Smiling, happy Girl Scouts – it was false advertising to me

I have a confession. I do not like Girl Scout cookies.
Yes, I know that makes me “un-American” in the eyes of many.
It’s OK.
In fact, you know those happy, smiling faces you see on the boxes of Girl Scout cookies … if someone were to have taken my photo when I was a Girl Scout, chances are, I would have been screaming or crying, or a combination of the two.
I admit it; I was not a fan of the Girl Scouting ways.
It wasn’t that I didn’t LEARN anything … in fact, I learned A LOT and took away these life-skills:
1. CHECKS are a form of payment. They are not “that little piece of paper?” One cold, bitter winter in the 1980s, when girls actually went door-to-door to sell cookies (instead of standing at the doors to WallyWorld, begging customers to buy cookies from a stand), I was walking back to my house with my clipboard and a gust of wind blew the check out from the clip. I arrived home. Showed my parents all the “cookies” I sold – I was so proud of myself! Then my dad said: “Melis! Where is the check?” I said: “That piece of paper? It blew away, in the wind …” (DUH!) Dad: “Melis, go back outside, and LOOK for it! That was a CHECK!” “Geez Dad, calm down!” I thought to myself, it’s just PAPER. I found the check, in the snow. It dried out just fine.
2. STONES hurt – especially when you trip on a seatbelt while exiting a two-door car and you land on your knees on gravel. Then your dad drives AWAY as you cry with gravel in your knees. “She will be FINE, Mr. Naymik.” THANKS! They just slapped a band-aid on my knee and sent me on my merry way … into hell.
3. PLAYING RED ROVER in a field of CLOVER – sounds dreamy, sure, until you get stung by a bee.
4. “BUDDY BURNERS” are not really your buddies. This may be the dumbest thing EVER thought up by Juliet Low, or her followers. Take an empty coffee can. Turn it upside town. Place a tea-light in it and “make a tasty toasted cheese sandwich.” Sure, THAT would be GREAT … if we weren’t designed for 10 year olds who had no clue about cooking. Got BURNED on the “BUDDY BURNER” – another trip to the nurse’s station.
5. When camp leaders tell you to “keep the tent flaps OPEN” – there is a reason! For some odd reason, when you (in the 1980s again) CLOSED the tent flaps, spiders took that as a “Welcome Home” sign and while we slept, they spun huge-ass houses above our heads. Damn you “Crystal” … you should have listened to Christina and I! We wanted them kept OPEN!
6. When a fellow Girl Scouter wants a drink of water from the fountain to the point where she shoves your BFF into the fence and then turns around and bites you on the ARM, I think that should mean an automatic discharge from the Girl Scouts of America. So, there I went … on another trip to the nurse’s station – they knew me by name now. And yes, the girl actually left bite marks on my arm. I was traumatized the rest of that summer. Bitch.
I just don’t understand why my parents forced me to go to summer camp every single year. I think it was a form of punishment.
I certainly did not walk away from camp, smiling and grinning from ear-to-ear like those girls on the boxes of cookies. To me, that is false advertising!

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