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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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TOUGH, ROUGH AND HARD TI DIAPER.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): BABY ; CONTRADICTION ; TAUNT?

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Lyrical Verse
SPEECH -- Formula
PROVERB -- Proverbial Phrase

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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BEANS, BEANS, THE TROPICAL FRUIT.
THE MORE YOU EAT THE MORE YOU TOOT.
THE MORE YOU TOOT THE BETTER YOU FEEL,
SO EAT MORE BEANS AT EVERY MEAL.

Submitter comment: SAID AROUND THE CAMPFIRE. IT WAS ALWAYS SAID IN THE
TENT IF ANYONE "TOOTED" THAT THEY HAD BEANS FOR SUPPER.

Where learned: CAMP

James Callow Keyword(s): ADVICE: POSITIVE ; FLATULENCE

Subject headings: 730 Lyrical Verse
SPEECH -- Formula

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SUPERSTITION

YOU MUST NEVER SWEEP AFTER THE SUN GOES DOWN. WHEN YOU DO SWEEP
THE HOUSE, YOU MUST CONTINUALLY SAY "BAD LUCK GO OUT, GOOD LUCK
COME."

Submitter comment: MRS. GROVE'S MOTHER FOLLOWED THIS CUSTOM RELIGIOUSLY. SHE IS FROM
SOMERSET, PENNSYLVANIA. MRS. GROVE FIRST LEARNED OF THIS CUSTOM
APPROXIMATELY THIRTY YEARS AGO.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Measure of time Week Day Hour
BELIEF -- Sun
BELIEF -- Good luck P881.21
BELIEF -- Bad luck P882.21
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 10-20-1963

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"ADOPTIVE PARENTS, WARNING!"

IN SEPTEMBER, 1964, WE ADOPTED A LITTLE BABY. WHENEVER WE TOLD
THE GOOD NEWS, WE WERE ALMOST ALWAYS GREETED WITH "WELL, NOW
YOU'LL HAVE ONE OF YOUR OWN. I HAVE AN AUNT (SISTER, SISTER-IN-
LAW, DAUGHTER, ETC.) WHO ADOPTED A BABY AND THE NEXT YEAR THEY HAD
ONE OF THEIR OWN. THEY NOW HAVE (THIS IS USUALLY ADDED FOR
EMPHASIS OR SHOCK, I'VE NOT DETERMINED WHICH) FOUR, FIVE, SEVEN
(OR MORE)."
I GOT THE SAME STORY OR VARIATIONS ON THE THEME FROM: MY MOTHER-
IN-LAW, WHO COMES FROM DECATUR, ILLINOIS; MY DRESSMAKER, WHO HAD
BEEN IN DETROIT ABOUT 3 YEARS AND HAD COME FROM KENTUCKY;
A NEIGHBOR; A SECRETARY IN THE COMMERCE AND FINANCE COLLEGE DEAN'S
OFFICE; AND OTHERS.

Submitter comment: IF ALL GOES WELL, WE PLAN TO HAVE ANOTHER BABY--BY ADOPTION--LATER
THIS YEAR. WONDER WHAT THEY'LL SAY TO THAT?

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Birth
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 05-00-1965

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THE FOX AND THE GRAPES

ONCE UPON A TIME, THERE WAS A FOX WHO SAW SOME GRAPES ON A VINE
ABOVE HIS HEAD. HE JUMPED, TRYING TO GET THEM, BUT FELL SHORT.
AFTER REPEATED UNSUCCESSFUL EFFORTS, HE SULKED OFF SAYING, "THEY
WERE PROBABLY SOUR ANYWAY." THIS IS THE ORIGIN OF THE EXPRESSION
"SOUR GRAPES," APPLIED TO SOMEONE WHO DEGRADES SOMETHING HE WANTS
BECAUSE HE CAN'T GET IT.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Mammal
Food Drink -- Plant food Fruit
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 11-00-1968

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ORIGIN OF OLD EXPRESSION

THE INFORMANT STATED THAT HE HEARD IT ON THE RADIO THAT THERE WERE
TWO CHURCHES IN LONDON, ST. PETER'S AND ST. PAUL'S. ST. PETER'S
WAS WEALTHY AND ST. PAUL'S WAS POOR. THE LAND AROUND ST. PETER'S
WAS SOLD AND THE MONEY GIVEN TO ST. PAUL'S. HENCE THE EXPRESSION,
"ROB PETER TO PAY PAUL."

