Out There: Cookie Monsters

My name is Susan Lacke, and I have a Girl Scout cookie problem.

In my second year with Competitor magazine, I’ve begun to take on more serious journalism. For the past few weeks, I’ve been doing some investigation into some heavy topics with scary consequences, and I’m just now ready to report to you with perhaps the biggest story of my news career. Brace yourselves, people. The news may shock you:

The Girl Scouts are trying to sabotage my marathon training.

It started innocently enough. One of my colleagues passed around the order sheet at the office on behalf of her niece. Warmed with nostalgia for my own days as a Girl Scout, I checked off a couple boxes. Then I added a few more boxes of flavors I thought my partner, Neil, would like. Then I tossed one more in, just to round it up to a nice even number.

“My inner fat kid thanks you!” I told her.

“Oh, shush.” She waved me away. “You run so much, you’ll burn it off.”

A couple weeks later, the boxes arrived at work, and I opened one to enjoy a cookie or two with my morning coffee.

I swear, those cookies were drugged, because by the time I left the office I had finished off almost half a box with no recollection whatsoever.

Sneaky Girl Scouts.

Last night, I was leaving the grocery store when a cute, pig-tailed girl named Madison approached me. Through her missing front teeth, she asked me if I’d like to buy a box of Girl Scout cookies. Though my rational brain was screaming at me to resist, my mouth seemed to separate from the rest of me when it smiled and said, “Okay, sweetie. But just one!”

Later in the evening, I crunched some numbers, then crunched them some more, until I found a formula in which my five-mile run that morning was satisfactory enough to burn off the number of cookies I consumed. I’d share the formula with you, but it’s highly technical and involves a lot of complicated skills, like denial, fraud, and outright shenanigans.

By midnight, I was meeting Madison in a dark alley. “You got the goods?” I asked.

“Depends,” she shrugged, “You got the cash?”

Our transaction was short and discreet. As I frantically tore open my case of Savannah Smiles to make the shakes go away, Madison rolled her eyes.

“Pssht,” she muttered under her breath, “Runners.”

I now have a pantry full of Thin Mints, Samoas, and Peanut Butter Patties, enough to last me for at least two weeks. A month, if I don’t share with Neil (an option I haven’t ruled out completely).

Meanwhile, I imagine Madison is sitting in a dimly-lit room with her fellow hustlers, while they count their stacks of money, plan their next trip to the Grand Cayman Islands, and laugh. Not a sweet girlish giggle, but deep, villainous belly laughs.

I know Girl Scout cookies are bad for some people. You don’t have to tell me about the marathoners whose careers were cut short by Trefoil overdose.

But I swear, it won’t happen to me. I’m not like them. I can quit anytime I want. It’s my right. I earned these cookies. I need something to take the edge off after a long run. I don’t expect you to understand.

If loving Girl Scout cookies is wrong, I don’t want to be right.

My name is Susan Lacke, and I have a Girl Scout cookie problem.

****

About The Author:

Susan Lacke does 5Ks, Ironman Triathlons, and everything in between to justify her love for cupcakes (yes, she eats that many). In addition to writing for Competitor, she serves as Resident Triathlete for No Meat Athlete, a website dedicated to vegetarian endurance athletes. Susan lives and trains in Phoenix, Arizona with three animals: A labrador, a cattle dog, and a freakishly tall triathlete boyfriend. She claims to be of sound mind, though this has yet to be substantiated by a medical expert. Follow her on Twitter: @SusanLacke

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