North Korean defectors who have spent years countering Communist propaganda now find themselves at odds with the South Korean government
A New York moment: The Girl Scouts of Greater New York designates troop numbers by the city’s five boroughs—1000 for the Bronx, and so on—but last year the organization started a Girl Scout Troop 6000, serving girls in the city’s homeless shelters. Troop 6000 now has 297 members from 14 shelters, according to Buzzfeed.
Girl Scouts of Greater New York covers their registration fees, and girls can stay in their chapter if their families leave the shelter system. This month the girls from the troop had their first cookie sale, at a Kellogg’s cereal store in Union Square. An aside: Yes, New York has a store where you can buy a bowl of cereal.
Last week I went to buy some Samoas, and when I walked up, I saw a line stretching around the block. There was a sign at the Barnes & Noble next door for a James Comey talk about his new book—maybe the line was for him? But no, New Yorkers wanted cookies from Troop 6000.
I hopped in line with other cookie hopefuls. “Do they even need my help?” one lady asked before deciding that after all, she wanted cookies. A Kellogg’s employee peeked out of the store and asked if anyone was in line for cereal. “No?” he said. A homeless man had perched on a wall by the line, and the employee went back inside to bring the man cereal and a protein shake.
Twenty-five minutes passed. Then another Kellogg’s employee came outside to break the news: The Scouts had to leave at 6 p.m., and we wouldn’t make it inside in time to buy their cookies. Come back early tomorrow to be sure to get cookies, she said. The troop has already met its initial sales goal: 6,000 boxes.
Worth your time:
Great writing on minor league baseball players working for peanuts: “The line between the majors and the minors is as long as Interstate-55 from St. Louis to Memphis and as thin as the movement on a 100-mph sinker.”
This week I learned:
C.S. Lewis was wounded in World War I, 100 years ago this month.
A court case you might not know about:
The Michael Cohen investigation isn’t just a Washington matter. There is daily drama in the Southern District of New York, from the Trump-picked Manhattan prosecutor recusing himself to President Donald Trump and Cohen asking a Manhattan judge for permission to screen materials seized by investigators.
Culture I am consuming:
Ninotchka, continuing my Billy Wilder project. Wilder’s idol, Ernst Lubitsch, directed this gem, and Wilder was one of the screenwriters. The romantic comedy was released in 1939 right after World War II began, and it throws a lot of jabs at then-powerful Josef Stalin. Greta Garbo stars as a Soviet envoy on a mission in the capitalistic city of Paris. When she arrives, a porter offers to carry her bags. “Why?” she demands. “That is a social injustice.”
The porter returns, “That depends on the tip.”
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