It was not unusual to see Girl Scouts in the wild this time of year, given that we find ourselves in the depths of cookie season. So when people pulled into the lot of Tony’s the strip mall pizza shop just into the suburbs near the community college, it was not odd to see little girls sporting the familiar girl scout green and brown vests gathered in front of corrugated boxes stacked behind and under folding tables. Propped against the table are hand drawn poster board signs, slightly bowed in to stand them up sturdily. Barely legible words, written in pastel magic marker, advertising cookies in a charmingly childlike scrawl next to the just this side of recognizable hand drawings of Samoas, Thin Mints and Tagalongs.
Who doesn’t love Girl Scout cookies after all? They are damn tasty and highly addictive snacks. The shelf life of a box of cookies in the typical house is very short. Most folks go from “just a couple” to “man that box got empty quick” in a matter of minutes and mindlessly shovel delicious cookies into their faces one after another as they watch a basketball game or some movie.
These girls however look a bit, different. There is a certain, air, dare I say attitude about them. For one thing, these girls aren’t smiling, aren’t laughing with each other. The three girls are standing there, one of them, the one with the straight black hair and the bangs above her big blue eyes, standing with her arms crossed in front over her, a scowl on her face as she assess the foot traffic in and out of the pizza shop. The girl with the curlier hair stood with her hands on her hips looking at the parking lot with a cold blank stare. The blonde was the younger of the three, she was chewing gum in a lawn chair behind the cash box and the IPhone with the credit card charging thingy attached to it .
A tall man in a long London Fog coat walked out of Tony’s with a freshly baked pie in the familiar pizza box.
“You going to buy some cookies or what?” Curly said with a frown.
“Sorry honey, no cash left today, get you next time, …promise”
“I’m not your honey, slick. You got enough for that pizza, but nothing for cookies huh? Well we can take credit cards so cough up the gold card and get 20 bucks worth pal, lets have it. Come on.”
The guy kept walking, ignoring Curly who was now following him to his car. “Oh okay buddy, ignore little girls, ignore children. I see how you are, cheap jerk, cant cough up a double saw to send a bunch of kids camping this summer, spent it all on those ugly wingtips you have on huh?”
The man continued to ignore her, clicking the automatic door unlock on the fob of his key ring causing his car to beep as the door unlocked. She had pulled a small notebook and a pen out of her pants packet and was writing down his license plate number.
Blonde and bangs were watching from the sidewalk, smirking.
“Is there something I can do for you?” the man asked, looking pretty unnerved by the whole experience.
“Too late for that pal, you cant afford a couple boxes of cookies anyway. Clown.”
“Why are you taking my license number?”
“No reason, just in case it you know, comes up sometime, know what I’m saying?’
The guy got into his car and started it. Curly walked back to the other with an evil grin.
A woman sat in Rav-4 near the scouts, presumably a mother, smoking cigarettes and texting with her phone oblivious to the goings on at the cookie stand.
“That’s a nice touch with the license thing.” said Bangs
“Yeah I thought of it last week when all those jerks walked right by us without saying a word. It makes these stiffs as nervous as hell.”
The girls laughed for a moment as another customer walked in to Tony’s and came out with her box and a six pack of Pepsi. She smiled, placed her food down on the table and surveyed the cookie boxes.
“I’ll take a box of thin mints please!” she said to Blonde with sweet smile, taking out a five dollar bill.
“A box? A? As in one? What kind of camping do you think we are going to do selling one box?”
The woman was taken aback. “I’m sorry all I have left is the five, look take it or leave it, I have to get this food home before it gets cold” She was clearly annoyed by Blonde’s reaction.
“Tell ya what lady, I’ll give you the box, on the house, you need the five bucks more than we do evidently. I wouldn’t want you to miss getting a scratch off at the Nice n’ Easy on the way home all for a box of thin mints. You just take em. On me.”
Blonde plopped the box on top of the woman’s pizza and turned her back.
“You are a rude little girl do you know that?” the woman scolded as she knocked the cookies off her pizza and headed to her SUV “Never mind, I don’t want your cookies.”
“Hey you forgot your thin mints!!” Bangs yelled after her. Blonde and Curly started chuckling. “you think I’m looking forward to loading all this junk back into the car after you Bozos don’t buy? Come back when you are ready to buy!”
A man in his early 30’s wearing a ball cap popped out of the restaurant.
“Cookies! Yes! GOTTA get a couple boxes, gimmie a Samoas and a Tagalongs. Hey can you break a twenty?”
“Does this look like a bank to you? Do we look like bankers? Do your self a favor, get the four boxes, give me the twenty and call it a good day” Bangs said to him with a dead eyed stare.
“Fine, whatever, okay, four boxes. Man you guys are tough!”
“Wouldn’t have to be if you guy’s weren’t so cheap”
She stacked his cookie boxes in a grocery bag. “Good choice pal. Thanks, come back again when you get your allowance and I’ll sell you some more”
“Could I have gotten just the two if I had used a credit card? No change making there right?”
“Nice try genius, Twenty dollar minimum, we get dinged a percentage out of every swipe, so we lose a few just to make it convenient for you no cash having clowns looking for sweet treats. Christ, all you people want is something for nothing. ”
The young man walked away shaking his head.
“Tough day today ..couldn’t chisel the wallets out of some of these bums today” Curly said to the group as they loaded the unsold product into the Rav-4, the sun starting to set over the parking lot.
“Yeah, we may have to lean harder on them tomorrow” Bangs agreed, slamming the tailgate door shut.