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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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AUTOGRAPH VERSE

WHEN THE GOLDEN SUN IS SETTING
AND THE EARTH NO MORE YOU TROD;
MAY YOUR NAME IN GOLD BE WRITTEN
IN THE AUTOGRAPH OF GOD.

Submitter comment: THIS ITEM WAS WRITTEN IN THE AUTOGRAPH BOOK OF
COLETTE BY A SCHOOLMATE.

Where learned: LOCATION NOT RECORDED BY COLLECTOR

Keyword(s): BLESSING ; CHARM ; PIOUS ; PREPARATION FOR DEATH ; RHYME ABCB

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Autograph Verse Pious reflection

Date learned: 10-08-1967

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AUTOGRAPH BOOK VERSE

WHEN YOU GET MARRIED AND HAVE A TOT,
SEND ME A LETTER FOR A PE-PE POT.

Where learned: DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): EUPHEMISM: PE-PE POT FOR CHILD'S TOILET BABY

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Autograph Verse Matrimony

Date learned: 00-00-1974

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AUTOGRAPH BOOK RHYME

IF IN HEAVEN WE DON'T MEET, TOGETHER WE CAN STAND THE HEAT
AND IF IT GETS REALLY HOT, PEPSI COLA HITS THE SPOT.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROYAL OAK

James Callow Keyword(s): INDIRECTION FOR HELL

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

Date learned: 00-00-1970

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Entry filtered.

YOU SWEEP WITH A BROOM,
YOU MOP WITH A MOP,
BUT WHATEVER YOU DO,
DON'T MARRY A WOP.

Submitter comment:

THIS WOMAN, WHO WISHES TO REMAIN ANONYMOUS, PERMITTED
ME TO COLLECT THESE VERSES FROM HER AUTOGRAPH BOOK.
THE VERSES WERE ENTERED BY HER HIGH SCHOOL CLASSMATES
IN 1939.

Where learned: MICHIGAN, ASSUMED ; WYANDOTTE

James Callow Keyword(s): DEROGATORY TERM=WOP (FOR ITALIAN)

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Autograph Verse Chimney corner wisdom, advice, humorous fortune

Date learned: 00-00-1939

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ROSES ARE RED, VIOLETS ARE GREEN,
YOU'D THINK BETTER WITH SOME BRAINS IN YOUR BEAN. CK[ SLANG=BEAN FOR HEAD

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; SAINT JAMES SCHOOL ; FERNDALE

James Callow Keyword(s): SLANG=BEAN FOR HEAD

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Autograph Verse Roses are red and other such associations

Date learned: 00-00-1959

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TALE

A MAN HAD JUST PURCHASED A NEW CAR. AFTER DRIVING IT FOR TWO
WEEKS, HE DISCOVERED AN AWFUL RATTLE IN THE DOOR. TAKING IT TO
A GARAGE TO FIND OUT WHAT WAS WRONG, HE DISCOVERED AN EMPTY
COKE BOTTLE WAS LODGED IN THE DOOR.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; BIRMINGHAM

Keyword(s): AUTOMOBILE ; COKE=COCA COLA: BRAND NAME FOR SOFT DRINK.

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Jest Anecdote
ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Means of transportation Vehicle propelled by mechanical or other force on land

Date learned: 00-00-1965

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TALE

WHILE HUNTING IN THE UPPER PENINSULA ONE SEASON, I CLIMBED A TREE
TO GET A BETTER VIEW OF THE TERRAIN. THE BRANCH I SAT ON BROKE
AND I FELL INTO WHAT TURNED OUT TO BE A HOLLOW TREE WITH BEAR CUBS
IN IT. KNOWING THAT THE MOTHER BEAR WOULD SOON BE BACK, I TRIED
MY BEST TO CLIMB OUT OF THE TREE, TO NO AVAIL. SO I GRABBED MY
KNIFE AND WAITED FOR HER. JUST THEN, I HEARD HER SCRATCHING HER
WAY UP THE TREE. I SAW HER AT THE TOP OF THE TREE CLIMBING INTO
THE HOLE REAR FIRST, SO I GRABBED HER TAIL AND JABBED MY KNIFE
INTO HER BEHIND. SHE SHOT UP THE TREE, PULLING ME WITH HER. AS
SOON AS WE WERE OUT, I PICKED UP MY GUN AND SHOT HER.

Where learned: NORTHERN MICHIGAN

Keyword(s): SEE ROBERTS' SOUTH FROM HELL-FOR-SATAN, TALE 71.

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Mammal
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Lie Tall tale

Date learned: 08-15-1969

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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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IF A HEN CROWS THERE WILL BE BAD LUCK IN A HOUSEHOLD,
AND THE MEMBERS OF THAT HOUSEHOLD MAY EXPECT EITHER
DEAD LIVESTOCK OR A DEATH IN THE FAMILY.

Submitter comment: MY GRANDMOTHER LEARNED THIS WHEN SHE WAS A GIRL
IN WARSAW IN THE EARLY 1900S.

