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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Entry from August 24, 2016
“Take lettuce from top of stack, or heads will roll” (grocery sign)

A jocular grocery sign was in the comic strip Frank and Ernest:

“Produce Dept. Notice!  Take lettuce from top of stack, or heads will roll!”

The Frank and Ernest comic strip joke was cited in a newsgroup in December 1999, but it’s uncertain when the strip was first printed. The comic strip was republished in July 5, 2007.


Wikipedia: Frank and Ernest (comic strip)
Frank and Ernest is an American comic strip created and illustrated by Bob Thaves and later Tom Thaves. It debuted on November 6, 1972, and has since been published daily in over 1,200 newspapers. The humor of the comic is based almost exclusively on wordplay and puns.

Google Groups: alt.callahans
Recycled Humor: World According to Frank and Ernest
Stan Kegel
12/12/99
WORLD ACCORDING TO FRANK & ERNEST
Notice!  Take lettuce from top of stack, or heads will roll!

Google Groups: alt.humor.puns
Puns of the Weak 11/08/02
Stan Kegel
11/8/02
(...)
Notice!  Take lettuce from top of stack, or heads will roll! (Frank & Ernest: Bob Thaves)

Cartoonist Group
Cartoonist(s): Bob Thaves Tom Thaves
Comic/Cartoon: Frank and Ernest
Viewable Date: 2007-07-05 Pub. Date: 2007-07-05
Image Number: 17799
Caption: Produce Dept. Notice! Take lettuce from top of stack, or heads will roll.

Twitter
FunnyOneLiners
‏@Funnyoneliners
Sign in the Produce Section: 
Take lettuce from the top of the stack or heads will roll.
7:27 AM - 5 Dec 2009

Google Books
Laughter Really Is The Best Medicine:
Reader’s Digest’s Funniest Jokes, Quotes, and Cartoons

By Editors of Reader’s Digest
White Plains, NY: The Reader’s Digest Association, Inc.
2011
Pg. ?:
t seems the manager of the vegetable department at my grocery store doesn’t tolerate picky customers. He posted this sign: “Notice! Take lettuce from top of stack, or heads will roll!” — RICK PARKER

Twitter
Fellatio Alger
‏@chocl8girl
Sign in the grocery store: Take lettuce from top of stack, or heads will roll!
11:42 AM - 23 May 2016

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityFood/Drink • Wednesday, August 24, 2016 • Permalink