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Explanation of a name
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Measure of quality Medium of exchange
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 03-15-1967

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GOOD LUCK IN THEATRE: "BREAK A LEG."

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): FORMULA SPEECH

Subject headings: DRAMA -- Secular
BELIEF -- Good luck Activities
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 11-30-1967

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TONGUE TWISTER

TRY SAYING "BLACK BUGS' BLOOD" TEN TIMES FAST,
YOU CAN'T, CAN YOU?

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROSEVILLE

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 12-00-1974

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WATERMELON CHEER

THERE IS A NARRATOR. HE STARTS OUT BY SAYING "HERE IS A WATERMELON."
EVERYONE PRETENDS THEY ARE HOLDING A WATERMELON. NARRATOR: "SLICE
IT IN HALF." EVERYONE PRETENDS THEY ARE SLICING IT IN HALF LENGTHWISE
WHILE MAKING A SLICING NOISE. NARRATOR: "EAT IT." EVERYONE PRETENDS
THEY ARE EATING IT, MAKING CHOMPING NOISES. NARRATOR: "SPIT OUT
THE SEEDS." EVERYONE TURNS TO THE SIDE OF THEM AND SPITS OUT THE
SEEDS, MAKING A SPITTING OUT NOISE.

Submitter comment: I WATCHED THIS CHEER BEING DONE AT A CAMPFIRE. AFTER A SONG WAS SUNG,
EVERYONE WOULD DO A CHEER.

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; GATLINBURG

James Callow Keyword(s): FOOD FRUIT

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Athletic sport and exercise Gymnastics
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Dramatic
SPEECH -- Formula
SPEECH -- Gesture

Date learned: 08-00-1974

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ROUND OF APPLAUSE

SOMEONE IN THE GROUP YELLS OUT, "A ROUND OF APPLAUSE" AND THE PEOPLE
DO THIS BY CLAPPING THEIR HANDS WHILE MOVING THEIR ARMS IN A BIG
CIRCLE.

Submitter comment: I WATCHED THIS CHEER BEING DONE AT A CAMPFIRE. AFTER A SONG WAS SUNG,
EVERYONE WOULD DO A CHEER.

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; GATLINBURG

James Callow Keyword(s): HUMOR ; METAPHOR INTERPRETED LITERALLY

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Athletic sport and exercise Gymnastics
SPEECH -- Formula
SPEECH -- Gesture

Date learned: 08-00-1974

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KETCHUP CHEER

SOMEONE IN THE GROUP YELLS OUT, "THE KETCHUP CHEER" AND
THE RIGHT HAND IS CLOSED, LIKE A FIST, AND THE LEFT HAND HITS THE
RIGHT, AS IF HITTING A BOTTLE OF KETCHUP.

Submitter comment: I WATCHED THIS CHEER BEING DONE AT A CAMPFIRE. AFTER A SONG WAS SUNG,
EVERYONE WOULD DO A CHEER.

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; GATLINBURG

James Callow Keyword(s): HUMOR

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Athletic sport and exercise Gymnastics
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Dramatic
SPEECH -- Formula
SPEECH -- Gesture

Date learned: 08-00-1974

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A BIG HAND

SOMEONE IN THE GROUP YELLS OUT, "A BIG HAND" AND
EVERYONE HOLDS UP AN OUTSTRETCHED HAND.

Submitter comment: I WATCHED THIS CHEER BEING DONE AT A CAMPFIRE. AFTER A SONG WAS SUNG,
EVERYONE WOULD DO A CHEER.

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; GATLINBURG

James Callow Keyword(s): HUMOR ; METAPHOR INTERPRETED LITERALLY

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula
SPEECH -- Gesture

Date learned: 08-00-1974

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RABBIT'S FOOT---RETORT

WHEN SOMEONE COMES UP TO YOU AND SAY "HERE IS A RABBIT
FOOT, TAKE IT FOR GOOD LUCK," YOU TELL THEM "HOW IT COULD
BE FOR GOOD LUCK, WHEN THE RABBIT HAS LOST HIS FOOT."

