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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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TELEPHONE PRANK

CALL A NUMBER FOUR OR FIVE TIMES, AND EACH TIME ASK FOR HARRY.
THEN CALL AND SAY, THIS IS HARRY, ARE THERE ANY MESSAGES?

Submitter comment: AS THE INFORMANT OFFERED THIS ONE, I COULD SEE THAT SHE TOLD IT
RELUCTANTLY, AS IF SHE HAD FEAR OF IT HAPPENING TO HER.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

James Callow Keyword(s): TELEPHONE PRANK

Subject headings: Favorites
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Entertainment Diversion

Date learned: 01-00-1974

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INDIAN TWISTER

HEAP SMART FELLOW, HEAP FELLOW SMART.

Submitter comment: SHE SEEMED TO GLOW WHEN GIVING THIS ONE, SURE THAT I COULDN'T SAY
IT WITHOUT TRIPPING UP.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

James Callow Keyword(s): CHIASMUS

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 01-00-1974

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THE BABY TONGUE-TWISTER

RUBBER BABY BUGGY BUMPER

Submitter comment: THE INFORMANT RATTLED THIS ONE OFF THREE TIMES PERFECTLY, THEN
INVITED ME TO TRY IT. NEEDLESS TO SAY I COULDN'T DO IT WITHOUT TRIP-
ING UP.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 01-00-1974

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THE EGG

PUT AN EGG IN YOUR SHOE AND BEAT IT.

Submitter comment: MRS. FRENDO JUST SNICKERED AS SHE FINISHED THIS ONE, EXPECTING A
GROAN BEFORE MOVING ON TO THE NEXT ONE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

James Callow Keyword(s): PUN SLANG: BEAT IT FOR GO AWAY

Subject headings: SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: 01-00-1974

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SANTA KNOCK-KNOCK

KNOCK-KNOCK - WHO'S THERE? - SANTA - SANTA WHO? - I DON'T CARE WHO
YOU ARE, FAT MAN, BUT GET THOSE REINDEER OFF MY ROOF.

Submitter comment: THIS KNOCK-KNOCK JOKE IS HER CHILDREN'S FAVORITE, HOWEVER SHE DID NOT
CARE FOR IT THAT MUCH.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

Subject headings: RIDDLE -- Riddle Question

Date learned: 01-00-1974

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AMOS KNOCK-KNOCK

KNOCK-KNOCK - WHO'S THERE? - AMOS - AMOS WHO? - A MOSQUITO BIT ME.
ANDY KNOCK-KNOCK KNOCK-KNOCK - WHO'S THERE? - ANDY - ANDY WHO? - AND HE BIT ME AGAIN.

Submitter comment: THIS KNOCK-KNOCK JOKE WAS FOLLOWED BY THE NEXT ITEM LISTED.
THIS NEXT ITEM WAS SAID BEFORE THE LAUGHTER OF THE FIRST DIED DOWN.
THIS IS THE SECOND HALF OF THE PREVIOUS ITEM. IT WAS SAID IMMEDIATELY AFTER THE FIRST PART.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

Subject headings: Favorites
RIDDLE -- Riddle Question

Date learned: 01-00-1974

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CRYING KNOCK-KNOCK

KNOCK-KNOCK - WHO'S THERE? - BOO - BOO WHO? - AW, DON'T CRY.

Submitter comment: AGAIN UPON HEARING THE CATEGORY KNOCK-KNOCK JOKES THE INFORMANT
RIFLED THEM OFF ONE AFTER ANOTHER, HARDLY GIVING ME A CHANCE TO GUESS
THE ANSWERS BEFORE GOING ON

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

James Callow Keyword(s): CATCH

Subject headings: Favorites
RIDDLE -- Riddle Question

Date learned: 01-00-1974

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BATHROOM WALL WRITING

SOME COME HERE TO SIT AND THINK, .
OTHERS COME TO RAISE A STINK.

Submitter comment: EVEN WITH HER VAST KNOWLEDGE OF GRAFFITI, THE INFORMANT
WAS NOT OVER-ANXIOUS TO GIVE ME THESE ITEMS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

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

Date learned: 01-00-1974

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MALE FLYLEAF

IF FOUND BY A PERSON, RETURN BY MAIL,
IF FOUND BY MALE, RETURN IN PERSON.

Submitter comment: THE INFORMANT GAVE THIS ITEM RELUCTANTLY, AS IF TO SAY IT'S NOT TOO
GOOD BUT HERE IT IS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

Subject headings: Z220

Date learned: 01-00-1974

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ELEPHANT JOKE

WHAT IS THAT BLACK STUFF BETWEEN AN ELEPHANT'S TOES? ANSWER: SLOW
MOVING NATIVES.

Submitter comment: THE INFORMANT UPON HEARING THE CATEGORY ELEPHANT JOKE SEEMED TO
LIGHT UP AND PROCEED TO OFFER THEM ONE AFTER ANOTHER. THIS PARTICULAR
ONE WAS HER FAVORITE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

Subject headings: --

Date learned: 01-00-1974

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Entry filtered.

POLISH JOKE

Historical record from James Callow Folklore Archive.

