If the doldrums of warm weather and al fresco dining bums you out, Starbucks would like to remind you—on this first week of August—that fall is coming. Fare thee well, summer! You’re only 317 days away.
Starbucks has formed a Facebook group called Leaf Rakers Society, a “safe space” for lovers of pumpkins and scarves baldly disguising a marketing tool for their fall drinks.
When this came across The Takeout’s morning meeting, the news was met with a variety of reactions: From eye rolls and indifference to an embrace as warm as a cardigan sweater. On one hand, protocol says any mention of a pumpkin spice latte should be reserved until after Labor Day—and this seems to creep earlier into the summer with each passing year. On the other hand: Rustling leaves! Temperate weather! Apple cider doughnuts, baby!
Here, now, are two staff opinions. And we invite your thoughts in the comment section as well.
Look, everyone likes fall. There is not a strong anti-hayride, anti-flannel, anti-leaves-changing-and-crispness-in-the-air contingent from which fall lovers require protection. The backlash to the pumpkin spice lattes and the Halloween decorations is merely one of timing. We can all celebrate fall... when it’s fall. Until then, let’s be in the moment. Let’s enjoy summer’s long evenings, its fresh fruit, its backyard grilling. There’s something unsettling to me about our constant (corporate-driven) rush from summer to fall to “the holiday season” to Valentine’s Day to graduations. This is a ploy to sell more PSLs, and I will have no part in it before September 22.
Pumpkin spice in August? Bring it on. Maybe it’s due to the fact that I spent the majority of my adult life without central air, but I greet September the way other people greet July. Halloween is my Christmas. So long, uncomfortable, unrelenting sweatiness; hello, refreshing 70-degree breezes. Because of my autumnal mania, I am the weirdo who buys up all the Yankee Candle apple spice varieties and searches for pumpkin- and cinnamon-scented body wash online. I look forward to using my oven again, baking banana bread and crafting heavy casseroles. I am the living personification of The Onion’s Mr. Autumn Man. So this “safe space” Starbucks group may actually be my people. Just don’t get me started on Santa decorations in the Walgreens in September, though, because that is straight-up bullshit.