Hey, and welcome to the short stuff, I'm Josh, there's Chuck, there's Jerry, the ghost of Dave Costanza's hanging around here somewhere. And that means that this is short stuff and in fact, it's not a ghost. I'm mistaken. Chucky is a tooth fairy.
That's right. Dave is very much alive. Don't worry, everyone. Shortstop producer. Dave is not a ghost.
No. You could astrally project yourself and still be what I would consider basically a ghost. I don't think I think being dead is overstated as a reason for being a ghost. It's being.
It's overrated. Yeah. Yeah. So we're talking about the tooth fairy. And the reason I thought of this is because my daughter has not lost a tooth yet. She's coming up on six years old with his baby teeth. And I'm just waiting like it could have happened by now and it can happen at any time. And I was, you know, I was like, all right, I got to get up on the latest research on the story that I'm going to need to tell the lie that I'm going to pound into her brain and like how much money these kids get these days?
A lot. It's like, how much did you get?
Like a quarter to quarter to which apparently is like 1930s level. You know, I also got a quarter for giving up my pacifier, and only later did I find out, like my sisters had gotten things like an Easy Bake Oven or something like that. And I got off for a quarter. I'm still to this day a little upset about that. Now, how old were you when you gave it up?
Like, twelve, thirteen?
It all depends on the kid. My daughter gave up her pacifier really early, so she didn't even know what money was, you know, there you go. That's the way to do it. She just didn't like it. Yeah, that was actually thirteen was approaching the age where I also would have traded my pacifier for a pack of smokes. Right.
You're like, give me one more. You had to suck on something, right? I never connected the two. So the tooth fairy is pretty interesting in that since people had children all over the world through antiquity, there seems to be a weird little stories here and there about traditions and things that you would do with the tooth. It seems like it was never just like, well, that happened. Let me just toss it out of here. You know, it could have been some little ceremony.
You could have put it in a fire. But this was not like the tooth fairy as we know it.
No, no, no, no. But it is the more we talk about in a minute. But there's rituals all over the world of what to do. Like, it's not like it just goes unnoticed. The Tooth Fairy is one of the most all-American supernatural beings there. There is.
And as a matter lies, not even not even old. It's not even an old one.
Apparently, the tooth fairy that there's is going to eventually come to visit your daughter that is running around this very night handing out dollars for teeth invading is basically sure, although you could make a really strong case in court that putting the tooth under the pillow could be construed as an invitation into your home. Yeah, but that tooth fairy, that particular being, that entity is from basically the mid century, mid 20th century America and is very new and very young for being a supernatural entity.
Yeah, I think there are a couple of references. There was one from 1988 from the Chicago Daily Tribune in an editorial that valued the contribution from the Tooth Fairy at a nickel. I think in 2007 there was a short play with the tooth fairy in it from Esther Watkins. Arnold Oh, it was OK.
I saw there was also a kid's book from the 20s that was an English version of eighteenth century French tooth fairy kind of thing. But the tooth fairy was a mouse.
OK, so in the twin mice will come into play though. The Tooth Fairy like really kind of hit the zeitgeist in the twenties I guess. Yeah, it sounds like it.
OK, and then apparently the whole thing broke wide open with a Collier's magazine article in May of nineteen forty nine. Yes, in 1949, I mean, that's not that long ago that parents have been lying to their kids about this home invader who would who would leave money to avoid prosecution. That's right. I mean, it is kind of weird. Like, is there any explanation that you've run across so far as to why the tooth fairy wants teeth?
That's something that no one ever taught me.
No. And, you know, I looked a lot of different places and there's just not a lot out there. It's pretty interesting. There is no there's no weird origin story. I mean, we could make one up if you want to kick that thing off. Let's do that.
Let's just take the Cabbage Patch Kids origin story and just replace it with Tooth Fairy.
Yeah, or maybe the tooth fairy builds this fantasy land out of children's teeth. OK, terrific. It does. It sounds like the teeth monster from mom. What was that. There was a weird Canadian TV show. Well, it's basically basic.
No, no, that was weird in a different way. I will I will come up with the name of it. But it was basically a bunch of urban legends that they blew out into an actual narrative over the course of a season. It was pretty interesting, but there was a monster made of children's teeth and it was creepy. I'll send it to you. You can show it to your daughter.
All right. Well, let's take a little break and we'll come back and talk about kind of some of these strange rituals and traditions all over the world right after this.
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Whether or not you put it in a box for a mouse or put it in a little mouse hole like Tom and Jerry style. And I think the the whole thing there was it was a wish that the tooth would grow back to be as strong as a rats tooth or a mouse tooth, which makes sense. Yeah. And that's called the transference. Wish that an anthropologist might call a sympathetic magic, which I think is a pretty good band name, though, wishing that your child's tooth grows back like a rat's tooth.
