Elizabeth in Suffolk, Virginia, spent her early childhood in Hawaii, then moved to Indiana and found that kids had a different playground game that involved pretending to use a cootie shot to inoculate someone against imagined infection from cooties. In Indiana, they drew two circles on the back of someone’s hand then poked that hand with a finger, chanting “Circle circle dot dot, now you have your cootie shot.” In Hawaii, Elizabeth learned it as “Circle circle dot dot, now you have your ’uku shot.” The Hawaiian word ’uku means flea, and the word ukulele derives from Hawaiian words that mean jumping flea, a reference to the rapid motion of a musician’s fingers on the instrument’s strings. This is part of a complete episode.
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