"Apple *mwah* Pie!": Who said it?
December 12, 2011 8:37 AM   Subscribe

"Apple pie [3 staccato lip smacks]." Have you heard this somewhere before?

A silly little thing my grandfather would do would be to say "Apple pie," and then dryly smack his lips. (There is some disagreement as to whether the lip smacks came between the words apple and pie or at the end. He probably did both.) This wasn't a general "yummy" noise, it only happened with the words apple pie, and had nothing to do with the actual presence of a pie.

I always assumed this was just a culture reference that everyone else but me got, but I was talking about it with older family members recently and that led to everyone saying "Yeah, what was that from, anyways?" Grampa's been gone for 15 years, so we can't ask him. My dad even tried saying it into Shazam, no luck.

Have any of you heard of this before? It could have been some family joke that everyone's forgotten about, but I'm hoping it's from a radio show or a Marx Brothers movie or something so I can show it to family who remembers it.

Some possibly relevant details: My grandfather was born in 1919 and spent his whole life in the northeastern US. He was probably saying this as early as the 50's or 60's, so media sources would probably be in the 1925-1945 range.. He didn't say it in an identifiably funny voice, but he would suck his lips behind his teeth to make the sound.
posted by tchemgrrl to Media & Arts (4 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I wonder if it might have anything to do with the old "apple pie and coffee" joke? Roger Ebert talks about it here and in his memoir; my grandmother used to tell a variation on the joke, which was similar to one of the many variations discussed in the comments. (No one mentions any lip smacks, though.) Do any of those ring a bell?
posted by scody at 11:06 AM on December 12, 2011

Geez, that sounds SO similar to a scene from Disney's "The Computer Who Wore Tennis Shoes" from 1969, starring (a very young) Kurt Russell. A freak accident downloads the contents of a computer hard drive into his brain. He then goes on a trivia game show and is winning famously, when he hears the word "applejack", which is the password for his hard drive. He then starts saying (as my 7 year old brain remembers it) , in a computer voice, "Apple jack. Beep. Beep. Beep." Is it possible your grandfather didn't feel like beeping, and used the lip smack instead? And the joke was that he was referencing the apple PIE in front of him? You can google around and probably find that scene online somewhere. Check it out and let us know! Sad part is, if he was saying that in the 50's or 60's then it predates the movie by quite a bit. Unless the movie was riffing off of something previous...?
posted by Spyder's Game at 9:59 PM on December 12, 2011

Did he say it as a reply to "How are you doing?" or "How are things going?" type of questions? If so, he might have been using shorthand for "apple pie order" (meaning everything's fine or in good order, neat and tidy, etc.) but I don't know how the lip-smacking would relate.
posted by amyms at 9:52 AM on December 13, 2011

He was first generation US (parents Italian), and that apple pie joke is the kind of thing he would've liked, so that's possible.

On the other points, I'll need to check with my parents. We were only guessing about him doing it since the 60's because no one could remember him *not* doing it, it was just his little vocal tic.
posted by tchemgrrl at 1:02 PM on December 13, 2011

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