My cell phone rang at 9:15 a.m. on Friday, June 29, 2018. When I noticed the area code was 212, my pulse quickened. But only a little. Yes, I enter the New Yorker’s cartoon contest religiously. Yes, the magazine calls finalists at the end of the week to tell them their caption will appear in Monday’s issue. But I had already played and lost over 150 times, so I prepared to hear the spiel of a spammer.
It was Jessica (not her real name, because if she said it, I can’t remember it) from the New Yorker. And yes, my caption was a finalist! Jessica wanted to confirm the spelling of my name, and where I’m from, for accuracy; as an editor, I appreciated that. She said some logistical things I hope weren’t important, because I don’t recall a word. As far as my end of the conversation, I believe I blathered like an idiot.
For almost every cartoon, I solicit feedback from my Facebook friends on five possible captions. (Sometimes I’m stumped and can barely come up with one.) With very few exceptions, I submit the caption that receives the most mentions. Such was the case last week. I am grateful to everyone who commented on the drawing of a man dressed in a suit of armor, standing in front of a three-way mirror.
So, what does this mean?
- On Monday, July 2, my caption will appear along with two others in the print version of the New Yorker (July 9th & 16th issue) as well as online.
- You (both generally and specifically) can vote for your favorite caption. (Feel free to read between the lines here: “Pick the one by Karen Greenfield from Santa Barbara!”) You’ll need to create an account to vote, but you can always unsubscribe from e-mails later.
- It’s my turn to be the object of the statement, “Geesh! My caption was better than that.”
The bottom line is that I’m going to be published in the New Yorker. Even if it’s only eight words.