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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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THE DANCE TO THE DEVIL

WHEN MY FRIEND AND I WERE IN CALIFORNIA LAST CHRISTMAS
WE HAD THESE SILVER BEADS, CALLED THE BEADS OF DEATH.
WE PUT THEM IN THE SHAPE OF A D FOR DEVIL, AND PROCEEDED
TO DO A DANCE. WE REALLY GOT INTO IT, BECAUSE WE STARTED
TO LOSE COMPLETE CONTROL OF OURSELVES AND WERE ROLLING
ALL OVER THE FLOOR AND DOING WILD DANCES AND YELLING. IT
WAS LIKE SOME FORCE HAD TAKEN US BOTH OVER AND WAS CONTROL-
LING OUR MOVEMENTS. I DID THIS ONE OTHER TIME WITH ANOTHER
FRIEND, AND SOMEWHAT OF THE SAME THING HAPPENED BUT NOT AS
VIOLENT. OH YES, AFTER WE DID THIS WE HAD BAD LUCK FOR
ABOUT ONE WEEK.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- C425
BELIEF -- Bad luck

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GREAT INDIAN WARRIORS ARE BURIED WITH THEIR HORSES.

Submitter comment: WHEN WE WERE STUDYING INDIANS, MY TEACHER TOLD ME THIS.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; SAN BERNARDINO

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial

Date learned: 00-00-1958

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ROSES ARE RED, VIOLETS ARE BLUE,
I'VE GOT A BULLDOG THAT LOOKS JUST LIKE YOU.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Autograph Verse Roses are red and other such associations

Date learned: 00-00-1963

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WISHING

WHEN YOU SEE A MAIL TRUCK, CROSS YOUR FINGERS AND MAKE A WISH. KEEP
THEM CROSSED UNTIL YOU SEE A DOG. THEN UNCROSS THEM AND YOUR WISH
WILL COME TRUE.

Submitter comment: THE INFORMANT WAS LIVING IN CALIFORNIA AT THIS TIME

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; MICHIGAN ; Sterling Heights

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Prayer
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
SPEECH -- Gesture

Date learned: 11-15-1973

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CREOLE BELIEF

DO NOT PUT YOUR UNDER GARMENTS ON BACKWARDS OR YOUR WHOLE DAY
WILL GO BAD.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; BREAUX BRIDGE ; LOS ANGELES

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal
BELIEF -- Measure of time WeekDayHour

Date learned: 00-00-1933

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CREOLE BELIEF

DO NOT PUT A MAN'S HAT ON THE BED OR YOU WILL HAVE BAD LUCK.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; BREAUX BRIDGE ; LOS ANGELES

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Bad luck

Date learned: 00-00-1931

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CREOLE BELIEF

DON'T SWEEP DIRT OUTSIDE AFTER DARK BECAUSE IT'S BAD LUCK.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; BREAUX BRIDGE ; LOS ANGELES

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Measure of time WeekDayHour
BELIEF -- Measure of time Working
BELIEF -- Bad luck

Date learned: 00-00-1930

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CREOLE BELIEF

DO NOT WALK OVER A BROOM, BECAUSE IT IS BAD LUCK.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; BREAUX BRIDGE ; LOS ANGELES

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Bad luck

Date learned: 00-00-1930

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CREOLE BELIEF

IF AN OWL HOWLS TAKE OFF YOUR SHOES AND TURN THEM UPSIDE DOWN
OR BAD LUCK WILL COME TO YOU

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; BREAUX BRIDGE ; LOS ANGELES

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Bird
BELIEF -- Conversions

Date learned: 00-00-1933

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COLD REMEDY

DRINK HOT WATER WITH SALT AND CASTEROIL MIXED IN IT .

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; BREAUX BRIDGE ; LOS ANGELES

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Plant
BELIEF -- Mineral

Date learned: 00-00-1950

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CREOLE BELIEF

DO NOT PUT A BABY'S SHOE HIGHER THAN THE BABY'S HEAD OR IT WILL NOT
GROW ANY TALLER.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; BREAUX BRIDGE ; LOS ANGELES

James Callow Keyword(s): HOMEOPATHIC MAGIC ; POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: Favorites
BELIEF -- Means of Causing or Avoiding Illness

Date learned: 00-00-1935

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CREOLE BELIEF

IF YOUR BELT COMES UNBUCKLED IT MEANS SOMEONE IN YOU FAMILY WILL DIE.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; BREAUX BRIDGE ; LOS ANGELES

Subject headings: Observation
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial

Date learned: 00-00-1930

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CREOLE BELIEF

WALK BACKWARDS IF YOU CURSE YOUR MOTHER OR YOU WILL HAVE BAD LUCK.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; BREAUX BRIDGE ; LOS ANGELES

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Street Trip Relations between relatives, friends, host and guest Social class Rank
BELIEF -- Measure of time Year
BELIEF -- Curse
BELIEF -- Conversions

Date learned: 00-00-1929

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CREOLE BELIEF

BROKEN MIRROR IS SEVEN YEARS OF BAD LUCK

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; BREAUX BRIDGE ; LOS ANGELES

Subject headings: 686 Seven / Sevenths / Several
BELIEF -- Measure of time Year
BELIEF -- Bad luck

Date learned: 00-00-1930

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TRADITIONAL WORDS

EIGHTY-SIX.

Submitter comment: THE PHRASE WHICH WAS PICKED UP WAS EIGHTY-SIX. TO EIGHTY-SIX
SOMETHING MEANT TO 1, IGNORE IT, OR 2, THROW IT AWAY. THERE IS ALSO
A TRADITIONAL TALE ABOUT THE ORIGIN OF THE TERM. IT IS BELIEVED TO
HAVE COME FROM AN OLD BARTENDER'S TERM. WHEN THE BARTENDER SAW THAT
SOMEONE WAS DRUNK, HE WOULD PASS THE WORD TO EIGHTY-SIX THAT MAN.
THAT WOULD MEAN EITHER CALL THE POLICE, WHOSE ADDRESS WAS 86TH ST.
OR TO GIVE THE MAN 86 PROOF LIQUOR, RATHER THAN 100 PROOF.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA

James Callow Keyword(s): ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGE ; NUMBER ; THREAT

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Trade & commerce
PROVERB -- Proverbial Phrase

Date learned: 00-00-1967

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BEFORE GOING ON A MISSION OR A TRAINING PROGRAM, ALL MEN IN
THE UNIT DRINK AN ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGE CALLED A SQWATT.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; MARINES

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- F535
Food Drink -- Alcoholic beverage

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POPULAR SAYING

WHATEVER SKIES ABOVE, HERE'S A HEART FOR EVERY FATE.

Submitter comment: IN A LETTER DATED AUGUST 10, 1851.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; WOLF CREEK

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim

Date learned: 08-10-1851

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PROVERB

TO YIELD TO DESPAIR IS USELESS; THE DARKEST DAY MAY
WEAR A SUNNY FACE TOMORROW.

Submitter comment: IN A LETTER DATED AUGUST 10, 1851.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; WOLF CREEK

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim

Date learned: 08-10-1851

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PROVERB

OFTEN WE ARE COMPELLED TO MAKE THE BEST OF A BAD CASE.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; WOLF CREEK

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim

Date learned: 08-10-1851

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PROVERB

THE LAST POLISH IS GIVEN BY SOCIETY OF THE SOFTER SEX.

Submitter comment: IN A LETTER DATED AUGUST 10, 1851.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; WOLF CREEK

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim

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