[?] "A nickel a shtickel" (1946)

Barnhart barnhart at HIGHLANDS.COM
Mon Feb 14 12:52:59 UTC 2005

A brief note on sch-~schm- appears in Wentworth & Flexner (p. 606).


barnhart at highlands.com

American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> on Monday, February 14,
2005 at 2:59 AM -0500 wrote:
>---------------------- Information from the mail header
>Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>Poster:       Bapopik at AOL.COM
>Subject:      "A nickel a shtickel" (1946)
>Maybe Fred can use this rhyme in his Yiddish quotations section. I just
>added it to my web site (www.barrypopik.com).
>"A nickel a shtickel."
>New York delis used to feature these signs. It meant that they were
>selling the ends of a salami for five cents.
>It was a good rhyme and a good business.
><i>New York City Folklore</i>
>edited by B. A. Botkin
>New York: Random House
>[From "The Jewish Delicatessen," by Ruth Glazer, in <i>Commentary on the
>American Scene: Portraits of Jewish Life in America</i> (1953). This was
>originally published as "From the American Scene" in the magazine
><i>Commentary</i>, Vol. 1 • March 1946 • No. 5]
>Pg. 370: "A Nickel a Shtickel"
>Pg. 371: And invariably on the glass-topped counter is a plate with small
>chunks of salami. In the old days the plate always carried a sign, "A
>Nickel a Shtickel." (A most convenient - and profitable - way of
>disposing of the ends of the salami, too.) This immortal rhyme succumbed
>during the [Second World] war to the free verse of "Have a Nosh - 10c."
>15 August 1952, Zanesville (OH) Signal, "Walter Winchell On Broadway"
>column, pg. 4, col. 4:
>Harry's Delicatessen (on 47th off B'way) still features "nickel for a
>shtickel" - chunks of salamee.
>2 April 1972, New York <i>Times</i>, pg. A13:
>There was Rosen's Delicatessen in Queens Village, where you got a small
>hunk of salami for five cents - "a schtickel for a nickel," he called it.
>7 July 1982, New York <i>Times</i>, pg. C1:
>"MENTALLY, I'm always noshing," said Mayor Koch, explaining the conflict
>he has between loving to eat and wanting to keep his weight down. "What I
>mentally nosh on most used to be called 'a nickel a schtickel' - those
>small end pieces of salami that were sold on top of the counters in New
>York delis for 5 cents."
>4 November 1984, New York <i>Times</i>, "True Confessions of a Deli
>Addict" by Nora Ephron, pg. 425:
>Sometimes I would chew on a miniature salami called a "schtickel" (there
>was a sign at Linny's that read: "A nickel a schtickel is a rhyme, now a
>nickel a schtickel is a dime") and press my nose against the glass case
>as a counterman sliced the Nova on the diagonal and laid it on sheets of
>waxed paper.

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