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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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POLISH PROVERB

CICHA WODA BRZEGI RWIE.
QUIET WATER WEARS DOWN THE SHORE.

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE WOODS

Keyword(s): RESERVATION

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Metaphor

Date learned: 10-25-1969

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LOOKING IN CORNERS

WHEN SOME PERSON YOU KNOW IS CONSTANTLY SNOOPING AROUND YOU CAN SAY
"ONLY MONKEYS LOOK IN CORNERS."
WHEN YOU WRITE A LETTER OR A NOTE YOU CAN WRITE "ONLY MONKEYS LOOK
IN CORNERS."

Submitter comment: THESE TWO GO TOGETHER BECAUSE OFTEN PEOPLE LOOK FOR MISTAKES IN
LETTERS THEY RECEIVE AND BY PUTTING THE PHRASE IN ONE OF THE CORNERS
YOU ARE SAYING THAT THE PERSON SHOULD ENJOY THE LETTER AND NOT LOOK
FOR MISTAKES. THIS IS A COMMON PRACTICE FOR THE INFORMANT.

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE WOODS

Keyword(s): ANIMAL COMPARISON

James Callow Keyword(s): PARA-RIME: BUY BE ; TREATING TO DRINKS

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 01-24-1971

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SUPERSTITION (FIXED DATE)

A PERSON MUST BE HOME BY MIDNIGHT OF NOVEMBER 1ST, BECAUSE ON
NOVEMBER 2ND ALL THE SOULS ARE ALLOWED TO RETURN TO EARTH.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE WOODS

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- November 1 All Saints
BELIEF -- Ghost Spirit Phantom Specter

Date learned: 10-25-1969

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FIXED DATE

APRIL 20 IS CELEBRATED AS FOUNDER'S DAY BY THE NATIONAL SOCIAL
SORORITY OF SIGMA SIGMA SIGMA. ON THIS DAY EACH CHAPTER HAS A
DINNER AND CONDUCTS SOME TYPE OF A PROGRAM IN MEMORY OF THE
FOUNDERS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE WOODS

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- April 20

Date learned: NO DATE INDICATED.

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APRIL FOOL

APRIL THE FIRST IS RECOGNIZED AS A DAY OF THE YEAR IN WHICH
PRACTICAL JOKES ARE PLAYED UPON OTHERS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE WOODS

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- April 1 April Fools
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- April 1 (April Fool's Day)

Date learned: NO DATE INDICATED.

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CHRISTMAS GAME

THE GAME IS CALLED "I'M THINKING OF A BULB." IN ORDER TO PLAY, ONE
PERSON HAS TO BE CHOSEN TO GO FIRST. THIS LEADER THEN SAYS "I'M
THINKING OF A BULB" AND DESCRIBES A CERTAIN BULB FOUND ON THE
CHRISTMAS TREE. IN TURN ALL THE PLAYERS START TO GUESS WHICH BULB IT
IS. THE PERSON WHO GUESSES THE BULB THEN BECOMES THE LEADER.

Data entry tech comment:

Informant and collector are the same person.

Where learned: GROSSE POINTE WOODS ; TOLD AT INFORMANT'S HOME

Keyword(s): GAME

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- December 21 solstice to March 20 Christmas tree

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SCARE

SEE MY FINGER, SEE MY THUMB,
SEE MY FIST, YOU BETTER RUN.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE WOODS

Keyword(s): BULLY ; ELLIPSIS, SURPRISE ENDING ; METER: ANAPESTIC ; MONOLOGUE UNDERSTATEMENT DIALECT FIGHTING ; RHYME: MASCULINE ; THREAT

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

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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Superstition

Italian Superstition:

Our family doesn't believe this, but my grandmother and some relatives do: when a pregnant woman craves for some specific food, and doesn't satisfy this crave, she will get a beauty mark in the shape of that food somewhere on her body. My cousin has a beauty mark similar to a pork chop and her mother claims to have craved for pork.

Data entry tech comment:

motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Reference

Original Bn [P680] crossed out and replaced with current classification

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE WOODS ; Myself

Keyword(s): BABY ; BELIEF ; CHILD ; Craving ; ETHNIC ; FOOD ; Italian ; Old Wives Tale ; SUPERSTITION

James Callow Keyword(s): Reference

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Birth

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Mnemonic Device

-Vibgyor-

One of my art teachers tried to make it easier for us to remember colors and their place on the color wheel so she introduced to us -vibgyor-pronounced vib-gee-or.

Submitter comment:

This method works every time - I now remember them (the colors).

