As many of you know, every year, we here at Bunny Ears bring you a detailed guide to all things autumn. Normally, our interactive autumnal map allows you to search B&Bs in the area by size, style, and quaint charm, while our color wheel breaks down every leaf shade permutation possible by region and time of season. We’d even begun using millions of historical data points from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to put together the most thorough forecasting in fall foliage history. But that’s all over now, thanks to Jayce, our stupid intern who got lost in the woods and died.
Look, I feel bad for him and his family. Losing a loved one is never an easy experience. Trust me, I know. This leaf guide was sort of like a child to me. But if we’re being honest, can we admit that this kid was sort of an idiot? I know people are sad around here. He was perfectly nice, and I think he got me a cup of coffee once. But all he had to do was pull over off Route 272, take a couple pictures, and then hightail it back to the office. What the hell was he doing four miles deep in the woods with a satchel full of leaves and some ranger station map for a forest two states away? That’s just insane. I’m the biggest leaf lover I know, and I’ve never even gotten out of my car.
What the hell am I going to do now? This is all some of us have, this brief moment of repose every year, when the world stills in the autumn chill and we’re allowed to truly be ourselves. But thanks to Jayce, I’ve got a country full of red, yellow, black, orange, magenta, pink, purple, blue, and brown leaves, and fuck all to do about it. Seriously, I’ve got this stupid funeral on Saturday and then a wide open calendar. You might think Fall Foliage Expert is a lucrative position here at Bunny Ears, but I honestly work one month per year. One! So you can imagine I might be a little bitter than Jayce up and died during it.
And not to rock the boat, but are we really so soft that one fatality means folding up shop completely? Wouldn’t he want his death to mean something? I didn’t know him well, but based on his t-shirt game alone, I’m assuming he was really into Doctor Who. Well, here’s the one thing I know about Doctor Who: He never allowed the death of a loved one to slow down his mission.
So if Bunny Ears doesn’t have the balls to publish my leaf-loving guide this year, then by God, maybe I need to find someone who does. Millions of leaf veins are already closing off as I write this. Their chlorophyll is drying up. This is happening, whether Jayce’s family wants to admit it or not. Maybe it’s time we all put on our big boy pants and recognize that everything has its season. Jayce did. My job at Bunny Ears did. But this, right now, this is motherfucking leaf-peeping season, and it’s the most glorious season of them all.