USC Digital Folklore Archives / general


  • Whenever you pour coffee, Turbulence starts
  • Whenever you start to eat anything someone rings and calls for a flight attendant’s help.
  • Jetblue has TVs so you can ignore your neighbor.

The Girl, The Egg, and the Goblin

Once upon a time, there was a girl that was afraid of the goblin. The goblin took away her egg. Then the girl said, “Let my egg go!” Then the girl said, “give me back my egg or else I’ll tell the police.” And then the goblin gave her the egg.


The Graveyard near the Soccer Field

At camp there is a graveyard near one of the soccer fields. A friend of the informant, Mariah, says that the graveyard is filled with a full family from years ago. The story is that their house burned down. Now they haunt the soccer field and games. Mariah says that the spirits favor the blue team during color war because the past four years the blue team has won on that soccer field. Mariah told Charley that the family of spirits “help them win” by making the ball go in weird directions when the other team is playing offense.


FSU Fountain Swimming

At Florida State University you have to swim in the fountain all four years on your birthday. There is nothing that will happen if you don’t do it but it is a tradition that you must do for all four years.


The Garden Apartments’ Animals

In Ridgefield, New Jersey at the Garden Apartments:

  • There were 10 attached garages and at night the kids that lived in the Garden apartments would say that lions, tigers, and dogs would jump over the garages. They were scared of this so the kids would stay inside at night
Folk Beliefs
Folk medicine

Energy Healing with water

Informant is a water based energy healer. In the healing practice that informant is a part of, you submerge the crystal into water during a healing session. You submerge it in water to dispel bad energy. She learned this from shaman teacher.

Her friend is a fire based energy healer and they burn their crystals which is considered extremely negative by water healers.


Old King Cole

Old King Cole

Was a merry old soul

Stuck his head in a toilet bowl

Jumped out the window

With his dick In his hand

And yelled, “Hey motherfucker look at me I’m superman


Helltown, Ohio

“In Summit County, Ohio, there’s a ghost town that people call Helltown. The town is notorious for being haunted and being a site of Satanic rituals. There’s actually even a church in the town with an upside down cross on it, apparently it’s the most haunted building in Helltown. Since the town was abandoned, a ton of teenagers have gone down there, and a few have gone missing mysteriously upon entering the church.”


So my dad told me this story, and it’s one that I’ve actually looked into a bit before just because it seems so fascinating. The actual reason for the town being abandoned is because of a mass governmental seizure of property in 1974 via eminent domain in order to create the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. The park was made, but the section that is now “Helltown” was never actually torn down, so the people basically abandoned the town and never moved back, effectively turning it into a ghost town. The rumors of Satanic rituals seems to have no basis other than someone misinterpreting the inverted cross on the church as a Satanic symbol. The purported hauntedness probably just comes from the fact that it is a ghost town, and that naturally causes people to associate it with ghosts. Nonetheless, I like this tale just because Helltown is a pretty close to my home, and it’s just surrounded by populated, normal towns.





That right there is literally the entire performance of this recent piece of cyberlore. This weird custom arose from the video game Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, in which the player (if playing on a computer) has the option to go up to a fallen soldier and “press F to pay respects.” The game was released in late 2014, and for some reason, towards the beginning of 2015 users on sites like Reddit started commenting with “press F to pay respects” whenever death or dying was mentioned on the site. This soon evolved into users simply shortening it to “F,” and now most Reddit users will know what someone means if he/she comments with that single letter. I frequent Reddit, so I kind of picked up on this a while ago, but I love how simple yet inexplicably hilarious it is.


One True God

“The one true god, Nicolas Cage. His light guides us away from the temptation of John Travolta, and saves us from our bees. His known prophets are Stephen King, who controls the mind, and M. Night Shyamalan, whose endings are always unforeseen. Follow their instructions, and you may achieve Mitt Romney, a state of eternal salvation and peace. He is a sworn enemy of Xenu and his minion Obama, and fights against the aliens with the help of the FSM, commander of pirates.”


This piece of cyberlore/jokelore is essentially the creed of those who worship actor Nicolas Cage as the “one true god.” This form of praise for Cage is entirely sarcastic, and it has been extremely popular on the internet because of Cage’s notoriously bad acting. It’s not clear why Nic Cage was chosen to be the subject of this faux-worship, but it seems to just have caught on and stuck for years, and it is pretty hilarious for some reason. I’ve been aware of the one true god for a while via my frequenting of the website Reddit, whose users have a particular penchant for Cage.