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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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ARABIAN MAXIM

BE WARY OF SOMEONE YOU HELP OR CARE FOR, FOR HE MAY SOME DAY BE
WELL ENOUGH TO CAUSE YOU HARM.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): SUPERSTITION

James Callow Keyword(s): ADVICE: POSITIVE ; CYNICISM ; PARADOX ; SUSPICION ; TREACHERY

Subject headings: PROVERB -- Proverbial Apothegm Maxim

Date learned: 09-00-1967

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I'M CONCHITA BANANA
AND I'M HERE TO SAY
HOW TO GET RID OF YOUR TEACHER
THE EASY WAY
PUT A BANANA ON THE FLOOR
AND WATCH YOUR TEACHER
SLIDE OUT THE DOOR.

DOWN, DOWN, DOWN, THE STAIRS SHE GOES
WHERE SHE LANDS KNOW ONE KNOWS
AND WHILE SHE'S GONE, THE KIDS HAVE FUN
DRINKING WHISKEY, BEER, AND RUM.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): ANTI-TEACHER ; PARODY OF A COMMERCIAL JINGLE

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Ill humor Ridicule Mockery
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Children

Date learned: DATE NOT RECORDED BY COLLECTOR.

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SONG

FROM THE HALLS OF BLESSED SACRAMENT
TO THE SHORES OF BUBBLE GUM BAY.
WE WILL FIGHT OUR COUNTRY'S TEACHERS
WITH SPIT BALLS, GUM, AND CLAY.
FIRST TO FIGHT FOR LUNCH AND RECESS,
THEN TO KEEP OUR DESKS A MESS.
WE ARE PROUD TO CLAIM THE TITLES
OF THE PESTS FROM B.S.S.

Submitter comment: ( SUNG TO "FROM THE HALLS OF MONTEZUMA" )
MARY BETH IS A STUDENT AT BLESSED SACRAMENT SCHOOL IN GRAND
RAPIDS, MICHIGAN. SHE TOLD ME THAT HER FRIENDS AT OTHER SCHOOLS
ALSO KNOW AND SING THIS SONG SUBSTITUTING THE NAME OF THEIR SCHOOL.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; GRAND RAPIDS

Keyword(s): ANTI-TEACHER ; SCHOOL SONG

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Ill humor Ridicule Mockery
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Children

Date learned: 10-00-1971

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PARODY, SONG

MINE EYES HAVE SEEN THE GLORY OF THE BURNING OF THE SCHOOL.
WE HAVE HUNG ALL THE TEACHERS AND BROKEN ALL THE RULES.
NOW WE'RE MARCHING DOWN THE CORRIDOR TO GET THE PRINCIPAL.
THE SCHOOL IS BURNING DOWN.

GLORY, GLORY HALLELUIAH.
THE TEACHER HIT ME WITH THE RULER.
SO I SLAMMED HER ON THE BEAN WITH A ROTTEN TANGERINE,
AND THE WHOLE CLASS STARTED TO SCREAM.

Submitter comment: SUNG TO THE TUNE OF THE "BATTLE HYMN OF THE REPUBLIC".

Where learned: DETROIT ; MICHIGAN, ASSUMED

Keyword(s): ANTI-SCHOOL SONG ; ANTI-TEACHER

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Ill humor Ridicule Mockery
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Children

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PARODY OF "BATTLE HYMN OF THE REPUBLIC"

GLORY GLORY HALLELUJAH
TEACHER HIT ME WITH A RULER
I MET HER AT THE DOOR
WITH MY TRUSTY FORTY-FOUR
AND THERE AIN'T NO TEACHER ANYMORE.

Where learned: BUFFALO ; NEW YORK

Keyword(s): ANTI-TEACHER ; EUPHEMISM

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Ill humor Ridicule Mockery
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Children

Date learned: DATE NOT RECORED BY COLLECTOR.

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RIDDLE

WHAT HAS A CRANK UP FRONT AND A BUNCH OF LITTLE
NUTS IN THE BACK?
A CLASSROOM

Submitter comment: TOLD TO HER BY A FRIEND IN SCHOOL

Where learned: LETTER ; TOLD IN

Keyword(s): ANTI-TEACHER ; PUN

Subject headings: RIDDLE -- Riddle Question

Date learned: 11-09-1967

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EXORCISING

MY STEPMOTHER, AN EX-SCHOOLMARM FROM A RURAL QUEBEC
VILLAGE, USED TO SPRINKLE HOLY WATER ON MY FATHER
TO EXORCISE HIM OF THE DEVIL IN HIM
WHWNEVER HR
WHEN EVER HE WOULD BECOME HEATEDLY ANGRY.

