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Full Text (236   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Mar 7, 1993

SHEDDING THE SKINS?

Now that change is coming anyway to the Redskins, dare we at last consider The Big Question? Should the team change its name?

There are two valid sides to this issue.

Side One: Tradition. The name is venerable. If you change it, much plastic and polyester merchandise instantly would become obsolete.

Side Two: Race libel. The name is brutishly demeaning to an ethnic group that has been indiscriminately plundered for centuries. It defines a proud and accomplished people by the single characteristic of the pigmentation of their skin.

Being typical pandering journalists, we take no position ourselves. We merely suspect the Redskin name is doomed, and when that occurs, we wish to be ready with an alternative.

So give us one. Come up with a new name for the team. Entries will be judged on humor, originality, and appopriateness to Washington.

Here are two examples:

The Washington Rotundas.

The Washington GS-11.

Get the idea? Send your entries by letter or postcard to The Style Invitational, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071.

Entries must be postmarked on or before Thursday, March 11. Include your phone number. The first-prize winner gets an elegant Timex "Ironman Triathlon" digital watch, valued at $39. Winners and runners-up will be announced in two weeks.

Washington Post employees and members of their immediate families are not eligible for prizes. No purchase necessary.


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Entries must arrive on or before Friday, March 19.

Full Text (326   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Mar 14, 1993

Lately, there has been a bit of a stink over the state motto of Maryland: "Fatti Maschii. Parole Femine." We could not understand what all the fuss was about, unless possibly it was insensitive to overweight individuals or incarcerated women.

Then someone pointed out that this was in Latin, and translated it for us. "Manly Deeds, Womanly Words." What is that supposed to mean? Is it as condescending as it sounds? Is it just stupid?

Clearly, Maryland needs a new motto, a multi-purpose slogan suitable for placement on a state seal or a license plate. Something grand, something that embodies the full bodacious majesty of the state.

Something like . . .

Let's see. We'll come up with an idea any minute now. Hang on, we need to consult an Almanac or something. Okay, here we go:

"Maryland: Where John Wilkes Booth got his broken leg splinted"

No, wait, how about:

"Maryland: A Proud Part of the I-95 Corridor"

"Maryland: The Keno State"

"Maryland: Not at All Ashamed of Our Governor"

"Maryland: Its Second-Largest City Is Rockville"

or, for a faux Latin motto:

Fatti Governor, Parole Ex-Governors Or, Forti Tamperi ("Power Corrupts")

You can do better than these, right? Mail your slogans by letter or postcard to "The Style Invitational, Week 2", The Washington Post, 1150 15th Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334- 4312. Include your phone number. Winners will be announced in two weeks. Entries will be judged on humor and originality.

The first-prize winner will get a huge, tasteless Maryland crab- motif cheezy souvenir ("Maryland: America's Second-Largest Producer of Vulgar Crustacean-Based Ornamental Objects"), an approximate $50 value. Runners-up will get the coveted "Style Invitational" loser's T- shirt. Entries must arrive on or before Friday, March 19.

Next Week: The results of Style Invitational, Week 1. A boffo new name for the Redskins.

Employees of The Washington Post, and their immediate families, are not eligible for prizes. No purchase necessary.


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Week 3 : A Statue of Limitations


contest is satire. Good is not good enough.

Full Text (541   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Mar 21, 1993

Washington has statues out the wazoo. Some are of presidents, some are of military leaders, some are of obscure pathetic has-beens. The idea here is to come up with a concept for a statue of someone - anyone, dead or alive - who doesn't currently have one. You don't have to draw it, you just need to describe it: You may include details of the pose, but you must include an inscription or quotation for the pedestal. Just about anyone will do: Nixon, Haldeman, Kornheiser, Riggins, Ling-Ling, The Energizer Bunny, you know. Anyone.

First-prize winner will get a framed original drawing of his concept, signed and inscribed by famed "Style Invitational" cartoonist by Marc Rosenthal (a $45,000 value once "The Style Invitational" catapults Mr. Rosenthal to the fawning international fame he deserves). Runners-up will get the coveted "Style Invitational" Loser's T-shirt. As always, entries will be judged on humor and originality. Mail your entries to The Style Invitational, Week 3, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312.

Entries must be received by Monday, March 29. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post, and their immediate families, are not eligible for prizes.

Week 1 Results:

A New Name for the Redskins

Let us first note that the single best new name we received, a name so hip and clever that it should be the new name for the Redskins, is "The Washington Clout," submitted by Hank Wallace of Washington. Let us also note that Mr. Wallace did not win our contest. He does not get the elegant Timex Triathlon digital watch, nor does he get the coveted runner-up "Loser" T-shirt. He gets squat. Sorry, Hank. We wanted "funny," and you gave us "good." We trust you will not make that mistake again. This contest is satire. Good is not good enough.

Most hackneyed entries: The Washington Monuments, followed closely by the Gridlocks, the Cookies (get it?), the Red Inks, the Red Tapes, the Pigskins and the PAC-men. Roughly a quarter of the 346 entries came up with one of these gems.

Now here's an original idea: Keep the name Redskins, but change the logo from an Indian to a potato! You were proud of that concept, all 23 of you who thought of it.

Best proposal to keep the "Skins" nickname: The Washington Rumpelstiltskins, by Edwin J.Hughes, Laurel.

Classiest entry: "The Washington L'Enfant Terribles," by Bonnie Tyler, of Washington.

Best Idea requiring elaborate explanation: "The Washington (your name here)." The name would change yearly, depending on which ego- diseased free agent the team is courting. This year, it would be "The Washington Reggies." John P. Gudas, Annapolis.

AND NOW, THE WINNERS:

Fifth Runner-Up: "The Washington Homicide Capitols," by Karin Schmerler, Washington.

Fourth Runner-Up: "The Washington Embittered Food-Service Workers," by Bradley Fisher, Rockville.

Third Runners-Up: "The Washington Senior Officials" and "The Washington Kickbacks," Dan Creel, Rockville.

Second Runner-Up: "The Washington Unindicted Co-Conspirators," by Charles Dean Layman, Silver Spring.

First Runner-Up: "The Washington Irvings," by E. Stanley Murphy, Charlottesville.

AND THE WINNER OF THE WATCH:

"The Baltimore Redskins" (No, don't move the team, just change the name. Let Baltimore worry about it). Douglas R. Miller, Arlington.


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Week 4 : ('If we can put a man on the moon, why can't we ... ')


Fairfax.

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Copyright The Washington Post Company Mar 28, 1993

The Style Invitational - Week 4.

This week, a gripe-fest about modernity and other irritations. Complete this sentence:

"If we can put a man on the moon, why can't we ... "

1. Get him to leave the seat down.

2. Prevent unwanted ear-hair growth.

3. Put a woman on the moon.

4. Brown a chicken in a microwave.

Got it? Entries will be judged, as always, on humor and originality. First-prize winner will get a toaster, a neat old one that looks like it came from Alice Kramden's kitchen (a value of about $60). Runners-up will get the coveted "Style Invitational" loser's T-shirt just as soon as we finish designing them. Send your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 4, The Washington Post, 1150 15th Street NW, Washington D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received by Monday, April 5. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in two weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 2: A New Motto for Maryland.

Here we were at the famed Style Invitational executive treehouse, fussing and fretting because your entries for a new Maryland state motto were so smart there seemed to be no pathetic boneheads out there to make fun of this week. But then, just as we were about to go to press without a trace of the infantile, snide attitude you have come to demand of us, the Maryland General Assembly came through big time. They decided to confront the embarrassing issue of Maryland's chauvinistic state motto (Fatti Maschii, Parole Femine - Manly Deeds, Womanly Words) not by rewriting it, as we asked you to do, but by re- translating it. (Strong Deeds, Gentle Words.) This is like finding a cure for cancer by changing its name to "mumps."

Imagine the possibilities for this kind of bold civic activism: Good news, folks - there are no more homeless people in America! From now on, they shall be called "Residents of the Asphalt Motel."

You showed no such timidity. Your 400-plus submissions fairly throbbed with cynicism. Boy are you guys mean-spirited. You made us so proud, we wept bile.

Without further ado, we present the winners. And to the courageous legislators in Annapolis, we offer this cheerful Latin salute: Ars Infantus, Ars Bandeus ("Run These Babies Up Your Flagpole").

Fifth Runner-Up:

Maryland: Home of Its Residents. Teal Ferguson, Bethesda.

Fourth Runner-Up:

You Have a Problem in Maryland. Susan Wenger, Montgomery Village, Md.

Third Runner-Up:

Maryland: We've Got Wonder Woman in Here. Brendan J. Murray, Silver Spring.

Second Runner-Up:

[Table]
In Hoc Quid Mihi (What's in It for Me?) Jon Katz, Rockville.
First Runner-Up:

Maryland: Please Pardon the Inconvenience. Catherine Barrier, Annapolis.

And Winner of the Crustacean-Motif Souvenir Monstrosity:

Maryland: Wait, We Can Explain ... Oslo, Alexandria.

And Honorable Mentions:

Maryland: Birthplace of Garry Moore, Hans Conried, Mona Freeman and Arnold Schwarzenegger's Father-in-Law. Beverly A. Barth, Edmonston, Md.

Maryland: Phonically Incorrect. Stephanie Weldon, Silver Spring.

Maryland: Some of Our Road Signs Do Not Feature Our Governor's Name. Also, Maryland: Home of the Most Baffling Interstate Sign: "North East Next Right." N. Peter Whitehead, Alexandria.

Maryland: It Looks Better in the Dark. Susan Wenger, Montgomery Village.

Maryland: Wider Than It Is Tall. Also, Where the Motto Comes First: Maryland. Oslo, Alexandria.

Maryland: Where the Magnificent Chesapeake Trickles Down to a Stinking Mud Flat. Ian Ories, Arlington.

[Table]
Viri Maschii Feminae Femine (Manly Men, Womanly Women.) Nick

Dierman, Potomac.

Maryland: YOU Figure It Out. Also, Maryland: Our Rest Stops Feature the Latest in Video Game Technology Christine Eames, Fairfax.

Maryland: Where the Area Code Is Always 301, Unless It's 410. Carol Rodowskas, Silver Spring.

Maryland: Never Been There. Deborah Houy, Boulder, Colo.

Next week: A new monument for Washington.


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Week 5 : There Ought to Be a Law ...


Bob.

Full Text (737   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Apr 4, 1993

There Ought to Be a Law ...

1. The Lott-Akaka Sewage Treatment Act

2. The Lugar-Kildee-Mann Gun Control Law

3. The Tanner-Hyde Spousal Abuse Amendment

4. The Rose-Royce-Carr Automobile Lemon Law

This week's contest: Invent a creative piece of legislation based on skillfully juxtaposed names of actual U.S. senators and representatives. (The names are on a list at the bottom of this page.)

