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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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Your search for PRACTICAL JOKE returned 10 results.

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PRACTICAL JOKE

WHEN A NEW WORKER BEGINS TO CLEAN TOILETS FOR THE FIRST TIME AT
COBO HALL, HE IS ASKED REPEATEDLY BY THE OLDER WORKERS IF HE HAS
A STATE BOARD OF HEALTH CARD. IF HE SAYS NO, WHICH HE ALMOST
CERTAINLY WILL, HE IS REPRIMANDED FOR NOT TELLING THE SUPERVISOR
AND RISKING A POSSIBLE FINE AGAINST THE COMPANY.

Submitter comment: THIS QUESTION HAS BEEN ASKED OF ALL WORKERS, INCLUDING MYSELF, AT
LEAST SINCE I STARTED WORK THERE 3 1/2 YEARS AGO.I FOUND OUT FROM
OTHER WORKERS THAT THEY ALSO WERE ASKED THIS QUESTION. THE LONGEST
WORKING EMPLOYEE ASKED WAS A WORKER WITH 10 YEARS SENIORITY.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): HOAX PRACTICAL JOKE

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Entertainment Diversion

Date learned: 00-00-1971

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KNOCK-KNOCK JOKE

KNOCK-KNOCK. WHO'S THERE?
JOHN.
JOHN WHO?
JOHN THE BAPTIST.

Submitter comment: THE PERSON WHO IS TELLING THE JOKE IS SUPPOSED TO PUT A LITTLE
WATER IN HIS HAND BEFORE TELLING IT AND WHEN HE GETS TO THE END OF
THE JOKE HE SPRINKLES THE WATER ON THE PERSON HE IS TELLING IT TO.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): HUMOR

James Callow Keyword(s): PRACTICAL JOKE

Subject headings: --

Date learned: 10-02-1967

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TELEPHONE PRANK

CALL A BAR; ASK IF THEY HAVE POP IN BOTTLES. IF ANSWER IS YES, SAY
"YOU'D BETTER LET HIM OUT, MOM WANTS HIM AT HOME."

Submitter comment: LEARNED FROM MY CHILDHOOD

Where learned: SUN PRAIRIE ; WISCONSIN, ASSUMED

Keyword(s): HUMOR PRACTICAL JOKE METAPHOR SODA

Subject headings: --

Date learned: DATE NOT RECORDED BY COLLECTOR

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Custom

Chimney Sweep:

In Belgium, or Europe for that matter, each house usually had two or more chimneys. Since they needed cleaning periodically, chimney sweeps were common. Some of these were employed by the cities for the purpose. But, in each case, it was good practice to give the sweeper a good tip, for if you didn't he would play tricks on you. For instance, he might come back to clean your chimney at a future date, but not tell you. Then you would be unprepared and the soot would come into the house because you didn't close the soot door in time.

Submitter comment:

Recorded on Tape

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN [M848] crossed out and replaced with F534

Where learned: PENNSYLVANIA ; PITTSBURGH

Keyword(s): BUSINESS ; Chimney Sweep ; CUSTOM ; Gratuity ; OCCUPATIONS: CHIMNEY SWEEPING ; PRACTICAL JOKE ; TIPPING ; WORK

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Work Commerce Business

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Prank

Fletcher Tube:

The Fletcher Tube us a non-existent piece of equipment. When freshmen are having problems in lab, you tell them that a Fletcher Tube will do the trick. They go to the stockroom to check one out and are laughed at.

Submitter comment:

Informant said that he pulled this gag while he was a graduate student.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT ; CLASSROOM ; CHEMISTRY BUILDING

Keyword(s): ACADEMIC JOKES ; Chemistry ; COLLEGE ; COLLEGE PRANK ; COLLEGE PRANK ; Entertainment ; Freshman ; Hazing ; JOKE ; Laboratory ; PRACTICAL JOKE ; Prank

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Entertainment Diversion

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Prank

TeePee-ing Houses:

A group of people go to a house late at night and throw toilet paper up into the trees, decorate the shrubbery and generally create a real mess.

Submitter comment:

This was done to my house by a group of friends who had attended Roosevelt High School in Wyandotte, MI. It was done in May of 1968. It seems that this was not an uncommon practice for them to do to their friends.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

Where learned: Myself

Keyword(s): Amusement ; CUSTOM ; Diversion ; Entertainment ; JOKE ; PRACTICAL JOKE ; Prank ; Shrubbery ; Toilet Paper

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Entertainment Diversion

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Custom: Holiday

"NO ONE REALLY KNOWS WHO ENJOYED THE FIRST APRIL FOOL'S
DAY GUFFAWS. SOME SAY THE DAY OF BUFFOONERY BEGAN IN
FRANCE IN 1564, WHEN NEW YEAR'S DAY WAS CARRIED BACK
TO JANUARY 1 INSTEAD OF BEING CELEBRATED ON MARCH 25.
THOSE PEOPLE WHO OBJECTED TO THE TIME JUGGLE WERE
GIVEN MOCK NEW YEAR'S GIFTS ON APRIL 1, WHICH USED TO
BE THE FINAL DAY OF MERRYMAKING. THE PRACTICAL JOKE
CUSTOM POPPED UP IN BRITAIN BY THE 18TH CENTURY, AND
THE BRITISH EXPORTED THE ZANY PRACTICE TO NORTH
AMERICA."

Data entry tech comment:

Updated and Motifs added / 02-28-2011 / TRD

Keyword(s): APRIL FOOL'S DAY ; Britain ; CUSTOM ; France ; holiday ; JOKE ; New Years ; Origin ; PRACTICAL JOKE ; Prank

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- April 1 April Fools
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- April 1 April Fools
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- March 21 equinox to June 20

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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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Verse

"Surprise" Verse:

Question: Inchme and Pinchme were walking across the bridge. Inchme fell in. Who was left?

Answer: Pinchme. (At this, the person who responded recieves a pinch.)

Submitter comment:

Informant learned this through experience during childhood - Plymouth MI, 1940's.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs Added By TRD

James Callow comment:

Not Verse?

Original BN [C800] crossed out. Replaced with current classification.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): Answer ; Inch ; JOKE ; Language ; Pinch ; PRACTICAL JOKE ; QUESTION ; RHYME ; SURPRISE ; VERSE

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

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BORASS---MEANS TO PLAY A PRACTICAL JOKE ON SOMEONE.

Data entry tech comment:

Updated by TRD

Where learned: INDIANA ; BLOOMINGTON

Keyword(s): JOKE ; Nickname ; PRACTICAL JOKE ; SLANG ; SPEECH

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Vocabulary of Special Group

Date learned: 10-00-1969

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showing 10 items

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