It’s autumn, and you know what that means: pumpkin spice everything and decorative gourds everywhere! I am very puzzled by the decomposition rate of various decorative gourds. For example, I have one on my desk that has been sitting there since last autumn and does not appear to be any worse for wear. It looks like a small, pale yellow pumpkin. However, during the gig at the orchard, I got two tiny gourds that looked just like little pumpkins, and they both molded within two weeks. Here I had thought they would last until Halloween, and they didn’t even last until October! So why did they go bad so fast while the one at work appears to be immortal? Will it last until the earth is swallowed up by the sun? And what exactly is its secret? Maybe I should alert scientists to this phenomenon so they could study it and apply their findings to, say, me. After all, this gourd is about 200 years old in gourd time, and it doesn’t look a day over 25. Wouldn’t we all love to know its secrets?