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs and BN added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Submission card located in pile labeled To Be Classified.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE WOODS

Keyword(s): ART ; COLOR ; EDUCATION ; EDUCATION ADVICE ; MEMORY ; MNEMONIC ; Mnemonic Device

Subject headings: ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- MNEM

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ONE DAY IN JUNE, WHEN MY FATHER WAS ALIVE,
THERE WAS A BAD STORM HEADED IN OUR DIRECTION.
AS MY FATHER LOOKED TO THE SKY HE SAID,
"WE BETER GET INSIDE, IT'S GOING TO RAIN LIKE
A COW PEEING ON A FLAT ROCK."

Submitter comment: MY FATHER WAS RAISED A FARM BOY IN ILLINOIS;
THIS WAS A COMMON EXPRESSION THERE.

Where learned: GROSSE POINTE WOODS

James Callow Keyword(s): URINATION

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Phrase

Date learned: 06-00-1975

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FUDGE, FUDGE CALL THE JUDGE./ MAMA'S GOT A NEW BORN BABY.
IT ISN'T A BOY, IT ISN'T A GIRL./ IT'S JUST AN ORDINARY BABY.
WRAP IT UP IN TISSUE PAPER,/ SEND IT DOWN THE ELEVATOR.
FIRST FLOOR-STOP (THE ROPE STOPS)
(ROPE BEGINS) SECOND FLOOR-STOP (ROPE STOPS)
(ROPE BEGINS) THIRD FLOOR, BABY FLOOR, ALL OUT.

Submitter comment: THIS IS FOR A GROUP TO JUMP TO. UPON REACHING "THIRD FLOOR" EVERYONE
MUST JUMP FROM THE TURNING ROPE.

Where learned: HOME ; MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE WOODS ; TOLD AT

Keyword(s): CALL-RHYME ; CHARACTER ; PLAIN-JUMP

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

Date learned: 03-01-1971

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SALT

DURING A BAD STORM, THROWING A HANDFUL OF SALT OUTSIDE BREAKS THE
STORM.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GROSSE POINTE WOODS ; GEORGIAN EAST ; NURSING HOME

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Weather sign or control
BELIEF -- Mineral

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GRANDMA HAS A HABIT OF CHEWING IN HER SLEEP
SHE CHEWS ON GRANDPA'S WISKERS
AND THINKS IT'S SHREDDED WHEAT.

Where learned: GROSSE POINTE WOODS ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

James Callow Keyword(s): CEREAL

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Autograph Verse Wisecracks, gags, silly stories, insults

Date learned: 06-00-1965

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WHEN YOU DIE IN TENNESSEE,
I'LL SHIP YOUR BODY C.O.D.

Where learned: GROSSE POINTE WOODS ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Autograph Verse Wisecracks, gags, silly stories, insults

Date learned: 06-00-1965

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I HAD A LITTLE MONKEY
I SENT HIM TO THE FARM
ALONG CAME A COPPER
AND SHOT HIM IN THE ARM.

Where learned: GROSSE POINTE WOODS ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Autograph Verse Wisecracks, gags, silly stories, insults

Date learned: 06-00-1965

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WINTER, SPRING, SUMMER AND FALL,
YOU LOOK LIKE A WALKING BASKETBALL.

Where learned: GROSSE POINTE WOODS ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Autograph Verse Wisecracks, gags, silly stories, insults

Date learned: 06-00-1965

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PA MOSES SHOT A SKUNK
MA MOSES FRIED A CHUNK
BABY MOSES ATE A HUNK
HOLY MOSES, HOW THEY STUNK.

Where learned: GROSSE POINTE WOODS ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Autograph Verse Wisecracks, gags, silly stories, insults

Date learned: 06-00-1965

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WHEN YOU GET MARRIED AND GROW OUT OF SHAPE,
REMEMBER GIRDLES ARE STILL $2.98.

Where learned: GROSSE POINTE WOODS ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Autograph Verse Wisecracks, gags, silly stories, insults

Date learned: 06-00-1965

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WHEN ROSES ARE RED THEY'RE READY FOR PICKING
WHEN CHICKENS ARE FAT THEY'RE READY FOR PLUCKING
BUT WHEN GIRLS ARE EIGHTEEN THEY'RE READY FOR
.....COLLEGE.

Where learned: GROSSE POINTE WOODS ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Autograph Verse Wisecracks, gags, silly stories, insults

Date learned: 06-00-1965

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WHEN YOU GET OLD
AND THINK YOU'RE SWEET
JUST TAKE OFF YOUR SHOES
AND SMELL YOUR FEET.

Where learned: GROSSE POINTE WOODS ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Autograph Verse Wisecracks, gags, silly stories, insults

Date learned: 06-00-1965

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