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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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SALESMAN'S TRADITION

METHODS OF DETERMINING A "MOOCK"
1) ALL HOUSE TRIM AND MAILBOX PAINTED ONE COLOR, USUALLY BRIGHT
2) NEW CAR OR CARS IN THE DRIVEWAY
3) UNKEMPT LAWN
4) "PECKER TRACKS"( SIGNS OF KIDS)

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): DOOR-TO-DOOR SALESMAN

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Work Commerce Business
SPEECH -- Trade & commerce

Date learned: 00-00-1968

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YEARLY GROWTH

WHILE ATTENDING A COUSIN'S BIRTHDAY PARTY, MY UNCLE JACK PLACED MY
COUSIN AGAINST THE DOOR JAM IN THE KITCHEN, TOOK OUT HIS KNIFE AND
NOTCHED MY COUSIN,S HEIGHT. LOOKING CLOSELY, I NOTICED THAT THE
HEIGHTS OF ALL THE FAMILY MEMBERS (6) WERE NOTCHED ON THE MOULDING
PIECE. ALSO, THEY WERE MARKED WITH THE APPROPRIATE BIRTHDATE. THUS
A RECORD OF GROWTH AND FINAL HEIGHT COULD BE MEASURED AND SAVED. I
HAVE ALSO NOTICED THIS CUSTOM IN OTHER HOMES SINCE THEN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; Mount Clemens

Keyword(s): DOOR JAMB HEIGHT BIRTHDAY

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Maturity

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RIDDLE

WHAT'S BLUE AND GOES DING-DONG?
A FROZEN AVON LADY.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): DEFINITION

James Callow Keyword(s): DOOR-TO-DOOR SALESWOMAN ; SICK JOKE

Subject headings: RIDDLE -- True Riddle

Date learned: 02-20-1968

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KNOCK KNOCK JOKE

KNOCK, KNOCK
WHO'S THERE?
NOBEL
NOBEL WHO?
NO BELL, SO I KNOCKED.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; FRANKLIN VILLAGE

James Callow Keyword(s): DOORBELL

Subject headings: RIDDLE -- Riddle Question

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Shut yo do' an lick yo chil'.

Submitter comment: This is not a literal suggestion but means that one should
deal with personal matters privately and not let the whole
world be privy to your business.

Where learned: VIRGIN ISLANDS ; Saint Thomas

Keyword(s): an = and ; chile = child ; do = door ; lick = spank (punish) ; yo = your

James Callow Keyword(s): ADVICE

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Metaphor

Date learned: 03-00-1991

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Custom

Method for pulling out baby teeth: tie string around tooth and other end around door and close door.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Keyword(s): BABY ; CUSTOM ; DENTISTRY ; Door ; Removal ; String ; TEETH ; Tooth

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Home

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KNOB: A THING TO ADORE.

Where learned: TEXAS ; WACO

James Callow Keyword(s): DEFINITION ; HUMOR ; PUN FOR A DOOR.

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim

Date learned: 05-29-1970

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Custom

Luck in a Custom:

When a stranger enters your home for the 1st time, make sure that he enters and exits from the same door. Otherwise it is bad luck for you.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN [P532] is crossed out and replaced with F533.

Where learned: HOME

Keyword(s): CUSTOM ; Domestic ; DOMESTIC RELATIONS ; Domesticity ; Door ; Entrance ; Guest ; Host ; LUCK

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Street Trip Relations between relatives, friends, host and guest Social class Rank

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Ethnic: Ukraine

Belief:

In Ukraine, it is believed that if you're locked out of your house and forced to come in through the window, you must also leave by the window or you will experience some misfortune.

Submitter comment:

Informant received information from grandparents in Ukraine.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN [P880] written and crossed out twice/replaced with current classification.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): BELIEF ; CUSTOM ; Door ; ETHNIC ; FUNERAL HOME SLOGAN? ; SUPERSTITION ; Ukraine ; UKRAINIAN ; UKRAINIAN BELIEF ; Window

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Street Trip Relations between relatives, friends, host and guest Social class Rank

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Proverb

As dead as a doornail.

Submitter comment:

The number 335 is typed in the upper right hand corner.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN [V600] crossed out and replaced with current classifications.

