My neighborhood has had a deluge of teens selling magazine subscriptions. I get magazines in the mail without ever ordering them. I get letters offering to use my unspent airline miles for magazines. If I wanted to read magazines, I would not need to buy them.

With my aging eyes, the computer monitor is easier to read than a magazine printed on glossy paper.

Yesterday’s teen was different.  I saw the clipboard and said, “I’m not going to buy any magazines.”  

He said, “I’m not selling magazines.”  

So, I said, “I’m not in the market for anything.”

Then he said, “Don’t you want me to go to college?”

I said, “I very much want you to go to college if that is what you want. What does college have to do with door-to-door selling?”

He said, “If I sell 100 subscriptions, I have a chance at a scholarship to Penn State.”

I started feeling sorry for him.  He reminded me of the time my blue bird leader sat our troop down at a table in front of the grocery store with a stack of vacuum packed cans of peanuts to sell.  I hadn’t sat there 10 minutes when a woman came out of the store and said, “The peanuts are cheaper inside.”  I felt embarrassed. Blue Birds were supposed to be an upstanding youth organization and here I was overcharging people for groceries.  

This magazine selling gig for a chance at a scholarship – not even for a cut of the take – seemed wrong.

I told the young man, “That doesn’t sound legitimate.”

He gave me a terrified look and ran.

Views: 99

Comment by Zanelle on May 31, 2016 at 12:09pm

He ran!  Wow.  It is such a brutal, cruel world.  I cant imagine how any of us grew up and figured out how to survive.  The market system seems to be crumbling.  Ads on tv are getting more desperate and stores are in dire need of customers.  We really need so little to live and everyone seems to want a piece of me.  Blue Birds were so cool when I was little.  I was a Brownie and Girl Scout.  Selling cookies sucked.

Comment by Jonathan Wolfman on May 31, 2016 at 1:53pm

Of course, the Aan Francisco Girl Scouts who set up tables outside marijuana dispensaries do very well, and are loved.

Comment by JMac1949 Today on May 31, 2016 at 1:58pm

With any luck he'll figure out that he's fallen for a con that cannot be sustained.  R&L

Comment by koshersalaami on May 31, 2016 at 2:06pm


The Boy Scout popcorn really is good

Comment by nerd cred on May 31, 2016 at 2:26pm

When I was a Blue Bird we sold candy. Door to door.

Comment by Valerie Lynn Stephens on June 1, 2016 at 12:10am

I miss Thin Mints!


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