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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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TWO IRISHMEN

TWO IRISHMEN, TWO IRISHMEN
SITTING IN A DITCH
ONE CALLED THE OTHER ONE
A DIRTY SON OF A
PETERS MURPHY COCKTAIL, GINGERALE
NINE CENTS A GLASS,
IF YOU DON,T BELIEVE ME
I,LL KICK YOU IN THE
TWO IRISHMEN, TWO IRISHMEN (REPEAT)

Submitter comment:

INFORMANT FORND THE SONG ENJOYABLE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; LINCOLN PARK

Keyword(s): IRISHMEN

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

Date learned: 00-00-1971

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FRANKENSTEIN

(NAME) IS A FRIEND OF MINE,
HE RESEMBLES FRANKENSTEIN.
WHEN HE DOES THE IRISH JIG,
HE LOOKS JUST LIKE PORKY PIG.

Where learned: DETROIT, ASSUMED ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Keyword(s): QUATRAIN INSULT DANCING-IRISH JIG ; RHYME: ABAB

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

Date learned: DATE NOT RECORDED BY COLLECTOR

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BELIEF

IF SOMEONE COMES IN THE FRONT DOOR AND LEAVES BY THE BACK DOOR IN
IRELAND IT WILL BRING BAD LUCK TO THE HOUSE, BECAUSE THE PERSON
TOOK ALL THE GOOD LUCK OUT WITH HIM.

Submitter comment: THE POLICE USED TO DO THIS ALL THE TIME IN IRELAND JUST
TO DISTURB THE WOMEN.

Where learned: LIBRARY ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT, ASSUMED

Keyword(s): HOME, DOMESTIC PURSUITS ; IRISH BELIEF

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: Favorites
BELIEF -- Bad luck P882.2

Date learned: 11-15-1968

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IN THE IRISH CULTURE, AFTER A PERSON DIES, THE SAME NIGHT
AS THE DEATH THE FRIENDS AND NEIGHBORS HAVE A HAPPY CELEBRATION.
EVERYONE DANCES AND DRINKS AND HAS A GOOD TIME. EACH PERSON BRINGS
SOME FOOD SO THAT THE WIDOW WILL NOT HAVE TO COOK.

Submitter comment: THIS WAS ORIGINALLY LEARNED IN WATERTOWN, NEW YORK

Where learned: NEW YORK ; WATERTOWN

James Callow Keyword(s): IRISH WAKE

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial

Date learned: 00-00-1945

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MACKEY'S IRISH POTATO SOUP

BOIL FOR THREE HOURS - ONE HAM BONE IN THREE QUARTS OF
WATER. REMOVE BONE AND ADD; 8-10 POTATOES DICED FINE,
4 STALKS OF CELERY DICED FINE, 1 GRATED CARROT,
3 SPRIGS OF FRESH PARSLEY DICED FINE, 1/2 TEASPOON
OF CELERY SALT, 1 TEASPOON OF TABLE SALT, 1/4 TEASPOON
FRESH PEPPER, 1/4 POUND OF BUTTER. SIMMER TWO MORE
HOURS WITH THE LID ON, STIRRING FREQUENTLY.

Submitter comment: UPON SERVING, THE COOK ALWAYS HAS A LITTLE SAYING
WHICH GOES LIKE THIS. "WE'VE GOT SOME GOOD NEWS
AND SOME BAD NEWS. FIRST THE BAD NEWS. ALL
WE HAVE FOR DINNER IS POTATO SOUP. NOW FOR THE GOOD NEWS.
THERE IS PLENTY OF IT."

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; WARREN

Keyword(s): IRISH RECIPE

Subject headings: Food Drink -- Mixed preparation in liquid

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May you be in Heaven fifteen minutes before the devil knows
you are dead.

Submitter comment: This is an Irish proverb that my grandfather always said.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): Irish, devil

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Prayer
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 00001940S

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Tomato Can

Oh, I had a little soup in an old tomato can
Teaspoon full for every man,
Got so drunk, that I couldn't stand.
So I joined the English Army.

Submitter comment: This is an old Irish song that my grandfather used to sing.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): Irish

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

Date learned: 00001940S

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It was a custom that during the wakes for the departed that
were always held at a house the women would sit in the living
room with the body and cry and pray while the men sat in the
kitchen. They (the men) would eat, drink and make merry.

Submitter comment: The informants' uncle learned to jig on the kitchen table at a
very young age at the wakes.
This is considered an Irish custom of that era.

Where learned: CAMBRIDGE ; Massachusetts

Keyword(s): Dancing: Irish Jig

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Crucial moment of life Life cycle
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Typical Elements of a Festive Pattern

Date learned: 00-00-1935

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Entry filtered.

WHY DID THE IRISHMAN MOVE OUT OF THE OUTHOUSE?
HE COULDN'T STAND HIS DOWNSTAIRS NEIGHBORS.

Submitter comment:

AFTER A FRIDAY NIGHT DRINKING PARTY, DAVE, BEING A COUNTRY BOY,
STARTED ON SOME OLD HOME JOKES.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): Irish

Subject headings: RIDDLE -- Riddle Question

Date learned: 00-00-1965

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THERE IS A LEGEND THAT SAYS THAT ONE OF THE MOUNTAINS IN
COUNTY SLIGO, IRELAND HAS A LUMP IN THE MIDDLE AND THE PEOPLE
SAY THAT ONE DAY THE DEVIL TOOK A BITE OF THE MOUNTAIN AND SPIT
IT AT CASHEL.

