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 July 13, 2018
“My accountant went to see a psychiatrist because he kept hearing strange invoices”

Crazy people hear strange voices. Do crazy accountants and billing clerks hear strange invoices?

“Horace McGonigle has heard about the billing clerk who went to a psychiatrist because he’d begun hearing strange invoices” was printed in the Des Moines (IA) Sunday Register on May 1, 1949. “A billing clerk has to be psychoanalyzed because he began hearing strange invoices” was credited in AMerican television personality Dave Garroway (1913-1982) in 1951.

“When accountants go insane, do they start to hear invoices?” is another version of the “invoices” joke.


1 May 1949, Des Moines (IA) Sunday Register, Gordon Gammack column, pg. 2L, col. 1: 
Horace McGonigle has heard about the billing clerk who went to a psychiatrist because he’d begun hearing strange invoices.

26 September 1951, Boston (MA) Daily Globe, “Sitting In” by Ted Ashby, pg. 25, col. 1:
AND HERE, from his office at the Merchandise Mart, Chicago, are some entertaining quips credited to Dave Garroway, who quite possibly is one of your favorite TV personalities: “(...) A billing clerk has to be psychoanalyzed because he began hearing strange invoices.”

7 October 1951, Chicago (IL) Sunday Tribune, “Radio-TV Gag Bag” culled by Larry Wolters, Magazine, pg. 12, col. 2:
Dave Garroway tells about a billing clerk who blew his top—he was hearing strange invoices!

Google Books
The Joke Teller’s Handbook: or, 1,999 Belly Laughs
By Robert Orben
Los Angeles, CA: Wilshire Book Company
1976
Pg. 98:
I know a billing clerk who went to a psychiatrist. Kept hearing strange invoices.

Google Books
Complete Book of Roasts, Boasts, and Toasts
By Elmer Pasta
West Nyack, NY: Parker Publishing Company
1982
She’s a billing clerk who had to go to a psychiatrist. She kept hearing strange invoices!

Google Books
Funniest Thing You Never Said 2
By Rosemarie Jarski
London, UK: Ebury Press
2010
Pg. 494:
You heard about the accountant who came in for treatment? He kept hearing strange invoices.
Anon

Twitter
Bill Lagerquist
@BillLagerquist
The accounting department where I work is going a bit nutty. They keep hearing strange invoices.
6:34 PM - 20 Jan 2011

Twitter
Tony Blackburn
@tonyblackburn
An accountant friend of mine has had to see a psychiatrist as he keeps hearing strange invoices
2:28 PM - 3 Mar 2011

Google Books
The Mammoth Book of One-Liners
Edited by Geoff Tibballs
London, UK: Constable & Robinson Ltd
Pg. ?:
Did you hear about the accountant who went to see a psychiatrist because he kept hearing strange invoices?

Twitter
Tony Blackburn
@tonyblackburn
An accountant I know had to see a psychiatrist the other day,he kept hearing strange invoices !!
12:16 PM - 23 Jan 2013

Twitter
Robin Johansen
@RobinJoha
Did you hear about the accountant who went to see a psychiatrist because he kept hearing strange invoices?
8:12 PM - 14 Nov 2013

Twitter
Tony Blackburn
@tonyblackburn
An account friend of mine has just started hearing strange invoices.
3:43 AM - 5 Jan 2015

Twitter
RyanTheGreat
@RyanCarlLauron
Did you hear about the accountant who kept hearing strange invoices?
3:52 AM - 23 May 2015

Twitter
Tog1989
@tog1989
My accountant went to see a Psychiatrist because he kept hearing strange invoices.
#SillySaturday
2:25 AM - 14 Jul 2018

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityWork/Businesses • Friday, July 13, 2018 • Permalink