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 10, 2006
“There’s nothing in the middle of the road except yellow stripes and dead armadillos”

Former Texas Commissioner of Agriculture Jim Hightower’s famous quotation is that there’s nothing middle-of-the-road “except yellow stripes and dead armadillos.” The line was said to him by a Texas farmer and was cited in print in 1984.

“Why did the Canadian cross the road? To get to the middle” is another jocular saying about the middle of the road.


Wikipedia: Jim Hightower
James Allen “Jim” Hightower (born January 11, 1943) is a populist activist and a former Texas Agriculture Commissioner.

6 December 1983, Dallas (TX) Morning News, “Once again, a thud seals fate of ‘dillo” by John Anders, pg. 1C, col. 1:
AND AN awful sound, if you’ve ever hit an armadillo on the highway.

22 July 1984, New York (NY) Times, pg. SM8:
Jim Hightower, state agriculture commissioner, on why he’s not a middle-of-the-road politician: “Ain’t nothing in the middle of the road but yellow stripes and dead armadillos.”

9 September 1985, Chicago (IL) Tribune, pg. E2:
Hightower had been hearing bolder advice from his conservative farmer friends, one of whom told him, “There’s nothing in the middle of the road except yellow stripes and dead armadillos. Get on out there and be with your friends.”

OCLC WorldCat record
There’s nothing in the middle of the road but yellow stripes and dead armadillos
Author: Jim Hightower
Publisher: New York : HarperCollins Publishers, ©1997.
Edition/Format: Print book : English : 1st ed
Database: WorldCat
Summary:
Presents a humorous look at American politics including such topics as the two-party system, Wall Street, Bill Clinton and more.

Posted by Barry Popik
Texas (Lone Star State Dictionary) • Thursday, August 10, 2006 • Permalink