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View Full Version : "When in danger, when in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout." Origin? Source?


Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor
09-08-2006, 08:49 AM
"When in danger, when in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout."

What is the source for this?
When did it appear?
Is it part of a longer essay or poem?
What did it refer to when it first appeared?

astro
09-08-2006, 09:10 AM
www.commentarymagazine.com/Summaries/V25I4P80-1.htm+%22When+in+danger,+when+in+doubt%22+phrase+origin&hl=en&gl=us&ct=clnk&cd=10]Only (http://72.14.209.104/search?q=cache:4Li8eQ9EDvgJ:[url) reference I could find[/URL]

Osgood's books, credits "When in danger/When in doubt,/Run in circles,/Scream and shout," to an unsung genius in the Pacific theater during World War II...

No idea who "Osgood" is.

Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor
09-08-2006, 09:10 AM
www.commentarymagazine.com/Summaries/V25I4P80-1.htm+%22When+in+danger,+when+in+doubt%22+phrase+origin&hl=en&gl=us&ct=clnk&cd=10]Only (http://72.14.209.104/search?q=cache:4Li8eQ9EDvgJ:[url) reference I could find[/URL]



No idea who "Osgood" is.
Link does not work.

Ethilrist
09-08-2006, 09:12 AM
I saw it in Time Enough for Love (Dora says it, I believe).

astro
09-08-2006, 09:14 AM
Link does not work.

google > "When in danger, when in doubt" phrase origin

click on the Commentary Magazine link

Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor
09-08-2006, 09:30 AM
google > "When in danger, when in doubt" phrase origin

click on the Commentary Magazine link

Well, yeah, ok.

But that just raises more questions than it answers. :confused:

Any other leads?

Should I submit this one to Cecil?

AncientHumanoid
09-08-2006, 09:48 AM
Crow T Robot says it a lot. MST3K. Definitely not the origin, but I'll bet it's where you heard it.

Rocketeer
09-08-2006, 11:38 AM
I first saw it in a Mad magazine Star Trek parody; don't remember what year, but probably between 1965-1970.

Chronos
09-08-2006, 02:56 PM
Obviously not the source, but the first I encountered it was on the cartoon Duck Tales. At one point, that's the advice the Junior Woodchuck Guidebook has for the triplets.

samclem
09-08-2006, 04:10 PM
Two early newspaper print sitings.

1955 article suggesting it was the "cry of the football team of the Old War College." Can't say which war college the writer was talking about or the time frame.

1957 article, written by a WWII naval officer, about the crash of the Andrea Doria in 1957. He uses that jingle and says it's an old Navy saying. He added the lines, "Stop the engines. Come About. Wake the Captain--roll him out!"

Rick
09-08-2006, 05:08 PM
www.commentarymagazine.com/Summaries/V25I4P80-1.htm+%22When+in+danger,+when+in+doubt%22+phrase+origin&hl=en&gl=us&ct=clnk&cd=10]Only (http://72.14.209.104/search?q=cache:4Li8eQ9EDvgJ:[url) reference I could find[/URL]



No idea who "Osgood" is.
I suspect he means Charles Osgood (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Osgood)

samclem
09-08-2006, 05:48 PM
I suspect he means Charles Osgood (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Osgood) NOpe. Robert Endicott Osgood.

And a telling statement from A short biography (http://72.14.207.104/search?q=cache:Get_fLopY2UJ:www.library.jhu.edu/collections/specialcollections/manuscripts/msregisters/ms204.html+Robert+Endicott+Osgood&hl=en&gl=us&ct=clnk&cd=2) Osgood also taught at the Naval War College....

I think it's safe to say that it IS probably a Naval related saying from about the WWII period or perhaps before. Just WHO invented it we'll probably never know.

Satyagrahi
09-08-2006, 07:36 PM
It's also quoted in The Caine Mutiny by Herman Wouk, copyright 1951.

Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor
09-08-2006, 07:50 PM
So, generally, it might be Naval.

Any Naval Officers on the Board?

Moirai
09-08-2006, 08:16 PM
We always said "When in panic, fear or doubt, scream and shout and run about!"

