US Stamps

Hop aboard a DC-3 for June cartoon caption contest

May 25, 2023, 8 AM
The cartoon caption contest image for June is the 32ยข DC-3 stamp from the 1997 Classic American Aircraft pane of 20. Entries must be received by June 23 for a chance to win a prize.

U.S. Stamp Notes by John M. Hotchner

For those of us who have spent a lot of time on airplanes, we discover rather quickly that they are a mixed blessing. They get you where you want to go — or at least close. And they are extraordinarily safe compared to the early days of aviation.

As comedian Shelley Berman used to say, “Flying is the safest way to fly!”

But travel by air comes with a list of potential potholes, such as the wanna-be sumo wrestler in the middle seat next to you on a 13-hour flight, or the sudden clear-air turbulence before you’ve had a chance to settle in and rebuckle your seat belt after a visit to the facilities.

On my last trip, the window seat I had asked for became a middle seat for some unaccountable reason, and nothing could be done because the plane was full. And then, the plane was diverted to an airport two hours away from the intended destination because of fog.

On landing, the airline representative cheerfully announced that they had no responsibility because the problem was caused by the weather.

Making lemonade from lemons is a useful skill in these situations, as getting angry does not contribute to making them any better.

So, buckle your seat belt and pretend you are on a plane like the DC-3 shown on a 32¢ stamp (Scott 3142q) in the 1997 Classic American Aircraft pane of 20 (3142) flying to your favorite destination. That stamp is our cartoon caption issue for June.

The DC-3 was a workhorse of civil and military aviation (as a C-47) in the 1940s and 50s.

So, settle into your seat and consider a smooth flight or anything that can go wrong, and tell me what you might be thinking or saying as you fly the sometimes friendly skies.

You can also use the image to say something about travel generally, philately, politics, air traffic control, or any other theme that occurs to you.

Entries with a touch of humor or irony stand the best chance of winning the contest.

There will be two prizes given to the winners: one for the best philatelic line and one for the best nonphilatelic line.

Put your entry (or entries) on a postcard if possible and send it to me, John Hotchner, Cartoon Contest, Box 1125, Falls Church, VA 22041-0125; or email it to If you send an email, it is essential that you include your postal mailing address.

For each winner, the prize will be a 13-week subscription to Linn’s (a new subscription or an extension). Entries must reach me no later than June 23.

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