A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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“Give me all your money or you’re geography!” (bank robbery joke) (6/24)
“A tragedy is a ship full of bankers sinking. A catastrophe is when they can all swim” (6/24)
“You said you had between ten and fifteen million dollars in the bank” (joke) (6/24)
“Cell phones keep getting thinner and smarter…people the opposite” (6/24)
“Before you diagnose yourself with depression, first make sure you’re not surrounded by assholes” (6/24)
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Entry from July 10, 2015
“An optimist laughs to forget and an pessimist forgets to laugh”

"An optimist laughs to forget and a pessimist forgets to laugh” was cited in print in an American newspaper from July 1922. No author was credited. “The optimist laughs to forget, while the pessimist forgets to laugh.—Rosalind Fuller” was cited in July 1922. “Jim Mundell says the optimist laughs to forget. The pessimist forgets to laugh” was cited in November 1922. “Walter Whitcomb says ‘the optimist laughs to forget; the pessimist forgets to laugh’” was also cited in November 1922.

Authorship remains unknown. American author and radio host Tom Bodett (born in 1955) has also been credited, but the saying existed before he was born.


12 July 1922, Brandon (Manitoba) Daily Sun, “Sun Gleams,” pg. 4, col. 2:
An optimist laughs to forget and a pessimist forgets to laugh.

Chronicling America
17 July 1922, The Evening World (New York, NY), pg. 22, col. 7:
A THOUGHT FOR TO-DAY
The optimist laughs to forget, while the pessimist forgets to laugh.—Rosalind Fuller.

Google Books
16 September 1922, , pg. 496, col. 1:
The optimist laughs to forget, but the pessimist forgets to laugh.

18 November 1922, The Salt Lake Telegram (Salt Lake City, UT), “Here and There,” pg. 6, col. 6:
The optimist laughs to forget. The pessimist forgets to laugh.

22 November 1922, Laurel (MS) Daily Leader, “Foibles” by the Office Cat, pg. 4, col. 3:
Jim Mundell says the optimist laughs to forget. The pessimist forgets to laugh.

22 November 1922, Bellingham (WA) Herald, “The Laugh Line,” pg. 6, col. 6:
Walter Whitcomb says “the optimist laughs to forget; the pessimist forgets to laugh.”

Google Books
20,000 Quips & Quotes
By Evan Esar
New York, NY: Barnes & Noble Books
1995, ©1968
Pg. 461:
The optimist laughs to forget; the pessimist forgets to laugh.

Google Books
The Secret Psychology of How We Fall in Love
By Paul Dobransky
New York, NY: Plume
2007
Pg. 207:
The difference between an optimist and a pessimist? An optimist laughs to forget, hut a pessimist forgets to laugh. —Tom Bodett ...

Twitter
ProverbsOfAmerican
‏@american798
The difference between an optimist and a pessimist? An optimist laughs to forget but a pessimist forgets to laugh.  ~Tom Bodett
6:14 PM - 5 Jul 2015

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityWork/Businesses • Friday, July 10, 2015 • Permalink