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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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BIRDS OF A FEATHER FLOCK TOGETHER,
AND SO DO PIGS AND SWINE;
RATS AND MICE DO HAVE THEIR CHOICE,
AND SO DO I HAVE MINE.

Where learned: CANADA ; ONTARIO ; OAKVILLE

Keyword(s): EUPHEMISM PROVERBIAL RETORT ANIMALS ; METER: IAMBIC ; MONOLOGUE QUATRAIN ; RHYME: ABCB

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

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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"IN RESPONSE TO THE OVERUSED GREETING AMONG FRIENDS OF "WHAT'S THE
WORD" WE OFTEN REPLY WITH "LEGS" " SPREAD THE WORD."

Where learned: DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): RETORT

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 11-15-1972

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A BOTTLE OF INK

INK, /INK, A BOTTLE OF INK
THE CORK FELL OUT
AND YOU STINK.

Submitter comment: REPLY GIVEN BY A CHILD TO A PERSON HE IS ANGRY WITH.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): RETORT INSULT BODY ODOR

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

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WHEN WE WERE KIDS WE USED TO SAY THIS WHEN CALLED NAMES BY OTHERS:
"I'M RUBBER, YOU'RE GLUE. WHATEVER YOU SAY BOUNCES OFF ME AND STICKS
TO YOU."

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): RETORT

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

Date learned: 10-07-1972

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RIDDLE

IF YOU'RE SO SMART ANSWER ME HOW MANY SIDES DOES A TREE HAVE?
TWO, OUTSIDE AND INSIDE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; FARMINGTON ; TOLD IN

James Callow Keyword(s): PLANT (Q) ; RETORT

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula
RIDDLE -- Riddle Question

Date learned: 09-26-1972

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PROVERB

WHEN I WAS LEAVING TO COME TO THE UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT I TOLD MY
GIRLFRIEND THAT ABSENCE MAKES THE HEART GROW FONDER. SHE REPLIED
WITH "OUT OF SIGHT OUT OF MIND."

Submitter comment: TOLD IN JERSEY CITY IN DECEMBER, 1967

Where learned: NEW JERSEY ; JERSEY CITY

Keyword(s): ELLIPSIS

James Callow Keyword(s): CONTRAST ; RETORT

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Marriage Dating Courtship
PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim
PROVERB -- Wellerism Quotation

Date learned: 12-00-1967

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PUT THAT IN YOUR PIPE AND SMOKE IT.

Where learned: OHIO ; Sylvania

James Callow Keyword(s): ADVICE: POSITIVE ; RETORT ; SYMBOL ; THINK IT OVER

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula
PROVERB -- Proverbial Phrase

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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GRAFFITI

LOVE IS A FOUR-LETTER WORD.

Data entry tech comment: INFORMANT ASSUMED TO BE THE COLLECTOR.
FOUR-LETTER WORDS WERE KNOWN AS SWEAR WORDS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT ; COLLECTED IN LAVATORY

Keyword(s): EUPHEMISM RETORT

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Art Craft Architecture Art, Craft, Architecture

Date learned: 00-00-1968

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GRAFFITI

IF GOD IS DEAD THEN HE MUST BE IN HEAVEN.

Where learned: MENS LAVATORY

Keyword(s): RETORT RELIGION

James Callow Keyword(s): ANTHROPOMORPHISM

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Art Craft Architecture Art, Craft, Architecture

Date learned: DATE NOT RECORDED BY COLLECTOR

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GRAFFITI

SMILE: YOU'RE ON CANDID CAMERA

Data entry tech comment: THIS SAYING THRIVES FROM A TV SHOW PRODUCED BY ALAN FUNT.