As befits the dignity of the subject matter, the first-prize winner will receive an elegant assortment of practical-joke devices, including but not limited to 1 (one) whoopee cushion and 1 (one) squirting lapel flower, as well as other novelty prank items too revolting to be enumerated here. Runners-up will receive the coveted Style Invitational loser's T-shirt. As always, entries will be judged on humor and originality. Fax them to 202-334-4312, or mail them to The Style Invitational, Week 5, The Washington Post, 1150 15th Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20071. Include your address and phone number. Entries must be received by Monday, April 12. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 3, in which you were asked to come up with a new monument for Washington.

Ahem. The Style Invitational is not a whetstone for political axes. Typical losing entry: "Okay, so it's a statue of Nixon, looking really smug. Around his feet are DEAD and DISMEMBERED Cambodian BABIES, with ... "

Nonono. We value funny. Funny and clever. Like the Tomb Of The Unknown Uncle, submitted by Bob Zane of Woodbridge. It depicts a congenial man, extending a hand. Inscription: "Pull my finger." This would have been a runner-up, except Bob also won first prize (see below), and we need to maintain not only the pretense of evenhandedness, but the illusion of abundance. Why, we have so many brilliant entries, we can discard the best of them willy-nilly! So, sorry. No T-shirt for Bob.

And now, the winners:

Fourth Runner-Up: The Foreign Head of State Statue: The body stays the same. You change the head with each new head of state visiting town. (John Re, Springfield, and Mischeline Toussant, Takoma Park)

Third Runner-Up: A Man Without a Face, at a desk, speaking furtively into the telephone. Inscription: "The Anonymous Source at Work." (Art Brodsky, Olney) Second Runner-Up: The Marion Barry Statue. His trousers lower every minute, then snap back up. Modifying an old Barry political slogan, the inscription reads: "Up With Hope, Down With Dope My Pants." (Bradley Fisher, Rockville)

First Runner-Up: A Sign, to be hung on the real Al Gore: "Not a Statue. Don't Paint." (Jim and Tana Reagan, Reston)

And Winner of the signed and framed Style Invitational cartoon:

The Dan Quayle Statue. Inscription: "Goodbye? WHERE IS EVERYBODY GOING?" (Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

The honorable mentions:

The Andy Warhol Statue, a six-cubic-yard block of silly putty to be molded into the visage of the person whose news coverage the previous week exceeded the Warhol Index by the greatest magnitude. The inscription is whatever is in the boldest print on the first piece of trash removed from the closest garbage can. (Bruce Fraser, Rockville)

The J. Edgar Hoover Statue, in a low-cut red dress. Inscription: "I have the goods on you." (William T. Smith, Vienna)

The Roman Hruska Statue, inscribed with a real quote from the former senator: "Even if {the nominee} is mediocre, there are a lot of mediocre judges and people and lawyers. They are entitled to a little representation, aren't they?" (Lenore C. Garon, Falls Church)

The Oliver North Statue. Inscription: Simper Fi. (Sylvia Phillips, Ashburn, Va.)

The Pork Barrel Statue. A barrel, and a pig. Inscription: "B-dee b- dee b-dee, that's not all, folks." (David Templeton, Oakton)

The Pierre L'Enfant Statue: It would rotate in a counterclockwise direction, while its head rotated 85 degrees in a clockwise direction, snapping back to face forward again every few seconds. For the most part it will be engaged in spinning to its left while it incessantly looks over its right shoulder. Inscription: "Round and round we go ... " It must be placed on a triangular city block where no one can find it. (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

The Hermann Rorschach Statue. Inscription: "What does this remind you of?" (Sigh. Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

And last: The Richard Nixon Statue, to be placed in front of the Watergate Hotel, beckoning travelers. Inscription: "We'll leave the light on." (Jim and Tana Reagan, Reston)


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Week 6 : Putting Words in Their Mouths


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Full Text (684   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Apr 11, 1993

Putting Words in Their Mouths

This week's contest: In 40 words or less, write a caption for either of these two generic cartoons drawn by famed Style Invitational artist Marc Rosenthal, just back from his triumphant two- man show in New York with Henri Matisse.

Examples:

Picture A:

1. It was an embarrassing situation all around. Leonard had wished for his his wife "to become an animal in bed," but the Genie of the Box had somehow, tragically, misunderstood.

2. Only after long stares had been exchanged, after eyes had been locked onto, after gazes had burned in, did the box realize it could no longer trust either the dog or the man.

Picture B:

1. "That Wayne, he always had to be different, and it drove Murray crazy. How many times did he have to tell him? `Siamese twins joined at the buttocks always wear the same number of boxes on their heads.' "

2. Marvin was furious. The haberdasher had assured him the hat was "unique."

First-prize winner will receive a huge genuine two-carat cruddy diamond, a value of nearly $50. Runners-up will get the coveted "Style Invitational" loser's T-shirt and a festive box of Peeps. As always, winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 6, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received by Monday, April 19. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in two weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week Four, in which we asked you to complete this sentence: "If We Can Put a Man on the Moon, Why Can't We ... "

First, a little experiment. Stick your index finger in your mouth (or, if you prefer, someone else's mouth). Now place your finger on this big black heart here: , which symbolizes our goodwill toward you. Now rub your finger in widening circles on the page. Now look at your finger. Hahahaha. What a dope you are. Don't you know that newspaper ink rubs off like a bad habit? Dozens of you came up with this as your biggest gripe. Rest assured, we'll get right on it, just as soon as the troubled newspaper industry coughs up a billion dollars for research, and Gumby-shaped life forms are discovered on Io, the fifth moon of Jupiter.

Secondly, we wish to report that there seems to be a teensy bit of anti-male hostility out there, judging from the identical entries from more than 100 different women, saying, "If we can send a man to the moon, why can't we SEND THEM ALL THERE?"

The answer: Because then who would judge the Style Invitational? Girls????

Ahem. The winners:

Fifth Runner-Up: " ... Pass on first down?" (Charles E. Brunswick, Springfield)

Fourth Runner-Up: " ... Find a cure for posterior cleavage?" (Robert Zane, Woodbridge)

Third Runner-Up: " ... Figure out how to walk a cat?" (Stuart Segal, Vienna)

Second Runner-Up: " ... Offer sea monkeys as a low-fat alternative to chicken?" (Rich Stone, Washington)

First Runner-Up: " ... Put an end to the tragic heartbreak of involuntary `nose whistle'?" (Felix McBundy, Silver Spring)

And the Winner of the vintage toaster:

" ... Remember why we did it?" (Geri, Tom and Heidi Klitsch, Wheaton)

Honorable Mentions:

" ... Colonize the sun?" (Chuck Rainville, Baltimore)

" ... Make a traffic light that lets you go when it knows there's no reasonble expectation that a vehicle will come from the other direction in your grandmother's lifetime?" (Phil Clutts, Silver Spring)

" ... Put toilets in cars?" (Gynny Katon, Rockville)

" ... Just collect the rocks on Earth?" (Papan Devani, Arlington)

" ... Have driver's licenses that renew themselves?" (Frances C. McCormick, Bartlett, Ohio)

" ... Unwrap CDs without needing an engineering degree?" (Bonita Boyle Cote, Gaithersburg)

" ... Design a toilet and shower that can live in harmony?" (Daniel J. Berkowitz, Washington)

And last:

" ... Rise above griping for toasters?" (Christine Worthen Eames, Fairfax)

Next Week: There Oughta Be A Law.


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Week 7 : Beat the Bands


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Full Text (550   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Apr 18, 1993

Beat the Bands

"My Dad Is Dead"

"Jason's Gay Haircut"

"Men Without Underwear"

"Half Man Half Biscuit"

"Trotsky Ice Pick"

This week's contest: Once, rock band names were wholesome if dippy ("Vinnie Delpupo and the Del-Tonics"). Then they became self- consciously cute ("The Raspberry Pillow"). Finally, a few years ago, they began getting intriguingly bizarre. Seditious. Obnoxious. Idiotic, yet somehow strangely ... idiotic.

Every name above belongs to a real band. But you can come up with better ones, can't you? Go ahead, weird us out.

First-prize winner will receive a selection of really obscure tapes by real groups with infantile names, a value of nearly $50. Runners-up will get the coveted "Style Invitational" loser's T- shirt. As always, winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 7, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, April 26. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week Five, in which you were invited to come up with funny federal legislation based on the real names of congresspersons:

We at the Style Invitational are nothing if not arrogant. For example, we are outraged that Columbia University snubbed us this week by not awarding us the Pulitzer Prize for Public Service. Still, we must admit to being uncharacteristically humbled by your 3,400 entries to this contest. They were so clever we had to create two sets of winners and runners-up, distributed over two weeks. This is Week One.

Good Ideas, But Too Bad Everyone Else Had Them, Too: Dunn-Deal, Carr-Bumpers, Mink-Coats, Penny-Wise, Sharp-Payne, Unsoeld-Wheat, Robb-Rockefeller, Wise-King-Solomon, and Hamburg-Hoekstra-Pickle.

And now, the Week 1 winners:

++ Fifth Runner-Up: The Green-Cardin-Spector Illegal Aliens Act (Rick von Behren, Glenn Dale)

++ Fourth Runner-Up: The Watt-D'Amato-McHugh Voter Apathy Act (Stuart A. Segal, Vienna)

++ Third Runner-Up: The Boren-Gordon-Lightfoot-Crapo Easy Listening Abolition Act. (Ed VanderPloeg and Bob Vietrogoski, Centreville)

++

Second Runner-Up: The Sawyer-Bumpers Ban on Public Breast Feeding (Clarence Coo, Alexandria)

++

First Runner-Up: The Traficant-DeLay-Akaka Roadside Port-A-Pot Act (Carole and Stephanie Dix, Gaithersburg)

And the Winner of the Whoopie Cushion and Other Revolting Novelty Items:

++

The Watt-Eshoo-Dunn-Furse-Leahy Pork Barrel Protection Act (Carol Vance, Washington) And Honorable Mentions:

++

The Exon-Dunn-Kildee-Byrd-Fish Environmental Impact Study (Wernher Baussus, Reston)

++

The Paxon-Wallop Alcohol Content Standards Act (Jennifer Mazarr, Arlington)

++ The Murtha-Washington Memorial Resolution to Establish Official Presidential Spousal Duties (Ellen Nestos, Alexandria)

The Wise-Buyer-Rangel-Olver-Price Free Trade Agreement (Tom and Debbie Shatten, Pittsburgh, Pa.)

++ The Brown-Snowe Pooper-Scooper Law (Steven Rettinger, Potomac)

++

++

The Pickle-Dorgan Transplant Regulatory Act (Carol Vance, Washington)

++

The Robb-Petri Vintage TV Act and the Kohl-Swett Blind Date Regulatory Act (Robin Rogoff Star, Rockville)

++

The Doolittle-Dickey-Duncan Sex Education Act (Mary Edwards, Dale City)

++

The Eshoo-Blute Anti-Conspiracy Law (Joan Bobchek, Fredericksburg)

The Deal-Meehan Congressional Reform Act (Paul Elstein, Columbia)

The Young-Studds-Moseley-Braun Anabolic Steroids Decriminalization Act (Tom and Debbie Shatten, Pittsburgh, Pa.)

