Tuesday, September 26, 2006

At Least It's Ghiradelli Chocolate

When I signed the paperwork for Mr. Personality's preschool, I expected a large packet of information. I was not disappointed, and eagerly read through all of the pamphlets and calendars and various and sundry things that the school thinks I should know.

And what to my wondering eyes should appear, but the fundraiser packet.

My goodness, I thought, school just started and they are already starting the fundraiser?

Silly me. This is only the first of at least four formal fundraisers, with probably a bunch of little ones in between.

I have never been good at selling things. When I attended school we had only one fundraiser, and that was selling World's Finest Chocolate Almond bars. I'm not even sure there were any other kind, so in those days, people with a nut allergy were out of luck. And I'm sure they were just heartbroken not to experience the pure joy that was the World's Finest Chocolate Almond bar. There were thirty to a box, and I can picture my young self opening the lid to inhale the aroma of all that confined chocolate mixed with the foil in which they were wrapped. It was so distinct that I can smell it even now.

I attempted to sell to my family, but even fifteen bars seemed like a lot for just my grandparents, and I didn't really have much family other than them. As for my friends, well, we were all in the same boat, so no one's parents were going to help me out, they had their own boxes to deal with.

As a result, throughout my school career I was a disappointing one-box-a-year seller. My mouth would gape open as the teacher announced that Martha had yet again sold five boxes this year, and I would enviously eye the poster which detailed all the totally lame awesome prizes. I always wondered how she did it. She must have stood outside the grocery store, which my parents would never allow me to do. I was fine with the status quo until 8th grade. If you sold three boxes (90 bars!) you got to go on a class trip to Disneyland. If you didn't, well, you got to come to school and do worksheets all day in the 7th grade classroom.

I was of course, desperate to go. Yet I was at a complete loss as to how one sells so many candy bars. I pleaded with my father to please just buy the three boxes and we would sell them later. I knew that if I didn't sell the three boxes, the tale of humiliation that I would have to endure as being the only 8th grader not to go on the trip would fall on completely deaf ears and they would force me to go to school. I think I cried. I may have even screamed a bit. I wouldn't even rule out some rolling around on the floor, beating my fists.

Lucky for me, I was a bit of a Daddy's girl, and my father relented and wrote the check out for ninety dollars worth of fairly cheap chocolate. As a parent, I now cringe at the thought. I tried to console him with the fact that within each foil wrapper was a coupon for a free cheeseburger at McDonalds. I don't believe that made him feel any better. Those boxes sat in our living room, wafting a chocolate-scented cardboard reminder of my failure as a salesman to any who passed by.

But I went on that trip to Disneyland, and even though my jeans were a little tight from eating approximately 72 candy bars, I had a great time.

By the way, does anybody want to buy some cookie dough? It's pre-proportioned! And you can choose Ghiradelli chocolate chips or Reese's peanut butter cups!

I didn't think so.

Are there any classes I can take to improve my pitch? Otherwise, I see a freezer full of cookie dough in my future

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