Tag Archives: occupational folklore


Ambulance Chasers

Main Piece Informant: “We [corporate lawyers] call personal injury attorneys “ambulance chasers.” We mean this as a joke, obviously, but sometimes we … don’t. There’s this stereotype that personal injury attorneys chase around ambulances in order to add the injured persons to their clientele. It’s… it’s a real thing that people do. I know it’s… Continue Reading »

Splitting the Baby

Main Piece Informant: “So there’s an old Jewish thing where two women go up to King Solomon and both of them claim that a child is theirs. So King Solomon says “let’s split this baby in half and give half to each claiming mother.” The first woman agrees, but the second woman would rather give… Continue Reading »

Lawyer joke

My friend and classmate Pauline told me the following joke, which she learned from her dad, who is a lawyer: “It was so cold outside today that earlier, I saw a lawyer with his hands in his own pockets.” This joke relies upon the stereotype that lawyers are greedy and corrupt, and the metonymic use… Continue Reading »

Toots The Gaseous Ghost

Informant (L.P.) is an 18 year old student. I had heard her enthusiasm for telling ghost stories the week before, and this one stood out. L.P. works at a local novelty shop. This interview is conducted at my house one Saturday evening. I ask about the ghost in her workplace, which she had mentioned during… Continue Reading »

The OJ Simpson Metaphor

The informant (A.H.) comes from a Black Christian family. A.H. does not identify with Christianity. Now well retired from the game at 54 years old, A.H. played football in the NFL from 1983 to 1987; first drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles, then transferred to the Seattle Seahawks, and finally the San Francisco 49ers. Since then… Continue Reading »