The beginning of autumn brought the onslaught of pumpkin spice everything and, as usual, the PSL craze has hit America hard. Although the UK remains relatively unaffected, with only a few PSLs to be found at your local Starbucks, for Americans, pumpkin spice season has become a state of mind.
This autumnal attitude typically manifests by the consumption of pumpkin-based abominations such as pumpkin spice cereal, pumpkin spice pancakes, and – inexplicably- pumpkin spice spam in addition to the traditional pumpkin spice latte (commonly abbreviated as PSL). However, especially devoted members of the cult may up their game by wearing clothing which advertises their obsession such as tee-shirts which read, ‘Pumpkin Spice Everything’ or ‘(Pumpkin) Spice Girl.’
But one devotee has truly taken her obsession to the next level by purchasing black market pumpkin spice syrup. Yes, you read that right— there really is such a thing as black market pumpkin spice syrup. This sneaky seasonal trade is estimated to have begun in the early 2000s, when crazed pumpkin spice fanatics became desperate to beat the seasonal limitations and enjoy home-brewed PSLs long after they stopped being available in stores. Bought and sold anonymously on eBay, buyers have no way of tracing the origins of the mysteriously acquired syrup. However, the item’s branding confirms that this is indeed the authentic, chemical-y goodness that is pumped into your PSL in such popular chain stores as Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts.
When asked why she was so keen to turn to the black market, one American student happily explained:
It all started when my local Dunkin Donuts ran out of pumpkin spice and switched over to Christmas flavours. As soon as the PSL launched at Dunkin on August 19th, I was making trips to Dunkin at least once a day, but often twice. I have so many reward points. But then one day in November, out of the blue, they said they wouldn’t be getting any more in stock and I was devastated. I mean, it’s not even Thanksgiving yet! This is still pumpkin spice season! And that’s when I knew something had to be done.
The student justified her purchase by stating simply, ‘I need my pumpkin spice. People have said that I’m obsessed with pumpkin spice and I’m not embarrassed to admit that; pumpkin spice lattes are my entire personality. But I think this is an obsession that doesn’t hurt anyone. And PSLs really are the spice of life.’
At the time of this interview, the student in question was consuming her third pumpkin spice latte of the day and wearing TooFaced’s new Pumpkin Spice palette.