Where learned: NOT GIVEN

Keyword(s): TEACHER

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Magic of Speech, Sign, Color

Date learned: NOT GIVEN

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BACKACHE REMEDY (ITALIAN)

TAKE A PIECE OF CLOTH, PUT A HALF DOLLAR IN IT.
LAY ON YOUR STOMACH, SOMEONE RUBS YOUR BACK.
LIGHT THE CLOTH ON THE PERSON'S BACK AND COVER WITH GLASS.
DO THIS 5 TIMES.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; WARREN

Keyword(s): BACKACHE ; HEAT REMEDY ; TRANSFERENCE

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Remedy

Date learned: 12-00-1969

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GOOD LUCK

TAKE THREE VERY SILVER QUARTERS AND PUT THEM ON YOUR BACK.
NEXT TAKE A GLASS AND PUT IT OVER THE THREE QUARTERS.
FINALLY, LIGHT A CANDLE UNDER THE GLASS AND IT WILL DRAW
ALL OF THE EVIL SPIRITS OUT OF YOUR BACK.

Submitter comment: HIS GRANDMOTHER TOLD HIM.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT ; J L HUDSONS COMPANY

Keyword(s): BACKACHE ; TRANSFERENCE

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Ghost Spirit Phantom Specter
BELIEF -- Method of Curing

Date learned: 12-02-1967

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CASE OF EVIL EYE CAUSING DEATH

AFTER COMING TO THIS COUNTRY, THE INFORMANT'S MOTHER
LOST A BABY GIRL NAMED CATHERINE BECAUSE SOME FRIEND OF THEIRS
(A MAN) PRAISED THE LITTLE BABY AND IT CAME UNDER A SPELL.
THEY COULDN'T FIND ANYONE IN THE U.S. WHO COULD BREAK THE SPELL
(THERE WERE PEOPLE GOOD AT THIS IN THE OLD COUNTRY).
THE BABY JUST WANED AWAY AND DIED. AND IN LATER YEARS
WHEN ANOTHER RELATIVE WAS GIVEN THE NAME OF CATHERINE SHE GOT
BAD LUCK TO GO WITH IT FROM THE OLD SPELL
AND THAT IS WHY SHE NEVER HAS ANY DATES.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): BAD LUCK ATTACHED TO NAME

Subject headings: Favorites
BELIEF -- Body part Senses Eyes, evil eye
BELIEF -- Marriage
BELIEF -- Means of Causing or Avoiding Illness
BELIEF -- Fate Destiny Luck Chance

Date learned: 10-26-1969

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Entry filtered.

RUMOR ABOUT TEACHER

IT WAS RUMORED THAT OUR ALGEBRA TEACHER , MR. JOHNSON, PICKED
HIS NOSE AND PUT THE MUCUS BEHIND HIS TIE.

Data entry tech comment:

Updated by TRD

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): Picking Nose ; Rumor ; TEACHER ; Tie

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Human Being

Date learned: 11-11-1968

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Urban Legend

THE INFORMANT TOLD ME THAT STUDENTS ACTUALLY BELIEVE THAT THERE
WAS A PROFESSOR WHO USED TO THROW THE EXAMINATION PAPERS UP THE
STAIRS AS HIS METOD OF GRADING THEM. THOSE THAT LANDED ON THE
HIGHER LEVEL GOT "AS", THE NEXT STEP GOT "BS" AND SO ON DOWN
UNTIL THE BOTTOM STEP WERE THE STUDENTS WHOSE PAPERS LANDED THERE
RECEIVED "FS".

Submitter comment:

HE (THE INFORMANT) TOLD ME THAT THIS PRACTICE WAS ATTRIBUTED TO DR.
H. THEODORE HOFFMAN OF THE ECONOMICS DEPARTMENT AT THE
UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT.

Data entry tech comment:

Updated / 02-24-2011 / TRD

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): ACADEMIC ; Grade ; Legend ; MYTH ; Stairs ; Student ; TEACHER ; URBAN

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Human Being

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Entry filtered.

USE OLIVE OIL FOR AN EARACHE.

Submitter comment:

PUT THE OIL ON A COTTON BALL AND PLACE THE COTTON IN YOUR EAR.
IN ADDITION TO OLIVE OIL, CASTOR OIL AND COD LIVER OIL ARE
USED TO CURE MANY AILMENTS.
OILS ARE A "BIG" THING AMONG BLACKS.

Data entry tech comment:

Updated on 11.10.13 by TRD

Keyword(s): REMEDY, Oil, Natural, Homeopathy, Earache, Ailment,

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Remedy
BELIEF -- Mineral

Date learned: 10-08-1984

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BURN YOUR HAIR OR BIRDS WILL BUILD NEST WITH IT CAUSING YOUR HEAD TO
ACHE. THIS IS PRACTICED BY MANY SOUTHERNERS.