The word As is underlined in red the first time it appears.

Dup of WPP.

The word (informant) has been written in red next to the name of Sophie Drouillard.

Keyword(s): ALLITERATION ; Dead ; Doornail ; SIMILE

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Phrase
PROVERB -- Proverbial Comparison

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Proverb

Dead as a doornail

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Located in pile marked Duplicates and Other Rejects.

Keyword(s): ALLITERATION ; Dead ; Doornail ; SIMILE

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Phrase

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Proverb

That's as funny as a screen door in a submarine

Submitter comment:

Wet Floor

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Located in pile marked Duplicates and Other Rejects

Keyword(s): Funny ; JOKE ; SARCASM ; Screen Door ; SIMILE ; Submarine ; Unfunny

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Comparison

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Retort

You make a better door than you do a window.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

[When said? When someone gets in the way?]

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GRAND RAPIDS

Keyword(s): COMEBACK ; Door ; INSULT ; Obstruction ; RETORT ; SARCASM ; View ; Window ; Wisecrack

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

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Proverb

Arabian Saying (Translated):

The carpenter's door is broken.

Submitter comment:

When one can't handle his own problems, especially in his expert field: ie - The tailor has poor clothes.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN [V400] crossed out. Replaced wtih current classification.

Keyword(s): ; Aphorism ; Apothegm ; Arabian ; Carpenter ; Door ; ETHNIC ; Maxim ; PROVERB ; Skill ; VERSE

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Metaphor

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Prank

Dorm Doorknobs:

I have often heard of this trick praticed in college dormatories and once actually saw it being done. One night, quiet [sic] late when most everyone had gone to sleep a girl on muy floor took a ball of string and tied either end to doorknobs which faced one another. The idea of this is that the next morning when girls began leaving for class they would be unable to open their doors. You can well imagine the shouting which occured the "morning after" this trick.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Keyword(s): COLLEGE ; Doorknob ; Dorm ; Dormitory ; JOKE ; PRACTICAL JOKE ; Prank ; String

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- C537

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Taunt

Fatty, fatty, two by four. Can't get through the bathroom door. So he did it on the floor.

Submitter comment:

Friends

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs Added By TRD

James Callow comment:

Orignal BN [S570] crossed out. Replaced with current classification

Where learned: HOME

Keyword(s): BATHROOM ; Bowels ; Door ; Fat ; Fatty ; Floor ; INSULT ; JOKE ; Large ; RHYME ; SIZE ; TAUNT ; URINATE ; WEIGHT

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Speech Speech

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OPENING AN UMBRELLA IN THE HOUSE BRINGS BAD LUCK.

Data entry tech comment:

Updated on 09-01-11

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; GALLATIN

Keyword(s): BAD LUCK ; House ; Indoors ; LUCK ; OMEN ; UMBRELLA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Bad luck Umbrella

Date learned: 08-20-1973

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IT IS BAD LUCK TO CUT A FRAME FOR A WINDOW OR A DOOR
INSIDE A HOUSE.

Data entry tech comment:

Updated on 09-01-11

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI ; BELZONI

Keyword(s): BAD LUCK ; Carpentry ; Craft ; Cut ; Door ; frame ; House ; Indoors ; Inside ; LUCK ; Window

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Bad luck Activities

Date learned: 11-22-1972

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IT IS BAD LUCK TO SWEEP DIRT OUT OF DOORS AFTER SUNDOWN.

Data entry tech comment:

Updated on 09-01-11

Where learned: MISSISSIPPI ; BELZONI

Keyword(s): BAD LUCK ; LUCK ; Out ; Outdoors ; Sundown ; SUNSET ; Sweep

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Measure of time WeekDayHour
BELIEF -- Measure of time Working
BELIEF -- Bad luck Broom Sweeping

Date learned: 11-22-1972

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GOING OUT OF A HOUSE THROUGH THE SAME DOOR BY WHICH
YOU ENTERED IS BAD LUCK.

Data entry tech comment:

Updated by TRD

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; CORNERSVILLE

Keyword(s): Door ; Enter ; Exit ; SUPERSTITION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Street Trip Relations between relatives, friends, host and guest Social class Rank
BELIEF -- Bad luck

Date learned: 00001972-00001973 (ASSUMED)

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