US Stamps

It’s OK to be grouchy for the November cartoon contest

Oct 26, 2020, 3 PM

U.S. Stamp Notes by John M. Hotchner

If there is a single character from Sesame Street that seems to distill the essence of 2020, it is Oscar the Grouch.

Oscar has lived in a garbage can since the Sesame Street television series for children debuted in November 1969, and he has the disposition to match yet is capable of occasional kindness.

He is one of the major characters from the series pictured on forever stamps in the Sesame Street pane of 16 issued June 22, 2019, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the series. The pane (Scott 5394) is shown here. I have chosen that Oscar the Grouch stamp (5394g) for the November cartoon caption contest.

Commenting on the election is fair game, but as the election included the United States Postal Service in a prominent role, that could be a theme as well. Many other themes are possible, too, from stamp collecting to the continuing effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

So take on Oscar’s personality for a little while, and tell me what you think he might be thinking or saying about 2020.

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 Nov. 27.

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