It’s quarter to nine Monday evening. The phone rings and the
Mister and I take a beat before both of us leap to answer.
“I’m home in twenty. Meet me with the money?”
I nod and stumble over my words. “Yes, of course.”
I hang up, and look at the Mister and the Teen. “I have to be there in twenty minutes.” They don’t reply or make eye contact. Slowly I get my coat, keys, and purse. The Boy hugs me, begging me not to go. With a sigh and a loving look at my family (the last time?) I leave the house.
I have to meet my connection, and I hope my count is correct.
“You have something for me?” I am asked before I barely knock on the door.
I hand over the money and look at the merchandise. I’m short and as I try to explain, feel a few loose twenties in my pocket. I give up the crumpled bills and give a sigh of relief. Safe this time, but will I get another chance to prove myself?
Girl Scout Cookies, of course.
The Teen is in a highly organized troop. The Scout Leader is a diminutive woman whose size belittles her precision and sternness. Her politeness verges on curtness, and I am constantly told “That’s not how Mrs G does it.”
Once I got the bug from my butt and got to know her, Mrs G has turned into a person I admire and respect. She personifies The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, and the pre Merrill Lynch/ Countrywide iconic Kenneth Lewis (another figure I admire). She does brilliantly for the maturation of the girls, and tacitly assist parents in the tumultuous age of adolescence.
Each February she sets an individual goal for each scout: 500 boxes of cookies. When I worked, I was able to leave a case of cookies in eye view and my coworkers would assist in putting a dent in this number. I also was able to set up a table on the weekends in front of the supermarket and get a few of the customers as they bought groceries or picked up prescriptions.
This year, I was sweating. Where in the world would my customers come from?
Upper Darby commuters answered the question.
We spent the afternoon selling cookies at the train station:
Happy, ready and able.
Selling cookies is like the Mister playing Scarface selling his Yeyo. As fast as we could set the cookies on the table, just as quickly they were snapped up. When we were down to the last four boxes of Thin Mints, the terminal police had to come by to break up a minor disruption.
Out of 192, only 15 boxes remained. We did hella good!
I sometimes wish I could just give the cash rather than move product, but that would be cheating. Cookie selling is very beneficial to the girls. It teaches money management, goal setting, confidence (try selling to a mass of weary commuters), and self control (see if you can resist having four cases of your favorite cookie in your house, seductively imploring you to just have ONE). The Teen has set a goal of one hundred boxes a week and despite her introverted nature, has managed to surpass this goal with her own sales besides what was sold at the cookie booths. Even Bubbles! joined us and snagged sales of 140 boxes.
Thanks to assistance from Mrs. G, we are at 429 boxes sold. The Teen has planned to go to Wisconsin(?!) and wants to sell over 1000 boxes to assist with the costs of the trip. As much as I love Lemonades, I see that I will have to add hustler to my list of skills I posses.