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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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If two people say the same thing at the same time
you should hook your little fingers and make a
wish.

Submitter comment: Informant says she has been practicing this since
she was a little girl.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): Simultaneity of speech

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Body part Senses
BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal
BELIEF -- Prayer
SPEECH -- Gesture
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: 00001950S

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WHEN YOU SAY SOMETHING THE SAME TIME SOMEONE ELSE DOES,
MAKE A WISH, POP ONE OF YOUR LITTLE FINGERS, AND TOUCH
SOMETHING BLUE. THE WISH WILL COME TRUE, IF YOU ARE
THE FIRST TO TOUCH BLUE.

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; NASHVILLE

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Prayer
BELIEF -- Color
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

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IF THE HEM OF YOUR DRESS IS TURNED UP, KISS THE HEM AND MAKE
A WISH.

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; NASHVILLE

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Prayer
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: 08-01-1968

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GOODBYE GESTURES

WHILE WORKING AS A TOURIST GUIDE FOR THE FORD MOTOR
COMPANY, I WAS ASSIGNED A GROUP OF ENGLISHMEN TO
ESCORT THROUGH THE ROUGE PLANT. WHEN LUNCH WAS
COMPLETED, I STOOD UP TO LEAVE THE TABLE AND SAY
GOODBYE. WHILE LEAVING, A NUMBER OF THE ENGLISHMEN
GESTURED BY CLENCHING THEIR FINGERS LIKE A FIST,
THUMB STRAIGHT UP. WITH THE HAND IN SUCH A FORM,
THEY WOULD MOVE THE ARM UP AND DOWN ABOUT 5 TO 6
INCHES IN ALL. ONE OF THEM TOLD ME THAT THIS WAS
A GOODBYE AND GOOD LUCK SIGN ALL IN ONE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DEARBORN

James Callow Keyword(s): LEAVETAKING

Subject headings: 602 Body Parts
SPEECH -- Goodbyes Leavetakings
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: 00001963 SUMMER

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SALUTATION GESTURE

WAVING GOODBYE AMONG SICILIANS AND MOST LATIN AMERICANS
ENTAILS CUPPING AND UNCUPPING THE HAND--AS IS COMMON IN
THE U.S. HOWEVER, THIS IS DIRECTED TOWARD'S ONE'S OWN
BODY AND NOT TOWARD THE DEPARTING PERSON. THIS GESTURE
IS REPUTED TO BE A SYMBOLIC YEARNING OF THE OTHER'S SOON
RETURN.

Where learned: FLORIDA ; MIAMI

Keyword(s): CUP THE FINGERS, AND WAVE THEM TOWARD YOURSELF.

Subject headings: 602 Body Parts
SPEECH -- Goodbyes Leavetakings
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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Entry filtered.

WHEN A FLEMISH WOMAN PUTS THE FINGER NEXT TO HER
THUMB (INDEX FINGER) IN THE PALM OF A GUY'S HAND,
SHE WANTS TO GO TO BED WITH HIM.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT ; DORM ROOM

Keyword(s): INTERCOURSE

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Marriage
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: 11-13-1969

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WHEN TWO PEOPLE SAY SOMETHING AT THE SAME TIME, THEY WRAP
BABY FINGERS AND MAKE A WISH.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: 602 Body Parts
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: 11-17-1968

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WHEN TWO PEOPLE SAY THE SAME THING AT THE SAME TIME,
THEY LINK PINKIES AND MAKE A WISH.

Where learned: UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Subject headings: 602 Body Parts
BELIEF -- Prayer
SPEECH -- Formula
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: 10-02-1967

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WHEN PEOPLE SAY THE SAME THING AT THE SAME TIME,
THEY USED TO DO SOME GESTURE OR SOMETHING
TOGETHER AND MAKE A WISH. NOWADAYS, WHEN THIS HAPPENS,
YOUNG CHILDREN SAY "COKE" AND WHOEVER SAYS IT FIRST
GETS TREATED TO A COKE BY THE OTHER ONE.
COLLEGE STUDENTS USUALLY SAY "BEER."

