Tag Archives: ready

One For the Money…

The informant is recounting a rhyme/chant her and her cousins would recite when they were younger:
One for the money, two for the show, three to get ready, and four to go!
Uh, I learned it from my cousins, It’s what we’d say right before jumping into this lake we went to every summer. Basically, it made it harder for people to chicken out when we had this whole chant thing going. What it means, I don’t really know, but that’s the context i’ve used it in.
The informant chanted this before doing something frightening and it’s purpose was to bring her group of cousins closer together.
This shows the power of folklore that, by sharing this chant, they are capable of assuaging their fears since they are all experiencing it together.


Part of this phrase was used as the title of the popular Janet Evanovitch novel One For the Money. This use plays on the audience’s familiarity with the phrase. It is used there as a play on words though since it is actually about doing one bounty hunter job literally for the money.