This Is the Way the Cookies Crumbled

When my editors first told me we were doing a piece about the best places to get cookies, I had this picture in my head of the three of us huddled around a cookie-covered table, spending half an hour tasting, discussing, and describing the sweets I spent all day picking up.

It didn’t really go down that way.

I knew I’d be the one visiting all the bakeries and choosing the cookies. After all, the definition of an intern is running errands. Despite some engine trouble (picture rain, the parking lot of a Super Target, and one pair of ruined ballet flats), that part was totally awesome. As a recent transplant, I loved seeing the different neighborhoods, visiting these amazing bakeries, and spotting so many of the places I always hear about in the office.

By the time I got back, I had about 30 cookies. So you can imagine how it felt to learn I would be the only one doing the taste-test. I know what you’re thinking, “Poor little intern. It’s rough working in the dining department.” But seriously, take a look at the pictures. Anyone would have a little doubt when faced with that much sugar.

Piling the cookies on a spare plate, I put on my game face. I started with a peanut butter cookie, then moved to a chocolate chip. Next was the most amazing sugar cookie I’ve ever tasted in my life. I wanted to shove the whole thing in my mouth, but opted to pace myself instead.

Six cookies later, I was glad I did. Nine cookies in, and I was already fading. I only ate what I needed for a description. I couldn’t have had more than four cookies total. I imagined every 8-year-old child in America looking at me with disappointment as my determination to taste each confection faded.

Then it hit me. It was for those 8-year-old-children that I sat at my crumb-covered desk, sugar coursing through my veins. For them, and for everyone who craves a sweet, decadent dessert that wasn’t packaged three months ago at a factory in New York.

I reached for a snickerdoodle with a renewed sense of purpose. It took four hours, but I tasted every last cookie and crafted a fitting description for each.

So raise a glass of milk, Indianapolis. This sugar high is for you.