A Cartoonist’s Diary

Emily Flake: Monday

Is it weird that I’m envisioning these day titles as the day titles in The Shining? Nah, it’s probably fine. At any rate: Monday.

Working from home has its advantages. None of these advantages are sartorial. Lulu Eightball is due on Monday. I ink and send her on in while wrapped in a dirty old towel. Part of me feels like I’m watching this scenario at a remove, shaking my head and wondering when it was that I decided that it was okay to work in a towel. Another part of me—a larger, sloppier part—is, like, fuck it.

Do you want to know what I had for breakfast? Well, I’ll tell you. I had plain Fage yogurt with honey, pomegranate seeds, and pepitas, a tiny “cutie” orange, and coffee. I have this or some variation of this almost every morning, so I will let you copy and paste this fact, mentally, into subsequent entries.

I tried very hard, given that I eat a lot of Fage, to make some kind of “Fage-phagy” joke, but it fell apart in my nerdy, nerdy hands.

The New Yorker batches are due on Tuesday. A consequence of this is that the tension begins a slow build on Wednesday, ratchets up as the week progresses, and explodes into a flurry of self-recrimination, fear, and frantic activity on Monday (and Tuesday, if I file my batch electronically rather than go in for the meeting). Thus, this is what’s on the slate for today.

But first I have to deviate from the usual schedule for a visit to the dentist. I know, I know, I’m totally putting on airs. But as fancy as going to the dentist might be, it is also a necessity, as rot and corruption have slipped underneath an old filling and are destroying my tooth from within. I will take a moment to tell you that I end up loving this dentist. He is kind and funny and the doctor who does the actual filling is fantastic. Even their assistant is great. Is there a way I can convince these people to be my OB/GYNs and possibly my therapists? In case you were worried, I put on clothes to go to the dentist.

Thus patched up, it is time to work on the batch. I start this from the comfort of a plastic chair in the laundromat, because my underwear situation has become untenable and also because it’s nice to be out sometimes. The last time I was here I made fast friends with a small girl who kept throwing me her stuffed giraffe. It makes me feel a little creepy that I’m hoping she might be here again. She’s not. I use the wash and dry cycles to write jokes. None of them are about laundry. Maybe one of them is about cruising for kid friends. I take my clean clothes home and keep working on the batch.

Emily Flake is an award-winning illustrator, writer, and cartoonist. Her work appears in Time, The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Globe and Mail, Forbes, The Nation, and many, many others.