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.

Recent entries:
Entry forthcoming—B.P. (7/17)
“Waiter, there’s a bee in my soup."/"Yes sir, it is the fly’s day off.” (7/17)
“Don’t give up. You’ve still got a couple of MFers to prove wrong” (7/17)
Entry forthcoming—B.P. (7/17)
“Waiter, there’s a button on my potato."/"Well, you did ask for a jacket potato.” (7/17)
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Entry from June 20, 2018
“Why did the potato cross the road?"/"He saw a fork up ahead.”

“Why did the chicken cross the road?"/"To get to the other side” is a classic riddle from the 19th century. A potato version is:

Q: Why did the potato cross the road? 
A: He saw a fork up ahead.


The potato joke has been cited in print since at least 1984.


25 January 1984, Journal Star (Peoria, IL), “Etc.,” pg. B1, col. 1:
Why did the potato cross the road? Because he saw a fork up ahead.

1 February 1984, The Herald-Palladium (Benton Harbor-St. Joseph, MI), “Spud Humor,” pg. 5, col. 3:
Why did the potato cross the road? 
Because he saw a fork up ahead!

Google Books
The Great Potato Book
By Meredith Hughes and Thomas Hughes
New York, NY: Macmillan
1986
Pg. 73:
Question: Why did the potato cross the road?
Answer: he saw a fork up ahead.

7 April 1998, The Wall Street Journal (New York, NY), “Mr. Potato Head’s Legacy” by Susan G. Hauser, pg. A16, col. 3:
Q: Why dud the potato cross the road?
A: Because he saw a fork up ahead.

Twitter
Trevor McCombie
@McC1971
Why did the potato cross the road? He saw a fork up ahead.
5:09 AM - 19 Aug 2009

Google Books
Teacher’s Joke and Story Book
Collected by Stanley B. Graham
Bloomington, IN: AuthorHouse
2016
Pg. ?:
Q. Why did the potato cross the road?
A. He saw a fork up ahead.

Twitter
lorraine Jo King
@LahLahBean
#badjokethursday
Why did the potato cross the road? 
He saw a fork up ahead.
12:23 AM - 21 Jun 2018

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityStreets • Wednesday, June 20, 2018 • Permalink