++ The Robb-Regula-Mann Tax Reform Amendment (Jacki Drucker, Arlington)

And last,

++

The Grassley-Knollenberg Presidential Assassination Conspiracy Prevention Act (Harold Mantle, Darnestown)

NEXT WEEK: Part II


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Week 8 : I Am Spurious (Yellow)


delight.

Full Text (569   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Apr 25, 1993

RUSSIAN SPACE PROBE DISCOVERS HEAVEN!

HUBBY`S BAD BREATH KILLS HIS WIFE!

HITLER WAS A WOMAN!

GALS! SNEEZING MAKES YOUR BREASTS BIGGER!

MAN SAWS OFF ARM TO GET HANDICAPPED PARKING STICKER!

GAY CHIMP FALLS IN LOVE WITH CIRCUS MIDGET!

All the headlines above actually appeared in the Weekly World News, a supermarket tabloid that traffics in eye-popping tales of extraterrestrials, life after death, miracle cures, Elvis sightings and highly improbable human drama. The Weekly World News has so trampled traditional standards of fair and responsible journalism, so abandoned even the pretense of objectivity and truth-telling, that it has earned the distinction of being America's Crappiest Newspaper. Needless to say, we at the Style Invitational find it a total delight.

THIS WEEK's CONTEST

Write a headline for the Weekly World News (Maximum length, 10 words)

First-prize winner will get an article written about him in the Weekly World News (Editor Eddie Clontz has agreed to do this), a selection of handsome Weekly World News T-shirts, plus all of the national shame and ridicule occasioned by that notoriety.

Runners-up will get the coveted "Style Invitational" loser's T- shirts. As always, winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 8, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, May 3. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

REPORT FROM WEEK 5 (Part II)...

In which we challenged you to come up with funny legislation based on the real names of congressmen. But first, a personal word to the winners and runners-up of our previous contests, the men and women whose creative genius has delighted millions of readers and fueled the dubious engine of this cheesy contest, but who have been sending us polite letters wondering where their prizes are: Get a life, you whiny little precocious over-achieving smart-ass nerds. Your prizes aren't ready yet.

And Now, This Week's Winners:

Fifth Runner-Up: The Fowler-Fish White Wine Distribution Act (Robin Rogoff Star, Rockville)

Fourth Runner-Up: The Long-Boren-Stump Campaign Limitation Act (Michael J. Hammer, Washington)

Third Runner-Up: The Regula-Crapo Prune Subsidy Bill (Ira P. Robins, Bethesda)

Second Runner-Up: The Hamburg-Shelby-Dunn Meat Cooking Act (Robert Lennartz, Charlottsville)

First Runner-Up: The Kilder-Wise-Byrd Act, a repeal of the Spotted Owl Endangerment Law (Patricia Dollar and Ira Rutberg, McLean)

AND THE WINNER OF THE WHOOPIE CUSHION AND OTHER REVOLTING NOVELTY ITEMS: The Cantwell-English-Read Dyslexia Research Funding Bill (Jacki Drucker, Arlington)

And Honorable Mentions:

The Watt-Eshoo-Inouye Sex-Change Regulatory Act (Carol Vance, Washington)

The Ewing-Watt-Armey Verbal Taunting Ban (Jennifer Mazarr, Arlington)

The Condit-Wheat Parent and Child Restroom Act (Rubin Rogoff Star, Rockville)

The Wyden-Dorgan Penile Implant Safety Act (Lauren Scott, Washington)

The Leach-Mica-Deal Monty Hall Commemorative Stamp Act (Steve Aaronson, Arlington)

The Klecza-Gejdenson-Ros-Lehtinen-Hockbrueckner-Falcomavaega Simplified Internal Revenue Code ("Dee Dee," Silver Spring)

The Mazzoli-Waters Oil Spill Control Bill (Leon Slavin, Laytonsville)

The Meek-Young-Mann-Holden-Dickey-Harman-Nunn Exhibitionist Freedom of Expression Act (Mark Pitre, Rockville)

The Robb-Peterson-Payne-Pell Income Redistribution Act (Gar Enders, Arlington)

The Crane-Fawell-Olver Construction Safety Act (Darren Mitchell, Mount Ranier)

The Watt-D'Amato-Whitten-Johnson Anti-Impotency Law (Matt Dickert, Reston)

And last, The Bradley-Jefferson Bill to Erect a Living Memorial for Oustanding U.S. Citizens (Bradley Jefferson, Centreville)

NEXT WEEK: PUTTING WORDS IN THEIR MOUTHS.


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Week 9 : Vanity Unfair


prizes.

Full Text (697   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company May 2, 1993

TKTKTKTK: Mike Wallace

Uh O: Oriole Team Bus

+: Roger Maris

B MBO: Vanna White

I 8 NY: Godzilla

NITE NITE: Jack Kevorkian

This Week's Contest: Create vanity license plates for famous people. Maximum number of characters is eight, with spaces counting as one character. You are limited to letters, numbers and common symbols found on a typewriter keyboard. First-prize winner will receive several irresponsible how-to books published by Loompanics, Unlimited, including "The Complete Book of Razor Fighting," "Successful Armed Robbery," "Home Workshop Explosives," and "Physical Interrogation Techniques," a value of about $50. Runners-up will get the coveted "Style Invitational" loser's T-shirt. As always, winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 9, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received by Monday, May 10. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 6

... In which we asked you to supply captions to these two cartoons.

But first, a few words about excellence. Although we received more than 500 entries to this contest, and have selected only 15 of them as winners, you will note that several people are represented more than once, including the highly mysterious "Oslo of Alexandria," the first-prize winner of Week 2 who darn near won again this week. You may reasonably wonder: Is this fair? Answer: Of course it is fair. The Style Invitational is the nation's last remaining pure meritocracy. The best is chosen, without regard to previous history, demographics, national origin, sexual orientation, dental anomalies, annoying personal habits, or cash inducements you may have included with your letters. In fact, our judging is done completely blindfolded, so we cannot see your name, or your address, or your entry. We hope this clears matters up. Thank you.

Fifth Runner-up: (Cartoon B) Pythagoras was training Rover to guard his lunch box when something occurred to him. (Ken Schwartz, Burke)

Fourth Runner-Up: (Cartoon A) "You scatter the ashes ... I get the bones." (Melinda Blachfield, Damascus)

Third Runner-Up: (Cartoon B) "Okay, kid. They're all warmed up." (Oslo, Alexandria.)

Second Runner-Up: (Cartoon B) "Did you see that idiot back there carrying his packages in a shopping cart?" (Elliot Greene, Silver Spring)

First Runner Up: (Cartoon B) Identical twins separated at birth often lead identical lives without knowing it; tomorrow, on Geraldo. (Steven Schupak, Chevy Chase)

And the winner of the Big, Ugly Diamond:

(Cartoon A) Near starvation, the Giant Rat of Sumatra and the lawyer begin to eye the cajunCajun? jem cheese ... and each other. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Honorable mentions:

Cartoon A: It was bad enough that his master had him neutered, Sparky felt, but to keep his cojones ital, as in our dict.? jem in a box on the kitchen table as a constant reminder of the man's power over him was just too much. (Charles Layman, Silver Spring)

Marge Schott's dog could not relax until the will was read. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

In a split second - before Bowser and Henry even had time to blink - that annoying bug shot out of its box, flew into Bowser's eye, careened off Henry's eye, then safely made it back, locking the lid from the inside. (Kathy Weisse, Sykesville)

Each plotted to have the Maltese Brick all to himself. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

What do you do with a giant Folger's crystal? (Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

Cartoon B

"How was I to know," said Zeke to his paramour Francis, "that when we made our lover's suicide pact, we'd end up in Hell, spending eternity doing old Carmen Miranda routines and slam dancing?" (Charles Layman, Silver Spring)

Stephen and William had never really got the hang of "hide and go seek." (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

In an effort to revive the heyday of the Coneheads, the cast of "Saturday Night Live" tried everything. (Oslo, Alexandria)

And last:

"No, I don't know what the hell that R. is doing up there, either." (Geary Johns, Columbia)

Next Week: Beat the Bands.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 10 : A Week That Will Live in Euphemy


name=fulltext>
Full Text (471   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company May 9, 1993

PLANE CRASH = UNSCHEDULED ARRIVAL

THROWING UP = A RETRO DINING EXPERIENCE

LIAR = TRUTH ECONOMIST

ACNE = FACIAL ACCESSORIES

MURDERER = AFTERLIFE FACILITATOR

This week's contest: Euphemisms. We came up with this concept after receiving a brochure from a school for "persons with multiple exceptionalities." Eventually we figured out this meant "lunatics." And so we got to thinking about how euphemisms are cynical assaults on the truth, and must be ridiculed to oblivion. So: Write us a funny one.

First-prize winner will receive a Handsome White House Dinner Plate, which is a euphemism for a "cheap, foreign-made porcelain gewgaw featuring the nearly recognizable likenesses of American presidents," a value of maybe $20. Runners-up will get the coveted "Style Invitational" loser's T-shirt. As always, winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to The Style Invitational, Week 10, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received by Monday, May 17. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from week 7

...in which we asked you to come up with names for new rock bands.

Your 3,200 entries were "spirited." This is a euphemism for "twisted beyond all reason." How twisted? Suffice it to say that dozens of hilarious entries had to be eliminated for reasons of taste. Now look at those that survived the taste test, and permit your imagination to boggle.

