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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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FORMULA

IF YOU WANT SOMEONE TO KNOW SOMETHING WITHOUT HAVING TO TELL
THAT PERSON YOURSELF, YOU MENTION IT TO SOMEONE ELSE WHO IN
TURN PROMISES TO PUT A BUG IN HIS EAR, IN OTHER WORDS TO
MENTION IT TO THAT OTHER PERSON.

Where learned: DETROIT ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

James Callow Keyword(s): ANIMAL: INSECT ; REMINDER PROD

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Phrase

Date learned: 10-03-1969

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BUG

IF A LIGHTING BUG ENTERS YOUR HOME. THAT IS A SIGN, THAT A STRANGER
IS COMING TO YOUR HOUSE.

Submitter comment: INFORMANTS LEARNED IN CHILDHOOD.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): LIGHTNING BUG FIREFLY INSECT

Subject headings: Observation
BELIEF -- Insect

Date learned: 01-26-1971

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IT AIN'T GONNA RAIN

IT AIN'T GONNA RAIN NO MORE NO MORE
IT AIN'T GONNA RAIN NO MORE
HOW IN THE HECK CAN THE OLD FOLKS TELL
THAT IT AIN'T GONNA RAIN NO MORE.

MOSQUITO HE FLY HIGH, MOSQUITO HE FLY LOW
O MOSQUITO LIGHT ON ME, AND YE AIN'T GONNA FLY NO MORE.

IT AIN'T GONNA RAIN NO MORE NO MORE
IT AIN'T GONNA RAIN NO MORE
HOW IN THE HECK CAN I WASH MY NECK
IF IT AIN'T GONNA RAIN NO MORE.

A PEANUT SAT ON A RAILROAD TRACK, ITS HEART ALL A FLUTTER.
AROUND THE BEND CAME 416, TOOT TOOT, PEANUT BUTTER.

IT AIN'T GONNA RAIN NO MORE NO MORE
IT AIN'T GONNA RAIN NO MORE
HOW IN THE HECK CAN THE OLD FOLKS TELL
THAT IT AIN'T GONNA RAIN NO MORE.

Submitter comment:

Learned in childhood.

Data entry tech comment:

Informant and collector are the same person.

Where learned: CHILDHOOD ; MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): ANIMAL-INSECT

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Good humor Jest

Date learned: LEARNED IN CHILDHOOD

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GOOD NIGHT

GOOD NIGHT, SLEEP TIGHT.
DON'T LET THE BED BUGS BITE.
IF THEY DO, PUT THEM IN A STEW
AND GET UP AND EAT THEM AT HALF PAST TWO.

Where learned: ILLINOIS ; CHICAGO

Keyword(s): FOOD ; GORE ; INSECTS ; INTERNAL RHYME ( TWO PAIRS) ; RHYME: AABB

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Lyrical Verse
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Lyrical Verse Lyrical Verse
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Belief Belief

Date learned: 00-00-1955

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CHILDREN'S VERSE

I WOKE UP SUNDAY MORNING,
I LOOKED UPON THE WALL,
THE COOTIES AND THE BEDBUGS
WERE HAVING A GAME OF BALL.
THE SCORE WAS 6 TO NOTHING,
THE COOTIES WERE AHEAD.
THE BEDBUGS HIT A HOMERUN AND KNOCKED ME OUT OF BED.

Submitter comment: FROM THE CHILDREN OF HER NEIGHBORHOOD.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE

Keyword(s): HANGOVER VISION ; INSECTS ; MARVELS ; QUATRAIN HUMOR NONSENSE ; RHYME: ABCB

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Insect
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Narrative Verse

Date learned: 00001964 SUMMER

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SPIDER IN HAIR

A TEENAGE GIRL RATTED HER HAIR AND DIDN'T COMB IT OUT FOR TWO WEEKS.
SHE DIED SUDDENLY. AN AUTOPSY HAD TO BE PERFORMED TO DETERMINE THE
CAUSE OF DEATH. THEY FOUND THAT SPIDERS HAD MADE THEIR HOME IN HER
HAIR AND HAD EATEN THEIR WAY INTO HER BRAIN.

Submitter comment: HEARD SEVERAL TIMES ON U-D CAMPUS.

Where learned: DETROIT

Keyword(s): DEATH INSECT LAZINESS ; FATAL HAIRDO

Subject headings: Favorites
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Body part Senses

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SPIDER LADY

A GIRL WAS GOING TO A BIG PARTY AND HAD HER HAIR DONE AT A SALON.
IT WAS FIXED IN A BEEHIVE WITH LOTS AND LOTS OF HAIRSPRAY. SHE LIKED
IT SO WELL THAT EVERYDAY SHE JUST PUT A LITTLE MORE SPRAY ON AND
NEVER TOOK IT DOWN OR WASHED IT. ONE DAY SHE SCRATCHED HER HEAD AND
BLOOD TRICKLED DOWN. SHE WAS TAKEN TO THE HOSPITAL WHEREUPON
EXAMINATION IT WAS REVEALED ANTS HAD COLONIZED IN HER HAIR.

Where learned: DETROIT

Keyword(s): FATAL HAIRDO ; INSECT HAIRDO

Subject headings: Favorites
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Body part Senses

Date learned: 02-20-1968

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IF YOU LIE DOWN WITH DOGS, YOU GET FLEAS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE

Keyword(s): ANIMALS

James Callow Keyword(s): FRIENDS ASSOCIATES BAD COMPANY ; INSECTS ; OBSERVATION

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Metaphor

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SUPERSTITION

IF YOU SEE A SPIDER SPINNING HER WEB IN THE MORNING YOU WILL
HAVE BAD LUCK. BUT, IF YOU SEE THE SPIDER SPINNING HER WEB AT
EVENING YOU WILL HAVE GOOD LUCK.

