Most people assume that a cartoon is the product of one person’s efforts, a solitary artist sitting somewhere at a drawing board. The truth is that there are a lot of other people working behind the scenes that readers don’t know about.

Until now.

Here’s a list of some of the people who are indispensable to to the process of bringing you those funny pictures every week:

Pencil Sharpener

A busy cartoonist can’t afford the time taken away from the creative process for menial tasks. Those pencils need to be sharp, and somebody’s got to do it. My sharpener lives in France. Each week I send him several dull pencils, which he expertly sharpens and ships back to me the following week. It’s costly, but well worth it in my estimation.

Bullshit Artist

What does the cartoonist say when buttonholed at a cocktail party or in the street by a representative of the media? The real story might just be way too dull to make interesting copy. That’s why I hired a bullshit artist to invent some useful bogus anecdotes and background stories about my life. Have you heard about how I once rescued a drowning puppy? How I captured the Gold in the hammer-throw at the 1984 Summer Olympics?


This way, if I happen to accidentally lift someone else’s idea, I have someone to blame it on. Plagiarists can be fired and then later quietly rehired after all the fuss is over. I’ve fired and hired mine six or seven times so far.

Computer Guru

Who has time to spend fixing the damned computer when it suddenly decides to ljlkj;0[hi;olnghvnoh;l. in the middle of a mmm8888n [ctxoNGFIUC busy day? Not jljadjjdr me.


I don’t know why. I just like having a rabbit around.


Why do some people try so hard to get rid of these? Insecurities, angst, low self-esteem. They’re the gasoline we throw on the fires of creativity. Or are they? Maybe I’m just a damned fool. A hopeless wretch living a pathetic dream in some nonexistent fantasy world of my own invention.

Ego Massage Therapist

Once or twice a week I count on this woman to come over and tell me things like “You are a comic genius.” Or “Now, that’s funny!” I don’t know how I’d get along without her.

Wardrobe Coordinator

Which teeshirt? Bathrobe? Lucky Hat? These are hard, time-consuming choices. Thanks to my wardrobe coordinator, my clothes are laid out for me when I wake up every morning and at night there’s a fresh set of Pj’s waiting. This saves me oodles of time formerly spent on longish periods of indecision.

Reality Wrangler

It’s important to stay upbeat in order to consistently produce high-quality cartoons and we just can’t afford to be bummed out all the time by bad weather, politics, or incessant war and tribulation. My RW takes care of that by intercepting bad news and replacing it with happier items about cute animals, celebrity sex-lives, and dessert recipes. You should try my key-lime pie. It’s to die for, and I mean that in the happiest possible way.

Check Stretcher

Someone to figure out how to pay all these people.


I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the above people for all they’ve done for me over the years. I’d like to, but I don’t have time, so I’m turning the job over to my
Gratitude Guy.

See You!


Mr. Stevens would like to take this opportunity to thank all the people who make his important work possible, including me, his Gratitude Guy.

~Elmore E. Echo



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