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:
“Coffee. Chaos. Wine. Bed. Repeat.” (7/20)
“I think my patience is at the bottom of this coffee cup. Hang on while I find it” (7/20)
Entry forthcoming—B.P. (7/20)
“Recipe for iced coffee: 1) Have kids 2) Make coffee 3) Forget you made coffee 4) Drink it cold” (7/20)
Recipe for iced coffee: 1) Become a teacher 2) Pour coffee 3) Go to school…” (7/20)
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Entry from June 22, 2008
Clowncil (Clown Council)

The New York City Council hasn’t had a lot of respect. The mayor of New York City sets the budget and has more power under the city charter. The city council has often been compared to a group of children, with many wacky council bills introduced that have no hope of passing (but appeal to a particular constituency or special interest).

Beginning about 2005, the New York Post began calling it the “clown council.” In June 2008, “bikerrich1” submitted several comments to the New York Daily News Daily Politics blog using the term “clowncil.” The word “clowncil” appeared in print in the 1916 Los Angeles (CA) Times and has had greater blog currency in west coast cities such as Los Angeles and Seattle than in New York City.

Similar terms include “clowndidate" (clown + candidate), “clowngress" (clown + Congress) and “clownigarch" (clown + oligarch).


24 September 1916, Los Angeles (CA) Times, “Chile Con Carnage: Being the particular pepper in some personal opinions,” pg. II4:
If the County Stuporvisors “haven’t any money for Reforestation,” the City Clowncil has. Oodles of it—of Ours. If they cannot do anything else with the dignity, the sense and the patriotism of as many High School boys elected by their follows to represent the class, our Clowncilmen have one proud eminence.

7 August 2005, New York (NY) Post:
A Non-Clown Council?
by Adam Brodsky

PO Boss
Sunday, December 04, 2005
NY Post Edit Heads
Amusingly Unamused!

In today’s New York Post, the editorial board simply rips the Council a new one:

You could say term limits are why New York City has today’s “clown council” in the first place.

New York (NY) Post
MIKE & THE CLOWN CLUB
November 18, 2006—Mayor Bloomberg has a choice.

New York (NY) Post
THE CLOWN COUNCIL’S PLASTIC PIFFLE
October 31, 2007—The City Council can’t say how many plastic bags make their way into local landfills. Nor does it know where the bags come from in the first place.

Mayor Sam’s Sister City - Home of Los Angeles Politics
Friday, April 04, 2008
Clowncil Ain’t Got Nothin’ on East Coast Brethren
This is one way to get around Tony Villar…

(Co-opted from the NY Times by way of the Chronicle of Philanthropy, believe it or not)
New York City Council Budgeted Millions of Dollars for Fake Community Groups

New York (NY) Post
CLOWN COUNCIL, CONT’D
May 29, 2008—City Council members embarrassed by their City Haul scandal have a plan to change the subject:

New York (NY) Daily News - Daily Politics blog
re: city clowncil, restraint won’t help them now as most will b e indicted over the next 18 to 24 months. NO MEMBER ITEMS.
Posted by bikerrich1 on June 2, 2008 7:51 AM

New York (NY) Daily News - Daily Politics blog
bloomy for gov sounds good to me. don’t mess with term limits; what other hope is there to get rid of the birds in teh city clowncil. b ut i think before they leave office the us atty should pull their passports.
Posted by bikerrich1 on June 6, 2008 8:41 AM

New York (NY) Daily News - Daily Politics blog
why does anybody care about the opinion of the clowncil?? c’mon u.s. atty get crackin’; why are you going so slow on the indictments? was there ever a more discredited organization?
Posted by bikerrich1 on June 20, 2008 7:15 PM

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityGovernment/Law/Politics/Military • Sunday, June 22, 2008 • Permalink