The Commuter Challenge

1 November 2007

The November 2007 Challenge

by CC @ 22:34

Submit a caption for each drawing in the New Yorker Caption Contest throughout the month of November. This will involve writing maybe one sentence (or sentence fragment) per week, so make it good. Each should be brilliant and original; shoot to make yours the winning entry, or at least one the top three chosen out of the thousands upon thousands of submissions each week. New cartoons are posted each Monday. You have until the following Sunday to submit a caption.

The Results

October 29th

Ryan Finholm “Let’s go get us some veggie tail.”
Brian Raiter “I’m starting to feel together again.”
Sam Bleckley “Maybe it’s time to move to Idaho and raise a family.”
November 5th

Brian Raiter “Watch it, Jones. We’ll have no Marxist demonstrations in this factory.”
Ryan Finholm “Don’t give me that look.”
Sam Bleckley “If I’m wrong, I’m wrong. But I swear I’ve seen your face before.”
November 12th

Brian Raiter “Well, one day I just got tired of always dealing with other people’s dirty laundry.”
Ryan Finholm “Really? Then what do the other judges do during jury deliberations?”
Sam Bleckley “Ever since we opened ‘Chez Justice’ downstairs.”
November 19th

Ryan Finholm “I know I should change the curtain, but I meet so many men this way.”
Brian Raiter “Just ignore him and he’ll leave. But whatever you do, don’t say ‘olé’.”
Sam Bleckley “So far, my feng shui decorator hasn’t brought me peace.”
November 26th

Ryan Finholm “This looked so much better in the brochure.”
Brian Raiter “Yeah, but the light is so much better over here.”
Eric Maland “Have YOU seen my contact lens?”


  1. Brian noted this in a comment to the previous Caption Contest challenge (December 2006), but it’s worth noting again: the actual winning New Yorker submissions, which I’m assuming must have each been chosen from thousands of entries, really stunk.

    The way the contest works is that people submit during the first week, the New Yorker staff narrows it down to three entries during the second week and post them on the website for people to vote on, and the winner of that vote is announced in the third week. Occasionally one of the top three entries is pretty good – I remember one finalist caption, for the last (desert scene) drawing, to the effect of, “We could have avoided all this traffic if we’d started crawling 15 minutes earlier,” and I thought that was pretty good, certainly better than the winner. The final winner tends to be really disappointing. Sam’s Feng Shui entry should have won the 11/19 contest.

    by RyanF — 15 February 2008 @ 08:51

  2. For the 11/5 cartoon Ryan also came up with the caption “Yes, yes. That pair is also very funny,” which turned out to be extremely similar to one of the three finalists. I still prefer the one he went with, though.

    I had decided that it was all but impossible to write a good caption for the 11/19 cartoon, so I just went with something weak. Then I saw Ryan’s, and realized I could have done better. Then I saw Sam’s, and I actually laughed aloud.

    I actually think my 11/26 caption wasn’t bad, but it’s only funny in the context of a caption contest. If taken as the cartoonist’s original caption, it’s merely ridiculous.

    by breadbox — 15 February 2008 @ 12:33