I love cookies. Me and cookies – it’s real.This isn’t summer fling, this isn’t May-December, this is NOT that weird thing where it’s like “what are we??” and he’s stupid handsome, like, “Why do we have to label it babe?” and you’re like, “Yeah, okay, I get it, we totally don’t (WHAT ARE WE?)”
This is a loving, emotionally open and supporting, lasting relationship for me. Cookies are my rock. My #1 boo. So, when I was having a rough week at the office and developing an eye twitch from stress and started crying because someone didn’t hold an elevator for me, I decided I needed two cookies. I ate the first one quickly (delish!) and then took the other one to eat on my walk back to the Excel spreadsheet.
I work in Chicago and as usual en route, I passed a homeless man. He was really homeless – a wheelchair, super sad eyes, the whole thing. Not that some people are less homeless but this man looked thoroughly beaten up by life. He held a McDonald’s cup limply. There were maybe three coins within.
I thought about my cookie. I thought about my eye-twitch. I thought about his leathery skin. Two seconds ago my inner monologue was very, “I deserve this! I look at Excel spreadsheets all day!” and then in the blink of an eye it became, “Nope. I have everything.”
That’s heavy and not entirely true – I deserve things, cookies even – but I had a moment.
So I walked up to the guy, a little timid, because there are a lot of nice homeless people but also many who aren’t in their right mind and can be scary or lewd. I said, “I bought this cookie but it was my second one. I took a small bite out of it, but like, I promise it’s not gross.” I held out the cookie.
He had been nodding along to my explanation, seeming confused, and then his eyes grew wide and I flinched. He noticed that I flinched but he whispered, gravelly, “You’re an angel.”
I’m not an angel. Oh my God, I’m absolutely not an angel. That’s not humble, that’s just like a serious truth. Other people do way, way more for the disenfranchised with their pinky than I will probably do in my lifetime. Imagine I’m making scales out of my hands: Red Cross devoting their lives to service, me buying too many cookies – the Red Cross hand is tipped much higher. But the fact that you can resemble something of an angel to someone just by offering him a cookie is important.
You know what? Maybe cookies are angels.