USC Digital Folklore Archives / Posts Tagged ‘candy man’
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Candy Family

The informant’s family had been a traditional Mexican family then they moved to America and expanded their culture here. His parents were born and raised in Mexico and learned many cultural forms of folklore with the informant who was born in America. He shared some of the folklore that he was told that stuck with him as he grew older and more wise and mature. 

The Candy Family

Informant…

“My family, we have been making candy for 200 years. Good Mexican candy. No one knows where it started but my great great great grandpa is who we believe started it and passed it down though each generation. Making Mexican Candy is how my grandparents survived through the Mexican Revolution. My grandfather use to say, “people may be poor but they are always going to have a couple of cents for candy for their kids.” That was how my family survived being poor then it turned into this thing that our family does. My uncle who lives in Mexico, is know as the King of Candies in that area and he was able to put his kids through college. My dad brought it here to America and that is what he did for the longest time, and once he retired he decided to take up the candy trade. Over here in this are my dad is known as the Ducero or the Candy Man”.

Analysis…

Family traditions are interesting and it is interesting to hear about the different family traditions that families possess. I collected from this informant and he was more excited to tell me about the traditions that his family has started and continue to do apposed to the scary stories or the legends and myths he shared with me. Family history, traditions, culture, and backgrounds are important to us because they give us a sense of identity and I thought it was neat hearing about how the informants family survived.

Mexican Candy is extremely popular, it has the sweet taste of regular candy but with an extra tangy bitter taste to it. The taste of Mexican Candy is so much different than any type of food combinations we may be use to, giving a nice flavor burst in our mouths. We enjoy different things and Mexican Candy is definitely different and I think that is what makes it so popular.

 

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Legends
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Contemporary Legend

Candy Man

So, in elementary when  a large group of girls would go to the bathroom, they would hit the mirror three times or more, I’m not sure, and say candy man and then the mirror would shift, or the toilet would get off and we would all get scared.

This game or invocation was the thing to do to get scared when she was younger. At the time she remembers that a movie by the same name had come out recently and their game emerged soon after seeing and learning about it. Cathy said that she still had not seen the movie, even though she did participate in this game when she was younger. She commented that it was mostly a way to get a rise and a thrill when they were younger and also a way to get away with something that they maybe should not have been doing.

Cathy’s initial eagerness to share this urban legend is interesting to note because although she did say that used to participate alongside her friends, she did emphasize that she thought it was all very silly. She emphasized that the Candy man story/ game was more about the exhilaration and anxiety of the moment than anything else. For example, when she said that the mirror would shift or the toilet might go off mysteriously, she did also later add that it was most likely because all of the girls had gotten quiet waiting for something to happen in the bathroom. In this way, the smallest sound or sudden movement could have easily shocked them and also perhaps made them believe that their invocation of this so called Candy Man had worked. Regrettably, she did not remember details about the Candy Man or his story, most likely because she did not see the movie that may have sparked their bathroom games. It is however significant to note that the movie by the same name had such an impact and influence on popular culture. Whether the movie inspired their beliefs and game, or it simply portrayed an already prevalent urban legend, it nonetheless held its own power over a captive audience such as Cathy and her childhood friends.

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