look up any word, like sex:
 
1.
derogatory term for Cleveland, Ohio; called so due to the fact that Cleveland is on the southern shore of Lake Erie
by Nate June 06, 2003
 
2.
The correct name for the city in Ohio often referred to as "Cleveland." Located by Lake Erie, nothing good has ever come from Cleveland and the city ranks just behind Paris Hilton, Jean Shorts, and trusting Judas as one of God's worst mistakes.
"Do you smell that?"
"Oh dont worry about that, Cleveland is the Mistake by the Lake, it always smells like feces."
by Better than all clevelanders September 26, 2007
 
3.
the rightfully given nickname to the city of cleveland ohio because the city truly is one of the biggest mistakes in the world. not only has cleveland managed to set a river on fire but they also havent won a sports championship since 1948
im looking on the map for cleveland but its nowhere to be found.

thats because they changed the name to mistake by the lake
by john workowitz October 21, 2007
 
4.
Sometimes ignorant people think this can refer to any number of cities located next to a lake; obviously this is incorrect.
Jason: "Fuck the Chicago Bears, they're from the mistake by the lake!"
me: "I hate you."
by Minataur November 13, 2008