So The Husband brings home this giant tin of homemade specialty cookies from his co-worker, Pamela. She had a health scare earlier this year and had surgery, so she is on a temporary leave. The Husband was very instrumental in helping her get her disability pay started while she was in the hospital and in covering her job while she was gone for months. These cookies were not so much “Merry Christmas” as a gesture of goodwill and thanks.
Within a half day of the cookies being brought home, a small child who lives in our house ate them all. Every. Last. One.
How does a person even begin to punish this blatant disregard for others? How greedy to eat all the cookies.
Of course, The Husband was quite upset (more on this later), as deathbed Pamela had gone to great effort to make these stunning cookies, complete with “Santas” iced in red and white, “reindeers” with silver sparkly bell and red frosted noses, multi-colored presents with delicately swirled icing, and sleigh bells that looked much too good to eat. The central ingredients were not flour, vanilla, and sugar, but instead love and kindness. The cookies were exquisitely beautiful and it was flat out rude, selfish, and thoughtless for one individual to inhale them all without even so much as offering to share one with The Husband, who they were originally meant for.
Now, substitute the name “MOV” for the words “small child who lives in our house” and you can see the dilemma. I was actually the one who ate the cookies, like a naughty first-grader with zero impulse control.
They were SO good. They were like the potato chips of the cookie world, impossible to eat just one. And I was so hungry. I had skipped breakfast and run out of time for lunch. Did I mention how good they were?
I looked down in horror at the empty tin, much like a murderer must survey the scene right after he just killed five people. What was I possibly going to say when The Husband found out the tin was empty? “I’m sorry”? Was I really sorry, or would I do it again given the chance? I was mostly sorry that I had not at least saved one for The Husband, but ohmygod they were so delicious.
I had the brilliant idea to rush out to my local bakery and replace them all. The professional bakery cookies looked perfect, painfully perfect. At this point, I was not trying to fool The Husband into thinking they were the same cookies (it was beyond obvious that they weren’t), I just wanted to make amends and not appear quite so gluttonous.
I set the new box of cookies on the counter. Don’t worry, I did not eat these too if that’s what you’re thinking.
But then the phone rang and it was one of my girlfriends calling to set up an impromptu happy hour/ playdate for Tall and Short. I am not usually as spontaneous as I should be, so I embraced the chance to just show up at her house in 20 minutes and not have to spend two weeks planning it and emailing back and forth.
Her parting words were “Don’t bring wine, Mike just bought a case last time he was in France.”
France?!? When did Mike go to France?
I scanned the cupboard for something, anything, to bring. Ha, I would ignore her and bring wine even though she told me not to. The Trader Joe’s discount wine winced at me. It said, “Don’t even think about bringing me unless you want to appear cheap. And stupid.” That Trader Joe’s wine, even though reasonably priced and actually quite yummy, seemed to have an attitude.
I had a half bag of pretzels that I decided against. There was one yogurt in the fridge, expired. A lone unopened jar of peanut butter blinked up at me.
That’s when I remembered the bakery box of cookies, humming holidays tunes on the counter top: “We wish you a Merry Christmas, and take us with you!”
What else could I do?
My friend was delighted. The happy hour/ playdate was a success and I didn’t look like a cheapskate to her.
I did, however, look like a piggy to The Husband that evening.
“All?” he asked in utter disbelief. “You actually ate all of them? You didn’t even save me any crumbs? What are you, a human vacuum?”
I have this incredibly annoying habit of giggling when I'm nervous. I started to giggle.
“Yes,” giggle-giggle-giggle, “I guess I ate all of them.”
“You guess? You guess? Did someone force you to?”
Geesh, he was acting as if I’d spent the mortgage money on new shoes. Again. Were a few cookies really such a big deal?
“Pamela made those for me! Her husband is out of a job and she is totally stressed that she’s going to lose her job from these medical absences. I assured her that everything is okay and that HR wants to help her. She made these cookies out of the goodness of her heart, and I know it took her all weekend and then you have the audacity to gobble them all up in one fell swoop?”
Giggle giggle giggle. “I didn’t mean to. I’m sorry.” Giggle.
“You’re not a bit sorry. Why would you be laughing if you’re sorry?”
He stormed out of the room.
I followed him. “Sweetie, I bought you new cookies! From the bakery! To replace the other ones.” I smiled. The giggling finally stopped.
“Fine. Where are they?”
“You ate those, too? Unbelievable.”
It is utterly unbelievable, as I told the bakery lady my sad, sad story today when I bought the second batch of replacement cookies for The Husband. She shook her head, as if to say, I totally get it, or maybe to say, You are a complete piggy.
I got home, put the new cookies in the tin. And walked away.
Good impulse control? Nah. The bakery lady gave me a free piece of cake.