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 December 16, 2014
“Be nice to people on your way up because you’ll meet the same people on your way down”

“Be kind to everyone on the way up; you’ll meet the same people on the way down” was credited to American playwright Wilson Mizner (1876-1933) on July 5, 1932. “He (newspaper columnist Walter Winchell—ed.) did give some good advice to bigheaded movie actors: ‘Be nice to those you meet on the way up. They’re the same folks you’ll meet on the way down’” was cited in a radio column on July 8, 1932. On July 9, 1932, Winchell’s column called this “Wilson Mizner’s classic advice.”

Although Winchell received early credit for the saying, Winchell himself always credited Mizner. Winchell wrote in a 1940 column about a person getting $2 from a newspaper for the saying, “And so it is assumed Wilson Mizner is not resting in peace.”

[This research was assisted by the earlier investigation of the Quote Investigator.]


Wikipedia: Wilson Mizner
Wilson Mizner (May 19, 1876 – April 3, 1933) was an American playwright, raconteur, and entrepreneur. His best-known plays are The Deep Purple, produced in 1910, and The Greyhound, produced in 1912. He was manager and co-owner of The Brown Derby restaurant in Los Angeles, California, and was affiliated with his brother, Addison Mizner, in a series of scams and picaresque misadventures that inspired Stephen Sondheim’s musical Road Show (alternately known as Wise Guys, Gold! and Bounce).
(...)
Famous quotes
. “Be nice to people on your way up because you’ll meet the same people on your way down”.

5 July 1932, San Francisco (CA) Chronicle, pg. 9, col. 6:
Directs Traveler
On Road to Fame

Wilson Miznor [sic], globe-trotter, ex-Alaska mining chappie, scenario writer, playwright and sage of Hollywood, gave the following advice to a young and coming motion picture star:

“Be kind to everyone on the way up; you’ll meet the same people on the way down.”

Google News Archive
8 July 1932, Pittsburgh (PA) Press, “Were You Listening?” (radio column), pg. 21, col. 1:
Walter Winchell made only passing reference to Ben Bernie—probably admitting that Ben made him look like a sucker in the battle of the brains. He did give some good advice to bigheaded movie actors: “Be nice to those you meet on the way up. They’re the same folks you’ll meet on the way own.”

9 July 1932, Reading (PA) Times, “On Broadway” by Walter Winchell, pg. 8, col. 4:
Which reminded a wag of Wilson Mizner’s classic advice: “Always be pleasant to the people you meet on the way going up—for they are the same people you meet on the way down!”

Google News Archive
15 April 1933, The Afro American (Baltimore, MD), “Believe Me” by Malcom B. Fulcher, pg. 10, col. 4:
Reminds me of those swell lines of Winchell’s, “be good to those you meet on the way up, because they are the same ones you meet on the way down.”

Google News Archive
14 January 1935, The Gazette (Montreal, Quebec), “La Boyer Arrives, Station ‘Sold Out’” by James M. Fyffe, pg. 11, col. 3:
She knows the worth of the Broadway dictum that it pays to be nice to the people you meet on the way up because they’re the same people you meet on the way down.

Google News Archive
9 September 1936, The Spokesman (Drummondville, Quebec), “Gleanings,” pg. 4, col. 3:
It pays to be nice to the people you meet on the way up, for they are the same people you meet on the way down.—Walter Winchell.

Google News Archive
28 February 1940, Palm Beach (FL) Daily News, “On Broadway” by Walter Winchell, pg. 4, col. 2:
The Racket of the Year: The Confucius Say vogue knows no bounds, it appears...Now that several newspapers in the land are inviting subscribers to submit their own “originals” in return for $2 for each published, you find something like this: “Be nice to the people you meet on the way up because you meet the same people on the way down”...A Philadelphia paper just gave Mrs. Texas LaGrange of that city $2 for that one.

And so it is assumed Wilson Mizner is not resting in peace.

Google News Archive
2 April 1942, Gettysburg (PA) Times, “Sports Roundup” by Hugh Fullerton, Jr.,pg. 3, col. 3:
TODAY"S GUEST STAR
Shirley Povich, Washington Post:
“We don’t know whether it was Scratches or Confucius who first said, ‘be nice to the people you meet on the way up because you may have to meet ‘em on the way down.’ Anyway, Buck Newsom could have used that tip.”

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityWork/Businesses • Tuesday, December 16, 2014 • Permalink