Deep Down in the Jungle redux

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Mon May 22 15:12:11 UTC 2006

Life is strange. I learned "looby-loo" as a child in Saint Louis in the
'40's. It was about 25 years later in Los Angeles that I heard the
"loop-de-loop" version. I know the line, "Step back, Sally, Sally, Sally" as
"Jump back, Sally, jump back." Unfortunately, I've forgotten all other
information. But these words and their rhythm have stuck with me,
which is to say that "Jump back,
Sally, jump back" will now
be running through my mind for the rest of the day. Oh, well. ;-)

In Saint Louis, there was once a popular dance step called the "camel walk."
This was also in the '40's. I have two left feet, but I can still do this
step. That is, it was an adult dance step so simple that even
an unco-ordinated child - I was in perhaps the fifth grade, at the time -
could learn it. So, it's quite possible that the step was derived from some
children's game or, OTOH, became incorporated into a children's game. Or
maybe not. The camel walk that I know is literally a way of walking and
doesn't involve the upper body at all.

"Neither you nor I nor anyone knows how oats, pease[sic], beans, and barley
grows[sic]." This is all that I can remember of a song sung by Frank Luther,
who recorded songs for kiddies, in the '40's.
A local paper once referred to him as "the children's Frank Sinatra" or some


On 5/21/06, carole crompton <crompton at> wrote:
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       carole crompton <crompton at SOVER.NET>
> Subject:      Re: Deep Down in the Jungle redux
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> On Sunday, May 21, 2006, at 12:26  AM, Wilson Gray wrote:
> > On p.6, Abrahams mentions the ring games, Little Sally Waters, Sally
> > Go 'Round the Sun. and Here We Go Zootie-O. I know these as Little
> Sally Walker, Sally Go 'Round the Roses, and >Here We Go Looby-Loo or
> ... Loop-de-Loop.<
> Or perhaps he meant the line dance called Zootie-o
> or.....(synchronicity) "Zodiac."
> "Here we go zodiac, zodiac, zodiac,
> Here we go zodiac all night long.
> Step back Sally, Sally, Sally
> Step back Sally all night long.
> Lookin down the alley what do I see?
> A Great big man from Tennessee
> Beat you five dollars that you can't do this:
> (A) To the front to the back to the side side side
> to the side side side, to the side side side
> Repeat to "This:"
> (B) You lean wa-a-a-ay back, you got a hump on yur back
> you  do the camel walk, you do the camel walk......."
> By the way, any idea what "the camel walk" is? (I always just bend over
> and walk like a camel, but I assume this is an old time dance move?)
> Anyway, that's the game I'd think of from that list. I played the first
> 2 as a child in Rialto, California (San Bernardino Co) in the '50's.
> Most of the kids there were children of the Dust Bowl refugees. We
> played lots of the old games (Oats and peas and barley grow, down on
> the green grass, On the mountain stands a lady, etc.) in my
> neighborhood and the tradition was still intact. We learned them from
> older kids, NOT at school. We learned Looby Loo at school. (Along with
> tisket a tasket).
> It sure was fun to be a kid then. Kids I work with(6-9)  want to be
> gangstas. Growing up WAY too fast.
> ------------------------------------------------------------
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