Short Term Financing

By: Jessica Lowe

We all know what happens if you give a mouse a cookie, but what happens if you give a girl short-term financing?

In some ways, that mouse and I aren’t too dissimilar. We both look up to those bigger than us with wide doe eyes, batting our eye lashes and asking “please, sir, may I have a cookie?” Except in my case, I’m asking for a little bit of money, but for the sake of this metaphor let’s pretend that I’m asking for a cookie instead of financing. The kind that mother used to make—warm, fresh out of the oven, crispy around the edges and still gooey on the inside.

And by some play of fate, the big people lean down and give me that cookie, just like mother used to make. This is where the mouse and I diverge: the mouse will cling to the hand that fed him, instantly asking for a glass of milk to go with it. Then he’ll want a straw, and a napkin, and then a mirror to look into to make sure he doesn’t have a milk mustache.

While the mouse is taking advantage of that act of kindness, I’m left with a cookie in my hand and a massive smile spread across my face. I have a whole cookie all to myself—something new and exciting for a girl fresh out of high school. I’m starving, but I keep from eating too much of the cookie in my hands. I save the rest and I feel like an adult, because for the first time I realize that’s what I am: a cookie-rationing adult.

Meanwhile the mouse is asking for you to make a bed for him out of a box and a pillow, and then he’ll ask you to read him a story. I don’t really need all that, since I have my own bed and can fall asleep in minutes if there’s nothing on my mind. And with that cookie sitting on the nightstand beside me, there’s really nothing left to worry about (aside from that pesky psychology exam coming up, but not even a dozen cookies could fix that.)

The next morning the mouse will ask for more and more, from crayons to paper to scotch tape. Little necessities like that wouldn’t be a problem—had the little mouse rationed his hypothetical cookie, then he wouldn’t have had to ask.

The next morning I oversleep because I’m just so darn relaxed over this whole cookie situation. With that psychology test in twenty minutes and school being at least a thirty minute trip on foot, it seems like I’m out of luck, right? Who knew that never manning up and getting my license would come back to bite me? But with some remaining cookie, I could catch a bus, or a taxi, or whatever decides to pull over for a girl waving a cookie desperately in the air.

And as I get to school with a few minutes to spare, I take another nibble at that cookie. It calms me down, and I know that this is just another test. I’ve studied hard, and it should be a breeze. A good chunk of my cookie remains, making me feel mature, confident, and proud, on top of other things. This cookie may not be enough to sustain me for the rest of my life, but it’s just what I need to get me through today.

Elsewhere, the mouse is looking at the fridge and realizing just how thirsty he is, so he’ll ask for a glass of milk. And if he asks for a glass of milk, chances are he’ll ask for yet another cookie to go with it.

If only short term financing were as easy to find as a cookie.

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