"How do you make a small fortune in lexicography?"

James A. Landau JJJRLandau at AOL.COM
Fri Dec 7 01:53:48 UTC 2001

In a message dated 12/05/2001 6:52:37 PM Eastern Standard Time,
Bapopik at AOL.COM writes:

> "There's a joke baseball owners like to tell: 'How do you make a small
> fortune owning a baseball team?  Start with a large fortune!'"
>  --VILLAGE VOICE (www.villagevoice.com), jockbeat column in latest issue
>     Does Fred Shapiro have this one?
>     A web check ("make a small fortune" & "large") shows the joke in many
> different fields.  Paul Dickson might be interested, but I don't think it
> originated in baseball.  Where did it originate?
>     If I had to guess, I'd pick Wall Street.  1960s?

Sounds to me like the punchline of a Chelm story.  Or perhaps an Irish bull.
Either one would long antedate the 20th century.

A similar joke runs: "Las Vegas (or any other gambling center)---you go there
in a thirty thousand dollar car and leave in a hundred fifty thousand dollar

       - Jim Landau

More information about the Ads-l mailing list