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 April 13, 2011
OOPS (United Parcel Service or UPS nickname)

The United Parcel Service (UPS) is an international package delivery company that began in Seattle, Washington, in 1907. The nickname “OOPS” (a variant pronunciation of “UPS”) has been cited in print since at least 1990 and has been frequently used by customers for whom UPS has lost or misplaced packages.
Other UPS nicknames include “Big Brown,” “Buster Brown” and “United Parcel/Package Smashers.”
Wikipedia: United Parcel Service
United Parcel Service, Inc. (NYSE: UPS), colloquially referred to as UPS, is a package delivery company. Headquartered in Sandy Springs, Georgia, United States, UPS delivers more than 15 million packages a day to 6.1 million customers in more than 220 countries and territories around the world.
UPS is well known for its brown trucks, internally known as package cars (hence the company nickname “The Big Brown Machine”). UPS also operates its own airline (IATA: 5X, ICAO: UPS, Call sign: UPS) based in Louisville, Kentucky.
Free Merriam-Webster Dictionary
oops interj \ˈ(w)u̇(ə)ps\
Definition of OOPS
—used typically to express mild apology, surprise, or dismay
First Known Use of OOPS
Google Books
American Statistical Association
Volume 3, Issue 3
Pg. 70:
As much as I love the United Parcel Service, however, I do wonder how you can trust a package-handling service whose acronym is pronounced, “OOPS!”
19 August 1997, St. Petersburg (FL) Times, “New School’s novices hit the books” by Eric Woodman, pg. 13B:
If you pronounce the letters in UPS it sounds like “oops.”
2 July 1998, New York (NY) Times, “Psst, Over Here…Want Your Good Name Back?” by Peter H. Lewis, pg. G3:
Federal Express had already registered fdxcorp.cx, federalexpress.cx, fedex.cx and—could it be?—ups.cx. Perhaps they made a typo and meant to type “oops.cx.”
Shorty PJs
Monday, September 08, 2008
I am so frustrated with UPS right now, I could just spit! United? Hardly. Parcel. Can’t prove it by me. Service? Don’t make me laugh. No, really. Don’t make me laugh.
Curly & Bee
There’s a Reason They’re Called OOPS… I Mean UPS
The last of our wedding presents arrived in the mail today…
Posted on Wednesday, September 23rd, 2009 at 4:07 am
Ask MetaFilter
Nickname that store
November 30, 2010 8:53 AM
I always pronounce “UPS” as “oops,” after the year my non-custodial-parent Christmas gifts were lost.
posted by SMPA at 9:05 AM on November 30, 2010

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityWork/Businesses • Wednesday, April 13, 2011 • Permalink

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