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WE MUST, WE MUST,
WE MUST IMPROVE THE BUST.
THE BIGGER THE BETTER,
THE TIGHTER THE SWEATER,
WE MUST IMPROVE THE BUST.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): ANATOMY ; BOSOM BREAST ; FUNCTION GROWING UP ; MONOLOGUE SLANG DIALECT ; REFRAIN, QUATRAIN? ; RHYME: FEMININE, INTERNAL ; RHYME: IMPERFECT, AABBA

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

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A HOUSEWIFE CANNOT CUT DRESS MATERIAL ON A FRIDAY.
THIS WILL BRING BAD LUCK WHEN THE DRESS IS WORN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; MILFORD

James Callow Keyword(s): SEWING

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal
BELIEF -- Measure of time WeekDayHour
BELIEF -- Measure of time Working
BELIEF -- Bad luck Activities
BELIEF -- Bad luck Time (year, season, week, hour, etc.) Occasion Event

Date learned: 09-22-1968

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NURSING BELIEF

IF TWO MOTHERS ARE RAISING THEIR BABIES IN THE SAME ROOM, ONE
WILL 'STEAL' THE OTHER'S MILK.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): OLRIK'S LAW OF TWINS

Subject headings: 686 Seconds / Twice / Two
BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal
BELIEF -- Birth

Date learned: 11-19-1971

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GOOD FRIDAY BELIEF

IT IS A SIN TO USE A NEEDLE ON GOOD FRIDAY, OR TO USE ANY KIND OF
ANIMAL FATS ON GOOD FRIDAY.

Submitter comment: SHE LEARNED THESE BELIEFS FROM HER MOTHER AS A CHILD, BUT DOES NOT
BELIEVE IN THEM OR PRACTICE THEM NOW. (1920'S)

Where learned: PENNSYLVANIA ; PITTSBURGH

Keyword(s): FOOD CUSTOM ; IRON ; SEWING ; WORK TABOO

Subject headings: 663 Good Friday

Date learned: 10-02-1971

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IF YOU HEAR A HEN CROW LIKE A ROOSTER, BE SURE TO KILL HER THE
SAME DAY.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; ROCHESTER

Keyword(s): HEN ROOSTER CROWING

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Mammal
BELIEF -- Bird
BELIEF -- Animal Husbandry Farming Ranching

Date learned: 03-11-1972

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KNOCK KNOCK JOKE

KNOCK KNOCK
WHO'S THERE?
DOMINO
DOMINO WHO?
DOMINO THING IF YA AIN'T GOT THAT SWING.

Submitter comment: AT SOME PARTY

Where learned: UNKNOWN

Keyword(s): SONG TITLE: IT DON'T MEAN A THING IF YOU AIN'T GOT THAT SWING

Subject headings: RIDDLE -- Riddle Question

Date learned: 11-03-1967

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PA. DUTCH BELIEF

A MAMMY IS CALLED IN FOR SICKNESS-- ESPECIALLY BLEEDING OF
ANY SORT.
FOR AN ADULT: THE "POW-WOWER" OR MAMMY RECITES BIBLE
PHRASES TO HERSELF WHILE HOLDING THE SICK PERSON, AND IT CURES HIM.
FOR A CHILD: THE "POW-WOWER" PASSES THE CHILD AROUND A TABLE LEG
WHILE RECITING BIBLE PHRASES, AND THE CHILD WILL BE CURED.

Submitter comment: THIS IS CALLED "POW-WOWING" AND IT AFFECTS THE WHOLE PA. DUTCH
AREA. IT IS NECESSARY TO BELIEVE IN IT TO HAVE IT WORK.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; BIRMINGHAM

Keyword(s): PENNSYLVANIA DUTCH (GERMAN) ; POWWOWING

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Expression of Fixed Form
BELIEF -- Method of Curing

Date learned: 02-24-1968

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IN WINTER YOUR HAIR GROWS FASTER.