:D

samclem
09-08-2006, 08:26 PM
So, generally, it might be Naval.

Any Naval Officers on the Board?
You're gonna need one who was in the Navy before 1951.

Nightsong
09-08-2006, 09:26 PM
As an added data point, I've always heard it as:

"When in trouble or in doubt,
run in circles, scream and shout."

Never heard the 'when in danger' version before: wonder which is the most common?

____
<< It's always darkest before dawn. So if you're going to steal your neighbor's newspaper, that's the time to do it. >>

samclem
09-08-2006, 10:26 PM
As an added data point, I've always heard it as:

"When in trouble or in doubt,
run in circles, scream and shout."

Never heard the 'when in danger' version before: wonder which is the most common?

Good catch! I can find this cited in a 1954 newspaper article, but there were NO OTHER hits for that phrase. Interesting. Just someone who heard it, and morphed it in another way. This was upstate NY, FWIW.

NinetyWt
09-09-2006, 03:12 AM
FWIW,, Bosda, my Daddy said this was a common expression in the Navy when he ws on active duty. He served between WWII and the Korean War. My sis was born in '56, as he was leaving the Navy, so this would put the phrase as being in use from about '52 to '56.

Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor
09-09-2006, 07:34 AM
We seem to be getting a better fix on this.

Anybody else?

samclem
09-09-2006, 05:49 PM
A 1948 newspaper citing from the same writer as in the 1955 one about the (Naval) War College football team cry. He told the same story in a 1948 column.

Punoqllads
09-09-2006, 07:03 PM
My Google-fu found http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/mt/mt-comments.cgi?entry_id=8475
"When in danger or in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout" actually comes from Reefs and Shoals, the rulebook for cadets at the Naval Academy in Annapolis. This dates back to at least the late 20s.
I have found no corroborating evidence, however.

Nightsong
09-09-2006, 09:24 PM
Good catch! I can find this cited in a 1954 newspaper article, but there were NO OTHER hits for that phrase. Interesting. Just someone who heard it, and morphed it in another way. This was upstate NY, FWIW.How odd that this version of the phrase had a hit in NY, considering that I'm from (mainly) the midwest. *scratches head* I doubt that I would have heard it from my grandpa (who was in the Navy circa... er... Korean War era if I remember correctly), but I would have heard it either being said or in a book.

DrDeth
09-09-2006, 11:01 PM
The phrase is a parody of another phrase, something telling you not to panic. I think it was in an old BSA handbook.

elucidator
09-10-2006, 09:48 AM
"Spider" John Koerner. Stuff yer cites. "Spider" John Koerner. Send him some money.

NoCoolUserName
09-10-2006, 11:03 AM
"Spider" John Koerner (http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=br_ss_hs/102-9754824-6886505?platform=gurupa&url=index%3Dmusic&keywords=%22Spider%22+John+Koerner&Go.x=11&Go.y=16) for easy reference. Info also available on allmusic.

Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor
09-10-2006, 01:37 PM
"Spider" John Koerner. Stuff yer cites. "Spider" John Koerner. Send him some money.
No, no he didn't. :dubious:

dangermom
09-10-2006, 04:25 PM
You can find it, along with other amusing bits of rhyme, in one of the two collections illustrated by Wallace Tripp: Marguerite, go wash your feet or A great big ugly man came up and tied his horse to me. IIRC, there was no attribution. I'm pretty sure it's in Marguerite, and will check it if I go to my mom's place for dinner. Meanwhile, every Doper would enjoy both books, so go check them out of your friendly neighborhood public library...

Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor
09-10-2006, 05:19 PM
You can find it, along with other amusing bits of rhyme, in one of the two collections illustrated by Wallace Tripp: Marguerite, go wash your feet or A great big ugly man came up and tied his horse to me. IIRC, there was no attribution. I'm pretty sure it's in Marguerite, and will check it if I go to my mom's place for dinner. Meanwhile, every Doper would enjoy both books, so go check them out of your friendly neighborhood public library...Do these volumes predate the 1920's?