Eighth Runner-Up: Pointless Umlautzz (Ron Vlaskamp, Crofton)

Seventh Runner-Up: Armageddon Sandwich (Rob Runett and Todd Kolm, Potomac)

Sixth Runner-Up: Manson Family Values (Bradley Fisher, Rockville)

Fifth Runner-Up: The Irving R. Levine Experience (Anthony Fabic, Gaithersburg)

Fourth Runner-Up: Satan In Therapy (Catherine D. Richardson, Alexandria)

Third Runner-Up: Stroke the Fat Elvis (Douglas E. Morris, Washington)

Second Runner-Up: Meal of Poodles (Edward Giefer, Arlington)

First Runner-Up: Mohandas Hitler (Ranald Totten, Springfield)

And the Winner of the Collection of Awful Tapes:

Your Mother Was My Father (Beverley Brown, Falls Church)

Honorable mentions:

When Ruby Met Oswald (Mark Hagstrom, Leesburg)

Shemp's Swollen Prostate (Craig Garland, Oxon Hill)

Xenophobic Strangers (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

Crosseyed Cyclops; also, Spiro Agnew's Yard Sale (Geoff and Jacki Drucker, Arlington)

We Who Are Flaccid (Jeff Evans, Arlington)

Six-Word, Eight Syllable Band Name (Peter Geiger, Reston)

Picturing Your Parents Doing It (Rachel Carasso, Gaithersburg)

Ich Bin Ein Target (Ranald Totten, Springfield)

The Incontinentals (John H. Prentice, Washington)

Turn Your Head and Cough (Tony Sanders, Holly Sanders, and Page Newton, Washington)

Kevorkian Express (Melissa Fischer, Washington)

Spastic Mohels (Stephen Adise, Silver Spring)

Dead Rock Stars of the Future (Scott Kuntz, Catonsville)

And last: Give Me The Damned T-Shirt (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Next Week: Tom Gets His T-shirt.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 11 : In Which We Give You the Back Off Our Shirts.


name=fulltext>
Full Text (586   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company May 16, 1993

A mere 11 weeks after the start of this sorry contest, we have finally gotten around to designing the T-shirts won by runners-up. But just as we were about to get them manufactured and shipped out, we came up with a swell new way to delay the whole process a few more weeks! The back of the shirt needs a slogan, something that captures the spirit of The Style Invitational. What is that spirit? You tell us. No hints this week. And no, "Your Clever Words Here" won't win. The right idea, though.

First-prize winner will receive five handsome T-shirts, a value of about $75. They will of course not be Style Invitational T-shirts, with your fabulous slogan on them. To win those, you have to lose. Hahahahahahaha. Runners-up, as always, get the losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 11, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334- 4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, May 24. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 8, in which we asked you to come up with sleazy headlines for the Weekly World News:

Roseanne Pregnant With Elvis's Baby. Elvis Pregnant With Roseanne's Baby. Baby Pregnant With Roseanne's Elvis. Elvis Has Gas. Elvis Has Boogers. Roseanne Explodes.

Sigh. True comic genius does not submit to formula, folks. True comic genius would be a headline like CHAINSAW PROCTOLOGIST INDICTED, which no one submitted, fortunately, since it is far too tasteless to print.

The promise of a story about the first-prize winner in the famously disreputable Weekly World News, as opposed to our usual lousy prizes, elicited more than 700 entries, nearly 20 of which were clever and inventive. Here they are:

Fifth Runner-Up: ELVIS HEADLINES USO SHOW FOR MIAS STILL IN VIETNAM

(C. Paul Mendez, Silver Spring)

Fourth Runner-Up: TRAGIC LEPER TRAPEZE ACT FATALITY

(Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Third Runner-UP: EARTH DISCOVERED TO BE `SHOOTER' IN GIANT ALIEN MARBLE GAME

(Jim and Tana Reagan, Reston)

Second Runner-Up: ELVIS FINISHES 3RD IN ELVIS IMPERSONATOR CONTEST

(Chris David Zaharis, Baltimore)

First Runner-Up: AL GORE BELIEVED ALIVE - WHAT HE MIGHT LOOK LIKE

(Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

And the Winner of a Story in the Weekly World News: LIKENESS OF HONEYMOONERS' `ALICE' FOUND ON MOON

(Byron Baker, Capital Heights)

Honorable Mentions:

MISTAKEN FOR MIMES, ALIENS BEATEN BY ANGRY MOB

(Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

NAPOLEON'S PENIS FOUND IN RECTANGULAR PASTRY

(Jesse Etelson, Rockville)

ALIENS SIMONIZED MY CAR

(Susan Campbell, New York)

SCIENTISTS DISCOVER TREES ARE WHISKERS OF `MAN IN THE EARTH'

(Jim and Tana Reagan, Reston)

STUDY FINDS MOST BALD MEN VICTIMS OF BAD HAIRCUTS

(Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

WEDDING NIGHT SHOCKER - BRIDE AND GROOM HAD SEX CHANGE OPERATIONS

("Dee Dee," Silver Spring)

EXCLUSIVE: ELVIS BURIED STILL ATTACHED TO TOILET SEAT

(Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

HEALTH COSTS TO PLUMMET: KEVORKIAN TO BECOME HEALTH CZAR

(Kenneth Lynch, Lutherville)

JACK THE RIPPER WAS GROVER CLEVELAND

(Kathy Weisse, Sykesville)

SCIENTIST PROVES MARTIAN CANALS MADE BY GIANT ROLLERBLADES

(Stephen Adise, Silver Spring)

CAPITALS WIN STANLEY CUP

(Craig Ulander, Mount Airy)

POPE SECRETLY WARNS CLERGYMEN: HEAVEN IS GETTING FULL

(David Moon, Kettering)

BLIND ELVIS-LIKE ALIENS IMPREGNATE ROSEANNE, RANSACK GRAVES OF MARILYN, JFK

(Barry Reichenbaugh, Alexandria)

LOCAL EDITOR SHOOTS DOG, WIFE, THEN SEL (Jim and Tana Reagan, Reston)

NEXT WEEK: Vanity Unfair.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 12 : HERE DOGGEREL . . .


name=fulltext>
Full Text (544   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company May 23, 1993

Doc Kevorkian, AKA Jack,

Had no need for a magazine rack.

He simply ignored

That his patients were bored

Since he figured they weren't coming back.

The husband of Hillary Rodham, he

Came out firmly in favor of sodomy.

A nation would wonder

About Clinton's blunder -

Did the president have a lobotomy?

A graceful and fair ballerina

From Bosnia-Herzegovina

Kept her spirits undamp

In a refugee camp,

A-twirl behind coiled concertina.

This week's contest: Write a limerick. That's the easy part. The hard part: It must contain one of the following names: "Hillary Rodham Clinton," "Jack Kevorkian," "George Stephanopoulos" or "Bosnia-Herzegovina." The names don't have to be part of the rhyme, and their constituent words can be separated.

First-prize winner will receive a selection of revolting novelty items, including but not limited to a twitching rubber rat caught in a leg-hold trap, a value of about $35. A special award will be given for the most pitiful attempt at a rhyme. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational Losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 12, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, May 31. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 9, in which we asked you to come up with vanity license plates for famous people. But first, a quick mail call. A few of you have written in, asking what we do with your losing entries after the judging. What would you do with 500 lame Vanities? We had a bonfire. You're welcome.

The Winners:

Fifth Runner-Up: UP CHUCK - Princess Di (Bruce Powers, Alexandria. Also, "Hoops," Alexandria)

Fourth Runner-Up: CALL AAA - All Metro buses (Harold Kerr, Washington)

Third Runner-Up: R U MINE? - Dr. Cecil Jacobson, "The Sperminator" (Audrey Kovalak, Springfield)

Second Runner-Up: NTM NTM - Judy Garland (Tom O'Brien, Winchester)

First Runner-Up: FCC YOU - Howard Stern (Terri Levine, Herndon)

And the Winner of the Irresponsible Books About Robbery, Torture and other Mayhem:

[Table]
FOR! - Dan Quayle (Don Beale, Arlington)
Honorable Mentions:

ONLYACAR - Sigmund Freud (Robert Hofheimer, Norfolk)

I 4 GOT - Ronald Reagan (Anna Sokol, Alexandria)

1 2 MANY - John Riggins (Gordon Angell, McLean)

YES DEAR - Bill Clinton (Tom Crites, Gaithersburg)

I/M - Jack the Ripper (Kathy Weisse, Sykesville)

[Table]
QUAIL1 - Dan Quayle (Eric D. Greenberg, Washington)
IM L8 - Bill Clinton (Jonathan S. Silber, Bethesda)

(A blank plate) - Al Gore (George C. Montgomery, Bethesda)

(A blank plate) - J.P. Sartre (Ken Schwartz, Burke)

\#\#\\\#\# - LAPD cars (E. Kelly Merritte, Charleston, W.Va.)

[Table]
1/8/40- - Elvis Presley (Neil Molenda, Arlington)
I C U - George Orwell (Kathy Weisse, Sykesville)
COPY +.+ - Joe Biden (Harold Mantle, Darnestown)
TRODHAM - Hillary Clinton (Hoops, Alexandria)

FEELINGS - Bob Packwood (Nick Dierman, Potomac)

[Table]
GO CAPS - e.e. cummings (Rich Isaacman and Kathy Pedelty,

Bowie)

And Last,

SO LONG - deceased porn star John Holmes (Margaret Welch, Arlington)

NEXT WEEK: A WEEK THAT WILL LIVE IN EUPHEMY.


The Style Invitational Week 113 analogies results

Is To! Results of Week 133 of The Style Invitational  
The contest was to state an SAT-style analogy in the form “A is to B as X is to Y.” 
* Fifth Runner-Up: Guilt is to innocence as O.J. Simpson is to Maggie Simpson. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel, Md.)
* Fourth Runner-Up: Ketchup is to vegetables as Ronald Reagan was to the presidency. (Elijah Tucker, 13, Kensington, Md.)
* Third Runner-Up: Estrogen is to testosterone as housewarming is to arson. (Jennifer Hart, Arlington, Va.)
* Second Runner-Up: Style Invitational is to Style as funny bone is to funny. (Leonard Greenberg, Sterling, Va.)
* First Runner-Up: Dole is to ol' as Newt is to ew. (Stephen Offutt, Arlington, Va.)
* And the winner of the framed poster featuring comparative-size drawings of animal wee-wees: A good joke is to its explanation as sex is to trying to have a baby. Get it? It takes all the fun out of it! (Mike Connaghan, Gaithersburg, Md.)
* Honorable Mentions:
An Arkansan is to the White House as a washboard is to the National Symphony Orchestra. (Tommy Litz, Bowie, Md.)
Dogs are to cats as favorite uncles out on parole are to 10th-grade Latin teachers. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel, Md.)
Congressional Republicans are to the federal government as a lawn mower is to crabgrass. And daisies. And tulips. And . . . (Mike Connaghan, Gaithersburg, Md.)
Madonna is to Marilyn as carob is to chocolate. (Russell Beland, Springfield, Va.)
Gus Frerotte is to Heath Shuler as a $ 1.99 burger is to a $ 5 piece of sushi. (Steven King, Alexandria, Va.)
Bill Clinton is to Newt Gingrich as the Pillsbury Doughboy is to the Pillsbury Doughboy with fangs. (Ted Hudson, Alexandria, Va.)
Analogies are to non sequiturs as non sequiturs are to flashlights. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg, Md.)
Giant is to Safeway as flat chests are to really nice hooters. (B. Packwood, Portland, Ore.)
Those big wads of cotton in the tops of medicine bottles are to aspirin what tofu is to Chinese food. (Russell Beland, Springfield, Va.)
Lust is to love as an electrical fire in the basement is to a wood fire in the Franklin stove. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel, Md.)
Balancing the budget is to Congress as Hobbes is to Calvin. (Roy Highberg, Bentonville, Va.)
As is to analogies as is to is to analogies. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg, Md.)
Bob Dole is to humor as Pringles is to diversity. (Paul F. Krause, Fredericksburg, Va.)
The LAPD is to defense lawyers as Paul Mellon is to the National Gallery. (Sarah Worcester, Bowie, Md.)
"I'm outta" is to "here" as one shoe dropping is. (Mike Connaghan, Gaithersburg, Md.)
George Washington is to the cherry tree as Jack Kevorkian is to the family tree. (Greg Arnold, Herndon, Va.)
The Unabomber is to a good point as an appendix is to . . . uh, never mind. No relation there. No sirree. (Mike Connaghan, Gaithersburg, Md.)
Squirrel is to alarm clock as cable deregulation is to lower rates. (Sarah Worcester, Bowie, Md.)
Bob Packwood is to an honored, respected lawmaker as Bob Packwood is to a real macho studmuffin. (Phil Plait, Silver Spring, Md.)
The Style Invitational is to subliminal messages as Honorable Mention is to Mike Connaghan. (Mike Connaghan, Gaithersburg, Md.)
* And Last:
Style Invitational is to The Washington Post as two heads are to a calf. (Jennifer Hart, Arlington, Va.)
Steve Offutt of Arlington is to the The Style Invitational as the Chicago Cubs are to the Stanley Cup. (Steve Offutt, Arlington, Va.)
A1 is to F2 [the page number the Invitational appeared on back then]  as AA is to DTs (Jennifer Hart, Arlington, Va.)
The Style Invitational is to poop jokes as cow is to pie. (Mike Connaghan, Gaithersburg, Md.)


