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James Callow Folklore Archive

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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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TAUNT

A FAKE WAY TO FIND OUT IF YOUR FRIEND IS A GOOD CHILD IS
THIS ONE:
A GOOD CHILD, A GOOD CHILD,
AS I SUPPOSE YOU BE,
NEVER LAUGH OR SMILE,
WHILE I TICKLE YOUR KNEE.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; "STICKS AND STONES" ; San Francisco ; PORPOISE BOOKSHOP

Subject headings: Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Game Verse C750.520

Date learned: 00-00-1960

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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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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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ENGAGEMENT RITUAL

THE NEWS OF AN ENGAGEMENT SUBJECTS TO AN IMMEDIATE DUNKING IN
SOME NEARBY BODY OF WATER OF THE PROSPECTIVE BRIDEGROOM.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; HARVEY MUDD COLLEGE ; CLAREMONT

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Marriage After engagement: fun with friends, etc.

Date learned: 00-00-1968

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DREAM

IF YOU DREAM THE SAME DREAM THREE TIMES, IT WILL COME TRUE.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; LOS ANGELES

Subject headings: 686 Thirds / Thrice / Three / Triple
Spirit / Mind / Body

Date learned: 06-00-1968

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SAYING

LAND'S SO RICH THAT WHEN YOU PLANT CORN, YOU HAVE TO JUMP BACK SO IT
WON'T HIT YOU IN THE EYE.

Submitter comment: I HEARD MY 5TH COUSIN SAY THIS ABOUT FIVE YEARS AGO. IT WAS IN THE
SAN JOAQUIN DELTAS OF NORTHERN CALIFORNIA. HE WAS DESCRIBING A
MUDFLAT THAT HE HAD LEASED.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; SAN JOAQUIN DELTA

Keyword(s): AGRICULTURE ; FERTILITY ; HYPERBOLE ; LAND

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Plant
PROVERB -- Proverbial Comparison

Date learned: 10-08-1968

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BELIEFS

TO BE HOSTILE TO YUOR ESCORT IS A SURE SIGN OF PRIDE.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; MONROVIA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Street Trip Relations between relatives, friends, host and guest Social class Rank
BELIEF -- Marriage

Date learned: CA00001966

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SUPERSTITION

IF YOU SEE A DOG EATING GRASS IT IS GOING TO RAIN.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; MONROVIA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Mammal
BELIEF -- Weather sign or control
BELIEF -- Cloud Fog Mist Rain Hail Ice Snow Frost Dew

Date learned: CA00001965

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SUPERSTITION

IF YOU HAVE A BACK AILMENT, GET AN OLD PAIR OF SHOES AND PUT THEM
UNDER YOUR BED UPSIDE DOWN.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; MONROVIA

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Dress HandsFeet
BELIEF -- Remedy P750.8

Date learned: CA00001936

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SUPERSTITION

IF YOU SEE A SHOOTING STAR YOU SHOULD SAY MONEY THREE TIME FOR
GOOD LUCK.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; MONROVIA

Subject headings: 686 Thirds / Thrice / Three / Triple
BELIEF -- Good luck
SPEECH -- Formula

Date learned: CA00001935

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FUNERAL LORE

COUNT THE CARS IN A FUNERAL PROCESSION IS BAD LUCK

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; MONROVIA

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Number Counting beliefs
BELIEF -- Bad luck

Date learned: CA00001935

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OMENS

TO SLEEP ON A LARGE PILLOW DENOTES A SUCCESSFULL BUSINESS ENTERPRISE

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; MONROVIA

Subject headings: Observation
BELIEF -- Work Commerce Business
BELIEF -- Measure of time Sleeping
BELIEF -- Measure of space: distance, height, depth

Date learned: CA00001966

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CONVERSIONS

STEPPING OVER A FISHING POLE WILL RUIN YOUR LUCK.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; MONROVIA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Bad luck
BELIEF -- Conversions

Date learned: CA00001966

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TO DRIVE AN AMBULANCE IS A SURE SIGN THAT YOU ARE GOING TO VISIT
A FRIEND WHO IS A LITTLE INDISPOSED.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; MONROVIA

Subject headings: Observation
BELIEF -- Street Trip Relations between relatives, friends, host and guest Social class Rank

Date learned: CA00001965

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BELIEFS

AN EMPTY ROCKING CHAIR THAT IS MOVING IS A SIGN OF DEATH.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; MONROVIA

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Number Emptiness, nothingness, zero

Date learned: CA00001964

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BELIEFS

TO HEAR ONE SING SIGNIFIES GOOD NEWS.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; MONROVIA

Subject headings: Observation

Date learned: CA00001966

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SUPERSTITION

AN EMPTY ROCKING CHAIR THAT IS MOVING IS A SIGN OF DEATH

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; MONROVIA

Subject headings: CUSTOM FESTIVAL -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Number Emptiness, nothingness, zero
BELIEF -- Good luck

Date learned: CA00001964

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SUPERSTITION/DEATH

WHEN A DOG HOWL AT NIGHT IS A SIGN OF DEATH.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; MONROVIA

Subject headings: Observation
BELIEF -- P441
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Measure of time WeekDayHour

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BELIEFS

TO COUNT YOUR TEETH IS A SIGN OF YOUR TEETH ROTTEN OUT QUICKER.

Where learned: CALIFORNIA ; MONROVIA

Subject headings: Observation
BELIEF -- Body part Senses
BELIEF -- Number Counting beliefs
BELIEF -- Means of Causing or Avoiding Illness

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