hgazette.com, Haverhill, MA


March 21, 2012

Poor Tom's Almanac: Girl Scout cookie never crumbles


Like most dads, I used to bring cookie supplies to work and peddle them to my cohorts. One or two helped themselves to a box without payment and I found myself kicking in the proceeds. Not that they meant it, given their meager salaries. Girl Scout cookies are like peanuts. You can't stop at one.

"Mr. V," a blue-eyed girl called out in church. She had her sheet in front of my nose. Now this youngster is a salesgirl.

"How many boxes would you like to order?" she smiled curtly.

"I bought some from my granddaughter, "I informed her.

"Fine. Will three be enough?"

I was driving down the road and there before me was a billboard marking the 100th anniversary of the Girl Scouts. It was an eye-catcher the way they portrayed the numerals with cookies. It looked so realistic, I wanted to reach out and take one.

I can only vouch for my daughter by telling you what the Girl Scouts did for her. She joined the organization at 10 — shy, inhibited, calculating.

Through the various genres, she blossomed into a well-rounded teenager, oozing with confidence and maturity. A base had been established. Everything else grew from Scouting.

And she would be the first to tell you that Scouting played a significant role in her life and career as a city editor of The Newburyport News. It taught her how to handle adversity and manage responsibility. People skills were adopted.

Both her brothers became Eagle Scouts and perhaps it was Sonya who planted that seed as the first-born. We were a Scouting family from the get-go and experienced some of our best years together in Scouting. No doubt the boys were just as productive, even without cookies. They sold candy and candles.

By the time we got done ordering, spending, eating and gifting, we were pretty much all cookied out this year. Boxes were piled up on our living room table. I tried a couple others like the lemonade and the caramel deLites that were supposed to be lower in calories — until you eat more than you really should.

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