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 14 : Collective Insanity


prizes.

Full Text (499   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jun 6, 1993

A Slick of lawyers

A Smuggery of politically correct individuals

An Olfaction of babies

A Confusion of psychiatrists

A Nitpick of wonks

Today, we present our first reader-induced contest, proposed by Kitty Theurmer of Washington, who receives for her gracious help some plastic vomit. Kitty proposed that we modernize collective nouns (as in a "pride" of lions or an "exaltation" of larks), inventing snide new names for groups of things. As in the examples above.

First-prize winner will receive a big fluffy pillow, because we always wanted to mail somebody a big fluffy pillow. It's worth about $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 14, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, June 14. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 11, in which you were asked to come up with a slogan for the back of the coveted Style Invitational losers' T- shirt.

There were more than 1,200 entries, almost 5 percent of which were some variation of "If You Get It, You Don't Get It," a corruption of The Washington Post's television ad campaign. To which we respond, "If You Get a Life, You Won't Not Have a Life." Thank you.

Many of you have inquired whether the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirt, almost ready for shipping, is available for purchase. Yes, it is. It costs $765.

And now, the winners:

Eighth Runner-Up: You Can't Lose if You Don't Play (Jim Martin, Alexandria)

Seventh Runner-Up: Near Genius Nearly Rewarded (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

[Table]
Sixth Runner-Up: Will Exchange Shirt for Idea (Tom Witte,
Gaithersburg)
Fifth Runner-Up: Born to Be Barely Adequate (Charles Layman,

Silver Spring)

Fourth Runner-Up: Words Fail Me (Mort Oakes, Monkton; also, Jan Genevro, Rockville)

[Table]
Third Runner-Up: My Name Here (Craig Ulander, Mount Airy)

Second Runner-Up: Machine wash. Tumble dry. Do not bleach. Do not iron. (Rick Greene, Washington)

[Table]
First Runner-Up: Mistakes Were Made (Jennifer Hart, Arlington)

And The Winner of the five T-shirts, none of which contains her ingenious slogan, which will appear on Style Invitational losers' T- shirts only:

Almost Do It! (Mary Pat Jones, Potomac)

Honorable Mentions:

No Radio in Pants (Mary Mazer, Antioch, Tenn.)

The unexamined life IS worth living. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

I used to be, you know, inarticulate. (Ken Schwartz, Burke)

Will write for food. (Hoops, Alexandria)

Big, Hairy Deal (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

Wet the OTHER side, idiot! (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

When Aroused, I Submit (Addison L. Gilmore, Cumberland)

Quayle in '96 (David Moon, Kettering)

Humor Hurts (Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

And Last:

No, I'm not Bob Zane of Woodbridge. (Michael J. Hammer, Washington)

Next Week: Here, Doggerel ...


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 15 : Punch Us.


Ms. Hillary Clinton (nee Rodham)

Full Text (590   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jun 13, 1993

Sandra Day O'Connor, Abraham Lincoln and Woody Woodpecker are in a boat that capsizes. There is only one life preserver. Sandra says ...

How do you know if Bill Clinton has been in your house?

Knock knock.

Who's there?

Hillary.

Hillary who?

...

A man walks into a bar in Washington and orders a Kahlua and root beer fizz. He notices that the woman next to him has a chicken bone in her hair. "Hey," he says to the bartender ...

A nun, a rabbi and an atheist are taking a tour of the White House ...

This week's contest: Complete any of these jokes in 75 words or fewer. First-prize winner will receive several books of tasteless jokes, a value of about $30. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 15, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, June 21. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 12, in which we asked you to write a limerick using any of these names: George Stephanopoulos, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Jack Kevorkian or Bosnia-Herzegovina. We offered a contest poetic.

The results, they were pretty pathetic.

'Twas the worst of our fears -

You all had tin ears!

And kept trying to stick in extra clunky words and committing rhymes that gave us a headache.

And now the winners, some of which have been lightly edited to improve their meter: Fourth Runner-Up:

Hillary Rodham spent hours

Developing Bill Clinton's powers.

But she really got miffed

When she bought him a gift,

And he said that he'd rather have Flowers.

(Scott Straub, Winchester, Va.)

Third Runner-Up:

There are names that are spoken with ease,

While others come out like a sneeze.

By George, there's a lot of us

Who think "Stephanopoulos"

Just sounds like a rare foot disease.

(Art and limerick, Andy Black, Reston)

Second Runner-up:

Ms. Hillary Clinton (nee Rodham)

Charmed Bill from his top to his bottom

Now that Billy is prez

Will he do as she says?

Has she not only got him, but got 'em?

(Janet Crawford, Pomfret, Md.)

First Runner-up:

The president's spokesman was out.

An afternoon lunch date, no doubt.

"Find George Stephanopoulos!

This crisis could topple us!

Al Gore's got termites, not gout!"

(Kevin Dunleavy, Fairfax)

And the winner of the twitching rubber rat caught in a trap:

Jack Kevorkian, Suicide Doc,

Awoke to a terrible shock.

His machine ... it was broke!

"But folks want to croak!

I suppose I can use a blunt rock."

(Jimmy Nguyen, Rockville)

Special award of a tin cup for the most pitiful attempt at a rhyme:

In a faraway jungle most populous

With elephant and rhinoceros,

George deemed it unsound

That we sleep on the ground

Because something big might Stephanopoulos.

(C. Paul Mendez, Silver Spring)

Honorable Mentions:

Ms. Clinton, that's Hillary Rodham,

Into the White House, she got him.

Now, when they're in bed,

Or so it is said,

She prefers the top to the bottom.

(Art and limerick by Andy Black, Reston)

Doc Kevorkian, also called Jack

Is possessed of a marvelous knack.

He'll provide a neat visa

To any old geeza

For a trip on the heavenly track.

(Thomas A. Parrott, Washington)

Next Week: Anagrams=A Man's Rag.


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Week 16 : 'I Am Addicted to an Asinine Newspaper Contest With Crummy Prizes'


& Mark Zimmermann, Silver Spring)

Full Text (745   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jun 20, 1993

"Men Who Get Sex Changes and Then Become Lesbians"

"I Caught My Hubby in a Topless Bar"

"I Am Sleeping With My Best Friend's Mom"

"I Am Sleeping With My Son's Girlfriend"

"Gay Men Who Date Married Men"

"Black Men Who Want to Be Chinese"

"My Husband Spends All His Time in the Toilet"

"Divorced Couples Who Still Do It"

Americans have proved time and again that they will cheerfully flush their dignity right down the pooper for a few minutes of grungy fame on national TV. Half of the above topics actually were aired on the OprahGeraldoSallyJenny circuit. The others are made up. Of course you can't tell the difference, that's our point. This week's contest: Come up with sleazy new topics for the daytime talks.

First-prize winner will receive a ceramic raccoon purchased from a Bethesda hardware store, plus a framed painting of dogs playing poker, a value of $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 16, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, June 28. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report From Week 13, in which you were asked to come up with clever anagrams for the names of famous people or institutions:

Many of you have asked why we sometimes have six or seven runners- up, and sometimes only two or three. The answer is that some weeks you are a parliament of drooling nitwits, and other weeks you appear to have gobbled brilliance pills. Like this week. Congratulations, especially to Laura Drohan, our very first T-shirt winner yet to reach puberty.

Tenth Runner-Up: North American Free Trade Agreement = Rare Menace Threatening Rat Freedom (Scott Michael, Alexandria)

Ninth Runner-Up: Thomas Jefferson = Oh, Master Jeff'son! (Douglas M. Delorge, Fairfax)

Eighth Runner-Up: Gerald Ford = Grade F, Lord (Carole Dix, Gaithersburg)

Seventh Runner-Up: Ted Turner = Utter nerd (Marjean Willett, Arlington)

Sixth Runner-up: George Stephanopoulos = One huge press pool goat (Jennifer Mendelsohn, Arlington)

Fifth Runner-Up: FBI = Fib (Laura Drohan, 10 years old, Springfield. Submitted in crayon)

Fourth Runner-Up: Washington Redskins = Darkness in sight now (Ian Marc Ories, "Nice Aroma, Sir," Arlington)

Third Runner-Up: Supreme Court = Corrupt? Sue Me. (Paulette Dickerson & Mark Zimmermann, Silver Spring)

Second Runner-up: George Stephanopoulos = O, Ha! U Lose to "Pops" Gergen (Ned Lilly, Arlington)

First Runner-Up: The economy, stupid = Shout my deception (Ira P. Robbins, Bethesda)

And the winner of the gigantic, ungainly American flag:

William Jefferson Clinton = "Slim-n-fit. Join now. Call Free!" (John and Donna Hughes-Hasle, Dunn Loring, Va.)

Honorable Mentions:

Tax and Spend Liberal = A Bland, Lax President (Ira P. Robbins, Bethesda)

Clarence Thomas = To scheme carnal (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

Professor Anita Hill = A thin, proofless liar (Mary Lee Fox Roe??? )

George Stephanopoulos = Gergen phases out o' loop (David A. Ames, Crofton, Md.)

Giant Food = A tin of dog (Heidi Waters, Charlottesville)

Ollie North = O, rot in hell (Hank, Leesburg)

Senator Jesse Helms = No jest: He's real mess (Forrest L. Miller, Rockville)

Monica Seles = Camel's noise (P.P. Rao, Oxon Hill)

Boris N. Yeltsin = Nobly sinister (Ira P. Robbins, Bethesda)

Michael Jordan = Land heroic jam (Ian Marc Ories, Arlington)

Gennifer Flowers = Elfin news forger (Mary Lee Fox Roe, Mount Kisco, N.Y.)

