Half a Pound of Tuppeny Rice

The Creepy Nursery Rhyme That Gets Stuck In My Head

There are tons of possibilities for ear worms. Everything from the latest pop tune to out of date Christmas Carols. So why does my brain think it needs to sing Half a pound of tuppeny rice like some little kid on a trike in a scary movie? – you know, irritatingly slow and with a little creepy laugh at the end like I should expect something to happen but aren’t going to give me any clue as to what.

‘Half a pound of tuppenny rice,
Half a pound of treacle.
That’s the way the money goes,
Pop! goes the weasel.’

That’s the version we used to sing and then hum the second verse because we could never remember the words. Who even taught us it?

‘Up and down the City road,
In and out the Eagle,
That’s the way the money goes,
Pop! goes the weasel.’

It apparently dates back to the 1700’s but no one can say for certain. And the meanings are derived from old cockney rhyming slang and a pub – naturally. Or perhaps we should believe it’s from the textile industry way back in the 1680’s.

Whatever it’s origin I feel the need to include it somehow in my work – a creepy video perhaps? A movie? Part of a book? I definitely think I’d be the nut humming it on a ghost hunt in some creepy location.

Kate xxx

P.S. What nursery rhyme plagues you and is it creepy too?

What say you?

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