Six Things That Feel like Fall (Hint: None Of Them Are Pumpkin Spice)

It’s a running joke that basic bitches love fall because they get to swap out their seasonal wardrobes, break out the fleece footwear, and order overly-popular, fall-like drinks at their local coffee shops. Basic bitches love to be cozy. They also love Lululemon, Gwyneth Paltrow, blowouts, and fluffy lap dogs. They use words like “totes” and “vacay” and gesticulate with a lot of hair flips. They’re fantastic, but … they’re a little boring.

I don’t think of myself as basic, but I do really enjoy the changing seasons: crisp air, falling leaves, Halloween decorations, and football. However — unpopular opinion alert! — I don’t like the flavor of pumpkin spice. I find it gloopy. In addition, almost everything that falls under the category of basic is also really expensive, and I have way too many kids and bills for all that jazz.

So, if you’re like me, you may find yourself wondering what else there is to the fall season besides booties and overly spiced, gloopy coffee. Thankfully (for you) I’m here to report there are plenty of seasonal enjoyments out there which absolutely do not involve the word “harvest.” Here are 6 things that feel like fall, but are so not basic:

Unusual candles. Forget that pumpkin patch crap — I’m talking about the ones that smell like whiskey barrels, tobacco, or crackling bonfires. I like the smell of leather hide and gasoline, roasted walnuts and freshly-brewed coffee. Bring me the warm smell of freshly cut timber, and I’ll be happier than a bird with a french fry. An added bonus: candlelight is romantic and flattering on the figure, and if you’re anything like me, your figure might need a bit of flattering this time of the year. Luckily, scents like these aren’t that hard to find; you just have to take the time to look.

Converse sneakers (because flip-flop season is over). I have respect and appreciation for trends, but they tend to look better on other people, which is why I stick with tried-and-true Chuck Taylors when the weather turns crisp. I’ve lost count of how many people have stopped me on the sidewalk to comment on my brightly-colored shoes; I wear them with everything in my closet, including dresses, jeans, skirts, and sweats. The thing about Chuck Taylors that makes me happiest, though, is the fact that they come in every color imaginable and even though I don’t like pumpkin spiced coffee, I can totally rock pumpkin-colored sneakers.

Non-ponytailed hairstyles. It’s fall! It’s time to leave our hair down, shake it out, let it be free, braid it, or do imaginative things with the front pieces. Fall means hats: baseball caps, Fedoras, ski hats, Ranchers, berets! SO MANY OPTIONS! Down here in the South, where I live, it’s too hot for any kind of hat before September, so when this time of year finally rolls around, I am stoked. Break out the YouTube tutorials, ladies, and save the ponytails and messy buns for the hot months.

SEX. Because it’s officially no longer too hot to touch another human being.

Tailgating. Living in a college town means that football and fall go hand in hand. I am not a sports fanatic, like my husband, but dressing up in our team colors while eating Buffalo Chicken dip and holding an over-sized foam finger? I’m a fan of THAT. Close runner-ups are outdoor grilling, yelling at the television, and cramming into a stadium on game day.

Simple carbs. OMG, carbs. I saved my favorite Fall thing for last, because eating things that my body immediately converts into fat is one of the best things about this time of year. Halloween candy? Yes, please! Pies, cobblers, and fudge-like delicacies? Most certainly! LOAD ME UP, MOTHERFUCKERS. I’ve got a winter fat layer to grow.