Al "Al" Gore = A real log (Kevin Cuddihy, Fairfax)

Tom Arnold = Man or dolt? (Colleen McGuire, Arlington)

Ronald Wilson Reagan = Ran in an old slow gear (Ed VanderPloeg, Centreville)

George Stephanopoulos = A prologue? Stop. He's gone (Sally Longinotti, Fairfax)

General Motors = Largest no more (Mary Hosek, Alexandria)

William Shatner = What man sillier? (Dorothy Laoang, Rockville)

Slobodan Milosevic = Damn evil socio-slob (Steve Rosenberg, Bowie)

Hillary Rodham Clinton = Choir lady thrill no man (Lynne A. Larkin, Reston)

Geraldo Rivera = A viler dog rear (Mary Hosek, Alexandria)

And Last:

Style Invitational = A vinyl toilet stain (Clara M. Glock, College Park)

Style Invitational = Total Evil Insanity (Paulette Dickerson & Mark Zimmermann, Silver Spring)

The Style Invitational Editor = So Vain, or a Little Tin Deity? (Dee Dee, Silver Spring)

Next Week: Collective Insanity


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Week 17 : Seeing Red Ink


TRAVESTY of justices (Meg Sullivan, Potomac)

Full Text (625   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jun 27, 1993

Four simple ways to reduce the federal deficit:

1. Impose a special handgun licensing fee for disgruntled postal workers.

2. Secretly print up four trillion dollars and have an accountant named Seymour "find" it one day in the U.S. Treasury.

3. Levy fines for pomposity in the District of Columbia.

4. Have the federal government challenge Michael Jordan to a game of golf.

This week's contest: Send us a photocopy of your behind. Just kidding. Obviously, this week's contest is to come up with an easy way to reduce the federal deficit, in 20 words or fewer. This idea was proposed by reader Ken Sandler of Alexandria, who wins three Hanes briefs in attractive designer colors.

The first-prize winner will receive a rubber chicken plus a ceramic cat, a value of $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 17, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, July 5. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 14, in which you were asked to come up with new collective nouns. Hmm. More than 3,000 entries, not one of which proposed a name for a group of Style Invitational entries. We suggest: a MESS of entries. Smart but too-popular offerings: a BRACE of orthodontists, a PILE of proctologists, a REAM of proctologists, a GAGGLE of comedy writers, a GIGGLE of teenage girls, a GOGGLE of skin divers. Sixth Runner-Up: a TRAVESTY of justices (Meg Sullivan, Potomac)

Fifth Runner-Up: a CORPS of morticians (Barbara Mayo-Wells, Ellicott City)

Fourth Runner-Up: a BROOD of pessimists (P.P. Rao, Oxon Hill; also, Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Third Runner-Up: a MYRIAD of cliches (Dave Noon, Harrisonburg, Va.)

Second Runner-Up: a PROLIFERATION of abortion protesters (Charles Gilbert Owens, Indian Head)

First Runner-Up: a GREAT DEAL of used-car salesmen (Tim and Heather Allen, Chapel Hill, N.C.) And the winner of the big, fluffy pillow:

[Table]
a TRANSTIONPOSI of dyslexics (Stu Segal, Vienna) Honorable

Mentions:

a BATTERY of L.A. police officers (Douglas Olson, Beltsville; also, Geoff and Jacki Drucker, Arlington)

an INNUENDO of proctologists (Harry Richardson, Laurel)

a RUMP of couch potatoes (Mrs. S.T. Prevost, Falls Church)

a PRIDE of grandparents (Susan Wenger, Montgomery Village)

a SLEW of murderers (Lyell Rodieck, Washington; also, J. Chanmugam, Bethesda)

a KUVVEY of Quayles (Lance Conn, Washington)

Un MOI des existentialistes (Dick Holt, Arlington)

a CONGRESS of hot-air balloons (John Kelly, Washington)

a PROPOS of nothing (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

a LOT of Realtors (Byron Baker, Capitol Heights; also, Kathy Weisse, Sykesville)

a RASH of hookers (Mary Mazer, Antioch, Tenn.)

a HEAD of thyme (Harry Richardson, Laurel)

a BASSINET of White House staffers (Ronald Varuska Jr., Washington)

a RETINUE of optometrists (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

an AMALGAM of dentists (Marilyn Glaser, Laurel)

a JAR of potholes (Mary Frances Borrell-Gould, Kensington)

a (SMEAR) of secret agents (Meg Sullivan, Potomac)

a GARRISON of Kennedy assassination conspiracy theorists (Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

a MAGNUM o' pus (Harry Richardson, Laurel)

a CLIQUE of castanet players (Kathy Weisse, Sykesville)

a CONSENSUS of yes men (Ro Hofford, McLean)

a RING of phonies (Barbara Mayo-Wells, Ellicott City)

a CHAIN of lynx (Harry Richardson, Laurel)

a PROFUSION of nuclear scientists (Pat Wallace, La Plata; also, Kathy Weisse, Sykesville)

an ARMY of homosexuals (Philip Delduke, Bethesda)

a SEMORDNILAP of palindromes (stolen from an undisclosed acquaintance by Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

And last:

a SHIRTLOAD of Style Invitational losers (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

Next Week: You Punch Us.


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Week 18 : Punch Us In the Ear


Md.; also, Jan Verrey, Arlington)

Full Text (737   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jul 4, 1993

This week's contest: We were sitting around the Style Invitational treehouse the other day, reflecting on how unfair it is that the New York Times is more famous than The Washington Post. It's not that we disrespect the Times. We think it a fine newspaper, despite of its policy of selling tiny Page 1 advertisements that appear under stories about Indonesian trade embargoes, ads with messages like "Come, give me a birthday squeeze on the tuchus, Stevie - Love, Aunt Dorcas." It's just that we feel The Washington Post merits equal respect, but we don't get it. Why? Then it hit us. The Times has a motto! "All the News That's Fit to Print" sits grandly right up there in the same place The Post reserves for the weather ("Today: Partly cloudy. Tomorrow: Partly sunny."). Perhaps this is what we need to push The Post over the top, fame-wise. A motto. Give us one.

First-prize winner will receive a three-month subscription to the New York Times, a value of $40. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 18, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, July 12. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 15, in which we asked you to complete one of several jokes.

Sixth Runner-Up: A man walks into a Washington bar and orders a Kahlua and root beer fizz. He notices the woman next to him has a chicken bone in her hair. "Hey," he says to the bartender, "why does she have a chicken bone in her hair?" "She's a Democrat," the bartender says. "A steak bone would be too ostentatious." (John Gilbert, Arlington)

Fifth Runner-Up: . . . "... Hey," he says to the bartender, "this place makes me homesick for Arkansas." (Dan Thomas, Burke)

Fourth Runner-Up: How do you know if Bill Clinton's been in your house? You have the feeling somebody's been there, but nothing's changed. (Pai Rosenthal, Sterling)

Third Runner-Up: How do you know if Bill Clinton's been in your house? He denies it. The next day, he denies that he ever denied it. Later, George Stephanopoulos explains that the president wasn't denying the denial, but instead was denying that the initial denial was in fact a denial. Rather, it was an admission that he was in your house, but a denial that he was aware of that fact. Stephanopoulos is demoted, David Gergen replaces him, and you are audited. (Meg Sullivan, Potomac)

Second Runner-Up: Abe Lincoln, Sandra Day O'Connor and Woody Woodpecker are in a boat that capsizes. There is only one life preserver. Sandra says, "I have a plan." She gives one of the oars to Abe. Then he poles the boat into shallow water, where Abe and Sandra can both stand. The bird simply flies to shore. And suddenly Sandra finds herself holding the other oar, faced with a mighty dilemma: Row v. wade. (Evan Steinhart, Fulton, Md.; also, Jan Verrey, Arlington)

First Runner-Up: How do you know if Bill Clinton's been in your house? You find Dave Gergen cleaning up. (Stu Segal, Vienna)

And the winner of the books of dirty jokes:

How do you know if Bill Clinton's been in your house? A hundred days later he is still trying to get his foot in the door. (Dan Thomas, Burke)

Honorable Mentions:

"Hey," he says to the bartender, "you got any more of that chicken chow mane?" (Jim Tucker, Charlottesville)

How do you know if Bill Clinton's been in your house? The lights seem dimmer. (John Cooper, Clarksburg)

... The bowl with the plastic fruit is empty. (J.M. Crowe, Middletown)

. . You find your kids and the White house staff fighting over Legos. (Stu Segal, Vienna)

... The lights are on, but nobody's home. (Bonnie Speary, Bethesda)

And Last:

"She's foreign born," the bartender says. "In her country, women customarily wear chicken bones in their hair."

"That's the stupidest custom I ever heard about."

"I thought so, too," says the bartender, "until she told me that their national drink is a Kahlua and root beer fizz." (John Kupiec, Springfield)

Next Week: Talk Show Topics


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Week 19 : A Recycled Idea That Was None Too Good to Begin With


way.

Full Text (703   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jul 11, 1993

ARF WIEDERSEHEN = Put the dog out

THE MAN FROM HYPE = David Gergen

RICHARD NIKON = The never-apprehended surveillance specialist of Watergate

COGITO EGGO SUM = I think, therefore I am a waffle.

LAST ACTION ZERO = Schwarzenegger bombs big time.

This week's contest was proposed by reader Barbara Mayo-Wells of Ellicott City, who wins a pair of cheap earrings that are gigantic replicas of the Elvis stamp, only less attractive. Barbara's idea: Alter a well-known phrase or name by deleting, adding or changing only one letter, and then supply a definition for what results. First- prize winner will receive a genuine Lava-Lite with an inviting blood- and-urine color motif, a value of $45. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 19, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, July 19. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report From Week 16, in which you were asked to come up with sleazy topics for the daytime TV talk shows:

But first, a weird coincidence. The Style Invitational has conferred a certain shabby notoriety on a few otherwise obscure individuals from fetid backwaters of The Post circulation area. The three most frequent winners to date are Chuck Smith of Woodbridge, Bob Zane of Woodbridge ("Woodbridge: The City of Two-Bit Fame") and Stu Segal of Vienna. Now here's the weird part: In this week's contest, Bob, Chuck and Stu independently came up with the same good idea, an idea not duplicated in any of the other 1,200 entries. "Women Who Leave the Toilet Seat Up" is a great talk show topic, but it isn't going to bring home the shirt. Why? Because we are just going to be that way.

Fifth Runner-Up: "Total Idiots Who May Already Have Won the Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes" (Chris Rooney, Reston)

Fourth Runner-Up: "People Examined in UFOs Who Went Back for Checkups" (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

[Table]
Third Runner-Up: "Undertakers Who Sell Used Dentures" (James

Day, Gaithersburg)

Second Runner-Up: "People Who Have Their Inner Child Circumcised" (Charles A. Jones, Norfolk, Va.)