Data entry tech comment: I BELIEVE SHE MEANS IF A HEN CROWS BEFORE DAWN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT ; POLAND ; WARSAW

James Callow Keyword(s): FOWL

Subject headings: Observation
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Use of Object Animals

Date learned: 00001900s ; 10-05-1967

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IF CHICKENS COME OFF THE ROOST AND CACKLE BEFORE
DAWN, THERE WILL BE A DEATH IN THE FAMILY.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): FOWL

Subject headings: Observation
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Use of Object Animals

Date learned: 10-00-1971

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IF A ROOSTER CROWS BEFORE DAY, IT IS A SIGN SOMEONE
IS GOING TO DIE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): FOWL

Subject headings: Observation
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Use of Object Animals

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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IF YOU HEAR A ROOSTER CROWING AT THE DOOR, IT BRINGS
SICKNESS TO THE FAMILY.

Submitter comment: INFORMANT HEARD FROM HIS MOTHER.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ALLEN PARK

James Callow Keyword(s): FOWL

Subject headings: Observation
BELIEF -- Use of Object Animals

Date learned: 09-28-1967

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MILITARY CADENCE SONG

I DON'T KNOW WHAT I'VE BEEN TOLD,
RANGERS ARE AS GOOD AS GOLD.
I'VE BEEN TOLD AND I BELIEVE,
I'LL BE HOME FOR CHRISTMAS LEAVE.
I WONDER WHERE THE YELLOW WENT,
WHEN THEY BOMBED THE ORIENT.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROSEVILLE

James Callow Keyword(s): ADVERTISING FOR PEPSODENT TOOTHPASTE: ; WHEN YOU BRUSH YOUR TEETH WITH PEPSODENT ; YOU'LL WONDER WHERE THE YELLOW WENT

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- War cries
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- F535

Date learned: 12-00-1974

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MILITARY CADENCE SONG

MR. NIXON DROPPED THE BOMB,
BUT I DON'T WANT TO GO TO 'NAM.
BUT IF I GET MY ORDERS TO 'NAM,
I'M GOING AWOL TO MY MOM.
IF THAT DOOR'S NOT OPEN WIDE,
GOT MY WEAPON BY MY SIDE.
IF THAT WEAPON JAMS ON ME, OH OH OH OHHH.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROSEVILLE

James Callow Keyword(s): 'NAM FOR VIETNAM ; RHYME: 'NAM MOM

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- War cries
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- F535

Date learned: 12-00-1974

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PRACTICAL JOKE (PIMP)

PUT CELLOPHANE WRAP UNDER THE TOILET SEAT AND OVER THE TOILET BOWL
IN A GIRL'S BATHROOM.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MICHIGAN STATE UNIVERSITY ; EAST LANSING

James Callow Keyword(s): SARAN WRAP (CLEAR, PLASTIC FOOD-WRAP)

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Entertainment Diversion

Date learned: 00-00-1973

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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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STARTING THE NEW YEAR

ON THE FIRST OF THE NEW YEAR YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO LET THE FIRST
DARK PERSON THAT YOU KNOW COME THROUGH THE DOOR FIRST
WHILE HE CARRIES A PIECE OF BLACK CHARCOAL (IF NOT MALE THEN
HAVE A FEMALE DO IT).
SO THAT YOU MAY HAVE GOOD LUCK THROUGHOUT THE YEAR.

Submitter comment: THIS ITEM WAS LEARNED DURING HIS LATE ADOLESCENT STAGE IN HIS
HOME TOWN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): FIRST FOOTING

Subject headings: 686 Properties attributed to specific numbers or numerals individually.
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- January 1 New Year's
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20
BELIEF -- Number
BELIEF -- Good luck P881.1
BELIEF -- Good luck P881.42

Date learned: 00001930S

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POLISH EASTER CUSTOM - WIGILIA

ON EASTER SATURDAY A BASKET CONTAINING KIELBASA (SAUSAGE),
SALT AND PEPPER, VINEGAR, WATER, EGGS, BUTTER, HAM, BACON AND
HORSERADISH IS TAKEN TO THE CHURCH AND BLESSED BY THE PRIEST.
THEN ON EASTER SUNDAY MORN A SOUP IS MADE FROM ALL OF THESE
INGREDIENTS AND EATEN BY THE FAMILY.

Submitter comment: THIS WAS DONE IN INFORMANT'S HOME AS A CHILD AND IS STILL DONE
AS A PARENT.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): FOOD

Subject headings: 663 Holy Saturday
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Spring Planting Easter Sunday
BELIEF -- Prayer

Date learned: 10-15-1974

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LIMERICK

THERE WAS A YOUNG LADY FROM YETTA/ WHO FANCIED HERSELF IN A SWETTA/
THREE REASONS SHE HAD/ TO KEEP WARM WAS NOT BAD/ BUT THE OTHER TWO
REASONS WERE BETTA

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MADISON HEIGHTS

James Callow Keyword(s): INDIRECTION FOR BREASTS ; SWEATER

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

Date learned: 00-00-1969

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THE EGG

PUT AN EGG IN YOUR SHOE AND BEAT IT.

Submitter comment: MRS. FRENDO JUST SNICKERED AS SHE FINISHED THIS ONE, EXPECTING A
GROAN BEFORE MOVING ON TO THE NEXT ONE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

James Callow Keyword(s): PUN SLANG: BEAT IT FOR GO AWAY

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 01-00-1974

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