I am in the refrigerated section of Ralph's grocery store on my way to the cottage cheese but linger in front of the cookie dough with particular interest in the mini cinnamon rolls. Shoppers whiz by with carts loaded to the brim for holiday feasts. A little girl steps up to the cold case and puts her nose within inches of a roll of chocolate chip cookie dough. She is white and wears a pink jacket with a "Dora the Explorer" graphic. She jumps a little in place and claps her hands twice, smiling. A man follows close behind:
Girl: Daddy! Here! Cookies for Santa.
Dad: Okay, okay, honey. Let's see. Here, these are good. Santa likes chocolate chip.
Girl: Is it no sugar? I want to get no sugar.
Dad: Why? These are fine. Regular cookies are fine.
Girl: No! Dad! What if Santa has diabetic like me? It's dangerous!
Dad: (laughs) No, honey. Santa is not diabetic. Don't worry about it. These are fine.
Girl: Daddy! We can't do that! It HAS to be no sugar.
(The man keeps the tube of dough originally chosen and begins to walk away with his daughter pulling on his arm. A few more protests, but soon they are out of sight.)
Moments later, I cave in to the mini cinni's and am wheeling my cart away when the little girl returns holding a woman's hand. The lady carries the tube of cookie dough. The two approach the cold case, put the tube back and take another. They leave with Pillsbury sugar-free chocolate chip dough, sweetened with Splenda.