Thursday, March 19, 2009

Thin Mints: The Adult Cookie

Dartmouth’s winter term has finally come to a close. I have, in the past week, written over 90 double-spaced pages, most of it in three quick bursts*. As you may imagine, I am exhausted, but there’s no rest for the weary: I am driving to Miami with the Dartmouth Navigators Christian Fellowship starting today for several days of Habitat for Humanity work. Blogging will either be light or non-existent for the next two weeks, just as it’s been for the past two, but I hope to be back with a roar in April. As for this post, it’s one of those personal entries a blogger allows his or herself, as opposed to a post with a point, like all that political garbage I write.

I wrote about 39 of those 92 pages at the Edgerton Episcopal Campus Ministry, where have I spent many a finals period over the past four years. The Edge is always a homey and welcoming place, but the campus ministers try especially hard to make it so during finals. One of the little amenities inevitably laid out, at least during winter term, is Girl Scout cookies.

Two types of Girl Scout cookies loom large over my childhood: Thin Mints and Shortbread cookies. I suspect that Thin Mints will remind me of my dad for as long as they make them.

I will always think of Girl Scout Shortbread cookies as the taste of childhood. When I was a little kid, Mom tended to buy three flavors of Girl Scout cookies: the Peanut Butter cookies in the orange box (that’s the way I thought of them then and I still don’t know their name), which she liked; Thin Mints for Dad; and shortbreads for me (at the time, I thought of them as the bready cookies in the blue box). I was rarely allowed either the peanut butter cookies or the Thin Mints, and when I was, I could only have one or two. I’m supposing the rationale was that I liked the shortbreads, but my folks didn’t, and so everyone could have their favorite cookie for longer if the kids just stuck to their own box.

I never cared much for Mom’s peanut butter cookies, so that was no sacrifice, but I did enjoy the thin mints. Sometimes I would sneak one or two if no parent was around. To this day, even though I eat them more any other flavor, I still think of them as something adult and mature, just like driving, going to meetings, beer, taxes, rated R movies, or flying alone.

And just for the record, as I write this post, I am indeed munching on Shortbread cookies. And they still come in a blue box.

*(If it’s of any interest, the three papers were: 1) a literary review of Mary Crow Dog’s Lakota Woman for an NAS class, 2) a paper on the policies of termination and relocation as seen in David Treuer’s The Hiawatha for another NAS class, and 3) my thesis-turned-independent-study on the decline of the religious right and the new era of evangelical politics. Like I said – it’s my blog and I can write what I want.)

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