Yes, it's true, I was a Brownie a long time ago, and learned how to toast marshmellows and make rag-rugs, and I sold cookies then too.
But people weren't so - ummm - deliciously smitten with cookies and cakes and candies and pizza and hamburgers and tamales and barbacoa. We weren't so gorditas and gorditos then, ok?
San Antonio, Texas, has a reputation for great Tex-Mex food. But if you live here, it's hard to be slender. And the only slender thing about San Antonio is the river. We are one of the poorest cities in the country, deliberately so, making my community vulnerable to commercials and the flour-tortilla temptations of our working-class history. In my part of the city, there should be a law against all the fast-food joints on one block. Cheap, fast, filling food that working and middle-class people eat all the time. Have to eat, or else they'll starve.
This is why I picked a fight with the Girls Scouts selling their make-me-fat cookies outside the stores this weekend. It seems like ninety percent of the people here are overweight, many are very obese. When my out-of-town friends come to visit me, this is the first thing they notice... How dare the Girls Scouts take advantage of us this way?
But of course, they can. Everybody else does. We don't have a good mass transit system, and the middle-class won't take the buses, that's what poor people use in Texas. So hardly anyone walks. It's just too easy to gain weight in San Antonio, we have a generous table of friendship and food, it's all offered in love. Only the food we're eating right now is all wrong for us. Being gordita or gordita is normal for this city. I'm not kidding.
Our diabetes rate is skyrocketing-high, and it's like those who don't have the sugar have high blood pressure or borderline or are having heart attacks. We are a breathtakingly beautiful people, if you could only see us as I knew us when I was growing up. When we were skinny.
I told the Girls Scouts leaders at the table they needed to come up with another product - how they were killing us with every cookie they sold us. Of course the flaca Junior League-types got pissed, so much for the good-girl credo they're supposed to follow. It's about the money, honey.
No, I didn't buy the cookies. (I'm sure someone will let me have some at the office). And I hope you don't either. Ya basta! Health is a civil right, too.