14. When Life Gives You Lemons, Make Lemonade – But What if it Gives You Candy Instead of Desperately Needed Ammunition?
Americans in the Chosin Reservoir made an unexpected – and unwelcome – discovery when they received airdropped crates after requesting mortar shells, using the code Tootsie Rolls. The looks on their faces must have been something as they opened crate after crate, only to discover that instead of the desperately needed ammunition, they had been sent the actual candy. Fortunately, the troops soon discovered that Tootsie Rolls were among the few food items that were actually edible when frozen. The sugar boost also gave the weary fighters a needed jolt.
Additionally, innovation being a key component of the American national character, the troops found other uses for the candy. Chewed up Tootsie Rolls became like putty in the mouth, but froze solid when exposed to the frigid conditions of the Chosin Reservoir. So using Tootsie Rolls as improvised epoxy, the troops patched-up bullet holes in their equipment and repaired broken tools. Then, on a sugar high and with their equipment fixed, the American forces broke out of the Chosin Reservoir and fought their way to safety.