Give us the Cookies!

Here in the Midwest, Girl Scout cookie time has hit. We’ve ordered from a faculty member’s daughter, the daughter of someone who has an office near me, and the daughter of Porkchop’s boss.

I’m a pretty easy target for Girl Scout cookies because I went through the travails of cookie-selling myself. Well, I should amend that statement because if a Girl Scout has already sold a hundred boxes, she doesn’t really need our help. Nope, I have a dear place in my heart for those Girl Scouts who are having a hard time selling. They’re the ones who need our help.

You see, when I was a Scout, depending on the number of boxes you sold, you received a cookie badge sized accordingly. With the exception of one year, I always had the smallest badge. And, I was always the only one in my troop to have the smallest badge.

Do you know how that feels? I didn’t really care about the number of boxes I sold because I knew my parents donated money to my troop throughout the year to cover costs. But I still hated feeling like the cookie outcast. And since you put the badge on your sash or vest, every other Scout knew that I was a cookie loser.

I had a hard time selling for the following reasons:

  1. We didn’t have any relatives in my town. Our relatives in Oklahoma weren’t really the cookie-buying type. Well, they probably would have ordered a lavish amount of boxes, but they wouldn’t have paid up when the cookies were delivered.
  2. My mom worked from home and my dad’s workplace was small. I could count on the library staff for 15-20 boxes, top.
  3. My parents didn’t have many friends. The friends they did have all had kids in Scouts.
  4. I was shy and suffered social anxiety, and it was really hard for me to go door-to-door in our neighborhood and have people say No, I don’t want your stinking cookies.

There was only one year in which I achieved the 50+ boxes sold cookie badge. However, it was only because my dad put us down for about 30 boxes. Still, I felt pretty proud to sew that badge on my sash.

I told all of this to a co-worker who said she wasn’t ordering from our faculty members’ daughter because she (the co-worker) tends to eat an entire box of Thin Mints in one sitting. The faculty member in question is from Korea, is very quiet, and probably won’t send her daughter door-to-door. I told my co-worker, look, XXX probably isn’t going to sell any boxes outside of our office, that’s the reality, and I don’t want her to feel bad.

I think my co-worker is reconsidering.

I love the Girl Scouts, but I do wish they would reconsider the cookie incentive stuff (I think the incentives are a bit more complex these days). I mean, come on, the organization is supposed to help build girls’ self-esteem, not make them feel bad because no one wanted to buy cookies from them.


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