Where learned: NOT GIVEN

Keyword(s): COKE=COCA COLA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Prayer
SPEECH -- Formula
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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WHEN TWO PEOPLE ACCIDENTALLY SAY THE SAME WORD
SIMULTANEOUSLY, THEY SHOULD IMMEDIATELY LINK THEIR
LITTLE FINGERS TOGETHER AND MAKE A WISH TO THEMSELVES.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: 602 Body Parts
BELIEF -- Prayer
SPEECH -- Formula
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: 02-18-1971

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IF TWO PEOPLE SAY THE SAME WORD SIMULTANEOUSLY, THEY CAN
CLASP THEIR "BABY" FINGERS AND MAKE A WISH.

Submitter comment: INFORMANT IS A FRIEND OF MINE WHO REMEMBERS THIS FROM
HER CHILDHOOD.

Where learned: ILLINOIS ; CHICAGO

Subject headings: 602 Body Parts
SPEECH -- Formula
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: 02-00-1971

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ESP BELIEF

IF YOU SAY THE SAME THING AT THE SAME TIME AS SOMEBODY
ELSE, YOU HOOK LITTLE FINGERS WITH EACH OTHER, AND
MAKE A WISH.

Where learned: DETROIT ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Subject headings: 602 Body Parts
BELIEF -- Prayer
SPEECH -- Formula
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: 03-31-1971

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IF TWO PEOPLE SAY THE SAME WORDS OR SOME PHRASE
SIMULTANEOUSLY THEY SHOULD LINK THEIR LITTLE FINGERS
TOGETHER AND MAKE A WISH.

Where learned: OHIO ; TOLEDO

Subject headings: 602 Body Parts
BELIEF -- Prayer
SPEECH -- Formula
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: 10-00-1968

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IF YOU CROSS YOUR FINGERS ON BOTH HANDS, THE WISH
YOU'RE MAKING WILL NOT COME TRUE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

Subject headings: 602 Body Parts
BELIEF -- Prayer
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: 11-05-1967

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MAILTRUCK

WHEN YOU SEE A RED, WHITE, AND BLUE MAIL TRUCK, YOU
MAKE A WISH AND CROSS YOUR FINGERS UNTIL YOU
SEE A DOG OR ANOTHER MAILTRUCK AND YOUR WISH WILL
COME TRUE.

Where learned: DETROIT ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Subject headings: 602 Body Parts
ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Means of transportation Vehicle propelled by mechanical or other force on land
BELIEF -- Mammal
BELIEF -- Prayer
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
BELIEF -- Color
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: 11-22-1968

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WHEN TWO PEOPLE ACCIDENTALLY SAY THE SAME THING, THEY
LINK LITTLE FINGERS, SHAKE THEIR HANDS UP AND DOWN
AND SAY "NEEDLES AND PINS," AND MAKE A WISH. THEY
BREAK THE LINK WITH A CHOPPING MOTION WITH A FREE
HAND. AFTER THIS, THEY SAY "MAY YOUR WISH COME TRUE!"

Submitter comment: MY PARENTS REMEMBER DOING THIS WHEN THEY WERE
CHILDREN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: 602 Body Parts
BELIEF -- Prayer
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: 09-27-1971

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KNOCK ON WOOD, WHEN WISHING FOR SOMETHING AND IT
WILL HAPPEN.

Where learned: HOME

Subject headings: Observation
BELIEF -- Prayer
BELIEF -- Good luck P881.22
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: 10-00-1968

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WHEN YOU SPILL THE SALT ON THE TABLE; MAKE A WISH
AND THROW SOME OVER YOUR LEFT SHOULDER.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Prayer
BELIEF -- Good luck P881.22
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: 11-15-1968

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IF A PERSON WANTS A DRINK, HE DRAWS HIS FINGERS INTO
A FIST, PUTS HIS THUMB INTO HIS MOUTH, AND MOVES
HIS ARMS UP AND DOWN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Subject headings: Food Drink -- Drink
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions
SPEECH -- Drinking

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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WHEN YOUR DRINKING GLASS IS EMPTY AND YOU WANT IT
REFILLED, YOU GENTLY TAP THE RIM OF THE EMPTY GLASS.
THIS WOULD BE A SIGNAL FOR THE GLASS TO BE FILLED.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE WOODS

Subject headings: Food Drink -- Drink
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions
SPEECH -- Drinking

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