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Girl Scouts Visit the FBI, circa 1975 by Jane Satterfield

Girl Scouts Visit the FBI, circa 1975

by Jane Satterfield


Fox’s series the X-Files starred David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson as FBI agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully


Lights fade on this snow-erased suburban street as our screen flickers with roadside

bombs & body count. News is another stalled front,


a season past its prime. The house rattles with gale-force winds & Doppler radar

promises more. In this late hour, wisdom’s


an X-Files rerun, Tempranillo catching candle-shine in a glass. The flame leaps—a

little spark, a little shudder,


a little rising action in Headquarters where Scully calls Mulder, whispers Is it wise?

But I’m drifting back to the Hoover Building, my own inside shot


to honeycombed halls, rowed desks & ringing phones. What badge were we after,

riding the Yellowbird bus down Pennsylvania Avenue,


a troop of girls kitted out in jumpers, cable knee socks, & small green berets. What

badge we were after, what wisdom? Citizenship? Government?


We lived on old tobacco land, blissful on suburban streets, tree-lined Glens & Ways. Choppers stuttered over Saigon. In a year where cookie sales


earned record profit we walked through security, scanned the Ten-Most-Wanted Wall.

Mulder knows the truth is out there. Scully, good Girl Scout, questions


every clue. She knows how far the smart girl gets—badge & suit, official blessing,

unwitting agent of someone


else’s grand undisclosed plan. Cut to Mulder on the shooting range. What—or who—emerges next? Bullets, a steady


sequence of shots. The human-sized target bends & spins, faceless, with a red spotted

heart. Same spin, same din as I remember it.




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