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. Now a Popeye's fast food restaurant on Google Maps.

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Entry from November 09, 2010
“Buy the best and cry only once”

"Buy the best and cry only once” (BTBCOO) means that a customer cries once at the high price, but doesn’t cry again (because the higher price meant greater quality). It is not clear what retailer originated or popularized the saying. “Buy quality and cry once— buy cheap and cry forever” has been cited in print since 1922.

The business slogan appears to have been popularized in California in the 1970s. “When you buy quality you cry only once!” was an ad in a Eureka (CA) newspaper in 1977; “Buy the best and cry only once” was trademarked by a California company with a first use from 1979. In the 1980s and 1990s, the “cry once once” slogan was spotted on an electrician’s truck and a plumber’s truck in Los Angeles (CA).

The Free Dictionary
Acronym Definition
BTBACOO Buy the Best and Cry Only Once

Google Books
October 1922, The Associated Grower, pg. 32, col. 3 ad:
Power Farming Equipment
("Buy quality and cry once— buy cheap and cry forever")

13 September 1959, Abilene (TX) Reporter-News:
“Where you buy the best and cry but once.”
(A-1 Building Supply Company, cited in the Dictionary of Modern Proverbs—ed.)

7 July 1977, Eureka (CA) Times-Standard, Pg. 24 ad:
(Noel’s TV and Appliance - Henderson Center TV and Appliance—ed.)

6 March 1980, Ukiah (CA) Daily Journal, pg. 5 ad:

11 September 1983, Los Angeles (CA) Times, “The price of the not-so specials” by Charles C. Keely Jr., pg. T84:
“Buy the best,” advised the sign on the rear of the electrician’s truck ahead of me, “and cry only once.”

Google Books
Saving the Best for Last:
Planning a Secure Future for Your Family

By Wilson J. Humber
Chicago, IL: Moody Press
Pg. 116:
A Japanese friend of mine has a saying I like: “Buy best first and cry only once.”

Google Books
Time Tactics of Very Successful People
By B. Eugene Griessman
New York, NY: McGraw-Hill
Pg. 143:
Pay More and Cry Only Once. (Sign on a plumber’s truck in Los Angeles)

Google Books
VW Beetle performance handbook
By Keith Seume
Osceola, WI: Motorbooks International
Pg. 23:
However, as an old VW specialist used to say, buy the best and cry once.

Investment Owl Blog
Wednesday, March 02, 2005
‘Buy quality, and cry once’
I’m in the process of buying a new laptop PC.

Motorhome Magazine Open Roads Forum
Posted: 07/02/10 10:12pm
“Buy the Best and Cry Only Once” applies here.

Goods and Services IC 012. US 019 021 023 031 035 044. G & S: Differential covers. FIRST USE: 19791201. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 19940831
Mark Drawing Code (1) TYPED DRAWING
Serial Number 76558121
Filing Date October 23, 2003
Current Filing Basis 1A
Original Filing Basis 1A
Published for Opposition July 27, 2004
Registration Number 2895003
Registration Date October 19, 2004
Owner (REGISTRANT) Bacile, Jack R. DBA Concept Pattern Engineering and Manufacturing INDIVIDUAL UNITED STATES 65 Newport Avenue Grover Beach CALIFORNIA 93433
Attorney of Record Mary A. Harris
Type of Mark TRADEMARK
Live/Dead Indicator LIVE

Posted by {name}
New York CityWork/Businesses • (2) Comments • Tuesday, November 09, 2010 • Permalink

I remember this ad. I can see this in all places. This sure brings back memories. This ad is really catchy and many people are using this.

Posted by: Advertising Signs  on  05/11  at  04:26 AM

Yes, I agree with your this thought. If we spend more money for a project or any real time thing then definitely it will give us more profit. I have already applied this thought in my life.

Posted by: Plumbers Chicago  on  06/12  at  11:50 PM

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