Some of what we observe seems either pecuiliarly surprising or disturbingly banal; the latter often arises when some reason for the former has become orthodox. However, that which looks so (either way) is often a consequence of something fatuous, or so ridiculously unsurpsising (once I explain it) that it seems silly that anyone commented upon it.
Any time something goes wrong, we tend to remember it; but when everything goes the way we expected, we tend not to remember. When we look back through our memories to see how events have turned out, the expected successes are invisible: the surprising catastrophes stand out. So it always seems that, if something had the chance to go wrong, it lived up to its opportunity.
looking for it, you were simply fetching it; you only remember searching for something if it wasn't in one of the obvious places. In such cases, we typically exhaust the obvious then go into a cycle of: think where else it might be, check there. Each time round that cycle, it seems like there's nowhere else to look, until you do the next cycle's thinking; so, when you find the thing, you do so while unaware of all the places you'd have thought to look for it, had you not found it on the cycle you did. The longer you had to search, the more forceful this impression: and the more this search is apt to stick in your memory so – see the previous – the more it influences your perception of how searches go.
When they didn't, the winners wrote the story you've heard – and portrayed themselves as The Good Guys.
In the run-up to the great conflict, the ones who told the better stories got more recruits, so ended up winning. Telling the story in such a way that those who hear your side of it want you to win matches well with being the ones who do win: it (coincidentally) also matches well with your side of the story being the one that gets remembered.
Pipers who don't take requests don't do as well economically, so they don't stay pipers for as long as ones who do take requests.