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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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CAT BURIAL JOKE

A WOMAN BROUGHT HER DEAD CAT TO THE LOCAL CATHOLIC CHURCH AND
ASKED THE PRIEST TO HAVE A BURIAL SERVICE FOR HIM. THE PRIEST
SAID, "WE DO NOT BURY CATS. YOU WILL HAVE TO TAKE HIM TO ANOTHER
CHURCH." SHE SAID, "I WAS GOING TO SPEND $35,000 ON THE
FUNERAL." THE PRIEST SAID, "WHY DIDN'T YOU TELL ME YOUR CAT WAS
CATHOLIC."

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; HAMTRAMCK

Keyword(s): CAT ; CATHOLIC CHURCH ; FUNERAL PREPARATION ; HUMOR ; PRIEST ; RELIGION ; SURPRISE ENDING

James Callow Keyword(s): SATIRE OF MERCENARY CATHOLIC PRIESTS

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Jest Anecdote

Date learned: 10-09-1971

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YOU CAN'T SEW A GARMENT THAT IS ON YOUR BODY UNLESS YOU CHEW
SOMETHING TO SHOW YOU ARE ALIVE, SINCE THE ONLY TIME CLOTHES
SEWED ON YOUR BODY IS WHEN YOU ARE DEAD.

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; PEABODY COLLEGE ; NASHVILLE

Keyword(s): FUNERAL PREPARATION

Subject headings: Favorites
BELIEF -- Body part Senses
BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal
BELIEF -- Daily Life
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial

Date learned: 04-22-1969

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"WE BURY OTHERS, WHY NOT YOU;
EVENTUALLY, WHY NOT NOW."

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): ADVERTISEMENT ; FUNERAL HOME SLOGAN?

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial
PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim

Date learned: 11-19-1968

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Custom

The family of the deceased attends mass for six consecutive weeks. Each week the family brings fruit, candy, or fruit for the entire parish. At the end of the six week period an entire mass is said in memory of the deceased . The family brings wine, three large raisin breads, fruit, and boiled wheat for the parish. This is done to celebrate the first stage of the deceased's ascention into Heaven. The ritual is repeated at six months to celebrate the second stage. After a person has been dead for a period of one year, the ritual is repeated for the last time. This stage signifies that the deceased has ascended into Heaven.

Submitter comment:

Despite revisions in the Orthodox mass, this custom has been preserved. It is considered an important and beautiful ritual. This custom is so old that no one knows how it exactly originated.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; DETROIT ; Self

Keyword(s): BURIAL ; CUSTOM ; DEATH ; FOOD ; Funeral ; RELIGION ; SYMBOLISM

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial

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Destiny

If a cowboy dies without his boots on his soul is damned to limbo

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

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

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): BELIEF ; BURIAL ; DEATH ; Funeral ; Limbo ; MYTH ; Soul ; SUPERSTITION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial

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Maxim

Sun and Rain:

Happy is the bride the sun shines on;

Lucky is the corpse that rain falls on.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN [P880, P45] crossed out/ replaced with current classifications.

Where learned: OHIO ; TOLEDO

Keyword(s): BELIEF ; Bride ; BURIAL ; Corpse ; DEATH ; Funeral ; MARRIAGE ; Maxim ; OMEN ; SUPERSTITION ; WEDDING

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Marriage
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial

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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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Entry filtered.

Ethnic Joke: Jewish

Irishman, Scotchman and Jew visiting dead friend in funeral parlor. Sign on dead man's chest says, "I'd like to take some money with me when I go." Irishman puts out $500. So does the Scotchman. Jew writes a $1500 check and takes the $1000 as change.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs and BN added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN [B66] crossed out

Submission card located in pile marked [?]

Where learned: BUFFALO ; NEW YORK ; Collection

Keyword(s): AFTERLIFE ; BURIAL ; Dead ; Distasteful ; ETHNIC ; Funeral ; Irish ; Jewish ; JOKE ; MONEY ; Offensive ; Penny-pincher ; SCOTTISH ; Stereotype

James Callow Keyword(s): Jewish

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Ill humor Ridicule Mockery

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Ethnic Joke: Hollander

Hollander Joke:

When the Hollanders bury their dead, they bury them standing up with the top half sticking out of the grave. These are used as the tombstones.

Submitter comment:

This joke was told to me by a boy from Flanders.

Hollander jokes are typical in Belgium.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs and BN added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Written in the bottom left of the card: Does this imply that the Hollanders are cheap? A response in different handwriting (probably the collector's): YES!!

Where learned: BELGIUM

Keyword(s): BURIAL ; DEATH ; ETHNIC ; Funeral ; GRAVEYARD ; Headstones ; Holland ; Hollander ; Offensive ; Tasteless

James Callow Keyword(s): Hollander

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Ill humor Ridicule Mockery

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Ethnic: Native American

Prayer at the Time of a Wake:

Almighty God, we pray to you at this time so that we might understand your loving Providence in our lives. We know that the world is a sweat lodge, a place of purification, that our span of life is a time of trial. When our purification has been accomplished, we must step through the door of death into the light of eternal happiness. No one regrets leaving the hot darkness of the sweat lidge to the cool light og the world we live in. So lord, remove all spirit and rebellion from our hearts at a time when the soul of ______ had finished his (her) purification and gone into eternal life. Give us the strength to live by this vision, so that it can heal the wounds of grief and restore your peace in our hearts. Give us a greater understanding of the wonderful work of your redemption on the sacred Road of LIfe. Let us all be mindful that we share in Christ rising to a new life of complete happiness for all eternity. Let us pray that all traces of sin be removed from his (her) soul sop that the anfels of God may bring him (her) into paradise. We ask you these graces through the Blessed virgin Mary, St. Joseph and Jesus Christ who is and ever shall be the Living and Eternal Pipe. Amen.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: CANADA ; Tekakwitha Conference ; WINNIPEG ; MANITOBA

Keyword(s): AMERICAN INDIAN ; CUSTOM ; DEATH ; ETHNIC ; Funeral ; Native American ; PRAYER ; RELIGION ; Soul ; WAKE

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Prayer

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Ethnic: Native American

Before the prayers, say "remember man that the Pipe of your earthly life" will some day be broken. Then take bowl and stem apart and lay on coffin.

