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 Popeyes fast food restaurant on Google Maps.

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Entry from August 05, 2022
“An after-dinner speech—‘Check, please‘“

"Check, please!” is what a restaurant diner tells a waiter or waitress. The diner is finished eating and wants to pay for the meal.

“Check, please” was printed in The Courier-Journal (Louisville, KY) on November 26, 1883. “AN AFTER-DINNER SPEECH—‘Check, please’” was printed in the humor magazine Puck (New York, NY) on March 17, 1886. “The check, please” was printed in The Daily Advertiser (Montgomery, AL) on January 24, 1889. “We want separate checks, please” was printed in The Enquirer (Cincinnati, OH) on February 3, 1895.


Newspapers.com
28 November 1883, The Courier-Journal (Louisville, KY), pg. 6, col. 7:
The Greatest of All.
[New York Letter in Boston Herald.]

Mercy, how those fellows ate, how peremptory they were in order, how eager in contemplation, how earnest in cutting up, how vigorous in putting down. they hurried through the operation as though they were having a tooth pulled, and the quicker it was over the better. I was particularly struck by one man who finished a pork pie, a cup of custard, some cold coffee and fifteen or twenty pieces of cheese in less time, I was going to say, than it takes me to tell it, who asked, while the tumbler was still resting in his mouth and the milk was gurgling down his throat, “Check, please,” and, stretching out the other hand for the ticket as he moved away, pressing his fingers into his side-pocket for change with which to pay.

Google Books
17 March 1886, Puck (New York, NY), pg. 43, col. 1:
AN AFTER-DINNER SPEECH—
“Check, please.”

Newspapers.com
14 May 1886, Cherryvale (KS) Globe and Torch, pg. 3, col. 6:
ODDS AND ENDS.
An after dinner speech: “Check please.”

Newspapers.com
24 January 1889, The Daily Advertiser (Montgomery, AL), “My First Love,” pg. 3, col. 4:
As we finished our microscopic repast, however, she said in the most manner-of-fact tone to the waiter:

“The check, please.”
(Edward Heron Allen in Philadelphia Times.—ed.)

Newspapers.com
3 February 1895, The Enquirer (Cincinnati, OH), “Underwear” by Clara Belle, pg. 20, co9l. 6:
Then came the bill. Frances looked at it and then said severely: “We want separate checks, please.”

Newspapers.com
5 November 1902, Evansville (IN) Courier, pg. 4, col. 4:
Great After-Dinner Speech
Philadelphia Record.
Spunger—The best after-dinner speech I ever heard was once when I was out with Goodley.
Winks—And who made the speech?
Spunger—Goodley. He said, “Let me have the check, please, waiter.”

OCLC WorldCat record
Check, please. Don’t expect after-dinner mints.
Edition/Format: Article Article : English
Publication: Asiaweek, (19940330): 15
Summary:
That’s because when the check arrives, there’ll be condoms instead. Cabbage and Condoms, a Thai restaurant overseen by the Bangkok-based Population and Development Association, serves both items. The eatery plans to open its first overseas outlet in Beijing next month. “We have been working with Chinese family-planning groups and chose Beijing because it is the capital of the world’s most populous country,” says PDA founding chairman Mechai Viravaidya, who is widely known as “Mr. Condom” for his promotion of the device to stem population growth and the spread of sexually transmitted diseases.

OCLC WorldCat record
Check, Please! Museums and Destination Restaurants - The State of Museum Dining - Former Washington Post Restaurant Critic Phyllis Richman Chews the Fat
Publisher: [Washington, American Association of Museums]
Edition/Format: Article Article : English
Publication: Museum news. (October 2007): 41

OCLC WorldCat record
CHECK, PLEASE - Power Dining on the Road - Restaurant choices, coast to coast.
Author: Sharon King Hoge
Publisher: [New York, N.Y. : Forbes Inc., 1918-
Edition/Format: Article Article : English
Publication: Forbes. 53, (2008): 56

OCLC WorldCat record
Check, Please The challenges of fine dining
Author: J Colapinto
Edition/Format: Article Article : English
Publication: NEW YORKER -NEW YORKER MAGAZINE INCORPORATED- (September 10, 2012): 58-65

21 March 2015, Saint Paul Pioneer Press (St. Paul, MN), “St. Paul’s National Checking looks beyond the iconic green and white slip” by Nick Woltman, pg. >:
When you holler, “Check, please!” at a roadside diner in the United States, you’ll probably be handed a green and white slip with your order scribbled on it.

Chances are that slip was printed in St. Paul by National Checking Co.

Headquartered on a bluff overlooking the Mississippi River, 110-year-old National Checking sells more restaurant order pads than any other company.

“We have a significant market share,” said Ben Olk III, the company’s second-generation president. “The problem is that it’s a declining product.”
Restaurants are increasingly eschewing the traditional guest check in favor of thermal-printed register rolls.

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityRestaurants/Bars/Coffeehouses/Food Stores • Friday, August 05, 2022 • Permalink