This is Important: COOKIES

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.”

If you give a mouse a cookie, he'll be very grateful and call you an angel and not even ask for milk at all.

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.

Many have strong opinions about the homeless deserving their lot in life, which I oppose just by feeling it in my bones, but I’m not quite educated enough to talk welfare policy. So, here’s my cookie policy: you don’t know whether the man or woman on the corner is the devil incarnate or Ryan Gosling getting way into method acting but it’s probably just a human being who has had a difficult, hard life. If you can swing it, offer them a cookie.

You know what? Maybe cookies are angels.

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