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 April 15, 2016
“Yes, but I still love you more than I love basketball” (sports joke)

A popular joke illustrates a man’s love for sports:

“Complained the wife: ‘You love football more than you love me.’ Replied the husband: ‘Yeah, but I love you more than I love basketball.’”

The joke has been cited in print since at least 1970. The sports are sometimes changed in the joke, with “baseball” replacing “football” or “basketball.”


20 October 1970, Rockford (IL) Register-Republic, “Hot Lines,” pg. 12-B, col. 5:
Complained the wife: “You love football more than you love me.” Replied the husband: “Yeah, but I love you more than I love basketball.”

20 October 1970, Nashua (NH) Telegraph, “Today’s Chuckle,” pg. 1, col. 1:
Complained the wife: “You love football more than you love me.” Replied the husband: “Yeah, but I love you more than I love basketball.”

Google Books
The Dog with the Cold Nose
By James F. Dent
Charleston, WV: Jalamap Publications
1981
Pg. 74:
Then there was the football fan who stayed glued to his television set every fall weekend. His wife had had enough of that nonsense. “You love that old football more than you love me,” she sobbed. The fellow thought about it for a couple of minutes. “Well,” he replied, “I love you more than I do basketball.”

Google Books
Baseball : --a laughing matter!
By Warner Fusselle, Rick Wolff and Brian Zevnik
St. Louis, MO: Sporting News Publishing Company
1987
Pg. 49:
After more than three decades of marriage, Los Angeles Dodgers Manager Tom Lasorda was not ashamed to express his love for his wife, Joan.

Joan: “I think you love baseball more than you love me.”
Tom: “Yeah, but I love you more than I love football and basketball.”

Google Books
Not Now Honey I’m Watching the Game
By Kevin Quirk
New York, NY: Fireside Books
1997
Pg. 5:
She says, “You love football more than you love me.” He says, “Yeah, but I love you more than I love baseball.”

Santa Cruz (CA) Sentinel
Editorial, April 15, 2016: Warriors’ excellence on display
POSTED: 04/14/16, 5:23 PM PDT
There’s an old joke about a sports-crazy husband who ignores his wife while spending his nights and weekends watching sports on television.

His frustrated wife finally complains: “You love baseball and football more than you love me.” He replies, “Yeah, well I still love you more than I love basketball.”

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CitySports/Games • Friday, April 15, 2016 • Permalink