cootie catcher

Alice Faber faber at POP.HASKINS.YALE.EDU
Sun Aug 6 01:52:47 UTC 2000

At 8:27 PM -0500 8/5/2000, Tom Kysilko wrote, ostensibly about cootie catcher:
>I recently encountered a device made of folded paper, that grade school
>kids used for telling fortunes (when I was one.)  The subject chooses an
>option written on a fold of the paper, the fortune-teller manipulates the
>device with four fingers revealing another set of options.  This is
>repeated twice more, the last choice revealing the fortune written on the
>opposite side of the fold.
>Although I remember the device, I remember no name for it.  My wife
>remembers it as a "cootie catcher".

Me too, now that you mention it...
>Are these things known by any other names?  And what is their connection
>with cooties?

Well, when I was in elementary school, I had no idea that cooties
weren't imaginary. Of course, we'd accuse other kids of *having*
them, even so. I remember vaguely using the cootie catchers to nip at
other kids' arms.
Alice Faber                                       tel. (203) 865-6163
Haskins Laboratories                              fax  (203) 865-8963
270 Crown St           new improved email: faber at
New Haven, CT 06511    old email, if you must: faber at

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