Y'all are a bunch of wankers!

As a child...

As a child we are *forced* to learn few poems. But the poem I use to run around and sing was somewhat weird. It was like,
Piggy on the railway track,
Picking up stones,
Down came the engine,
Broke Piggy bone.
Oh!, said the Piggy,
"That's not fair".
Yes!, said the engine driver,


And now, it seems really funny to me. Any weird, childhood poem you would like to share.

<Motivated by: Dennis thread.>
Permalink Another Poster... 
March 24th, 2005
Milk, milk, lemonade,
Round the corner chocolate's made.
Put a penny in the slot,
Out it comes - plop, plop, plop.

(It's important to include the pointing at nipples, front bottom and starfish during the first two lines. :)
Permalink Mat Hall 
March 24th, 2005
Starfish huh.

Euphemisms are soooooo interesting.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
March 24th, 2005
I was always fond of:

"A peanut sat on a railroad track,
its heart was all a-flutter.
Toot! Toot! Train came round the bend.
Toot! Toot! Peanut butter!"

And the song about little bunny foo-foo.
Permalink Steve Barbour 
March 24th, 2005
I'm sure we all remember Ring around the Rosie. Yay for plague songs!
Permalink Aaron F Stanton 
March 24th, 2005
The plague / rosie connection is an urban legend:

Permalink Myth-busters R Us 
March 24th, 2005
Well not necessarily an urban myth.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
March 24th, 2005

Oh well.

I think I'm going to go write some songs talking about smallpox, anthrax, and other biochemical attack vectors. Gotta warn the kids somehow.
Permalink Aaron F Stanton 
March 24th, 2005
Simon, if you have evidence that suggests the plague/rosie connection is not a myth, then do share it with us.
Permalink Myth-busters R Us 
March 24th, 2005
Wow, cool, 1880's 'Play-Party' Circle games. Yeah, that "no-dancing" protestant thing is annoying alright.
Permalink AllanL5 
March 24th, 2005
Well all the evidence that it is a myth refers to a single source and then a supposition upon that source that it would have been printed earlier if it had existed.

The rhyme as I grew up with it is different,

Ring-a-ring a-roses
A pocket full of posies
A-tishoo!, A-tishoo!
We all fall down.

'Ashes, ashes' doesn't even scan as well as 'Atishoo, Atishoo, and the latter makes more sense with the last line.

Other than that, it may well be a case of backwards derivation. In other words, thinking a thing and making it so.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
March 24th, 2005
Single source? I dunno, Simon. A few minutes of Googling reveals multiple sources that all argue against the plauge/rosie connection.
Permalink Myth-busters R Us 
March 24th, 2005
Yes all relying on the same single source.

Sometimes I really do think I should be giving comprehension lessons.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
March 24th, 2005
Multiple sources -- not single.

Urban legends are my hobby. This one is a classic.

To the best of my knowledge, not a single, serious scholar of folklore supports the plague hypothesis.
Permalink Myth-busters R Us 
March 24th, 2005
In the unlikely event that someone wants to find out more about the theory that the "Ring Around the Rosie" rhyme refers to the bubonic plague, you may want to read the following articles:


Permalink Myth-busters R Us 
March 24th, 2005
So, to be tedious, how are these sources multiple? They all quote one another and the assertion that because the earliest published version is Kate Greenaway's 'Mother Goose' in 1881 and generally they all quote Philip Hiscock with an interpretation that it was some kind of ruse around the ban on dancing songs in Protestant households.

However, there was no such ban in Britain after the Restoration, except perhaps amongst the Plymouth Brethren who were always a minority sect.

Now, I'm not convinced that the rhyme deals with the Black Death but it is consistent with a 17th century attitude. There's a bunch of analyses about rings and the onset of plague but in itself is just as unprovable.

Mother Goose originated in France in the 17th century and was nicked or copied in England it always was a combination of traditional rhymes and anonymous doggerel. We don't know which this is, it could have been written by Greenaway but that's unlikely compared with her other verse, she may also be reproducing a song from her own childhood.

It isn't unusual for folk songs to not be recorded, it was only in the 1960's that most of the dialect songs in Britain were collected and written down.

I think its case not proven for both.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
March 24th, 2005
That all got serious a bit quickly, so allow me to lower the tone again:

Ip, dip, dog shit, you are not it;
Not because you're dirty,
Not because you're clean,
But my mum says you're the fairy queen!

Ibble Obble,
Black Bobble,
Ibble Obble,

Ippa dippa dation,
My operation,
How many people
At the station?

And so on...
Permalink Mat Hall 
March 24th, 2005
Thanks everyone!
Permalink Another poster... 
March 25th, 2005
Investigating "Ring a Ring o' Roses" I came across this site.


Rarely can one come across a site of such unadulterated bullshit.

It purports to give the 'origin' of nursery rhymes. The modus operandi of the informants it has collected its information from appears to be as follows.
a) Choose some obscure historical fact nobody is remotely interested in
b) Choose a nursery rhyme
c) Tie the two together with no evidence whatsoever, preferably introducing a couple of historical inaccuracies at the same time.

It does, of course, support the link to bubonic plague.

I'm afraid I agree with those who are shattering Simon's childhood illusions. There is almost nothing to tie the rhyme to bubonic plague. I doubt the alternative American origin that is given also.

Why is it so hard for us to admit we don't know some things, and are never likely to either?
Permalink Stephen Jones 
March 25th, 2005
There's lots of stuff I don't know. Probably a lot of the stuff I think I know is wrong.
Permalink Aaron F Stanton 
March 26th, 2005

This topic was orginally posted to the off-topic forum of the
Joel on Software discussion board.

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