It’s Punkin’ Chunkin’ Time Again…

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For those of us who grew up in Delaware (both owners), fall meant three things: Class field trips to that one apple orchard that’s still open, the gradual transition from soups to chowders, and having to listen to the damn Punkin’ Chunkin’ Anthem (link here).

You may think you’re initiated into the world of Punkin’ Chunkin’ because you’ve seen a thing or two about it on the Science Channel. To a Delawarean that’s the equivalent of saying you’re Jewish because you watched Eight Crazy Nights by Adam Sandler. Nope. That’s not the way it works.

Back before the Science Channel decided that a bunch of crazy people shooting pumpkins into the heavens was worthy of primetime broadcast, there was a VHS tape of the history of Punkin’ Chunkin’ played in classrooms all across the tiny state of Delaware. As we remember, it was played as if it somehow represented a fine opportunity to give growing minds science education without the nuisance of having to teach them anything. And, in this video, was the Punkin Chunkin’ Anthem (linked again here).

The lyrics to the Punkin’ Chunkin’ Anthem are as follows:

It was the end of October, the beginning of November.
The air was cold and clear and I said, Boys listen here,
I think I can make a punkin fly.
John said, Cannot. I said, Can too.
So we put that punkin in a bucket, swung around, away it flew.
John said, No fair. We said, Hell, it’s in the air.
So the challenge was made and the gauntlet was laid
To build a machine to power a punkin through the air.
John said, Springs are the way to go. Bill said, I don’t believe so.
It’s Punkin Chunkin time again.
Come on, all you neighbors and friends.
I’ll show you how to make a punkin fly … rain, snow or blow.
Them punkins are gonna go!

Last week we wrote an article listing our favorite Fall Drinking Songs. In a way, this week is about our least favorite fall drinking song: The Punkin’ Chunkin’ Anthem (linked again here). It plays through our heads from October 1st until Thanksgiving like a warbly, pseudo-educational cassette from Hell.

Now, it is true that pumpkins are a part of our national heritage. Pumpkins originated in North America [1], and they are one of the more popular American crops [2]. They are used in everything from pies to soups to beers. Furthermore, Punkin’ Chunkin’ itself represents perhaps the best example of what ingenious, directionless Americans with too much time on their hands can achieve. It’s really just the song that we can’t handle.

So, in conclusion, this is the very, very long way of answering a question we’ve been asked three times this week, “Do you make a Pumpkin Mead?”

No. No we do not. Not because we think it would be bad or because we don’t know how, but because it would make us think about the goddam Punkin’ Chunkin’ Anthem (linked for a final time here). 

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