First Runner-Up: "Dogs Who Do Their Owners' Homework for Them - and Then Eat It." (Thomas Drucker, Carlisle, Pa.)

And the winner of the framed painting of Dogs Playing Poker:

"Penis Litterers" (Kitty Thuermer and Mike Tidwell, Washington)

Honorable Mentions:

"My Dog Was My Bridesmaid" (Paul H. Parent, Adelphi)

"Vacuum Cleaner Hickeys - The Explanation No One Will Believe (Carole Dix, Gaithersburg)

"Men Who Ride Tricycles to Work" (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Weight-Challenged People Denied Seats on Roller Coasters" (Charles A. Jones, Norfolk, Va.)

"Men Who Have Gotten Drunk From the Small Quantities of Alcohol In `Non-Alcoholic' Beverages" (Aaron Suplizio, Alexandria)

"People Who Became Parents Because They Were Too Embarrassed to Buy Condoms" (Steven King, Alexandria)

"Men Who Are Battered by Their Dogs" (Danielle Therry, Washington)

"When Your Daughter Falls In Love With Lloyd Bentsen" (Danielle Therry, Washington)

KILL.... "Men With Priapism and Their Wives Who Have Constant Headaches" (Bob Sibley, Arlington)

"Police Officers Who've Undergone Face Lifts So They Will Look Good if Videotaped During an Attack on a Citizen." (Sue Lazanov, Reston)

KILL.... "Women Who Beat Themselves So Their Husbands Don't Have To." (Tom Gearty, Washington)

"My Husband's Son Married My Daughter and The Grandchildren Are Confused" (Tom Reed, Falls Church)

"Doctors Who Use the Words Weenie and Wee-Wee" (Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

"Biological Parents Who Hunt Down Their Adopted Children To Molest Them." (Shari Kallmyer and Cindy Karpaw, Washington)

"Obese Cross Dressers With Visible Panty Lines (Kara Grant, Alexandria)

"Men Whose Noses Resemble Their Genitals" (Cynthia Larsen, Afton, Va.)

"Kids Who Put Their Eyes Out With Sticks" (Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

"Adult Diapers - The New Lingerie" (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

"People Who Prefer The Taste of Diet Pepsi With The Syringe In It. (Chris Rooney, Reston)

And Last,

Reporters Who Get Lobotomies So They Can Judge The Style Invitational (James Day, Gaithersburg)


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 20 : Comic Relief


Greenbelt)

Full Text (712   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jul 18, 1993

Well, here we are, five months into this tawdry little competition, and not yet hauled away in shackles by the dreaded Propriety Police. There have been close calls, mes amis, but - ha ha HA! - still we survive, a tiny underground cell of grizzled partisans with reddened eyes and bourbon breath, lobbing stinkbombs at the pompous. Fact: Even The Washington Post does not know who we are. We strike each week from different locations in the Post building, and then scurry away like rats to fight another day.

Yesterday, while we were holed up in a dank bunker near the Post morgue, we came across old comics published 60 years ago today, July 18, 1933. "The Gumps" and "Looie Blooie, Attorney at Law." Pretty dated material, eh? This week's contest: Rewrite the cartoons, filling in your own balloons, to make them funnier and more timely.

First-prize winner will receive six ripe tomatoes from Joel Achenbach's back yard, plus a spectacular vintage 1930s typewriter, a value of about $100. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 20, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, July 26. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 17, in which you were asked to come up with inventive ways to reduce the federal deficit:

Fifth Runner-up: Declare Chapter 11 and start over under the new name, "The United States IN America." (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

Fourth Runner-Up: Have government agents get real friendly with the wealthiest people in the world and weasel themselves into their wills. (Paul Styrene, Olney)

Third Runner-Up: Require terrorists to pay for blasting permits. (Howard Waler, Catlett, Va.)

Second Runner-Up: Charge a nickel for every time someone begins a sentence with "If I had a nickel for every time ... ." (Paul Sabourin, Greenbelt)

First Runner-Up: Have the CIA search couches for coins. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

And the winner of the rubber chicken and ceramic cat:

Refinance! (Steven King, Alexandria)

Honorable Mentions:

Add to tax return: "Check here if you want to donate $1 trillion to reduce the deficit." That way, we'd only need four people. (Larry Rubin, Pikesville)

Sue Kim Basinger for the entire sum. She's so hated that any jury anywhere will side against her. (Steve A. Weinstein, Los Angeles)

"If you break the chain you will have 10 years of bad luck. Send $10 to the name on the top of the list (U.S. Treasury, Washington D.C.) and ... ." (Kevin Cuddihy, Fairfax)

Leave town and give no forwarding address. (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

Ask families to add this note to obituaries: In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the federal government. (C. Lynne Richardson, Burtonsville)

Move the decimal point five places to the left. (Steven King, Alexandria; also, Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

1. Turn control of economy over to New York Mets management. 2. Tell them they have to increase the deficit. (Paul Sabourin, Greenbelt)

Claim that all of the U.S. government's creditors made an attempt on Bush's life; indignantly default. (Cara and Elena Horowitz, Bethesda)

Have the government publish classified ads saying, "Make Thousands Stuffing Envelopes, $2 for info." Then send worthless info costing only 29 cents postage. (Kathy Weisse, Sykesville)

Hit Cntrl-Alt-Del (Paul Styrene, Olney)

Torch White House, collect insurance. (Abner Felix McBundy, Silver Spring)

Torch Al Gore, collect insurance. (Abner Felix McBundy, Silver Spring)

Beat swords into Microsoft shares. (Douglas H. Ricker, Beltsville)

Replace Greenspan and Panetta with existential economists who proceed to prove that there is no deficit. (Mary Lee Fox Roe, Mount Kisco, N.Y.)

Change the number base to a larger system so that all the numbers will be smaller. (Forrest L. Miller, Rockville)

Open a bungee jumping concession at the Washington Monument. (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

And Last:

Reinstitute public hanging. Begin with Style Invitational staff. While thousands of Post readers watch and rejoice, steal their wallets. (Paul Sabourin, Greenbelt)

Next Week: We Assassinate The Post.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 21 : A So-So Contest


Laurel)

Full Text (773   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jul 25, 1993

+ Bob Dole is so mean he wants to repeal the Santa Claus.

+ Roseanne Arnold is so fat they're spinning off her butt as a new series.

+ Michael Jackson is so odd he is divisible only by himself and I.

+ Warren Christopher is so colorless he doesn't tan, he grays.

+ Mister Rogers is so nice that in high school, girls got him in trouble.

+ Bill Clinton's waist is expanding so fast the Oval Offlee is in danger of becoming a circle.

This week's contest: This old idea ("HOW OLD IS lT?") may have begun with vaudeville, but itdid not achieve maturity until the presidential campaign of 1984, when Dave Barry wrote that John Glenn was so bland "he couldn't electrify a fish tank if he threw a toaster into it." That's the contest: Describe somebody - or something through exaggerated comparison.

The first-prize winner will receive a Mortimer Snerd ventriloquist's dummy, a value of about $75. Runners-up, as always. get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 21, The Washington Post. 1150 15th St. NW. Washington. D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Aug. 2. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase neeessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

REPORT FROM WEEK 18, in which you were asked to stick it in our "ear" by proposing a front-page motto for The Washington Post.

Our favorite comment came from Linda K. Malcolm of Silver Spring, who says she was stunned to learn The Post did not already have a motto. She assumed it was "Prices May Vary in Areas Outside Metropolitan Washington." Linda, don't be a dimwit. That is not a motto. The actual motto is "...."

+ Eighth Runner-Up: "As Seen On TV." (Pat Gentner, Washington)

+ Seventh Runner-Up: "A Newspaper With A Proud Tradition of Journalistic Ex- See MOTTO, a32, Col. 2 (Meg Sullivan, Potomac)

+ Sixth Runner-Up: "The Newspaper Without a Motto" (Dave Ferry, Potomac)

+ Fifth Runner-Up: "Your Source for Today's Date" (Mike Berman, Gaithersburg)

+ Fourth Runner-Up: "At Least We Never Have to Say `Mr. Dahmer'" (Gregory James, Fairmount Heights)

+ Third Runner-Up: "A Pulitzer Prize-Returning Paper" (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

+ Second Runner-Up: "Corrections You Can Rely On" (Stephen Adise, Silver Spring)

+ First Runner-Up: "A Great Newspaper That Operates on the Assumption That Its Readers Know Absolutely Nothing and Therefore Require Vast Amounts of Historical and Other Background Material With Every Story, Material That Often Is Allowed to Overwhelm the Story. Historically, Newspapers' Assumptions About Their Readers' Knowledge Level Have Varied Considerably. In the Case of Acta Diurna, for Example, a Daily Bulletin Established by Julius Caesar When Be Became Consul In 60 B.C. and Which May Perhaps Be Considered the Ultimate Ancestor of the Modern Newspaper, It Appears.... See MOTTO, A32, Co1. 4 (Tom Jedele, Laurel)

And the winner of the three-month subscription to the New York Times: "All the News That's Fit to Prinf." (Susan Wenger, Montgomery Village)

++ Honorable Mentions:

+ "When Folded Correctly, Makes a Nice Pair of Underpants" (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

+ "All the News. Every Morning. Under the Car" (John F. Donley, Vienna)

+ "For Today's Corrected Motto, See Tomorrow's A3" (Steve Svartz, McLean)

+ "Warning: This Product May Cause Drowsiness" (Al Toner, Arlington)

+ "Do Not Flush Plastic Wrapper"' (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

+ "Cheaper Than a Stamp" (Meg Sullivan, Potomac)

+ "More Interesting Than Breeding Prize-Winning Clams" (Douglas E. Morris, Washington)

+ "Today's Comics Are in Real Estate, Page f46. There Are Two Real Estate Sections. The First One Says COMICS on It, But the Comics are Actually in the Second Section, Which has the Orange Mortgage Rate Table on the Front. Real Estate Also Has the Classified Ads, So the Comics Aren't at the Back of the Section, They're a Little Past the Middle. (Douglas Olson, Beltsville)

+ "Mistakes Were Made" (John Kupiec, Springfield)

+ "There Is a Reason This Is on the Left" (Craig M. Lewis, Laytonsville)

+ "If You Don't Get It, Just Pick One Out of the Recyclables Bin at the Metro" (Rob Mendelson, Rockville)

+ "Gives Good Smear" (Al Toner, Arlington)

+ "Read Left to Right" (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

+ "Ultra Absorbent" (Meghan Meyer, Olney; Stu Segal, Vienna)

+ "Washington Is Our Middle Name" (Stu Segal, Vienna)

+ And Last:

"Exclusive T-Shirt Supplier to Stu Segal, Vienna" (Douglas Olson, Beltsville)

Next Week: The Stale Invitational.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 22 : Stump Us


[Glenn Dale]. (Rick von Behren, Glenn Dale)

Full Text (846   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Aug 1, 1993

Week 22: Stump Us

Let's Put Teddy Back In The Driver's Seat!

