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.

Recent entries:
“Don’t make me use my director voice” (12/5)
“Those who graduate with a theater degree and can’t find work suffer post dramatic stress disorder” (12/5)
“It’s not multiple personality disorder, it’s a theatre degree!” (12/5)
“Guy about to invent soy sauce: ‘Sure wish I could drink salt‘“ (12/5)
“We are not strange. We are dramatically different” (12/5)
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Entry from April 17, 2021
“I used to work in a watch factory. I sat around making faces all day”

A watch has a face, and there is a very old joke about that. “I have two jobs open. I’ve got a chance to go making faces in a watch factory or drawing mugs in a beer hall” was printed in the Indianapolis (IN) Journal on January 11, 1892, and the joke was reprinted in many other newspapers.

“I used to work in a watch factory. I sat around making faces all day” was posted on the newsgroup alt.disney.disneyland on August 25, 1997. “Had to quit my job at the watch factory. The guy sitting opposite me, kept making faces” was posted on Reddit—Jokes on April 17, 2021.


Newspapers.com
11 January 1892, Indianapolis (IN) Journal, pg. 4, col. 4:
“I have two jobs open. I’ve got a chance to go making faces in a watch factory or drawing mugs in a beer hall.”

Newspapers.com
4 February 1892 The Salt Lake Herald (Salt Lake City, UT), pg. 4, col. 4:
“I have two jobs open. I’ve got a chance to go making faces in a watch factory or drawing mugs in a beer hall.”—Indianapolis Journal.

Newspapers.com
19 January 1902, The News and Observer (Raleigh, NC), pg. 3, col. :
AN EASY JOB.
“My brother’s working in a watch factory.”
“What doing?”
“Making faces.”

Newspapers.com
1 March 1906, The Evening Times (Grand Forks, ND), pg. 1, col. 5:
Some young women should get jobs in a watch factory—making faces.

Newspapers.com
18 September 1945, The Gazette and Daily (York, PA), pg. 20, col. 2:
What is the easiest job in a watch factory?
Making Faces.
Sunshine Magazine

Google Books
Cruises in the Sun
By Kent Curtis
Chicago, IL: R.F. Seymour
1950
Pg. 134:
I wanted to give him as good as he gave and one of Hoppy Clarke’s jokes came into my head.

“I’ve got a job in a watch factory,” I told him, “making faces.”

Google Groups: alt.disney.disneyland
Jungle Cruise
Tripp1901
Aug 25, 1997, 3:00:00 AM
(...)
I used to work in a watch factory. I sat around making faces all day.

Google Groups: rec.arts.tv.mst3k.misc
!!!YOUR JEDI MIND TRICKS WON’T WORK ON ME, BOY!
Derek Janssen
Sep 15, 1997, 3:00:00 AM
(...)
He’s got a cushy job in a watch factory--Just sits around all day making faces…

Twitter
Something clever & Easter themed
@modernprincess
#bestsummerjob i worked in a watch factory. i got paid to stand around all day making faces!!
12:05 PM · Aug 22, 2009·Twitter Web Client

Twitter
Craig Bennett
@_theclyde
The man who worked at the watch factory was very funny. He stood about all day making faces.
9:05 AM · Jan 8, 2010·Twitter Web Client

Google Books
The Mammoth Book of One-Liners
Edited by Geoff Tibballs
London, UK: Constable & Robinson Ltd
2012
Pg. ?:
Why did everyone laugh at the man who worked in the watch factory? Because he spent all day making faces.

Reddit—Jokes
Posted by u/Airstrict December 24, 2018
A guy I know works at the watch factory,
I ask him “So what do you do?”
He says “I stand around all day making faces”

Reddit—Jokes
Posted by u/dis-boi April 15, 2019
I once knew a guy who worked in a watch factory
He was paid to stand around making faces.

Reddit—Jokes
Posted by u/criswellc90 December 29, 2019
My cousin lost his job at the watch factory last week…
He just stood around all day, making faces.

Reddit—Jokes
Posted by u/VERBERD April 17, 2021
Had to quit my job at the watch factory.
The guy sitting opposite me, kept making faces.

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityWork/Businesses • Saturday, April 17, 2021 • Permalink