There is increasing pressure for young girl scouts to outperform one another in the sales of cookies. This is fine, as it encourages confidence, manners, record keeping, and good-will.
However, they are aided and abetted by parents who fuel most of the sales, and it is becoming rather annoying.
You have seen it, and no doubt participated in the charlatan acts of parents who think they are doing the youngsters a favor by padding their sales.
The scouts mom or dad walks around with an order form, pen in hand: ‘how many boxes can I put you down for?’
The thoughtless and unsuspecting customer says with a wry smile: ‘oh, one or two, let’s see what kind you have.’ Aha, says the parent, another sale for my daughter! This happened to me last week with my yearly visit by said scout’s parent. ‘sure, I’ll by a few…from the scout!’ Of course this response was ignored, and I was told ‘I’ll go get her,’ but this was not to be, as I was thought to be a fool no doubt. But let’s back up here.
The idea of scouts selling cookies was for their own good, as they are supposed to promote girl scouting. What I wanted to hear was something like this: ‘Mr. so and so… my name is…and I am a girl scout representing troop 53 from…and I was hoping you would support the tradition of the scouts by buying a box or two, or as many as you like, for you see, not only would you be getting a return for your dollars by way of yummy treats, but you will be honoring an even better American tradition of keeping alive scouting.
I have been a scout for …years, and this fund raising helps us to purchase camping supplies, so we can experience the great outdoors. Your purchase also helps with administrative needs, such as books, computers, and even for the den mothers phone bill.’
Obviously impressed with such passion and knowledge, I would then ask about her latest trip; ask her to explain how her scout experience has helped her in school, and possibly ask what her favorite moment as a scout was. You get the point. But no, the poor kid is nowhere to be found; for the parents have some kind of race themselves, so one can have the boasting rights for the year.
The essence of scouting, I recall, is to foster kindness, experience, fun, travel, knowledge of the outdoors, respect for adults, etc; the selling of cookies should be (if done at all) done by the girls alone. Next time you are asked to buy cookies, do as I did, ask for the kid, you will be doing everybody a favor.