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 January 05, 2016
“What do a lawyer and a sperm cell have in common?” (lawyer joke)

A popular joke has been told about lawyers since at least 1993:

Q: What’s the difference between a lawyer and a sperm?
A; A sperm has a one-in-a-million chance of becoming a human being.


Another form of the joke was also cited in 1993:

Q: What do sperm and a lawyer have in common?
A: They both have a one in a million chance of becoming a human being.



Google Books
U.S. News & World Report
Volume 115, Issues 1-9
1993
Pg. ?:
What’s the difference between a lawyer and a sperm? The sperm has a l-in-100 million chance of becoming human. The American Bar Association isn’t laughing.

Google Books
Sing Out
1993
Pg. 66:
By the way, what do a politician and a sperm cell have in common? They each have a one-in-a-million chance of becoming a human being.

Google Groups: rec.humor
Multiple choice
Ken Kaufman
1/6/93
What’s the difference between a lawyer and a sperm?
a) A sperm has a one-in-a-million chance of becoming a human being.
b) Atlanta would never dream of having a giant blue lawyer as its olympic mascot.

20 May 1993, Syracuse (NY) Herald-Journal, “le Joke,” pg. D2, col. 4:
What do sperm and a lawyer have in common? They both have a one in a million chance of becoming a human being.

Google Books
Ultimate Risk
By Adam Raphael
London: Bantam Press
1994
Pg. 117:
‘What’s the difference between a single sperm and a lawyer?’ Answer: ‘The sperm has one-in-a-million chance of becoming a human being.’

Google Books
Law V. Life: What Lawyers are Afraid to Say about the Legal Profession
By Walt Bachman
Rhinebeck, NY: Four Directions Press
1995
Pg. 86:
Q. What do a lawyer and a sperm cell have in common?
A. Each has a one-in-a-million chance of becoming a human being.

Google Books
Lowering the Bar:
Lawyer Jokes and Legal Culture

By Marc Galanter
Madison, WI: The University of Wisconsin Press
2005
Pg. 203:
What do lawyers and sperm have in common?
Only one in three million does any real work.
Or
There’s always more than you’d ever need.
Or
Each has a one-in-a-million chance of becoming a human being.

Google Books
Ill-Legal Justice:
Baptism of a Deadbeat Dad

By Pete Becich
Xlibris Corporation (Xlibris.com)
2011
Pg. 55:
Joke: What is the difference between a lawyer and a sperm cell? The sperm cell has a one-in-a-million chance of becoming a human being!

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityGovernment/Law/Politics/Military • Tuesday, January 05, 2016 • Permalink