March 5, 2012
Editor’s Note: Carole Townsend, a correspondent for the Daily Post, is writing a blog called “Food for Thought.” It is available online at http://www.gwinnettdailypost.com/townsend.
My gosh it has sneaked up on me again. It’s Girl Scout Cookie selling season, and I don’t care where you go, you can’t avoid the little darlings with their well-packaged sugar- and fat-laden wares that taste so good.
Now I support the Girl Scouts wholeheartedly; in fact, this month marks the organization’s 100th anniversary. Did you know that? The girls’ group was started right here in Georgia – Savannah, in fact. What the thousands of young ladies who have grown up being Girl Scouts have learned is all good, and I applaud the parents who back their girls in this wonderful organization.
Still, those darn cookies. I walk past the tables, strategically placed in front of supermarkets and big retailers with cookie boxes neatly stacked and displayed, and I begin to sweat. I steel myself for the breakdown that I know will inevitably be coming. When a sweet little Girl Scout approaches me to ask whether I want to buy some cookies, I have to tell the truth here: I’m not always truthful. Sometimes I say I don’t have any cash (which is usually true; I simply launder it for my children). And as long as I’m confessing, I sometimes say I’ve already bought some cookies (also, usually true), or that I can’t eat sugar, or that I gave them up for Lent. In a panic, I say whatever pops into my head.
Last year, I felt so bad about being untruthful to little girls with good cookie-selling intentions, I just handed the attending mom a $20 bill and told her to consider it a donation. I drove myself crazy the rest of the day – What was I thinking? Now I’m out 20 bucks and have no Girl Scout cookies to show for it! When I told my husband I was going back up there to get $20 worth of cookies, he stopped me. He said it was for my own good.
I love Girl Scout cookies, but I dread when they go on sale. Isn’t it weird that so much guilt and anticipation and emotion are wrapped up in those colorful little boxes of confections? Anyway, keep up the good work girls; the problem is me, not you.
I will say that, of all the people who set up shop in front of Kroger or Sam’s Club or wherever you’re shopping on any given day, I think Girl Scouts should be the only ones allowed. I don’t like having to walk through several circles of sales pitches before I even get inside the store in which I intended to shop. It’s exhausting. On Saturday, we were hit up by satellite TV salespeople, windshield repair people, Girl Scouts (of course, we went over that) and, of all things, a group of people selling pet dental insurance. Ours is worthless; I can only imagine what a pet tooth care policy excludes. No matter; we weren’t buying.
Does it bother you to be hit up by salespeople before you even get into the store, or is it just me?
Carole Townsend is also a Gwinnett Daily Post staff correspondent and author of the recently-released book, “Southern Fried White Trash.” The book takes a humorous look at families and how we behave when thrown together for weddings, funerals and holidays. She has been quoted on msnbc.com, in the LA Times, USA Today and the Christian Science Monitor, been featured on FOX 5 News and CNN, and is often a guest on television and radio shows nationwide.