So, remember this morning how you were telling everyone that you were taking orders for your daughter’s Girl Scout cookie sale? I have been thinking this over all day, and I want to let you know that I have arrived at a decision. No, I cannot possibly buy Girl Scout cookies from your daughter at this time.

First of all, I have never even met your daughter. That on its own is probably a deal-breaker for me. Had she come here personally and solicited me herself, I almost certainly would have purchased cookies. In fact, I definitely would have ordered more than the perfunctory three or four boxes I saw everyone else from the office marked down for. However, the fact that she has employed you, her mother, in the execution of her sales reflects a lazy, manipulative approach to what could have been a valuable learning experience and community-building exercise. The loss of revenue resultant from her failure to close the deal with me is the least of her problems.

Furthermore, displaying the order form openly at the reception desk was beyond sleazy; it was socially irresponsible. By making the record of orders public, you generated a volatile atmosphere of concentrated anxieties and clashing egos, and part of me believes this was not done by accident. Do you fully appreciate the colossal amount of pressure you and your daughter have put on everyone here? A scarlet letter for him who orders the fewest cookies, and consummate disgrace for those who order none at all!

The overwhelming weight was nearly enough to bully me into a purchase. (You can see on the form that I did at one point enter an order but later crossed it out.) In my better judgment I have decided to take a stand. Today, I refuse to be coerced. I only hope that my actions will help assuage any obligation felt by those who may not be in a place financially to afford to be squandering precious income on cookies. I do realize that, myself not included, everyone in the office has already placed orders, but I am also speaking of any morally bankrupt business ventures your daughter may decide to impose on this office in the future.

I will thank you to relay as much to your daughter. Also, if you can let her know that, in the case that there is a surplus of Caramel deLites, and she is unable to sell them all, I may be interested in taking some of those off her hands at a substantially discounted price.