It’s that time of year again – time to purchase boxes of Girl Scout Cookies. It’s time again, too, to wonder why Girl Scouts sell cookies and Boy Scouts don’t.
Maybe it’s because little girls are made of:
Sugar and spice,
And everything nice,
That’s what little girls are made of.
Sugar and spice – add flour and butter and you’ve got a cookie!
Little boys, on the other hand, are made of cutting tools and animals,
Snips and snails,
And puppy dog tails,
That’s what little boys are made of.
In researching Boy Scouts, I saw that they do sell food – popcorn. I’m not sure if the popcorn sales are as prevalent as the Girl Scout Cookie sales. Cookie sales get pretty aggressive and demanding – I have stories. But in reflecting on it, I realize that may be because the sellers of the cookies are often the mothers.
Maybe my experience of Girl Scout Cookies is the result of female selling tactics. In addition to pushing Girl Scout Cookies, women also host shopping parties where they sell candles, jewelry, makeup, cooking products and clothing products.
Are there male shopping parties?
This study of shopping parties (To Buy or Not to Buy? That is Not the Question: Female Ritual in Home Shopping Parties) explains the mechanics of shopping parties and also explains why shopping parties are predominantly female. Toward the end of the study, the researchers explain,
While perhaps not so rigid, gender-role differentiation is still prevalent in contemporary society, and we suggest that home shopping parties constitute another particularly female ritual of the twentieth century in which women gather to celebrate and cooperate in the traditional female task of shopping. Interestingly, the shopping party seems to transcend the divisions of social class, education and ethnicity: they appear to have become a ritual female activity in North America used in the social construction of femininity itself.
Girl Scout Cookie selling seems to fall under this dynamic of the shopping party. Like shopping parties the purchasing of cookies isn’t about whether you want them or not (although you probably do), but about nurturing social relationships. You buy them to support your (mostly) female friends.
Looking at the 2013 financial statements of the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts have 18% more youth members (2.6 million) than Girl Scouts (2.2 million). Yet total net assets for Boy Scouts are over seven times the total assets of the Girl Scouts.
While selling cookies is, according to the financial statement, an $800 million dollar business, Girl Scouts are still having financial troubles.
Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts
Or maybe . . . the difference in revenue generation between the genders is because Boy Scouts are Aquarius and Girl Scouts are Pisces.
The Girls Scouts have Saturn in Taurus, a placement I always associate with the feeling of material lack. Saturn in Taurus is focused on materialism either due to true lack or because of undue focus on material goods. You can grow up wealthy with Saturn in Taurus and still feel you don’t have what others have.
Possibly that Saturn in Taurus created the strong business drive which resulted in national cookie campaign. The Girl Scouts also have moon in Capricorn, an industrious, hard-working sign that must achieve through its own efforts. Moon in Capricorn dislikes charity in general – it hurts the pride. Moon in Capricorn wants to earn your respect and your dollars.
Sun in Pisces is the warmth you feel from both Girl Scouts and their cookies. Water signs are more nurturing, a quality associated traditionally with females. Buying Girl Scout Cookies feels good in so many ways – you get to eat cookies, girls get funding for activities and girls learn about commerce.
The Boy Scouts, in contrast, have sun, moon and Venus in Aquarius, the fixed air sign. Aquarius is rational and intelligent associated with genius, futuristic thinking and the desire to form perfect, ideal societies and associations. Aquarius is the energy behind scouting organizations or any other civic type organization.
The Boy Scouts have all three air signs present from Pluto in Gemini to Jupiter in Libra to moon, sun and Venus in Aquarius. That preponderance of air is perfect for creating social networks. Air is also intelligent, inquisitive and adaptable.
Both Boy and Girl Scouts were formed while Pluto was in the air sign Gemini (1882-1914). During this period we took great leaps in communication including the formation of large newspapers, compulsory education and development of telephone and radio.
It’s no surprise, then, that both the Boy and Girl Scouts created a magazine – Boy’s Life, which is still in publication and The American Girl (not to be confused with today’s American Girl), which folded in 1979.
Pluto and Uranus Calling
Transiting Pluto in Capricorn will transit the Girl Scout’s moon in Capricorn potentially transforming this cookie-selling effort and other business efforts where the girls take on heavy responsibility. In the article about its financial troubles, transformation is mentioned:
Since 2003, the Girl Scouts have undergone what they describe as a “complete transformation” aimed at making their programs and image more relevant to a diverse population of girls and parents. Changes have affected uniforms, handbooks, merit badges, program materials, even the logo and the fine print on the boxes of Girl Scout cookies.
In 2003 Pluto had not even begun its transit of the moon. Transformation now may be even more extreme and focused on the business aspects of the Girl Scouts.
The major transit for the Boy Scouts is Uranus in Aries which is now transiting the organization’s Saturn in Aries. Saturn in Aries is lack of confidence, inability to project the self outward. From the news, I would say Uranus is forcing out (with Uranus erratic unpredictability) deeper identity issues within the organization.
Will the Uranus transit, a planet that likes to turn the world upside down, lead the boys to sell cookies?
If cookie selling is like home shopping party selling, the boys will probably avoid it as shopping party selling bonds females, not males.
With Pluto in Capricorn transiting the moon, it may be time, however, for the Girl Scouts to take a peek into the boys’ financial statement to see how the boys’ membership is about 400,000 members higher but assets are over seven higher. Does it help that the Boy Scouts receive donations from 14% of America’s Top 500 companies?
Under Pluto in Capricorn, it may be time for the Girl Scouts to transform their business model.