Where learned: ILLINOIS ; JACKSONVILLE

Keyword(s): INSECTS: SPIDERS

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Insect
BELIEF -- Measure of time WeekDayHour
BELIEF -- Measure of time Working
BELIEF -- Good luck P881.33
BELIEF -- Bad luck P882.33

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RIDDLE QUESTION

WHAT HAS FOUR WHEELS AND FLIES?
A GARBAGE TRUCK.

Where learned: NOT GIVEN

Keyword(s): CONUNDRUM ; INSECTS: FLIES ; PUN ON FLY (INSECT) AND FLY (VERB)

Subject headings: RIDDLE -- Riddle Question

Date learned: 11-16-1965

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"THE BUMBLE BEE SONG"

I'M BRINGING HOME MY BABY BUMBLE BEE,
WON'T MY MOMMY BE SO PROUD OF ME,
I'M BRINGING HOME MY BABY BUMBLE BEE,
OOOH! HE STUNG ME!
I'M SQUISHING UP MY BABY BUMBLE BEE,
WON'T MY MOMMY BE SO PROUD OF ME,
I'M SQUISHING UP MY BABY BUMBLE BEE,
OOOH! WHAT A MESS!
I'M LICKING UP MY BABY BUMBLE BEE,
WON'T MY MOMMY BE SO PROUD OF ME,
I'M LICKING UP MY BABY BUMBLE BEE,
OOOH! MY TUMMY HURTS!
I'M THROWING UP MY BABY BUMBLE BEE,
WON'T MY MOMMY BE SO PROUD OF ME,
I'M THROWING UP MY BABY BUMBLE BEE,
OOOH! WHAT A MESS!
I'M SWEEPING UP MY BABY BUMBLE BEE,
WON'T MY MOMMY BE SO PROUD OF ME,
I'M SWEEPING UP MY BABY BUMBLE BEE,
BYE, BYE, THERE HE GOES!
I THINK I SEE ANOTHER BUMBLE BEE,
WON'T MY MOMMY BE SO PROUD OF ME,
I THINK I SEE ANOTHER BUMBLE BEE,
OOOH! I CAUGHT HIM!
I'M BRINGING HOME MY BABY BUMBLE BEE............

Submitter comment: THIS IS ANOTHER INFINITE LOOP-TYPE SONG. IT CAN BE SUNG
UNTIL THE SINGERS ARE TIRED OF IT.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; FRASER

Keyword(s): INSECT

James Callow Keyword(s): VERSE ROUND

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Formula tale
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Ballad Epic
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Good humor Jest

Date learned: 00001970S

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Bay-Rama Fishfly Festival

Our town has a four-day celebration in honor
of the fishfly. We have a carnival and top
it off with a parade on the last day.
This always takes place in June. Fishflys
originate in the Anchor Bay, which is the
bay next to New Baltimore.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; NEW BALTIMORE

James Callow Keyword(s): INSECT ; June Bug ; May Fly

Subject headings: 686 Fourths / Quarters
Favorites
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Movable Date
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Summer

Date learned: 00001971ca

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SUPERSTITION: CENTIPEDES

IF A CENTIPEDE HAS A CHANCE TO COUNT YOUR TEETH, YOU WILL SOON
DIE.

Submitter comment: THUS CAUSING CHILDREN IN MY NEIGHBORHOOD TO KEEP THEIR LIPS FIRMLY
CLOSED WHILE IN COMPANY WITH THE ABUNDANT CENTIPEDES OF OUR WOODS.

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; NASHVILLE

Keyword(s): MOUTH, INSECTS

Subject headings: Prediction / Divination
BELIEF -- Body part Senses Mouth, teeth, lips, tongue
BELIEF -- Insect
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Number Counting beliefs

Date learned: 03-23-1972

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IT'S THE ROVING BEE THAT GATHERS THE HONEY.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GARDEN CITY

Keyword(s): ANIMAL INSECT FOOD WORK

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Metaphor

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TO THE BOILING POT, A FLY COMES NOT.

Where learned: HOME

Keyword(s): INSECT COOKING

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

Date learned: 11-02-1969

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VINEGAR CATCHES NO FLIES.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): FOOD INSECTS ODOR

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Metaphor

Date learned: 00-00-1965

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HOLY COMMUNION

YOU SHOULD NEVER GO TO HOLY COMMUNION IF YOU FEEL SICK OR IF
YOU THINK YOU COULD BE SICK.
SHE REMEMBERS ONE OF HER STUDENTS RECEIVING
COMMUNION AT MASS, THEN LEAVING CHURCH BECAUSE HE WAS GOING TO VOMIT.
SHE FOLLOWED HIM OUT TO THE BATHROOM AND FOUND HIM VOMITING UP THE
HOST. INSTANTLY THERE APPEARED THOUSANDS OF TINY MAGGOTS WHO ATE
UP THE VOMIT AND THEN ALL DISAPPEARED. SHE EXPLAINED THAT THEY HAD
BEEN SENT THERE MIRACULOUSLY SO THAT THE HOST WOULD NOT BE DEFILED BY
HAVING BEEN ON THE FLOOR.

Submitter comment:

THE "SHE" REFERS TO MY FIFTH GRADE TEACHER.

Data entry tech comment:

Informant and collector are the same person.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GRAND RAPIDS ; 5th grade teacher

James Callow Keyword(s): ANIMAL INSECT LARVA

Subject headings: Favorites
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Religious hero
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Insect
BELIEF -- Church

Date learned: NOT GIVEN (FIFTH GRADE)

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