Author Archives: Aisling Deng

Persimmons scare the tiger who wants to eat crying babies

Context I was having lunch with the subject, and he told me about this bed time story. He lived in Korea until he was 14 years old, one year from finishing middle school. He then moved to the United States to finish his middle school and high school. Piece Informant: It’s really for a kid… Continue Reading »

Guang Hua has 30 floors; a jump solves a thousand troubles.

Context The informant is a freshman at Fudan University. We were talking about our lives as college students when she brought up this item. Piece 光华三十楼,一跃解千愁 Roman form: Guang Hua san shi lou, yi yue jie qian chou. Transliteration: Guang Hua thirty floors, a jump solves a thousand troubles. Full translation: All trouble will be… Continue Reading »

Step on a crack, and you will break your mother’s back.

Context The informant is a Chinese American. We were discussing interesting superstitions in Chinese or American cultures when she brought out this item. Content You’re not supposed to step on cracks in the floor. If you step on it, you’re going to break your mother’s back. And I think kids kinda play for fun with… Continue Reading »