That would be one of those. Careful what you wish for kind of situations, if you ask me.
That's true. Mean the people do well, actually. So there is actually supposedly nine things, including everything from throwing the tooth into the sun, which that's got to be hard to do. Not possible.
Much more easy is to throw it into a fire. Sure. Like that between the legs. Huey Lewis style, little weird On2 or over the roof of your house.
Yes, a lot of Asian countries do this. OK, so one of the things I saw was that a lot of these rituals, pre tooth fairy rituals were often wrapped up or tied into burial rituals of that same culture. So does that mean that there are cultures out there that throw their their their deceased under the roof of the house? Do you think. Maybe it's like a sky burial kind of thing. I don't know that I don't know I was being funny at first and then pulled it out and into something really thought provoking at the end.
What else do people do? I think a lot of people bury them right in that kind of makes or hide them. And that kind of maybe that's where we got under the pillow. I don't know.
And then this probably has nothing to do with the dead or the deceased. But there's one where the mother or the kid or you make a poor animal swallow the tooth.
And talk about a rite of passage, because that's why all of these all of these cultures have a a ritual surrounding the loss of the first tooth, because that's basically the first rite of passage any kid cognizant goes through. And so, you know, cultures tend to make a big deal about it. But imagine your culture having you swallow your baby's tooth and then you pass it as the mom.
Like, that's got to provoke some sort of, you know, a mixed bag of emotions.
Yeah, I for some reason, it just that was the first thing that came to mind when I saw that mom sometimes swallow baby teeth, tooth poop, basically, you know.
Well, is it true your own from that from that little little vignette. So it seems like when it really became the tooth fairy that we think of in America, it came about at the same time that Disney was putting out movies like Pinocchio and Cinderella, two movies that each featured these benevolent fairies who granted wishes. And I think it may have just been the public consciousness. And we borrowed, like we said, from other cultures that maybe buried their teeth or hid their teeth into the under the pillow thing and in exchange for money.
Yeah. And the money thing still seems confounding. Like a fairy coming for your tooth. That's pretty cute. And that makes sense that Disney would influence that based on the time. But the money thing supposedly dates back to 12th century Norse custom, which was that you would pay a tooth fee to the kid who got there, who lost their their first baby tooth. And, you know, rather than them putting it under the pillow or there being any supernatural being who came to collect it, you just hand the kid some money or whatever, tell them to go away now.
So I think those combined to form this modern incarnation of the tooth fairy.
Yeah. And what's the going rate these days?
From what I saw, it's about three dollars and seventy cents, which means there's some weird parents out there who are right at the median who leave three dollars and seventy cents under their kid's pillow in exchange for the tooth. But that also means that there's plenty of parents out there who leave in like ten bucks, you know, who are skewing average upwards. And don't you know me because I know median is not the same thing.
Is that I guess I guess Emily and I need to do some soul searching to find out what the value of this tooth is, because it's you know, it can also be an opportunity to teach. You know, kids have no idea what things cost. They think everything is free. So it can be an opportunity to teach them about disappointment. Yeah, that disappointment know about the value of money. And you know what what this might buy or maybe you can save it or save part of it, I don't know.
But the introduction to money and income kind of starts with the tooth fairy. It's pre allowance.
Yeah, well, I read that there was a from a folklorist that said, like, the reason why this tooth fairy is an American invention and gives you money in exchange for something is you're teaching your kids capitalism. It would just make total sense. Yeah.
I mean, she's got piggy banks, so we'll we'll put change in there occasionally. But that's about it. As far as money goes. She thinks, you know, everything costs nothing.
Well, you can teach her the value of a human tooth now, and she'll go the rest of her life thinking she can get about three dollars and seventy cents per tooth if she is, you know, really tries at it.
I think if I tried to do 370 on the nose, Emily would just be like, are you kidding me? Put a fiver in there. Be hilarious. Hey, report back when when it happens. Oh yeah.
Yeah. And also want to quickly shout out Janet Varney, one of our good friends here in the Industry podcast and one of the the co-founders of Sketch Fest and the JV Club. Yeah. JBI Club. Great, great show. I I think had no teeth when I was first a guest of Janet SGV Club Live Sketch Fest. When I got home, she sent me in Janna's Janet is one to just send people funny gifts like this. She sent me a a little tooth fairy pillow.
That is very sweet.
Yeah. Because you can you can get an actual pillow. Right. That's special for that little pocket fairy. OK, that's great. Yeah. So well that's the tooth fairy. Unless you got anything else, you. I got nothing else except three fake teeth.
The you can get some money for that. Almost a little over ten dollars Chuck. Aaron Cooper would pay fifteen. Yeah. Yeah. And since Chuck said Aaron Cooper then of course that means short stuff is out.
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