Wednesday, February 20, 2008

It's ON!

My Aunt, who the sisters, my roommate, and I, refer to as "Aunt Ina," is a warm, gentle woman who had been providing her co-workers with cookies. The moniker is occasionally confusing as The Real Ina may be on at any given time, and finding her on Food TV often results in Biscuit proclaiming excitedly, "Aunt Ina's On!" and though I know she means Garten I sometimes think about my Aunt, living in Middle America Where Cookies Are Not Appreciated.

I worked for Target one summer, stocking the shelves with toys and sports equipment during the day. This has been my only job that included a break room, but if one of the women I worked with had made a plate of cookies and left it out during the day, she would have returned the next morning and found it covered in thank you notes; cards from the store, cards from Hallmark, and scraps of napkins inscribed with sonnets would cover the plate. I know what you're thinking. You think that the 1,000+ Target employees weren't used to hospitality. HA! Once a week, and usually more, the management team shared goodies. Often the overnight team was plied with pizza and goodies, and more often than not, the overnight team made an effort to leave the morning employees more than stale remnants. We were spoiled with surprise presents in the form of liter bottles of soda, fresh veggies, and warm cookies. Still, we loved it, it made our day, and homemade cookies would have changed the efficiency of our perfect store tenfold.

These people are fools. Just look at what they did! In an e-mail she sent last week (personal details have been omitted):

Okay, I am giving up taking cookies to work. we brought in desserts today for Valentine's. I brought in a container of my delicious heart shaped sugar cookies with cinnamon hots on them. Other desserts included pumpkin cake, cherry pie, red jigglers, berry lemon bars, Rice Krispie treats, large decorated chocolate. chip cookie from the store and a package of fat sugar cookies from marsh that iced with red sprinkles. People raved about those cookies! "Oh, I love these cookies!" and "These are my favorite!" About 3 people asked who made the heart sugar cookies and I said "I did. Have one, I make good sugar cookies." I did not count them but I don't think any were eaten, if so, only a couple. Bought those too thick cookies from Marsh were a hit! All the desserts were left for tomorrow so I'll see if any disappear tomorrow. I would have brought them home because I have eaten all the ones I kept here, but who knows who touched them and how clean their hands were. I didn't want to bring them back in the home. I have made oatmeal cookies, oatmeal rolled cookies, p.b.cookies, and now sugar cookies, and have not been met with the reception I would like, so I am done baking cookies for that office. My p.b. cookies are also extremely tasty but it seems that people like store boughten ones or choc. chip. I do not usually share choc. chip as when I make them I make dough balls and freeze them and make only 4 at a time.

I've had her peanut butter cookies. They are amazing. I mean, the nerve of some people. This e-mail was preceded by others, all detailing the process and selection of which cookies to bring. Aunt Ina was also responsible for organizing this sordid holiday affair, and supplied party supplies out-of-pocket. I say, remove the pink napkins from the whole lot of 'em! She also put a lot of detail and thought into getting and arranging platters, which I think further proves her personality likeness to Garten. A woman who will arrange a meat tray is a woman who can plan. I am not a woman who can arrange a meat tray.

All of this talk about cookies makes me hungry. Winifred was here on Saturday because she missed me, I think? And she brought cookies, which are pictured above with a bottle of Bubble Up, which she shared. We don't have Bubble Up in Baltimore, and Aunt Ina sent a private reserve to her sister for Valentine's Day. I was hoping to expound on the weekend days ago but I think that will wait until tomorrow. Thankfully the oatmeal and fizz has gotten me this far!

Oh! Lest my real job stumble over here, I should add that there are often days where people crowd around the table and fill themselves on food. One day, a day I was called in, my friend and I brought lunch to find out that there was lunch downstairs! We waited for the crowds to go before us as we are terribly awkward and nervous people, and then our supervisor urged us to go now before it was too late. We ambled to the kitchen downstairs where a giant turkey and ham were joined by homemade mac and cheese, vegetables, cookies, fresh baked rolls, and fudge cake so obscenely large that only Ms. Trunchbull would dare conquer (though someone must have, it was almost all gone). We arrived maybe ten minutes after the lunch announcement and as we hemmed and hawed the office ladies hovered so they could reclaim their wares. Previously, one day in the summer, everyone gathered outside to eat fried chicken and picnic fare just because it was summer. I'll make sure Aunt Ina's lousy co-workers never darken my workplace doors.

I'm going to bed, disgusted. If I move to Middle America I'll think twice before sharing my Jell-O salad.

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