Take a deep breath. Smell that? It’s the sweet scent of pumpkin spiced everything, failed football bets and the foreshadowing of ensuing holidays where family will divide into two separate sides of the room and bicker about why their guy didn’t make it into the White House. With fall underway, let’s take a look at some expected highlights, sad farewells and a couple little known facts about the month ahead with the 10 best things about October.
No 10 - Autumn’s Arrival
The most obvious change brought about by October is the change in the weather, turning our plush green backdrops into earthy-toned autumn spectacles. Although autumn technically begins in late September, it seems that not until October that Mother Nature truly embraces the season with a few light drizzles and colorful wardrobe changes before she strips her branches naked in time for a good wintery blizzard.
Despite the sun going down a bit earlier, it’s the perfect excuse to bust out those long johns with the holes in the crotch, toss some “Harvest Moon” on the record player and hit up as many chili cook-offs as possible, each done separately of course. Spend a nice day at the local apple orchard, sucking down cider and countless candy apples. Remember, everything has to die off so that it can be reborn again in the spring, so go nuts with the cavities.
No. 9 - Football Season In Full Swing
We stand corrected. The most obvious change brought about by October is that everyone has complete football madness. Whether you’re the guy with three separate fantasy leagues and very little time for his actual life or job, a (overly used term) “fantasy widow,” or if you’re that blind substitute teacher hired as a replacement referee, football is here for the next few months to both ruin and enhance your life.
Expect October to leave a mound of nacho remnants under the coffee table, a pile of beer cans at the back door and some shirtless guy you’ve never met sleeping on your couch through Monday morning. Yes, these are the days we live for.
Work becomes less about promotions and getting ahead in life and more about gaining a few pounds and getting just the right guys on your imaginary team to play an imaginary game with possibly imaginary friends.
Although your entire income over the next four months is directed completely towards belligerent Sunday morning drinking and sports betting, it’s all in the American dream to rally the locals, don your team’s colors and cheer until your voice box gives out. Let’s just hope the replacement refs don’t fill in at the presidential debates this month too.
No. 8 - National Seafood Month
Everyday seems to be National Something Day, so much so that most days celebrate two things, like vodka and tacos or prostitution and toothpaste. Why not add one more to the list with the month-long celebration of National Seafood Month?
Not only is this a celebration of seafood’s delectability this month, but it’s also a time for awareness. This is a poignant topic because, aside from the fact that seafood is a refreshing delicacy, its future is looking more and more bleak with the problems like overfishing in our oceans. It’s important for people understand that certain types of seafood, such as blue fin tuna and many other large fish, are being overfished illegally across the globe. Many of the fish we have grown to know, love and watch on television are endangered, disappearing in masses from 70 to 90 percent. It’s cool to enjoy seafood, but it’s way cooler if we know which is the right kind to eat. So study up and learn this month!
(Editor's note: For our female readers out there, October is also Breast Cancer Awareness Month. So if you haven't recently, make sure to get yourself checked out and spread the word to other women.)
No. 7 - Fall Beer Here
It doesn’t take a top notch set of taste buds to know that the best seasonal beers arrive in the fall, shortly after the summer blondes and just before the pale winter whites, throwing a lovely party in your mouth where everyone is invited to take a whiff.
Visit a local brewery or try some tasty beer flights to make it official. With just the right amount of hops and barley, you can bid farewell to cases of watered-down domestics and pick up a nice pack of quality brew worth savoring. Although they’re not always the best for shot-gunning, you can be assured that people will respect your taste in beer selection a bit more, plus you won’t continue to walk around with beer stains on your shirt from acting like a frat boy. Or maybe you will.
Oh, and we didn't forget. October also means there are Oktoberfest celebrations the entire month in countless cities across the world. Find one, and take advantage of it.
No 6 - Halloween Haunts Us Again
The day where we dress like the sluts and psychopaths we truly wish to be, Halloween. It’s hard to imagine another day that makes you feel as comfy cross-dressing in front of your friends, taking candy from strangers and pretending to be someone else so people will like you. It’s like playing dress-up at a gay brothel that hands you a gift bag on your way out just for coming. What could be better than that?
