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.

Recent entries:
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Entry forthcoming—B.P. (3/25)
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Entry from November 17, 2014
“Bills travel through the mail at twice the speed of checks”

"Bills travel through the mail at twice the speed of checks” is a joke that became popular on the Internet in the 1990s. The joke has been cited in print since at least 1997.

The joke is of unknown authorship. The joke is sometimes credited to comedian Steven Wright, but Wright’s work is documented (audio and video) and there is no evidence that he originated or even popularized it.


Google Groups: alt.humor
Truisms
Dixon Keller
10/10/97
(...)
Bills travel through the mail at twice the speed of checks.

Google News Archive
30 January 1998, The Daily Record (Ellensburg, WA), “Rainbow watching” by L. M. Boyd, pg. 7, col. 1:
Add Uncredited ‘Net Lines: ‘Bills travel through the mail at twice the speed of checks.”

Google News Archive
16 May 2000, The Daily Courier (Prescott, AZ), Ann Landers syndicated advice column, pg. 4B, col. 4:
Why do bills travel through the mail at twice the speed of checks?

Google News Archive
17 April 2001, Reading (PA) Eagle, “Ask Dr. Gott: Proverbs prompt smile” by Dr. Peter H. Gott, pg. C2, col. 1:
Bills travel through the mail at twice the speed of checks.

Google Books
The Friars Club Encyclopedia of Jokes: Revised and Updated!
Over 2,000 One-liners, Straight Lines, Stories, Gags, Roasts, Ribs & Put-downs

Compiled by Barry Dougherty and H. Aaron Cohl
New York, NY: Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers, Inc.
2009
Pg. 340:
Bills travel through the mail at twice the speed of checks. —StEVEN WRIGHT

Google Books
Life’s Daily Dose of Wit & Wisdom:
Wit & Wisdom to Enlighten Your Day

By J. N. Hospitable
Bloomington, IN: AuthorHouse
2011
Pg. 358:
Did you notice that bills travel through the mail at twice the speed of checks. (Unknown)

Twitter
CancunSkye Software
‏@CancunSkye
Stephen Wright: Bills travel through the mail at twice the speed of checks.
12:53 AM - 18 Nov 2014

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityBanking/Finance/Insurance • Monday, November 17, 2014 • Permalink