Select Page

Lolli’s Calling

December 4, 2021
Spread the love

Have you ever felt that you were destined to be something or do something? I have. Ever since I was a little girl, I have known my path, and it was coated in a sugary glaze and dipped in chocolate. My name is Lolli, and candy is my life.

For me, the most magical things in the world have always been the most delicious ones. The taffies, the gummies, the truffles, the peppermints, the bonbons and the jelly beans. You can lose yourself in the bright colors, escape reality with the transcendent flavors, and bring joy to anyone at any time with the warm satisfaction of sharing.

It was in the fourth grade that I found my entrepreneurial calling, and it brought me closer to the world of candy than I ever thought possible. We used to have the best hot lunches at school, made from scratch with hot gravy, fresh dinner rolls and an extraordinary variety of well-rounded meals. Going through the lunch line and collecting that familiar plastic tray was the best part of every school day.

When my fourth grade year started, I discovered that I wasn’t enrolled in the hot lunch program. Instead of looking forward to a wonderful hot lunch of sloppy joes, goulash or meatloaf, I was sent to school with a pathetic and crumpled brown paper bag containing an apple, a soda and a plastic-wrapped sandwich that was already soggy (from the soda’s condensation).

My mom told me the family was able to cut some serious costs by sending me with a bagged lunch, but that didn’t help in the slightest with my suffering. Day after day I had to smell the enchanting aromas of pork chops, Salisbury steaks and mashed potatoes as I choked down my white bread sandwiches. Times were tough.

Before long it was time for my favorite holiday, Halloween. With my bright blue hair, I didn’t need to do much in the way of costumes. I usually just slapped a ninja mask around my eyes and called myself Lolli the Daring. I took trick-or-treating very seriously, but I was mainly there for the treats. It was all about CPH (candy per hour). I went with a few trusted friends and started door-to-door as early as I could. My secret was drop-offs. If no one knew how much candy I was hoarding, then everyone would give me more. Fourth grade year I broke all my records by collecting what amounted to about two full garbage bags of candy.

It was Dad who gave me the idea to take the candy to school. One morning after Mom had packed my lunch, he tossed in a lollipop and a couple Jolly Ranchers, winked at me, and quietly said “Don’t tell your mother.”

“Candy at school”, I thought to myself in the back of the minivan. “It just might work.”

Later that day, I sat in the cafeteria with a sour look on my face and a bologna sandwich in my hands that I had no interest in eating. Finally I slapped the sandwich down and retrieved one of the hard candies Dad had dropped into the bag. All eyes around me immediately grew wide in fascination, as if they too had never before considered the possibilities of candy in school.

Just before I finished unwrapping the candy, a boy a few seats down spoke up. “I’ll give you one of my hot rolls for your Jolly Rancher.” I looked up slowly, trying to contain the size of my grin. I was a natural negotiator.

“Both your hot rolls, and you’ve got yourself a deal,” I finally responded with narrowed eyes. Without a moment’s hesitation, he leaned out and handed over both of his hot rolls. I gave him the half unwrapped Jolly Rancher as the exquisite smell of yeast roll filled my nostrils. Then I remembered the huge stash of Halloween candy hidden under my bed at home.

My little business escalated quickly. First it was hot rolls, then entrees, and eventually full trays. At some point before winter break, kids started offering me money for the candy. I saved it for future expansion.

Eventually my candy supply ran out, and I had to think about keeping my clientele satisfied. That’s when I took the $83 I had saved and rode my bike to the hobby store, where I purchased my very first candy-making supplies. A confectionary legend was born and the rest is history.

Town Star Website

Town Star Store

Join the Discussion