If “have a nice day” — remember the smiley face? — defines the 1970s, what defines the times in which we live?

How about “have a (pumpkin) spice day”?

The ubiquitous autumn fetish starts showing up in stores before the first tease of fall. This year, some newspapers and social media sites started coverage of the somewhat puzzling trend in August.

That’s just wrong. Everybody knows October is pumpkin spice month.

Here’s what I found out when I looked into the craze: As you await Halloween, you could easily devote a whole day to nothing but pumpkin spice.


The day starts with a jolt from your pumpkin spice alarm clock. (This originally was intended as a joke, but Google proved me wrong. A post on Twitter touts this very thing, then sends you to a site with an autumn wake-up.)

(In fact, everything we mention in this story is real, even the ones that sound like jokes.)

You smile as you throw back your pumpkin spice sheets and duvet cover with pillow shams, then head into the bathroom.

You might think that’s the only place not invaded by pumpkin spice (known as PS from this point on). But really, you know better than that.

In the shower, you grab your bottle of PS body wash and shampoo — which comes with an accompanying conditioner, in case you’re into that.

A little bit of PS deodorant, and you’ll smell as fresh as a latte all day.

(Unfortunately, you learned a while back that PS toothpaste apparently is not a thing, after you were taken in for a few giddy minutes by a fake Crest PS on a gag Buzzfeed post.)

You did, however, use PS toilet paper when you first got up. But you didn’t need the PS Poopourri.

At this point, if you’re an all-in kind of person, you put on your embroidered or appliqué pumpkin sweatshirt (available sans spice at fall craft shows everywhere) and head downstairs for breakfast.

You pop a PS pod into the Keurig and make some instant PS oatmeal to eat with a bagel and homemade PS spread.

After that satisfying weekend breakfast, you plunge into house cleaning. You take a break to contemplate making your own PS room deodorizer, but decide to use a commercial spray instead. (Who wants to spend a day off making air freshener?)

You take a break from chores to enjoy a PS tea and a book, “Death by Pumpkin Spice” by Alex Erickson. You eat a PS protein bar and a PS yogurt and call it lunch.

Back to work. The dog, a cute little Pekingese-Chihuahua mix named Belle, needs a bath — with PS pet shampoo, of course — so she can smell as delightful as you and the house. She’s such a good girl, she deserves a PS treat.

You head out to prepare the garden for winter. Your PS garden flag keeps your day on track.

Your final chore is detailing your car. You grab your bottle of PS interior car cleaner and scrub away, secure in the knowledge that a PS dinner awaits. In honor of pumpkin spice day, the old SUV gets a new scent.

Dinner is the highlight of your PS adventure. The main course is Pumpkin Spice Spam, provided you can find it. The delicacy caused quite a stir when it came out and appears to be in short supply. Cans are still available on eBay, though you’ll pay a filet mignon price for an often-maligned can of what some doubt is meat.

If you can’t find (or afford) it, a sweet potato side dish can fulfill your daily PS requirement. And if there’s time for a homemade dessert, don’t forget the PS cheesecake.

If you’re a risk-taker, sit on the patio and relax with a little post-meal vaping. (Yes, the Internet is full of PS vape juices, but I’m not going to help you, given the recent news about vaping. You’ll have to Google this one.)

Or, instead of risking life and lung, why not chill with an after-dinner drink.

Then it’s movie night, with PS munchies, of course.

What to watch? “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” followed by “Spookley the Square Pumpkin,” both animated classics.

Perfect family fare. Lot of pumpkin, but not too spicy.