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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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Your search for SPEECH returned 35 results.

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GOOD LUCK IN THEATRE: "BREAK A LEG."

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): FORMULA SPEECH

Subject headings: DRAMA -- Secular
BELIEF -- Good luck Activities
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 11-30-1967

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POLISH GOOD FRIDAY CUSTOM

IF THE PEOPLE CAN'T BE IN CHURCH FOR THE TRE ORE SERVICES, THEY DO
NOT SPEAK AT ALL FOR THE 3 HOURS.

Where learned: DETROIT ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Keyword(s): SILENCE ; SPEECH TABOO

Subject headings: 663 Good Friday

Date learned: DATE NOT RECORDED BY COLLECTOR

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"WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING AT ME FOR? I DIDN'T COME TO STAY. I ONLY CAME
TO TELL YOU THIS IS EASTER DAY."

Submitter comment: THIS IS A GREETING BY THE CHURCH DEACON TO THE CONGREGATION AT
EASTER MASS.

Where learned: WORK ; TOLD AT

Keyword(s): RITUAL SPEECH

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Custom Festival C840.663
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Speech Speech
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Spring Planting Easter Sunday

Date learned: 10-30-1971

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FORMULA SPEECH;

ON EASTER SUNDAY, ONE ROMANIAN, INSTEAD OF SAYING "HELLO," SAYS
"CHRIST HAS RISEN." THE OTHER PERSON RESPONDS, "HE HAS RISEN
INDEED."

Submitter comment: INFORMANT SAID THAT THIS HAS BEEN THE CUSTOM FOR GENERATIONS. SHE
DOES NOT KNOW WHY IT IS DONE EXCEPT POSSIBLY TO STRESS THE THEME
OF THE SEASON.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): GREETING ; RITUAL SPEECH

Subject headings: Favorites
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Spring Planting Easter Sunday
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 11-16-1971

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SALUTATION

THE UKRAINIAN TRADITIONAL GREETING FOR THE EASTER SEASON IS
"KHRYSTOS VOSKRES" (CHRIST IS RISEN) TO WHICH THE REPLY IS, "VOISTYNO
VOSKRES" (HE IS RISEN INDEED). THIS SALUTATION SUPERCEDES (SIC) ALL
FROM EASTER MORNING TO ASCENSION DAY.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; WARREN

Keyword(s): RITUAL SPEECH

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Spring Planting Easter Sunday
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Spring Planting Ascension Day

Date learned: 10-00-1970

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CUSTOM

ON THE DAY AFTER EASTER, THE POLISH CHILDREN WOULD GO FROM HOUSE TO
HOUSE KNOCKING ON THE DOORS. THE PEOPLE INVITED THEM INSIDE
WHERE ONE OF THE CHILDREN WOULD BRUSH THE PERSON ACROSS THE ANKLES
WITH A SWITCH WHILE THE OTHERS RECITED A SPECIAL GROUP OF WORDS.
WHEN THEY WERE FINISHED, THE OWNER OF THE HOUSE WOULD GIVE THEM
A BLESSED EGG, A PIECE OF CANDY, OR IN MOST CASES, MONEY.
THIS WAS CALLED DINGUS DAY, THE NAME DERIVED FROM THE WORDS RECITED;
DINGUS, DINGUS, PODINGUS...

Data entry tech comment:

Informant and collector share the same surname.

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; TAYLOR

Keyword(s): EASTER GIFTS ; RITUAL SPEECH ; RITUAL WHIPPING

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Custom Festival C840.663
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Spring Planting Easter Monday Dyngus

Date learned: 11-27-1967

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TALKATIVE

HE HAS THE GIFT OF GAB.

Submitter comment: BOB TOLD ME THIS ONE DAY WHEN WE WERE AT SCHOOL AND WE WERE LISTENING
TO THIS BOY TALK QUITE A BIT.

Where learned: SCHOOL

Keyword(s): SLANG ; SPEECH METAPHOR

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Phrase

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LIMERICK

THERE WAS A YOUNG LADY OF NORWAY
WHO CASUALLY SAT IN A DOORWAY.
WHEN THE DOOR SQUEEZED HER FLAT
SHE EXCLAIMED, "WHAT OF THAT?"
THIS COURAGEOUS YOUNG LADY OF NORWAY.

Where learned: LETTER ; TOLD IN

Keyword(s): IMPUSSIBLE SPEECH ; RHYME: AABBA

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

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NEW YEAR'S CUSTOMS AND CELEBRATIONS

SEVERAL DAYS BEFORE THE NEW YEAR THE CHINESE WILL
PREPARE A PASTRY. THIS IS PREPARED BY THE METHOD OF
STEMMING. IF CHILDREN ASK IF THE PASTRY IS DONE
BEFORE IT IS FULLY COOKED, THE PEOPLE BELIEVE
THAT THE PASTRY WILL NEVER BE FULLY COOKED.

Submitter comment:

INFORMANT LEARNED THIS IN TAIWAN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT ; 4001 W MCNICHOLS ; LANGUAGE DEPARTMENT

Keyword(s): FOOD CUSTOM ; SPEECH TABU ; STEAMING FOOD

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Winter
Food Drink -- Pastry Sweet Dessert

Date learned: 02-02-1971

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TELEPHONE CATCHES

MY GIRLFRIEND AND I USED TO PLAY TRICKS ON PEOPLE AND
CALL UP ON THE PHONE AND ASK, "IS YOUR REFRIGERATOR
RUNNING?" WHEN SOMEONE WOULD ANSWER OR GRUNT, WE'D
THEN ADD, "YOU'D BETTER CATCH IT!"

