Friday, November 10, 2006

Selling chocolate bars, and Girl Guide versus Girl Scout cookies

You know it's the Fall because Logan's school is selling chocolate bars and chocolate covered almonds. Last year they also had plain milk chocolate bars and chocolate covered crisp bars. His school didn't get them this year due to a mix up.

We're not doing a great job selling them. I think folks might be overdosing on schools selling the same old thing: chocolate covered almonds in the Fall, cookie dough in the Spring. I'm pretty tired of them, myself, as is Alana. It's the same old stuff all the time, and I think it's not having the effect it once did. They should try something new, preferably something that won't melt in a car (given that this is Louisiana).

I suspect that they feel people look forward to this stuff. I happen to like chocolate covered almonds, but I didn't buy any this year (at least not yet). They seem to be skimping on the number you get in a box. The first year we sold cookie dough was pretty successful, but last year was disappointing (I sold one container to someone at work the first year, but no one would take the stuff the next year). I don't think people really "look forward" to the cookie dough like they used to do. I think folks would have bought more chocolate if the entire batch that went to Logan's school didn't have nuts in it.

(Aside: Logan still doesn't understand economics. His friend, Dylan, came down to sell us chocolate. Logan didn't understand why we didn't buy any, why it really didn't make sense for us to buy one from Dylan and for Dylan's family to buy one from Logan.)

One thing that Alana does look forward to are Girl Scout cookies. This got us into one of our Canada versus U.S. discussions. They aren't the Girl Scouts in Canada, they are the Girl Guides. In Canada, the organization came from the original British organization, which was formed by Robert Baden-Powell, the founder of the Scouting movement. Originally the U.S. organization, founded separately but on the same principles, was called the Girl Guides of America, but they later changed to Girl Scouts.

In Canada, Girl Guides sell cookies, but they are entirely different from Girl Scout cookies. Girl Guide cookies are vanilla (yellowish coloured) or chocolate, and either have a vanilla or chocolate centre to match the cookie. This has caused us all sorts of confusion. Alana couldn't understand why I was shocked at the vast array of cookies they sell down here: Do-si-dos, Tagalongs, Samoas, etc. (see this Wikipedia article for more information). I, of course, couldn't understand why she had never heard of the plain vanilla cookies!

A typical discussion was like what we had today, driving home. She told me about how much she liked Girl Scout cookies. I explained that I liked the "original" cookies (not realizing that the Guides and the Scouts woudl have different bakers.) I described the Canadian cookies, while Alana looked askance at me. I then made a smartass comment like, "You know, plain cookies. Not like your fancy Somalians or whatever they sell down here!" To which Alana replied, "What, you mean like warring factions with a creamy filling?" At this point we just stared at each other with that look of horrible fascination one acquires upon anticipationo of viewing a particularly heinous car accident, and then I turned away so that I could drive along the road and not in the ditch.

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