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Rowing with crocodiles

Row, row, row your boat...

Life is but a dream
50(59.5%)
If you see a crocodile/don't forget to scream
14(16.7%)
Gently with the tide/to the other side
1(1.2%)
Throw your teacher overboard/and watch your teacher scream
10(11.9%)
Something else, to be mentioned in comments
9(10.7%)


I grew up with the bare minimum of "life is but a dream", with the occasional schoolyard bonus of throwing one's teacher overboard.

Here, the crocodile second verse is mandatory, but somewhat boggling in the way it's worded. What would happen if one absent-mindedly forgot to scream? It's like a bored tourist with a rote travel itinerary: Rowed boat? Check. Saw crocodile? Check. Screamed? Oh, what a waste, I totally forgot to do that.

The crocodile verse, on less frequent occasions, can also lead to lots of other animal variants. ("gently down the river/if you see a polar bear/don't forget to shiver")

The "tide" version I've heard a couple of times, but always at the same place, in a recording.

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Comments

eulistes
Apr. 18th, 2013 11:06 pm (UTC)
My experience with this is essentially the same as yours, but I thought it worth mentioning that our "teacher" variant was "throw your teacher overboard and listen to her scream."

I love the crocodile second verse!
owlfish
Apr. 18th, 2013 11:11 pm (UTC)
Your version of the teacher one makes more sense. watch/scream does have a certain disconnect to it.

I'm not yet quite comfortable with the crocodile verse, thanks to the oddness of "don't forget", but given how frequently I'm encountering it (twice today!) I suspect I shall become accustomed to it eventually despite myself.
hawkida
Apr. 19th, 2013 07:45 am (UTC)
As above with slight variation: Throw your teacher overboard and then you'll hear her scream.
owlfish
Apr. 18th, 2013 11:49 pm (UTC)
I think my favorite version with animals is "to the other shore/if you see a lion/don't forget to roar".