Where learned: UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT

Keyword(s): WINTER

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Body part Senses Hair, on head, mustache, widow's peak
BELIEF -- Measure of time Winter

Date learned: 11-02-1971

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KING KAHMAI MAI

IN HAWAII, ON THE ISLAND OF PAUI, THERE IS AN UPSIDE DOWN WATERFALL,
AND THIS IS CAUSED BY THE TRADEWINDS, WHICH PUSH THE FALLING WATERS
UPWARD. THE LEGEND BEHIND THIS DEALS WITH KING KAHMAI MAI, WHO WAS
KING OF THE ISLAND MANY YEARS AGO. IT IS SAID THAT HE DROVE ALL THE
PAGANS OFF THE ISLAND, AND THOSE THAT DID NOT LEAVE WERE SACRIFICED
TO THE GODS BY BEING PUSHED OFF THIS WATERFALL. WHEN ALL OF THE
PAGANS HAD LEFT THE ISLAND, THE KING VOWED THAT NO OTHER MAN WOULD
BE ABLE TO DIE BY JUMPING OFF THIS WATERFALL. UP TO THIS DAY THERE
HAS BEEN NOBODY KILLED FROM JUMPING OFF THE WATERFALL BECAUSE OF THE
STRONG TRADEWINDS, AND THEY SAY THAT THE TRADEWIND IS ACTUALLY
KING KAHMAI MAI FULFILLING HIS PROMISE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT ; A&P FOOD STORE

Keyword(s): DEAD KING RETURNS AS WIND TO PREVENT SUICIDE FROM WATERFALL.

Subject headings: Favorites
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Ghost Spirit Phantom Specter
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Running water

Date learned: 04-03-1970

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KENTUCKY BEAR

THERE WAS A MOTHER AND FATHER IN KENTUCKY WHOSE THREE-YEAR-OLD
DAUGHTER CAME UP MISSING ONE DAY. SHE WAS SEARCHED FOR FOR FOUR DAYS
AND NOT FOUND. ON THE FOURTH DAY A MAN CAME TO HER HOUSE AND TOLD HER
PARENTS THAT HE WOULD SHOW THEM WHERE THEIR DAUGHTER WAS IF THEY
WOULD GIVE HIM A MEAL. THEY FED HIM AND AFTERWARD HE LED THEM INTO
THE WOODS. THE GIRL WAS FOUND NEAR A LOG WHERE A BEAR WAS BRINGING
HER FOOD. THE GIRL SAID THAT THE BEAR HAD BEEN TAKING CARE OF HER AND
FEEDING HER. NOT KNOWING ANY BETTER THE GIRL THOUGHT THE BEAR WAS A
DOG.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT ;

Keyword(s): DAUGHTER ; MISTAKEN IDENITY (BEAR THOUGHT TO BE A DOG) ; TO GIVE IS TO RECEIVE--STRANGER GIVEN MEAL FOR SHOWING PLACE OF LOST

Subject headings: Favorites
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Human Being

Date learned: 11-20-1968

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IN LOVE, THERE IS ALWAYS ONE WHO KISSES AND ONE WHO OFFERS THE CHEEK

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; BIRMINGHAM ; COLLECTORS HOME

Keyword(s): METAPHOR ; OBSERVATION ; REPETITION

James Callow Keyword(s): LEADING AND FOLLOWING AMONG LOVERS

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim

Date learned: 04-05-1971

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SIAMESE TWINS

SIAMESE TWINS WHO WERE JOINED AT THE ARM WERE SEPARATED AND LIVED
IN DIFFERENT PARTS OF THE COUNTRY. WHEN LATER IN LIFE ONE DIED
IN AN AUTO ACCIDENT THE OTHER DIED SUDDENLY FOR NO APPARENT REASON
HUNDREDS OF MILES AWAY.

Submitter comment: TOLD TO ME AS A TRUE STORY WHICH BEV HAD READ ABOUT SOME YEARS (AGO).

