Who said this thing about flyers?
June 18, 2004 5:49 AM   Subscribe

A couple of times recently I have heard a quotation that goes something like "whenever a man offers me a flyer in the street I always take one, because when he's given them all out he can go home." Once I heard it attributed to George Orwell, and the other time to Somerset Maugham. I've googled to the best of my ability and can't find the quote or the speaker. Any ideas?
posted by hazyjane to Writing & Language (14 answers total)
Sounds like Jack Handy.
posted by bondcliff at 6:45 AM on June 18, 2004

Also sounds like Gore Vidal. I'd also say Heinlein (via Lazarus Long) but I don't recall it, so it probably wasn't that source.
posted by Goofyy at 7:00 AM on June 18, 2004

I am pretty sure it isnt Jack Handy as I spend many hours googling for Handy quotes and think I have them all and dont recognise that one.............but I like it and will take flyers from everyone I meet from now on.
posted by kenaman at 7:18 AM on June 18, 2004

If this were true, wouldn't the flyer guy just dump them all in the trash and knock off for the day?
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 7:42 AM on June 18, 2004

Though not what you're looking for, I remember a comedian saying that whenever someone hands him a flyer it's as if they're saying, "Here ... you throw this away for me."
posted by Acetylene at 8:01 AM on June 18, 2004

That's what lots of them do. We used to find stacks (still tied together) of free community newspapers in the field behind my school. I don't know if employers have figured out a way of getting around this, but it always seemed like a waste to me.
posted by nprigoda at 8:05 AM on June 18, 2004

You can attribute me or any number of friends I had in college who muttered this without any knowledge they were quoting anybody.
posted by falconred at 8:16 AM on June 18, 2004

It's Orwell. Down and Out in Paris and London.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 8:42 AM on June 18, 2004

Specifically, Chapter 33. "When you see a man distributing handbills you can do him a good turn by taking one, for he goes off duty when he has distributed all his bills."
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 8:47 AM on June 18, 2004

Response by poster: Excellent. Thanks Civil_Disobedient. And I found the entire book online here:
posted by hazyjane at 9:15 AM on June 18, 2004

I saw a funny commedian on Comedy Central (no that is not redundant, as I was attempting to differentiate from "I saw a commedian on Comedy Central," which for me, at least, evokes low-brow hackery and Michael Jackson jokes)the other day say something similar, to the effect of: "When someone hands me a flyer, its like they're saying 'here, you throw this away.'" How I laughed. Anyone know his name? Long hair and sunglasses.
posted by ChasFile at 9:24 AM on June 18, 2004

"Anyone know his name? Long hair and sunglasses."

His name is Mitch Hedberg.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 10:12 AM on June 18, 2004

a similar quote from a Mitch Hedberg comedy routine...

"When someone hands me a flyer, it's like they're saying 'Here, you throw this away.' "
posted by cadastral at 2:42 PM on June 18, 2004

ok... redundant. What're the odds?
posted by cadastral at 2:43 PM on June 18, 2004

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