As a child, I was led to believe that if you collected five Tootsie Pop wrappers with a star on them, you could exchange them for a free Tootsie Pop. I think my buddy James told me this. Can’t remember where I first heard it, but it was a pretty widely held belief.
I saved all the Tootsie Pop wrappers I ever found that had a star on them. All of them. I’m not even kidding. I had well over a hundred of those suckers.
One day, I finally decided it was time to cash them in. I took 25 wrappers (each with a star) to a local convenience store, picked up a five pack of Tootsie Pops and proceed to the cashier.
The clerk told me my total was 65¢ I handed him a stack of 25 Tootsie Pop wrappers (each with a star) He asked for 65¢
I tried to explain to him that five wrappers with a star on them were worth one free Tootsie Pop. He said that was a load of junk, and all these kids come in trying to exchange wrappers for candy and that just isn’t how the world works and I can give him 65¢ or I can put my five pack of Tootsie Pops back and get out of his store.
You can’t imagine my disbelief.
All this time my belief that I could trade in old Tootsie Pop wrappers with stars on them for free Tootsie Pops was just an Urban Legend. A wives tail. False.
The moral of the story is: the popular opinion is not always correct.