Submitter comment:

KATHY HEARD THIS FROM AN IRISHMAN WHILE HITCH-HIKING FROM CORK
TO LIMERICK IN IRELAND. CASHEL IS A ROCK ABOUT THREE HUNDRED FEET
HIGH WITH A RUIN OF A CASTLE AND CATHEDRAL ON IT. I BELIEVE IT WAS
ONCE THE SEAT OF RELIGIOUS LEADERS BUT AM NOT SURE. I DO NOT KNOW
IF THE MAN WHO TOLD KATHY BELIEVED IT BUT KATHY DOESN'T.

Data entry tech comment:

Additional (non-numbered) Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

[Please make a copy. Label it B472] - handwritten at the bottom of the card.

 

The original Boggs Number [P400] is crossed out and B425 and B472 are written next to it.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT ; PARTY

Keyword(s): Castle ; Cathedral ; DEVIL ; GEOLOGY ; IRELAND ; IRISH BELIEF ; MOUNTAIN ; NATURE ; Pagan ; RELIGION ; RELIGIOUS LEGEND ; Rock ; Rock Formation

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Devil Demon
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Formation

Date learned: UNKNOWN

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Irish Belief

"It is a known fact," Mr. Faron said, "that every Irishman has his own personal leprechaun that sits on his shoulder and pulls his earlobe every time another Irishman tells him a lie."

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original Boggs Number [B423 (elf) P423] crossed out and P423 is written next to it.

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; DETROIT ; LITTLEFIELD

Keyword(s): Detection ; EARS ; IRELAND ; Irish ; Leprechaun ; Lie ; Lie Detection

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Fairy Elf Goblin Gnome

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Entry filtered.

Ethnic Joke: The Height of Ingratitude

Historical record from James Callow Folklore Archive.

A poor decrepit Irishman, with a large family, was out of work and broke. He needed $50 very badly. He applied to his priest who advised him to search for work and pray, and he would find it. A week went by without results so the Irishman decided to appeal to the Lord directly. He wrote a stirring tearful letter asking for $50. he addresses the letter to the Lord God in care of Heaven, and mailed it, but did not put a stamp on it.

The postman, thinking it was only a child's letter, opened it and after reading same [sic] was deeply touched by the appeal. That night he took the letter with him to the Masonic Lodge meeting and brought it to the attention of the lodge in session. They promptly voted him $25, and they sent it to the Irishman.

A few days later the postman found another letter similar to the one addressed without a stamp. He opened it and read: Dear God, Thanks for the money, but please - next time send it by way of the Knights of Columbus because the goddamned Masons stole half of it.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs and BN added by TRD

James Callow comment:

The word IRISH is written in the top left corner of the submission.

Submission card located in a pile marked To Be Classified.

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): CHARITY ; GIFT MONEY ; HUMOR ; INGRATITUDE ; Irish ; IRISHMEN ; Knights of Columbus ; Masons ; MONEY ; POVERTY ; Stereotype ; STUPIDITY

James Callow Keyword(s): Irish

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Stupid man or woman

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Ethnic: Irish/Scottish Superstition

Good Luck:

No man would ever leave Irelannd or Scotland without a bit of heather and a small bag of soil. Without these life in the new wold would be bitter.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN's [P880, F533, p880] crossed out and replaced with F533.

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; WYANDOTTE

Keyword(s): BELIEF ; CUSTOM ; DIVINATION ; Earth ; ETHNIC ; Heather ; Herbal ; Irish ; LUCK ; NATURE ; New World ; SCOTTISH ; Soil ; SUPERSTITION ; TRAVEL

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

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Ethnic: Irish

Some more: when these men arrived they would not work either - it seems the air strip went over a large mound and this is Ireland is recognized as a grave yard for the "Little People" and to disturb it is unheard of. So to this day the strip is still uncompleted.  [sic]

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs and BN added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Card was located in a pile marked with [?].

Where learned: UNKNOWN

Keyword(s): Airport ; Airstrip ; BELIEF ; BURIAL ; ETHNIC ; GRAVEYARD ; IRELAND ; Irish ; Legend ; Little People ; Mound ; SYMBOL

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Fairy Elf Goblin Gnome

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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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Entry filtered.

Ethnic: Irish

An Irish Retort:

An Irishman is never drunk so long as he can hold on to one blade of grass and not fall off the face of the earth.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Why is this called a "retort"?

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): DRUNK ; ETHNIC ; Irish ; JOKE ; RETORT ; Stereotype

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

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Proverb

Ill Wind:

It is an ill wind that blows no good.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Various grammatical corrections.

Located in pile marked Duplicates and Other Rejects.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): ETHNIC ; EVIL ; FATE ; Gaelic ; Good ; Ill ; Irish ; LUCK ; OMEN ; Wind

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Metaphor

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Toasts

May your eyeballs never cease to stop rolling (Irish).

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: HOME

Keyword(s): DRINKING ; ETHNIC ; Eyeballs ; Irish ; SARCASM ; Social ; TOAST

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

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Toast

May the sun never set on your anger. (Irish)

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: HOME

Keyword(s): ANGER ; ETHNIC ; Grudge ; Irish ; Social ; Sun ; TOAST

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

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Toast

Irish Drinking Toast:

May you be in heaven a half hour before the devil knows that you are dead.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Keyword(s): DEVIL ; DRINKING ; ETHNIC ; HEAVEN ; HELL ; Irish ; Jest ; Social ; TOAST

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

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