Autumn is my favorite time of year.

It may be the changing colors, the falling temps, the start of the football season, or the abundance of wine, but there is something about the fall that I really enjoy. (It is very likely the wine.)

Actually, I think it is the change from hot and steamy weather, to a crispier cooler temperatures — even though it is more than 90 degrees as I write this column.

I am pretty sure that the hot summer days are numbered, which means we are getting close to the brief time period in which people don’t complain about the summer heat, but haven’t yet started to complain about the winter ice, snow and cold.

Autumn really has something for everyone, especially pumpkin lovers.

Yes, the fall is when pumpkins are in season. . . and when pumpkins are in everything.

Some people really go crazy for the pumpkin flavor. They eat it, drink and smell it.

I thought that it may be a fad, like roller blading, bell bottoms or exercise, but I guess this fruit is here to stay.

Yup, a pumpkin is a fruit. Most people, like myself, would think that a pumpkin is a vegetable, but since it grows on a vine and has seeds, it is fruit.

The pumpkin is part of the squash family because the only possible way that the fruit could be eaten is if it is squashed and smashed into foods that already exist.

Nobody has ever said, “Slice me off a hunk of that pumpkin,” or “will you warm me up a piece of pumpkin?”

There aren’t a whole lot of fruits that can’t be eaten raw, but the flavor is adored by so many.

There is pumpkin pie, of course, but there also is pumpkin muffins, pumpkin cookies and every other pumpkin baked goods.

Pumpkin fanatics can swig on pumpkin lattes, pumpkin wine, pumpkin beer and even a pumpkin martini, which I think I will pass on.

Even the seeds of a pumpkin are baked and munched on.

The fruit can be really healthy, unless you combine it with eggs, milk, sugar and a few other ingredients and then top it with half of a container of whipped cream.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not knocking pumpkins.

I don’t salivate for a pumpkin latte, nor do I anticipate the first pumpkin muffin of the season.

But I have been known to eat more than my share of pumpkin pie, and I will imbibe in a few pumpkin beers, in moderation.

My favorite thing to do with a pumpkin isn’t to eat it at all, but instead carve a jack-o’-lantern.

And my favorite Peanuts story is the “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown,” and the famous line, and great advice, “three things I have learned never to discuss with people: religion, politics, and the Great Pumpkin.”

However, I will never wait in the pumpkin patch for the Great Pumpkin just in case he shows up, especially now that I admitted to gutting and cutting faces into the big orange fruit.