Posted by Bob on December 19, 2004
In Reply to: Spectacles, testicles, wallet and watch posted by Gary on December 19, 2004
: I've heard that phrase used over the years as a comic addition to the Catholic custom of crossing oneself. It must have started in the days that watches were on watch chains across the chest.
: How widespread is that? It doesn't return many hits on Google.
The shaggy dog story that sets it up involves Catholic after Catholic parachuting out of the doomed plane, making the sign of the cross. Finally a rabbi signs in, and is questioned. He's making sure he's got the essentials, he replies, "Spectacles, testicles, watch and wallet." Joke, circa 1965 when I heard it.
It became a running joke in our house, representing that mental check list one does before going out the door: touching pockets for keys, etc.