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 October 17, 2009
“For the love of Mike” ("For the love of Pete")

Entry in progress—B.P.

(Oxford English Dictionary)
love, n.
colloq. for the love of Mike [probably showing euphemistic substitution of the male forename Mike (compare MIKE n.4) for God]: an exclamation of exasperation or surprise; β€˜for goodness’ sake!’
1901 S. CRANE in Home Mag. N.Y. Jan. 77/2 β€˜For the love of Mike, madam, what ails you?’ he spluttered.
1909 Syracuse (N.Y.) Herald (Electronic text) 21 Dec., For the love of Mike, man, haven’t you got a heart?
1922 J. JOYCE Ulysses III. 727 O move over your big carcass out of that for the love of Mike listen to him.
1925 T. DREISER Amer. Trag. (1926) I. I. ix. 57 For de love o’ Mike, will you listen to dat, now.
1934 J. BROPHY Waterfront i. 14 For the love of mike..shut those blasted windows.
1941 Penguin New Writing 8 91 Well, for the luvva Mike!

pete, n.
With capital initial. In various exclamatory phrases (chiefly as a euphemistic replacement for god), expressing exasperation or annoyance, as for Pete’s sake, for the love of Pete, etc. (cf. LOVE n.1 Phrases 1).
1906 S. FORD Shorty McCabe 303 Say, for the love of Pete, I couldn’t tell what it was gave me a grouch.
1917 Camp Meade (Va.) Herald 2 Nov. 5 Say, for the luvapete, shut that window.
1942 N. BALCHIN Darkness falls from Air ix. 170 Why in the name of Pete didn’t you say so?

Google Books
Dick: a story for boys and girls
By Anna Chapin Ray
New York, NY; Thomas Y. Crowell & Co.
Pg. 207:
“Oh, for the love of Mike!”

Google Books
The Cambric Mask: a romance
By Robert William Chambers
New York, NY: Frederick A. Stokes Company
Pg. 141:
“Give me food, for the love of Mike!”

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityWorkers/People • (0) Comments • Saturday, October 17, 2009 • Permalink