WHAT'S FUNNIER THAN TWO POLACKS DIGGING A BASEMENT IN AN ICE
SHANTY?
TWO ITALIANS WAITING TO POUR THE CEMENT}

Submitter comment:

THIS JOKE CAME TO ME FROM A HIGH SCHOOL WHERE I LIVE. THIS JOKE HAS
HAD MANY ETHNIC VARATIONS, FROM THE POLISH TO THE BLACKS. I FIND THIS
VERY INTERESTING THAT ONE JOKE CAN BE SO DIVERSIFIED.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

Subject headings: AFRO
ITAL
BELIEF -- Poli

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VERSE WITHOUT MUSIC, LYRICAL DEALS WITH EMOTIONS NOT STORY

SNEEZE ON MONDAY, SNEEZE FOR DANGER;
SNEEZE ON TUESDAY, KISS A STRANGER;
SNEEZE ON WEDNESDAY, SNEEZE FOR A LETTER;
SNEEZE ON THURSDAY, SOMETHING BETTER;
SNEEZE ON FRIDAY, SNEEZE FOR SORROW;
SNEEZE ON SATURDAY, SEE LOVE TOMORROW.

Submitter comment: I THINK THAT THIS IS A VERY BEAUTIFUL VERSE. IT IS A CHAIN TALE
BECAUSE OF THE WAY IT IS TOLD.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

James Callow Keyword(s): ELLIPSIS

Subject headings: Observation
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Lyrical Verse
BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal

Date learned: 02-00-1979

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MARRIAGE CUSTOM

A BRIDE SHOULD NOT BE MARRIED IF HER FEET ARE AT RIGHT ANGLES TO THE
FLOOR BOARDS.

Submitter comment: THIS IS A STRANGE BELIEF WHICH I DO NOT UNDERSTAND AT ALL. THE PERSON
THAT I GOT IT FROM DID NOT UNDERSTAND IT EITHER.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Marriage
BELIEF -- Body part Senses

Date learned: 12-00-1978

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DEATH CUSTOMS

ORIENTAL CUSTOMS OF NOT CRYING AT A DEATH, MEANS THAT THEY FEEL
THAT THE TEARS KEEP THE SOUL IN THE BODY.

Submitter comment: I FEEL THAT THIS IS NOT TRUE, BECAUSE PEORLE WHO DO NOT CRY MANY
TIMES ARE WORSE OFF THAN THOSE WHO DO.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial

Date learned: 02-00-1979

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PRAYER

COME LORD JESUS, BE OUR GUEST
LET THESE GIFTS TO US BE BLEST
BY HIS HANDS WE ARE FED
GIVE US LORD OUR DAILY BREAD. AMEN

Submitter comment: THIS IS A DIFFERENT TYPE OF BEFORE MEAL PRAYER, AND I THINK THAT I
LIKE IT BETTER THAN THE TRADITIONAL ONE.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Belief Belief
BELIEF -- Prayer

Date learned: 02-00-1979

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GOOD LUCK

WHEN OPENING A NEW PACK OF CIGARETTES, TAKE THE FIRST ONE OUT, TURN
IT UPSIDEDOWN, AND THEN PUT IT BACK IN, AND SAVE IT FOR LAST. THE
LAST CIGARETTE SMOKED WILL BE UPSIDEDOWN. WHILE SMOKING THE LAST
CIGARETTE, WHILE TAKING THE LAST PUFF, MAKE A WISH } }

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: 686 Properties attributed to specific numbers or numerals individually.
BELIEF -- Prayer
BELIEF -- Number Last events: the last person to the table...

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CURSES

WHEN YOU ARE PLAYING DICE, MAKE AN "X" ON THE TABLE SO THAT YOUR
OPPONENT DOES NOT ROLL A PAIR, OR WHATEVER YOU ARE ROLLING.

Submitter comment: THE "X" IS SOMETHING SIMILAR TO A CROSS, SO IT MIGHT BE A TYPE OF
BLESSING, INSTEAD OF A HEX.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

Subject headings: Favorites
BELIEF -- Curse
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
BELIEF -- Good luck
BELIEF -- Conversions

Date learned: 03-00-1979

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WEATHER BELIEF

IF IT RAINS ON MONDAY, YOU'LL HAVE THREE DAYS OF RAIN THAT WEEK.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

Subject headings: 686 Thirds / Thrice / Three / Triple
BELIEF -- Cloud Fog Mist Rain Hail Ice Snow Frost Dew
BELIEF -- Measure of time WeekDayHour
BELIEF -- Fate Destiny Luck Chance

Date learned: 04-00-1979

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APOTHEGM

MEASURE TWICE, CUT ONCE. THIS IS THE GOLDEN RULE IN THE GLASS
BUSINESS.

Submitter comment: THIS HAS A VERY SIMPLE MEANING: BE CAREFUL }

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

James Callow Keyword(s): ADVICE: POSITIVE

Subject headings: Favorites
PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim

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Every year in March at Gabriel Richard High School in
Riverview, Michigan the Junior class receives their class rings.
It is traditional (since 1964) for the entire class to attend a
special mass in order to bless each student's ring and celebrate
the coming of their Senior year.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; RIVERVIEW

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- March
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- School
CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Church
BELIEF -- Prayer

Date learned: 00-00-1983

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