Where learned: LOCATION NOT RECORDED BY COLLECTOR

Keyword(s): CONTAGIOUS MAGIC

James Callow Keyword(s): SIMULTANEOUS DEATH OF TWINS

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Physically handicapped Deformed

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ELEPHANT JOKE

QUESTION: WHAT DID THE GRAPE SAY WHEN THE ELEPHANT STEPPED ON IT?
ANSWER: NOTHING, IT JUST LET OUT A LITTLE WHINE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; HARPER WOODS

Keyword(s): CONUNDRUM ; RIDDLE JOKE: ELEPHANTS

James Callow Keyword(s): PUN ON WINE

Subject headings: RIDDLE -- Riddle Question

Date learned: 11-10-1968

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UKRAINIAN NEW YEAR'S GREETING

AT MIDNIGHT, IT IS CUSTOMARY TO TAKE A SMALL BELL AND A
HANDFUL OF WHEAT AND TO KNOCK ON THE DOOR OF THE HEAD OF
THE HOUSEHOLD. WHEN HE OPENS HIS DOOR, THE MEMBERS OF HIS
HOUSEHOLD TOSS WHEAT ON THEIR MASTER AND WISH HIM A HAPPY
NEW YEAR. THEY WISH FOR HIM MANY BLESSINGS, PLENTY OF
FOOD, AND GOOD LUCK. THE WHEAT IS SYMBOLIC OF FRUITFULNESS.
A SPECIAL NEW YEAR'S SONG IS SUNG IN WHICH GOD'S BLESSINGS
ARE INVOKED FOR THE NEW YEAR. THE HEAD OF THE HOUSE THANKS
THEM AND IN TURN WISHES THEM A HAPPY NEW YEAR. THEN THEY
HAVE A JOYOUS CELEBRATION.

Where learned: CANADA ; ONTARIO ; ANCASTER

Keyword(s): FOOD ; SPRINKLING ; THROWING

Subject headings: Favorites
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 31 New Year's Eve
BELIEF -- Prayer

Date learned: 00001960S

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MY FATHER USED TO TELL US KIDS THAT WHEN IT WAS SNOWING
OUTSIDE WE SHOULD SAY A PRAYER TO THANK GOD. HE
SAID THIS BECAUSE HE TOLD US THE ANGELS WERE HAVING A
PILLOW FIGHT. AS THE PILLOWS BROKE, FEATHERS OR SNOW,
FELL DOWN FROM THE HEAVENS.

Submitter comment: MY MOTHER TOLD ME A SIMILAR STORY, EXCEPT THE ANGELS WERE
THROWING RICE AT A HEAVENLY WEDDING.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; Sterling Heights

Keyword(s): WINTER

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Angel
BELIEF -- Cloud Fog Mist Rain Hail Ice Snow Frost Dew

Date learned: 00001940S

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In New Guinea, it is customary to take young boys away from
their parents for a couple of days to be initiated into
manhood. Ashes are used to cover the young boy's face and body
and a fire dance and prayer are conducted. The ashes
represent the death of the young boy. The young men are now
returned back to their parents.

Submitter comment: Robert spoke of this custom when he got back from Africa.
His gestures were mostly hands describing the way the
natives were conducting the ceremony.

Where learned: Africa

Keyword(s): Trial, Growing-up.

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Initiation rite Hazing

Date learned: 00-00-1949

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If win' don' blow yo won' see foul under cloes.

Submitter comment: You won't know the true circumstances until something
unexpected happens to upset the normal course of events.

Where learned: VIRGIN ISLANDS ; Saint Thomas

Keyword(s): cloes = clothes ; don' = don't ; win' = wind ; won' = won't ; Yo = you

James Callow Keyword(s): OBSERVATION

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Metaphor

Date learned: 03-00-1991

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THE NUMBER COMBINATION 3-3-9 HAS IMPORTANCE TO
HAPANESE BRIDE AND BRIDEGROOM. EACH HAS THREE SMALL
SAKE GLASSES WHICH THEY EXCHANGE NINE TIMES, THREE
FOR EACH GLASS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): SAKE=RICE WINE

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Marriage Ceremony

Date learned: 11-00-1968

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DON'T START A DRESS ON FRIDAY, BECAUSE YOU'LL NEVER LIVE
TO SEE IT FINISHED.

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; MURFREESBORO

Keyword(s): SEWING SEW

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Measure of time Routine activity
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Measure of time Routine activity

Date learned: 06-18-1972

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NEVER, NEVER MAKE A BABY'S CAP BEFORE THE BABY ARRIVES
OR YOU'LL HAVE BAD LUCK WITH THE BABY.

Where learned: TENNESSEE, ASSUMED ; MADISON

James Callow Keyword(s): SEWING

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Birth
BELIEF -- Bad luck

Date learned: 07-10-1973

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