October 3, 2007, - 3:51 pm
By Debbie Schlussel
It’s pumpkin season. And people are making my favorite (pumpkin pie), as well as carving Jack-o-Lanterns for Halloween.
Perhaps, the most creative (and tasteless) pumpkin “sculpture” comes from Tom Nardone, author of “Extreme Pumpkins: Diabolical Do-It-Yourself Designs to Amuse Your Friends and Scare Your Neighbors.” One of his unusual “creations” is below. But there are many others equally as “innovative” that he’s created, like a Medusa pumpkin, cannibal pumpkin, etc. He calls his creations “subversive”. More interesting pics here (Click on “Photo Gallery” on upper left-hand side). Visit Nardone’s Extreme Pumpkin website.
Nardone gave an interesting interview to USA Today. Did you know that pumpkins in some states are naturally bigger than in others? An excerpt:
Q: You talk about certain qualities a pumpkin has to possess to work as good Halloween design. What are they?
A: If you want it to be funny, you can’t tell anyone about it. If you tell all your friends you’re going to do a pumpkin being eaten by a squirrel, it’s not funny when they finally see it. It needs to be a surprise. For it to be cool, it has to be universally accepted as cool. Go for the gross. If it gives someone the heebie-jeebies, it’s a great pumpkin.
Q: What’s your favorite pumpkin in the book? I see the cannibal pumpkin made the cover.
A: I like the cannibal pumpkin, but my favorite one is the property defender. It’s got old rotten pumpkins at its feet. It’s a traffic-stopper. It’s dramatic. I like when I do a scene on the lawn.
Q: What’s your favorite tool to carve a pumpkin?
A. It’s almost all done with the jigsaw. I experimented. What’s the best way for a manly man to carve pumpkins, I asked? I tried all the different tools. I’m a tool kind of guy.
Q: What’s the biggest mistake pumpkin carvers make?
A: Just making an everyday pumpkin probably. Making the same old triangles they do. And then some try to get too in-depth. They try to make George Bush’s face, for instance, and fail. They try to make it too complex. What’s the point? It’s a pumpkin.
Q: So, how do we get that Halloween attitude back?
A: Think of your fears. What’s truly scary. Are you afraid of heights? Get a pumpkin that just fell off the roof. What really grosses you out? Are you afraid of rats? Do one with rats. Casper the ghost is not scary.
Q: Why are pumpkins larger in Wisconsin and Ohio, as you say in your book? And do you need a different saw there?
A: They just are. For the big guys, you need something more. Blade length is important. If it’s not long enough, you won’t get the chunks out of it. Sometimes a jigsaw won’t go through. The kits in the store aren’t that good for taking the top off. You have to go at it with a steak knife, but you can’t make art with a steak knife.
Q: Tell us a bit about the mooning pumpkins.
A: Me, being the wise guy that I am, we had neighbors who were in a bit of a feud. So I put the mooning pumpkins (two pumpkins peeking out of the top of jeans) on one neighbor’s lawn and pointed it at the other neighbor’s. They were infinitely amused. It was a big hit.
Tags: favorite tool, George Bush, Halloween, Ohio, Tom Nardone, USA Today, Wisconsin