Each year, there’s always that group of people who cleverly disguise themselves as the trendiest thing to come along that year. The only question is which costumes will be the biggest hit, aside from skinny guys going as Bane and Batman, blind people as referees and of course, some jackass who thinks it’s not too soon to be Bin Laden.
No. 5 - Pumpkin Spiced Everything
Lattes, pies, ice cream, even hamburgers. Everything is better when it’s pumpkin spiced, making the fall season that much more likeable. Like a premature Thanksgiving, notice how October makes the food in-take larger as you go, which works proportionately to your waistband.
If you happen to be in the Midwest, check out Morton, Illinois, the "Pumpkin Capital of the World." There you’ll have a hard time finding anything that isn’t made with pumpkin this time of the year, including the people.
Since the sun is down more and the tan is quickly fading, it seems more and more acceptable to wear your sweatpants, so why not eat and drink until the elastic gives out? Exercise later though.
No. 4 - Films Without Superheroes
Hopefully we speak for everybody when we say that it’s been fun watching a flock of unnecessary superhero movies so far this year, some of which flopped and successful ones that weren’t even that great (or were sequels or adaptations). Now it’s time to reintroduce some good ol’ fashion classic films with real actors and directors, many of which you can expect later this year, but beginning in October.
Ben Affleck's "Argo," Tom Hanks' “Cloud Atlas,” and Tim Burton’s remastered “Frankenweenie” are just a few of the great movies to expect heavy openings from this month.
Also expect there to be blood ("Seven Psychopaths"), Oscar buzz ("The Master") and, of course, a few sequels (yet another “Taken” and “Paranormal Activity”) in this tumultuous movie season. That should keep us busy while the anticipation builds for Tarantino’s “Django Unchained” and Daniel Craig’s new Bond flick “Skyfall” - right around the corner.
No. 3 - Presidential Debates
Democrat versus republican, black versus white, rich versus poor, smart versus stupid. However you want to look at the presidential race, this is the crucial time to tune in with the election. Politicians are revving up their bandwagons, doing their best to sway your mind as to who should be driving this buggy, but it’s these debates that are the largest tell.
Look into the big topics concerning our country, take a stand on as many topics as you can and see which candidate, Obama or Romney, delivers the best ideas for each in a heated one-ups-manship debate where the candidates are more likely to throw tomatoes at one another than come to an agreement on anything.
It’s an important time that only comes around every four years. So tune into the debates for both president and vice president candidates and see if you can’t form your own opinion.
No. 2 - New Season of TV
If you tuned out of television due to lack of good programming or you realized that there’s more to life than wondering why Jim and Pam Halpert are still getting new plotlines (not really), maybe it’s time to quickly tune back in.
With several shows in their swan song seasons ("Parks & Recreation," "Community," and "The Office"), it’s good to celebrate the journey we all took together, good episodes and bad, funny jokes and not-so-funny, kind-of-forced jokes.
With budget cuts and NBC and Fox making a lot of changes to their show rosters, you have to wonder if the shows to ensue will be as good. Actually you don’t, it’s almost certain we’ll be overrun with a plague of gut-wrenching (in a bad way) reality TV and more reasons to sharpen the knives before bed.
So tune in and enjoy what’s left of basic cable. Or, sell your TV set, buy a camera and make your own shows. They may actually be more watchable.
Next: Very Funny Vehicle Pranks
No. 1 - Columbus Day. Just Kidding. Baseball Playoffs.
Columbus Day! You wouldn’t be sitting where you’re sitting now, feeling great about your life and all the pretty things in it if it weren’t for a great gentleman known as Christopher Columbus.
OK that's a lie. Nobody really cares, and unless you had this past Monday off you probably didn't even know people still celebrate it. Well they do, but not as much as our country celebrates the MLB postseason.
Despite decreasing interest from fans across the U.S. in recent years, October is still the month of "America's Pastime." Heroes will rise on the baseball field on these chilly autumn evenings, it's just a question of who it will be this year. And with baseball mixing it up this season and adding an extra wild card team, things are already off to a pretty fun start. If you're still not into it, well, the NBA season tips off on October 30th. So there you go, you spoiled sports fan. Enjoy.