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 July 13, 2012
“Advertising is the most fun you can have with your clothes on”

Madison Avenue adman Jerry Della Femina wrote in his book, From Those Wonderful Folks Who Gave You Pearl Harbor:
Front-Line Dispatches From The Advertising War
(1970):

“There are ugly people in advertising, real charlatans, but there are good people, too. And good advertising. And I honestly believe that advertising is the most fun you can have with your clothes on.”

The line “Advertising is the most fun you can have with your clothes on” has been included in many collections of advertising quotations. The phrase “the most fun you can have with your clothes on” has been cited in print since at least 1969.


Wikipedia: Jerry Della Femina
Jerry Della Femina (born 1936 in Brooklyn) is an American advertising executive and restaurateur. Starting from a poor Italian background in Brooklyn, he eventually became chairman of Della Femina Travisano & Partners, an agency which he founded with Ron Travisano in the 1960s. Over the next two decades they grew the company into a major advertising house that was billing $250 million per year, had 300 employees, and offices in both New York and Los Angeles. Della Femina is known for his larger than life personality and colorful language, and was referred to as a “‘Madman’ of Madison Avenue”. In 1970, he wrote a book about the advertising industry, humorously titled, From Those Wonderful Folks Who Gave You Pearl Harbor: Front-Line Dispatches from the Advertising War. It became a cult bestseller, described by The Guardian as “one of the defining books about advertising”, and eventually inspired the television series Mad Men.

3 May 1969, Dallas (TX) Morning News, pg. 10E, col. 1 ad:
THE MOST FUN YOU CAN HAVE WITH YOUR CLOTHES ON!
LOUANN’S

Google Books
From Those Wonderful Folks Who Gave You Pearl Harbor:
Front-Line Dispatches From The Advertising War

By Jerry Della Femina and Charles Sopkin
New York, NY: Simon and Schuster
1970
Pg. 270:
There are ugly people in advertising, real charlatans, but there are good people, too. And good advertising. And I honestly believe that advertising is the most fun you can have with your clothes on.

9 June 1970, New York (NY) Times, “Books of The Times” by John Leonard, pg. 39:
Jerry Della Femina, a 33-year-old success story who heads his own New York ad agency (a staff of 53, $20 million a year in billings), puts it a little differently: “I honestly believe that advertising is the most fun you can have with your clothes on”.

2 August 1970, Star-News (Pasadena, CA), “Madison Avenue Madness Is Fun” reviewed by Russ Leadabrand, pg. C4, col. 4:
Della Femina is generous. He says it’s the most fun you can have with your clothes on.

Google News Archive
13 January 1971, The Michigan Daily (Ann Arbor, MI), “An adman’s view of Mad. Ave.” by Ron Brasch, pg. 5, cols. 1-3:
Jerry Della Demina, FROM THOSE WONDERFUL FOLKS WHO GAVE YOU PEARK HARBOR, Simon & Schuster, $6.50.
(...)
The author claims he loves his industry and says its (sic) the most fun you can have with your clothes on.

Forbes.com
James Brady On Media
Della Femina’s Dilemma

James Brady, 01.31.08, 6:00 AM ET
Legendary Madison Avenue ad man Jerry Della Femina has been in trouble before.

Remember his slogan, “The business of advertising is the most fun you can have with your clothes on?” Then there was his 1970 book From Those Wonderful Folks Who Brought You Pearl Harbor, which earned him a Japanese client for whom he did all those “Joe Isuzu” commercials. 

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityWork/Businesses • (0) Comments • Friday, July 13, 2012 • Permalink