A few years ago, when I was working a United flight (wearing a navy blue uniform this time—what is it about me and uniforms?), a passenger and I started chatting and I noticed that she had a certain famous logo of a certain famous cookie and snack food company embroidered on her polo shirt. I am not at liberty to reveal the name on her logo, but I can tell you it rhymed with “Sheebler.”“We make all the Girl Scout cookies,” she confided in me with a furtive quick glance to her left, as if I might divulge such company secrets to the general public over the PA system along with the landing announcements, or perhaps write about it later on, say, a blog (not that there were such things as blogs back then, and if there were, no one besides Mark Zuckerberg knew about them), “but I am not supposed to tell you that.”
I nodded solemnly to indicate that I would take such valuable and confidentially secret crucial cookie information to my grave. Right after we landed three hours later, I bounced merrily off my flight and immediately called The Husband at work.“Guess-what-guess-what-you’ll-never-guess!” I blurted out in my trademark enthusiasm for sharing information I was never meant to receive. “I had some big wig from some big company on my flight, and now I know who makes Girl Scout cookies!”
“Were you working first class?” he interrupted.“Huh? No. Coach.”
“Why would a big wig fly coach?” he asked, ruining the momentum of my story. “If it was a true big big wig, then wouldn’t they fly first class?”“That is not the point. Maybe she did not have enough miles for the upgrade. Whatever. Who cares? The point is, now we can buy this brand of cookies and get a reasonable facsimile of Thin Mints any time we want! No more waiting until March!”
Instead of cheering into the phone like I had anticipated, he let out a deep sigh. “This is why you called me? MOV, I’m at work.”I hate it when The Husband is not as supportive of my chocolate addiction as he should be.
When he got home from work later that evening, I reiterated my Life Changing Moment from my flight earlier that day. Fake Thin Mints! Any time we want! Right now, in August!“Why would you do that?” he inquired, shaking his head as if I had recommended stealing the neighbors’ newspaper instead of buying our own (in my defense, I had only recommended that once, and I was joking. Sort of.). “Don’t you want to support those poor little Girl Scouts, MOV? Hey wait, I thought you used to be a Girl Scout?”
“Sweetie, of course I want to support them, but—”“If you buy your special cookies all the time, they won’t be special anymore. The reason they are so great is because they are only available for a limited amount of time. It is like a giant psychological experiment, and the cookies always win.”
Cookies always win? This was the first smart thing he’d said all day.In the end, I opted to follow his advice every year and wait until Girl Scout cookie time to buy them. I convinced myself that the reason was to help the Girl Scouts.
Yesterday evening, an entrepreneurial Girl Scout knocked on our door demanding $36 for cookies that we had pre-ordered, like the good neighbors that we are. I took the cookies, handed her a check that I had taped to the inside of my front door two days ago (what had taken her so long?!), and politely waited for her to leave.When she left, I ate four sleeves of Thin Mints. I like to help people, and this might be the best way for me to give back.