Resolutions, shmesolutions. It’s Girl Scout Cookie time.
Who doesn’t love those Samoas with their chocolate and caramel chewiness? You have not lived until you’ve dunked Trefoils in your cocoa or chased a peanut butter and jelly sandwich with a Tagalong or two. Downton Abbey and a sleeve of Thin Mints? That is a pretty great evening. And if you are craving comfort food, you can always crumble some Do-si-dos in a bowl of milk and call it cereal.
I will admit it: when it comes to Girl Scout Cookies, I am an easy mark. I am happy to plunk down $6 – yeah, six bucks – for a box of fourteen gluten-free Toffee-tastics.
But even I have my limit. The self-proclaimed neighborhood Girl Scout Cookie crazy lady has her line. And it is this: I will not buy cookies from your mom. That’s right. I will purchase cookies out of wagons towed by girls in sashes or beanies. I will buy boxes off of folding tables from kids shivering outside of Rite Aid. I will snack on treats sold to me by entrepreneurial little sisters at my daughter’s basketball game.
But if I am purchasing Thin Mints out of a minivan, someone’s kid better be the one saying please and thank you and counting out my change.
Which is irritating for the moms, I know. Because as magical as cookie February is for the rest of us, it is super-annoying for moms. Moms have to tally those cookies, and sort the boxes, and accompany their kids to those sleeting Saturday morning troop sales. I get why they advertise, when they take to Facebook to help boost sales on their daughter’s digital cookie platform. But at least have your kid write some thank-you notes when your Twitter friends buy a box or two of Rah-Rah Raisins.
Because as much as I am a GSC aficionado, I also realize that the cookies themselves are ridiculous. They are one of the last societally approved forms of sugar-addiction. We all know to cut back on pasta, potatoes, and Juju Fruits. These days, a grown woman can hardly order a hamburger without a side of matcha and Brazil nuts. But nobody gives me the evil eye when I toss back a lemony handful of Savannah Smiles. It’s for a good cause.
What that cause is, I confess, I am not entirely sure. I never was a girl scout myself. As a kid, I thought piano lessons were cooler. My oldest daughter only made it through a single season as a Daisy Scout. She marched in a couple parades, earned her roller skating patch, and learned to make trail mix during a mock campout held one Saturday morning on the local softball field. We bailed when we discovered there was little, if any, scouting involved.
But when it comes to cookie sales, I am told the girls are not just scouts, but emissaries. These transactions promote self-confidence, worldliness, and a healthy spirit of competition. Moms: you already possess these traits. But some of your girls, they could use the practice. They should speak clearly to grown-ups and look them in the eyes. If they want to win the cookie sales piggy bank or the key chain or the journal and pen, they will probably need to answer questions about nut allergies and dairy. They might even summon some courage and knock on a few doors. Though I am never able to help with this part, it is good for them to be told no thank-you from time to time, so they can practice dealing with life’s small disappointments. But Mom, if you just flog fifty boxes after Pilates class, the whole child self-actualization model crumbles like, well… a cookie.
So kiddos, if you set up your table outside the taco stand or drag your duffle bag over to the swim meet on Tuesday afternoon, you can put me down for a box of Samoas and one box of Tagalongs. And if Mom is with you, have her read a magazine, catch up on Candy Crush, or just chit-chat with me. Because I will buy over-priced, chemical-laden, nonsensically delicious cookies from you. But I won’t buy them from your mom.
This DadvMom.com piece appeared today at the New York Observer.