Submitter comment: SHE REMEMBERED THIS ITEM FROM TIMES WHEN SHE WAS YOUNG. BUT
IT WAS TOLD TO HER FROM HER MOTHER AND NEIGHBORS USUALLY BY WORD
OF MOUTH. HER MOTHER AS WELL AS HER MOTHER'S MOTHER BELIEVED
THAT OLD SAYINGS ARE WORTH REMEMBERING. THE INFORMANT REGARDS
THIS FOLK ITEM AS A PIECE OF GOLD FOR A GUIDE LINE OF LIFE'S
EXPERIENCE.
SHE LEARNED THIS ITEM IN RICHMOND, VIRGINIA

Where learned: PENNSYLVANIA ; VIRGINIA ; PHILADELPHIA ; RICHMOND

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Good luck P881.16
BELIEF -- Bad luck P882.16
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 00-00-1935

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GREETINGS

SOME OF THE WAYS OF GREETING OTHER FOLKS, WHILE PASSING ARE:
WHAT IT IS: OK...WHAT'S THE DEAL: YOU MIGHT REPLY..AIN'T NO
HAPPENINGS: YOU: OR NOTHING TO IT MAN (IF IT IS A MALE).

Submitter comment: THIS WAS LEARNED IN MY EARLY ADOLESCENT STAGE IN MY HOME TOWN.
THIS WAS SOMETHING LEARNED IN MY NEIGHBORHOOD WITH MY PLAY MATES.
THESE ARE GREETINGS WHICH ARE NORMALLY SAID AMONG THE
YOUNG BLACK FOLK.

Where learned: PENNSYLVANIA ; PHILADELPHIA

James Callow Keyword(s): NEGRO

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: CA06171966

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HAIR FIX

DON'T SAY THANK-YOU TO SOMEONE WHO HAS DONE YOUR HAIR. SAY MORE
HAIR, OR LESS HAIR.

Submitter comment: THIS ITEM WAS LEARNED DURING MY STAY IN DETROIT WITH PEOPLE WHO
LIVED THERE A LONG TIME.
THIS VERSE IS CONNECTED WITH SAYING SPECIAL WORDS FOR THE PURPOSE
OF GETTING OR FOR HAVING HAD SOMETHING DONE TO YOUR HAIR.
THIS MIGHT IMPROVE THE CONDITION OF YOUR HAIR, BE IT LONG OR SHORT

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Daily Life
BELIEF -- Body part Senses Hair, on head, mustache, widow's peak
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 00-00-1972

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SCHOOL

IN GRAMMAR SCHOOL WE USE TO ASK EACH OTHER FOR SOME STUFF
(COOKIES, CANDY, ETC.). THEY WOULD REPLY THAT SOME MAKE YOU
DUMB, AND YOU WILL NEVER GET NONE.

Submitter comment: SHE TOLD THIS ITEM TO ME IN A SNAPPY MANNER. BECAUSE SHE DIDN'T HAVE
MUCH TO CONTRIBUTE AND I ASKED FOR TOO MUCH INFORMATION ABOUT HER.
I ASKED FOR THE ITEMS RIGHT BEFORE SHE WAS TO TAKE AN EXAM SO I
SUPPOSE THAT EXPLAINS HER ATTITUDE FOR NOT WANTING TO EXPLAIN THE
ITEM.
THIS ITEM IS A VERSE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT ; CAMPUS

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Custom Festival C840.537
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Speech Speech
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- School
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 00-00-1959

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POLISH SALUTATION

NIECH BENGIE POCHWALONI JEZUZ CHRISTUS. ANSWER: NO WIEKI WIEKUW
AMEN. TRANSLATION: PRAISE BE JESUS CHRIST. ANSWER: FOR EVER AND
EVER. AMEN.

Submitter comment: USED ESPECIALLY FOR GREETING PRIESTS NUNS AND ELDERS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Prayer
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 10-29-1974

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TONGUE TWISTER

RUBBER BABY BUGGY BUMPER

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 11-09-1974

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CALLING ME TO COME OUTSIDE

COME BY MY HOUSE AND WHISTLE ME OUT SO MY MOTHER KNOWS WHO I HANG
BY.

Submitter comment: THIS MEANT THAT THE PERSON IT WAS BEING SAID TO SHOULD COME OVER TO
HER HOUSE AND CALL HER OUTSIDE. THEN HER MOTHER WOULD KNOW WHO
SHE WAS HANGING AROUND WITH.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 10-00-1973

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RETORT

YOU THINK I CAME UP THE KLIDE ON A BIKE?

Submitter comment: HER MOTHER WHO WAS SCOTTISH USED TO SAY THIS A LOT. THE KLIDE IS
A VERY STEEP BANKED RIVER.
IT WAS LIKE SAYING DO YOU THINK I WAS BORN YESTERDAY?

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 10-00-1973

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