The seventh story from my collection Middle of Nowhere is up. In “Cookies,” a Girl Scout troop leader becomes involved in a bitter cookie selling scandal that rocks her suburban community and makes her an outcast.
THE CHOSEN MOVIE TO BEGIN JANINE ACORN’S ANNUAL SLUMBER PARTY FOR HER SENIOR FLOWER PATCH SCOUT TROOP WAS GLENGARRY GLEN ROSS, A PICK FROM JANINE HERSELF, THOUGHT TO BE MOTIVATIONAL REQUIRED VIEWING FOR ANY YOUNG FLOWER PATCHIAN. The girl who sold the most cookies this year was being rewarded (through a major pulling of strings) to be an extra on the tweentastic show JHS McKinley, a huge jump from last year’s Space Camp fiasco, a prize met with yawns, and worse than that, the lowest Flower Patch earnings since the foundation of the troop in 1972. Janine was determined not to let another cookie-selling train-wreck resurface this year.
Mackenzie Phelps, the little snot, was the first to make a face at Janine’s film choice. She had recently lost all her baby fat and gained a holier-than-thou-attitude. Evidently, she had gone to sloppy second with an older boy under the bleachers and astounded the other girls with repeated stories of the way his pierced tongue felt against her nipple. It angered Janine to hear it told in whispers during supposed arts and craft sessions, but if Janine was honest, at twelve years old Mackenzie Phelps already had bigger breasts than she did. Janine couldn’t remember any man in her life who’d been all too excited to go to sloppy second with her, especially her ex-husband Ron, who treated her breasts like doorbells, because in all honesty, there wasn’t much else he could do with them.
The other girls, high on root beer floats, whined along with Mackenzie who stood there with a told you so kind of look. She had pretty, blond hair, styled at some high-priced salon that her mother frequented and wore a tank top, which allowed her bra straps to peek through. Janine didn’t even bother wearing a bra that night.
“Is anyone cute in Glenn Larry?” Jamie Lynn asked, a dim girl who looked all of eight.
“It’s Glengarry. Alec Baldwin is in it.”
That remark made one of Janine’s eyes twitch. She longed for a smooth cigarette, or any oral fixation, but satiated herself for the time being by nibbling on her bottom lip. The girls began complaining as a chorus, but Janine raised one slender finger and prayed it would silence them.