Where learned: DETROIT

Keyword(s): TELEVISION SHOWS RETORT

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Art Craft Architecture Art, Craft, Architecture

Date learned: 11-18-1968

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IN GERMANY THEY HAVE MANY COFFEE HOUSES, SOMETHING THEY DON'T
HAVE HERE. ANYHOW, ONE DAY A YOUNG MAN WENT INTO THIS COFFEE HOUSE
AND HAPPENED TO SIT DOWN ACROSS FROM A BEAUTIFUL YOUNG GIRL. HE WAS
ASTOUNDED BY HER BEAUTY AND COULDN'T KEEP HIS EYES OFF OF HER. SHE
NOTICED HE KEPT STARING AT HER BUT SHE PAYED NO ATTENTION TO HIM.
ATTEMPTING TO STRIKE UP A CONVERSATION WITH HER, HE SAID: "EXCUSE ME
FOR STARING BUT I HAVE NEVER SEEN A WOMAN AS BEAUTIFUL AND LOVELY AS
YOU IN MY LIFE."
TO THIS SHE REPLIED, "I'M SORRY BUT I CAN'T SAY THE SAME THING
ABOUT YOU."
NOT TO BE OUTDONE, THE YOUNG MAN THEN MADE THIS REPLY: "YOU
SHOULD DO WHAT I DO THEN, SAY THE OPPOSITE OF WHAT YOU THINK."

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): SURPISE ENDING RETORT

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Jest Anecdote

Date learned: 07-00-1964

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NAME CALLING

WHEN CHILDREN GET INTO ARGUEMENTS, AMONG THEMSELVES
AND THE NAME CALLING BEGINS,
THEY CHANT
STICKS AND STONES MAY BREAK MY BONES BUT NAMES WILL NEVER HURT ME

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; LIVONIA

James Callow Keyword(s): RETORT

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

Date learned: CA02001980

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NAME CALLING

PEOPLE WHO LIVE IN GLASS HOUSES SHOULD NOT THROW STONES.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; LIVONIA

James Callow Keyword(s): RETORT

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula
PROVERB -- Proverbial Metaphor

Date learned: CA02001980

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GREEK RETORT
THE MULE CALLS THE CHICKEN-FAT HEAD.

Submitter comment: THIS IS USED TO TELL SOMEONE OFF WHEN THEY ARE YOU TO
DO OR SAY SOMETHING.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; ROYAL OAK

James Callow Keyword(s): GREEK LANGUAGE RETORT IS ON 5 X 8 CARD. ; TRANSLATION

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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YOU TELL 'EM, SAUSAGE, YOU GOT THE GUTS.

Where learned: NOT GIVEN

James Callow Keyword(s): RETORT

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 00001920S

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AUTOGRAPH BOOK VERSE

IF YOU EVER PASS A CHESTNUT TREE
LOOK AT A NUT AND THINK OF ME}
IF YOU EVER PASS A CHESTNUT TREE

Submitter comment: BOOK NOT IN DETROIT, MICHIGAN (1959-1960)

Where learned: NONE GIVEN

Keyword(s): COUPLET ; HUMOR ; INDIRECTION ; METER: TROCHEES ; NUT ; REMEMBRANCE ; RETORT ; RHYME: AA

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

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Unknown

Some people don't believe fat meat is greasy.

Submitter comment: This means that you are making a true statement but someone
is doubting you.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): Retort to skeptic

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula
PROVERB -- Proverbial Metaphor
PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim

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I'M RUBBER, YOU'RE GLUE
EVERYTHING YOU SAY
BOUNCES OFF ME
AND STICKS TO YOU.

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; CHATTANOOGA

Keyword(s): RETORT

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

Date learned: 00-00-1972

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FORMULA SPEECH

WHAT ABOUT THE SAYING, WHEN SOMEBODY WOULD SAY "HEY YOU!"; YOU
USED TO SAY, "SAVE THE HAY FOR LITTLE JESUS."

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; HARPER WOODS ; TOLD AT

James Callow Keyword(s): RETORT

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 10-00-1970

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WHEN SOMEONE STARTS CALLING YOU NAMES, HOLD YOUR
HAND FLAT, PALM TOWARD HIM, AND CALL "MIRROR,
WHATEVER YOU SAY YOU ARE."

Submitter comment: GESTURE IS USED TO IMITATE A MIRROR.

Where learned: NOT GIVEN

James Callow Keyword(s): RETORT

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula
SPEECH -- Derision Scorn
SPEECH -- Magical

Date learned: 00-00-1964

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