Submitter comment: INFORMANT MEANS THIS TO BE HAIRS THAT YOU LOST THROUGH COMBING OR
BRUSHING.

Where learned: DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): CONTAGIOUS MAGIC ; HEADACHE

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

Date learned: 09-08-1972

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SLEEPING BELIEF

DON'T SLEEP WITH YOUR HEAD TO THE SOUTH. THIS RESULTS IN A HEAD
ACHE.

Where learned: DETROIT

James Callow Keyword(s): DIRECTION--SOUTH ; HEADACHE

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Means of Causing or Avoiding Illness
BELIEF -- Plant P754.86

Date learned: 09-08-1972

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TOOTH ACHE BELIEF

IF YOU WEAR TIGHT ROLLERS IN YOUR HAIR, IF WILL GIVE YOU TOOTH ACHES.

Where learned: CANADA ; ONTARIO ; DORM ; UNIVERSITY OF WINDSOR

James Callow Keyword(s): HIDDEN CONNECTION ; TOOTHACHE

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

Date learned: 09-22-1972

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{THE FATAL HAIRDO}

THERE WAS A WOMAN WHO WENT TO THE BEAUTY PARLOR TO GET A "BEE HIVE"
HAIRDO. THE HAIR IS RATTED AND PLACED ON A WAXED PAPER CONE AND
BUILT INTO A HIVE SHAPE. THERE WERE COCKROACH EGGS ON THE PAPER
AND THE WOMAN DIDN'T BOTHER TO WASH HER HAIR FOR A FEW WEEKS,
THE EGGS HATCHED. THE WOMAN AT FIRST THOUGHT THE ITCHING WAS DUE
TO HER NOT HAVING WASHED HER HAIR FOR SUCH A LONG TIME. IN FACT,
THE COCKROACHES ATE THROUGH TO HER BRAIN AND SHE DIED. PEOPLE
DISCOVERED THE COCKROACHES AFTER SHE HAD DIED.

Submitter comment: THE INFORMANT HEARD THIS STORY WHILE LIVING IN A SMALL TOWN IN
WESTERN OHIO, BELLEVUE, AROUND 1959.

Where learned: OHIO ; DETROIT ; BELLEVUE

James Callow Keyword(s): DEVASTATING COCKROACHES, NOT SPIDERS

Subject headings: Favorites
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Body part Senses

Date learned: 09-20-1972

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BACKACHE CURE

WALK ON THE PERSON'S BACK. IT TAKES A CERTAIN TECHNIQUE
AND A SMALL PERSON (LIGHT WEIGHT).

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; NASHVILLE

James Callow Keyword(s): ACHE

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Method of Curing

Date learned: 11-00-1967

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WHISKEY HILL

IN AND NEAR THE TOWN OF DUBOIS (WYOMING?) THERE IS A
MOUNTAIN, CALLED BY THE TOWNSPEOPLE "WHISKEY HILL."
THE NAME COMES FROM THE LEGEND THAT IN THE EARLY DAYS
OF TIMBER CUTTING IN THAT AREA, THE LUMBERJACKS WOULD
GET EXTREMELY COLD IN THE THIRTY-BELOW WEATHER PREVALENT
IN THAT AREA. SO IN THE SUMMER MONTHS, THEY WOULD BUY
WHISKEY AND STASH IT IN PLACES KNOWN ONLY TO THEMSELVES
ON THE MOUNTAIN. THEN, IN THE WINTER, THEY WOULD BE
ABLE TO WARM THEMSELVES. NO TOWNSPEOPLE EVER FOUND
ANY OF THE STASHED (HIDDEN) WHISKEY SO NO ONE KNEW
IF IT WAS A TRUE STORY.

Where learned: NASHVILLE ; TENNESSEE, ASSUMED

James Callow Keyword(s): CACHE ; TEMPERATURE

Subject headings: PROSE NARRATIVE -- Formation
PROSE NARRATIVE -- Explanation of a name

Date learned: 00-00-1964

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TO CURE A TOOTHACHE PICK THE TOOTH WITH A COFFIN NAIL,
MIDDLE TOE OF AN OWL, A SPLINTER FROM A TREE STRUCK BY
LIGHTNING OR APPLY THE JUICE OF A PRICKLY ASH.

Data entry tech comment:

Updated by TRD

Where learned: TENNESSEE ; NASHVILLE

Keyword(s): BELIEF ; Claw ; Coffin ; Juice ; LIGHTNING ; Nail ; Owl ; Prickly Ash ; REMEDY ; Splinter ; TOOTHACHE ; Tree

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Method of Curing

Date learned: 09-30-1973

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