After the prayers in the ritual, then take two parts of the Pipe into your hands and say: "Through the Resurrection of Christ, the life of _____and all of us will be brought together into eternal happiness." Then in the four directions, point the Pipe to the sky and say "I am the Living and Eternal Pipe, the Ressurrection and the Life; he who believes in Me, even if he die [sic] shall live: and whoever lives and believes in me shall never die." Repeat this in each of the four direction. At the end point the Pipe to the sky and touch the Earth with the bowl.

Submitter comment:

The informant advises that the Pipe be already filled with tobacco. This is the most powerful prayer I have experienced with the Pipe and produces a deep impression on many people.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: CANADA ; Tekakwitha Conference ; WINNIPEG ; MANITOBA

Keyword(s): AMERICAN INDIAN ; BELIEF ; CUSTOM ; DEATH ; ETHNIC ; Funeral ; Native American ; PRAYER ; RELIGION ; RITUAL

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Prayer

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Ethnic: Moravian

Burial Custom: Moravian:

Every Easter, headstones are brought to uniform whitenes and flowers bedeck virtually every grave of deceased Moravian members at Old Salem, North Carolina. At sunrise, approximately half a dozen bands march into the graveyard to celebrate the risen lord.

Submitter comment:

Read in National Geographic Magazine,  Dec. 1970

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: Myself ; Magazine

Keyword(s): BURIAL ; CUSTOM ; Easter ; ETHNIC ; Funeral ; Moravian

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial

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Ethnic: Native American

Lakota Burial Custom:

The Lakota Indians place the deceased bodies of their tribe not in the ground but upon poles until the corpses are either disintegrated or eaten.

Submitter comment:

The informant supposes that the practice places the body close to the Great Spirit, prevents other tribes from taking over Lakota Territory, and expresses the belief that the Lakotas - if they wandered away - would eventually return to this special area.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): AMERICAN INDIAN ; BURIAL ; CUSTOM ; DEATH ; ETHNIC ; Funeral ; Lakota ; Native American

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial

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Ethnic: Korean

Korean Death Custom:

In Korea, a male will straighten the tongue of the person who just died while female members of the family would have to leave the room.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): BURIAL ; CUSTOM ; DEATH ; ETHNIC ; Funeral ; Korean

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial

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Ethnic: Moravian

Moravian Burial Custom:

Moravian cemetary headstones are kept flat to show humility; their uniform size reflects the democracy of death. Burial is not by families but by choirs - grouping by age, sex, and marital status.

Submitter comment:

Read in National Geographic Magazine, Dec. 1970

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: Myself

Keyword(s): BELIEF ; BURIAL ; CUSTOM ; DEATH ; ETHNIC ; Funeral ; Moravian

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial

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Ethnic: Native American

Indian Burial Custom:

Informant noted a ritualistic use of pipe smoking in Indian Burial practices which - he bleived - is a co-mixture of Indian and Catholic beliefs.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): AMERICAN INDIAN ; BURIAL ; CATHOLICISM ; CUSTOMS ; DEATH ; ETHNIC ; Funeral ; Native American ; RELIGION ; RELIGIOUS

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial

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Ethnic: Native American

Indian Death Belief:

Among the Lakota Indians, the Informant believes that the death customs among these particular Indians shows a consciousness of ancestry but not ancestor worship.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): AMERICAN INDIAN ; ANCESTRY ; BURIAL ; CUSTOM ; DEATH ; ETHNIC ; Funeral ; Native American

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial

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Ethnic: Korean

Korean Burial Custom:

In Korea, burial sites are usually found on the sides of mountains with boundaries marked by two pillars. Once a year, (exact time not revealed by informant) food for deceased is borught and placed upon a platform.

Submitter comment:

Informant believes that these particular examples reflect a Buddhist belief in afterlife and ancestor worship.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): BELIEF ; BURIAL ; CUSTOM ; ETHNIC ; FOOD ; Funeral ; Korean ; RITUAL

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial

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Ethnic: Korean

Korean Death Custom:

In Korea, there is a three year mourning period for a parent since each child spent three years in the bosom before birth.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): Ancestors ; Beliefs ; BURIAL ; CUSTOMS ; DEATH ; ETHNIC ; Funeral ; Korean

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial

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Custom

Cemetery Practices:

When the informant was a child, he said that one made a day out of a trip to the cemetary. People carried their own sprinkling cans, their own shears for cutting the grass around the gravesite, their own garden tools to plant their own flowers. Most of the time you would take a lunch with you and eat it under the trees at the cemetery.

Submitter comment:

Grammatical corrections made to typed submission.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: HOME

Keyword(s): Ancestors ; BURIAL ; CEMETERY ; DEATH ; FOOD ; Funeral ; GARDEN ; Lunch ; Maintenance ; RESPECT

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial

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