Today I’ve baked lots of cookies, and for me that’s probably saying something.
This is back-to-school week. Campus is busy with wonderful, nervous enthusiasm — a feeling that nears what Christmas week used to feel like for me when my family was young.
There’s a lot to do to be ready for this new semester, and it’s easy to get caught up in the excitement. Some students are already here. Others will be here in a couple of days. First-year students are moving in on Saturday. That’s also the first day of classes for the students in Coker’s Adult Degree Program. On Monday classes start for Coker’s graduate students and for most of Hartsville’s school children. And then Coker’s residential students begin on Wednesday.
Today’s cookies are for all of these students (and their faculties and staffs), but most of the cookies are destined for the annual The Back to School Extravaganza organized by Davita Malloy, which will be held this afternoon from 4 to 6 p.m. at the T.B. Thomas Center at Byerly Park. It’s a neat event that lets neighbors join in the fun of giving school supplies to the the children of Hartsville.
With so many people to bake for today, I’ve made four kinds of cookies: Standard Chocolate Chip, Oatmeal Raisin, Molasses Crinkles and Cookies Supreme (standard cookies with all the left over candy that I couldn’t fit onto last week’s cookie pizzas).
If too many choices annoy you or if over-indulgence freaks you out, consider a new way of looking at this. Back-to-school frenzies are about learning, and learning is about discovering questions and wrestling with answers — debate, trials, tests. It’s about resistance and decision-making, letting go and digging in, and it’s about being disciplined enough to break some rules. (Boy, it does sound fun.)
Today, though, amid the hubbub, we find ourselves in the luxurious position of having time on our side. Think of it.
My dear, if you try hard and stay organized, over the next 52 weeks, you may be able to learn the answers to some of the toughest questions Friday Cookie eaters are likely to face. Questions such as:
- Would peanut butter cookies be as good if they didn’t remind you of Grandma?
- Are molasses crinkles best because they beg for coffee like you do?
- If she skipped the white chocolate chips, would anyone notice?
- Does she add 1/4 tsp. of caramel to her chocolate chip cookies? I don’t recall that the recipe she published mentions it, but, I dunno, I think maybe she does. Would she do that?
- Do you have to eat oatmeal raisin cookies once in awhile to prove you’re fairly wholesome?
There’s so much more to discover, of course, and you will in good time, but, for today, just gobble up your cookies like it’s the first day of school and your world is just beginning.
Come and get ’em.