Where learned: MICHIGAN, ASSUMED ; SAGINAW

James Callow Keyword(s): FORMULA SPEECH

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Entertainment Diversion

Date learned: 03-27-1971

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WHY DID THE BLACK MAN WEAR A TUXEDO TO HIS VASECTOMY?
ANSWER. IF I'M GONNA BE IMPOTENT I MIGHT AS WELL LOOK
IMPOTENT.

Submitter comment: I GOT THIS JOKE FROM THE MOVIE "SOUL MAN." IT WAS TOLD
BY TWO WHITE GUYS IN FRONT OF A BLACK GUY TO MAKE HIM
FEEL BAD.

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): IMPOTENT- USED INSTEAD OF THE WORD IMPORTANT TO MAKE ; THE BLACK MAN'S SPEECH SEEM BAD.

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- BLAC

Date learned: 10-00-1987

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If two people say the same thing at the same time
you should hook your little fingers and make a
wish.

Submitter comment: Informant says she has been practicing this since
she was a little girl.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): Simultaneity of speech

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Body part Senses
BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal
BELIEF -- Prayer
SPEECH -- Gesture
SPEECH -- Wishes Wants Desires Predictions

Date learned: 00001950S

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THOSE IN THE THEATER, WHEN THEY WANT TO WISH AN
ACTOR OR AN ACTRESS GOOD LUCK, SAY: "BREAK A LEG."

Submitter comment: THOSE CONNECTED WITH THE THEATER FEEL IT IS BAD
LUCK TO WISH SOMEONE GOOD LUCK BEFORE THEY GO ON
STAGE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): FORMULA SPEECH

Subject headings: DRAMA -- Secular
BELIEF -- Conversions Activities
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 11-24-1968

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WHEN SOMEONE MENTIONS SOMETHING THAT HE HAS HAD
GOOD LUCK WITH IN HIS LIFE, HE PROMPTLY KNOCKS
ON WOOD AND/OR SAYS, "KNOCK ON WOOD" IN ORDER
TO KEEP HIS LUCK FROM CHANGING.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): FORMULA SPEECH

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Conversions Activities
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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WHEN TWO PEOPLE WOULD SAY THE SAME THING AT THE SAME
TIME, THE FIRST PERSON TO SAY "OWE ME A COKE" WOULD
RECEIVE SOME SORT OF GOOD LUCK.
(SUPPOSEDLY IN THE FORM OF A FREE COKE (COCA-COLA,
A SOFT DRINK).

Submitter comment: THE WAY I LEARNED IT, THE PERSON SAYING "OWE ME A
COKE" WOULD HAVE TO SLUG THE OTHER GUY ON THE
SHOULDER IN ORDER TO VALIDATE THE CUSTOM.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): FORMULA SPEECH

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Street Trip Relations between relatives, friends, host and guest Social class Rank
BELIEF -- Conversions Activities
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 00-00-1960

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THIS WAS COLLECTED APRIL 11, 1967 FROM MY SISTER. SHE
HEARD IT FROM HER CLASSMATES; SHE IS IN JUNIOR HIGH
SCHOOL.
WHEN TWO PEOPLE TALK AT THE SAME TIME, ONE MUST SAY
"NEEDLES AND PINS" IN ORDER TO PREVENT BAD LUCK.

Where learned: JUNIOR HIGH SCHOOL ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED ; WYANDOTTE

James Callow Keyword(s): FORMULA SPEECH

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Conversions Activities
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 04-11-1967

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"LUCKY AT CARDS, UNLUCKY AT LOVE."

Where learned: ILLINOIS ; CHICAGO

James Callow Keyword(s): FORMULA SPEECH

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Special Object or Implement
BELIEF -- Conversions Games Pastimes Sports
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 08-00-1967

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TELL SOMEONE THAT YOU CAN SAY THE ALPHABET FASTER BACKWARDS THAN
THEY CAN SAY IT FORWARD. SHOULD THEY AGREE... AT THE GO SIGNAL
YOU TURN YOUR BACK TO THEM AND SAY THE ALPHABET FORWARD.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): SPEECH

Subject headings: RIDDLE -- Riddle Question

Date learned: 10-00-1970

View just this record

Entry filtered.

Ethnic Joke: The Italian Who Came to Detroit

Ima don lak Detroit worth a sheet. I check inna hotel and go down for breakfast an I tella da girl I wanna ham and eggs and two piece a toast. I tella her I wanna two peese. She say if you wanna to peese go to da toilet. I say you no unnerstand, I wanna two peese on my plate. She say you don peese on your plate, you sonna ma beech. I no eat, I go to my room.

At lunch time I go donna da street for my lunch inna Drake Hotel. The waitress brings me a knife an a napkin but no foke. I tella her I wanna foke. She say whatta you talk, everybody wanna foke. I say you no unnerstand, I wanna foke on the table. She say you don care where you foke, you sonna ma bech. So when she call me sonna ma beech, I go back to hotel.

When I get inna da room I got no sheet on my bed, so I calla da manager and tell him I wanna sheet on my bed. He says don sheet on your bed, go to the bathroom. You no unnerstand, I say, I wanna sheet on the bed. He say you better not sheet on your bed, you sonna ma beech. So when he call me a sonna ma beech, I go check out. I go to da desk to check out to New York, and when I leave the manacer say Peace on You. I say peese on you too, you sonna ma beech cause I go back to Italy.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs and BN added by TRD

James Callow comment:

The word Italian is written in the upper left hand corner of the submission.

Submission card was located in a pile marked To Be Classified.

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; SAINT CLAIR SHORES

Keyword(s): AMERICAN ; Cultural Divide ; EUPHEMISM ; HUMOR ; Italian ; Language ; Language Barrier ; NEW YORK ; OBSCENE IMPLICATION ; SPEECH ; Stereotype

James Callow Keyword(s): Italian

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Jest Anecdote
ITAL

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