Monday, March 30, 2015

Not Surprisingly, I Was Kinda Shitty at Leading a Girl Scouts Meeting

March 29. That was the day that had been staring at me on my calendar for months. 

No, it wasn't the day of a big court argument or important legislative testimony. THAT would have been CAKE next to what was coming on March 29. 

See, that was the day I was scheduled to lead the meeting for Paige's co-op Girl Scout Daisy troop. Growing up, "co-op" was just a type of apartment building in New York City where people acted like even bigger assholes than usual. Today, it's code for "this activity will be a pain in your ass at some point, and someone else won't just magically take care of things indefinitely after you write a check."

And March 29 was my day to pay the co-op piper. My number was up and there was nothing I could do. I had to teach a dozen little girls how to "conserve resources." 

Now the irony of my assigned topic is worth a brief digression. Although I'm not oblivious to environmental stewardship, the CEO of Greenpeace I am not. 

That's apparent from the fact that I crack off a paper towel whenever the mood strikes, and had two kids in diapers that will still be in a landfill somewhere long after their kids are out of diapers. In short, when the planet finally burns to a cinder like a jalapeño popper left overnight in the fry-o-later at T.G.I. Friday's, I probably won't be able to claim total innocence in the matter.

Nevertheless, my job was to help 12 little girls earn their daisy petal in resource conservation, and fuck if I wasn't going to make them work for that shit. I spent a not insignificant amount of time seething at Pinterest and collecting garbage in my house in preparation for the big day.

When it came, the girls sat expectantly in a circle on a little blue mat, on the floor of the public library where our meetings are held. I've said before that I'm bad with kids, and I am. There's nothing that scares me more than a room full of children expecting me to hold their attention for more than five minutes, and this meeting was scheduled for an HOUR. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw one of my mom friends--who is familiar with my ineptitude--snickering in anticipation of the disaster to come.

The troop leader (whose shit is decidedly more together than mine, I don't need to tell you), handed the reins over to me. "Now, Libby is going to talk about our flower friend, Clover," she announced cheerfully.

WAIT...WHAT?! WHO THE FUCK IS CLOVER?, I thought, panicking as I looked down at my book about Spongebob Squarepants at the recycling center and a brand new copy of The Lorax that I had very incongruously and inappropriately bought new for this occasion (I couldn't find our copy, and it would have just been too consistent with the day's moral theme to take one out from the LIBRARY where I physically WAS).

Then I had a vague memory of chasing Isaac (a.k.a. a "tagalong," as siblings are called in Girl Scout-speak) around the room while other, more competent mothers talked to the girls about the various "flower friends" associated with each petal.

Well, FUCK. It was kind of like that dream where you sit down for a final exam and realize you haven't been to class all semester. But I was deep in the shit now, and had no choice but to roll with it. That bitch Clover was gonna cede the floor to Spongebob Squarepants, and that was all there was to it.

I blabbered on about recycling for awhile, and then had the girls make little garbage critters out of old egg cartons and googly eyes that looked nothing like what I had seen on Pinterest. That took most of the time, fortunately, but there was still my ill-planned "nature walk" to get through.

I insisted that we all step outside into the 40 degree monsoon to experience nature with our five senses. I failed to account for the fact that the library is on a busy thoroughfare with the least amount of "nature" in all of Juneau. 

Still, I was determined. I made everyone stand around awkwardly in front of the building for 45 seconds looking at bushes, grass, and old beer cans before cries of "I'm cold!" relieved me of the pressure of having to provide more educational experiences.

I couldn't believe my good fortune when I got back inside and saw that there were only 15 minutes left of the meeting! I suddenly felt like I had aced the exam I hadn't even studied for! I whipped out my "snack from the earth" (a.k.a. strawberries and clementines), and BOOM. Drop the MIC!

Well, at least until another mom asked, "Did you bring your cookie money? Today's the deadline."



  1. I warned you not to "sell" those damn cookies!

  2. Oh, Libby, that was hilarious! Thank you.


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