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 November 21, 2014
“Love is grand; divorce is a hundred grand”

"Love is grand: divorce is a hundred grand” is a jocular saying that has been printed on many gift items, such as posters, bumper stickers and T-shirts. “Love is grand, but divorce is twenty grand” was cited in print in 1993. “The central lesson you need to learn about divorce fits on a T-shirt popular with lawyers: ‘Love is grand. Divorce is 20 grand’” was cited in 1994.

It’s not known who authored the saying.


Google Books
Sex from Aah to Zipper:
A Delightful Glossary of Love, Lust and Laughter

By Roger W. Libby
Grand Rapids, MI : Playful Pleasure Press
1993
Pg. 34:
Divorce: “May divorce be with you” is something we never say, but sadly, divorce is all too common. Right now, about half of all American marriages end in divorce, which reinforces the new adage, “Love is grand, but divorce is twenty grand.”

Google News Archive
7 November 1994, Pittsburgh (PA) Post-Gazette, “When breaking up, be sensible” by Mark Schwanhausser (San Jose Mercury News), pg. B-8, col. 5:
The central lesson you need to learn about divorce fits on a T-shirt popular with lawyers: “Love is grand. Divorce is 20 grand.”

30 April 1995, Afro-American Gazette (Grand Rapids, MI), “Your Money Matters: Breaking Up Is Hard To Do” by Michael Kelly, pg. 3, col. 2:
A t-shirt popular with lawyers reads, “Love is Grand. Divorce is Twenty Grand.”

Google Books
Key West Graffiti
By W.J. Tolien
Buffalo, NY” Thorner Press
2001
Pg. 23:
Love is grand.
Divorce is 20 grand.

Twitter
Status King
‏@StatusKing
Craige believes love is grand… but divorce is hundred grand. http://budurl.com/5l5b
10:19 PM - 10 Feb 2009

Google Books
2,548 Wittiest Things Anybody Ever Said
By Robert Byrne
New York, NY: Touchstone
2012
Pg. ?:
649
Love is grand. Divorce is a hundred grand. —Unknown

Google Books
The Mammoth Book of One-Liners
By Geoff Tibballs
London: Constable & Robinson Ltd.
2012
Pg. ?:
Love is grand. Divorce is 15 grand.

Google Books
Market Like You Mean It:
Engage Customers, Create Brand Believers, and Gain Fans for Everything You Sell

By Al Lautenslager
Irvine, CA: Entrepreneur Press
2014
Pg. 66:
Love is grand. Divorce is 20 grand.

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityBanking/Finance/Insurance • Friday, November 21, 2014 • Permalink


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