"Dick" Nixon: Because Evil Is Entertaining.

Ross Perot. The Medication Is Working.

Chuck Robb. He Listens to You.

Quayle in '95!

Marion Barry. That Great Sucking Sound Isn't Jobs Going to Mexico.

This Week's Contest was proposed by reader Elden Carnahan of Laurel, who wins a model elephant made entirely of peach pits. Elden feels it is not too early to come up with slogans for the 1996 presidential campaign. The contest is restricted to plausible candidates, but we will be very lenient in our definition of plausible. (Dukakis, sure. Limbaugh, yes. Chuck Smith of Woodbridge, why not? The Energizer Bunny, no. Got it?) The first-prize winner will receive a framed photograph of President Clinton, personally autographed by Tony Kornheiser. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 22, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Aug. 9. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report From Week 19, in which we asked you to change, add or delete one letter of a common name or phrase, and supply a definition for what results.

But first, a personal message to the eleventeen squadrillion winners of T-shirts and other fine prizes who have been bombarding us with inquiries about why they haven't received squat from us, including one man, whom we do not wish to embarrass by naming, who seemed unduly anxious to receive his promised underpants: The T- shirts and most of the other prizes have now been shipped. Thank you for your patience, particularly Ken Sandler of Alexandria, who now has our full, ha ha, support.

Fifth Runner-Up: The Wizard of O - Dorothy follows the road to true happiness. (Rick von Behren, Glenn Dale)

Fourth Runner-Up: One fell snoop - William Sessions. (Bruce Powers, Alexandria)

Third Runner-Up: The Few, the Proud, the Maxines - Lacenecks in combat (Harry Richardson, Laurel)

Second Runner-Up: It's the Economy Stupids - Clinton, Bentsen and Panetta. (Jon Miller, Dumfries)

First Runner-Up: Beverly Sills 90210 - TV series about an overweight opera singer who is her own Zip code. (Bonnie Speary, Bethesda)

And the winner of the Lava-Lite:

Beat me up, Scotty - the last words of Commander James T. "Kinky" Kirk. (Joseph H. Engel, Bethesda, and David J. Zvijac, Annandale)

Honorable Mentions:

George Oh Well - writer who predicted 1984 would be just another year. (Jean C. Clancy, Fairfax)

Candide Camera - in which it is shown that making a fool out of yourself on TV is the best of all possible events. (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

Gergen's lotion - soothes but doesn't cure. (Allen Moore, McLean. Also, Kris Morris, McLean) The Zen Commandments - 1. The following Commandment is false. 2. The preceding Commandment is true. (Paul Sabourin, Greenbelt)

The Great White Hop - Woody Harrelson in "White Men Can't Jump." (Kennon Smith, Glenn Dale)

Four Coroners of the Earth - the cleanup crew for the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. (Meg Sullivan, Potomac)

George Tush - butt of presidential jokes. (Stu Segal, Vienna)

Hillary Rodham Clingon - the First Lady's latest hairstyle. It features massive centerline part held in place with black spray paint. (Harold Mantle, Darnestown)

National Pork Service - Congress. (Allen Moore, McLean)

New Pork City - Washington, D.C. (Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

Shootout at the U.K. Corral - family dinners at Buckingham Palace. (Tom Gearty, Washington)

Five Guys named Zoe - Here's the new group of nominees. (Carl Yaffe, Silver Spring)

Goys in the Military - controversy that rocked the Israeli armed forces. (Harry Richardson, Laurel)

Arsenic Hall -- Poison-tongued talk-show host (Carin C. Quinn, Gaithersburg)

Vaya Con Dior - a farewell blessing among the very stylish. (Meg Sullivan, Potomac)

Bomb Dole - he's got a short fuse. (Jon Miller, Dumfries)

The White House Press Corpse - George Stephanopoulos. (Brad Cooper and Paul Sparta, McLean)

A Place Called Nope - Bill Clinton's Washington. (Peter A. Molinaro, Oakton)

The Washington Past - newspaper living on Watergate reputation. (Dick Marvin, Burke)

Don't Halve a Cow - the motto of the anti-vivisection society. (Meg Sullivan, Potomac)

Gesundheil - the involuntary spastic salute during a sneeze. (Tom Crites, Gaithersburg)

The Goodyear Blip - Clinton's honeymoon with Congress. (Paul Sparta, McLean)

Anais Nun - repentant sensualist. (Jim Todhunter, Silver Spring)

Have a nice dad - sperm bank slogan. (Les Greenblatt, Washington)

Barney Hubble - Famed thinker who asked, "Is Bedrock expanding at a constant velocity?" (J. Preston Sparrer, Charlottesville)

Mr. Id - Catherine the Great's favorite mount. (Chuck and Mary Lou Smith, Woodbridge)

And last:

Style Invitational T-Shirk - attempt to shame Style Invitational editors into coughing up a promised prize for the Week 6 runner-up from Glenn Dale. (Rick von Behren, Glenn Dale)

Next Week: Comic Relief


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Week 23 : HAPPY ENDINGS


Please include your address and phone number.

Full Text (307   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Aug 8, 1993

You scratch my back and I'll ... slap you with a harassment suit.

Row, row, row your boat, gently down the ... street.

Read my lips. New taxes.

The only thing we have to fear is ... tractor-trailers exploding on the Beltway.

Watson, come here, I ... Damn. Hang on, Watson, there's another call coming in.

This week's contest: Modernize an old quote or expression by altering its ending. First-prize winner receives what may be the ugliest clock ever manufactured, a value of about $50. We will say only that it appears to be constructed entirely of licorice. Runners- up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 23, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334- 4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, August 16. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 20, in which we asked you to rewrite either of two 60-year-old comics, filling in the balloons with contemporary subject matter.

But first, a brief aside. We have received calls and letters requesting the name of the Czar of the Style Invitational. Regrettably, we cannot disclose this. At The Post, it is a closely guarded secret, like the identity of Deep Throat, which is known only to Bob Woodward and the Czar of The Style Invitational. Thank you.

First Runner Up:

(Mark Brackett, Laurel)

And the Winner of the Vintage Typewriter and six tomatoes from Joel Achenbach's garden:

(Tom Gearty, Washington)

Honorable Mentions:

forwarned, forearmed: (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

PMS: (Steven King, Alexandria)

filet knife: (Jim Tucker, Charlottesville)

and last: (Woody Franke, Reston)

(


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RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 24 : Ask Backwards


name=fulltext>
Full Text (752   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Aug 15, 1993

Janet Reno's shoes

Herbert Haft's hair

To get to the other side

Lorena Bobbitt or Hermann Goering

Socks

Don't ask, don't tell

Michael Jackson's face

The inventor of the urinary catheter

It's the economy, stupid

Heidi Fleiss's notebook

Just Do It

Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Madonna

Tax and spend

Because he didn't inhale

Ooo-bop-a-loo-bop-a-loo-bop-boom

Marion Barry, Vaclav Havel and that guy in the Taster's Choice ad

This week's contest: You are on "Jeopardy!" Those are the answers. What are the questions? Answer one or more than one. Only one example. Answer: The inventor of the urinary cateter. Question: "Who has been, simultaneously, an enormous contributor to society and a great drain on it?" First-prize winner receives a pair of tickets to Memorial Stadium for a Bowie Baysox game, plus a pair of furry moose slippers with eyes and antlers and everything, a total value of $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T- shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 24, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Aug. 23. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 21, in which you were asked to describe things through So-So comparison.

"Ross Perot is so unusual, it's said that when he was born they threw away the baby and raised the placenta." A splendid joke, when it was first applied to Tiny Tim in 1968. And: "George Burns is so old that when he was born the Dead Sea was just sick." This was originally said about George Bernard Shaw, who died in 1950. Fair warning: In the future, if you serve us chestnuts, we will roast you.

Fifth Runner-Up: Donald Trump is so annoying that Amnesty International wants him beaten and locked up. (Tom Gearty, Washington)

Fourth Runner-Up: D.C. streets are so badly maintained they have more potholes than Jerry Garcia's sofa. (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

Third Runner-Up: The Mississippi River has been so aggressive, it is now being called the Msissippi. (Pai Rosenthal, Sterling)

Second Runner-Up: Joe McGinniss is so original he deserves to win the Style Invitational, Ted Kennedy thought to himself. (Tom Jedele,

[Table]
Laurel) First Runner-Up: Bill Clinton has gained so much weight
that I-495 has been renamed the Sansabeltway. (Paul Sabourin,
Greenbelt) And the winner of the Mortimer Snerd Ventriloquist's

Dummy:

Jack Kent Cooke is so litigious that I'm not going to finish this

[Table]
thought. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge) Honorable Mentions: The
White House staff is so young that the most common question on Air
Force One is, "Are we there yet?" (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge) The
White House staff is so young they have to write home when they go to
Camp David. (Paul B. Jacoby, Washington) The White House staff is

so inexperienced that it has never "been" with another staff. (Meg Sullivan, Potomac)

Spike Lee is so desperate for a crossover hit that he is filming "Dennis the Menace II Society." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Saddam Hussein is so evil he will have to pass an ethics test to get into Hell. (Leonard Osterman, Potomac)

Mayor Kelly is so sensitive to sexual harassment that she refuses to accept mail addressed to "The Hon. Sharon Pratt Kelly" because she is no one's "hon." (Carol V. Strachan, Silver Spring)

Washington streets have so many potholes, it's like driving over a giant, deserted Whack-a-Mole game. (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

Don King has so much static in his hair, he electrocutes anyone who give him a noogie. (Audrey Kovalak, Springfield) The White House is so full of Arkansans they are cutting crescent moons in the restroom doors. (Forrest L. Miller, Rockville)

Ross Perot is so paranoid his theories are laughed at by Oliver Stone. (Paul Sabourin, Greenbelt) Gov. Schaefer is so petty that he had "43" painted on his limo. (Greg Griswold, Falls Church)

The Haft family is so dysfunctional that Herbert sold the family tree to Crown Books for pulp. (Christopher P. Nicholson, Arlington) Dan Quayle is so dumb. (Chris Rooney, Reston) And Last:

The Style Invitational is so popular that the next Supreme Court justice will be chosen on the basis of "humor and originality." (Al Toner, Arlington)

And Least: The Style Invitational is so funny I forgot to laugh. (Tony Buckley, Washington)


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RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 25 : Caption Crunch


name=fulltext>
Full Text (531   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Aug 22, 1993

This Week's Contest: Write a caption for any of these photos. First-prize winner receives a wristwatch featuring a hologram of an eyeball, a value of about $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 25, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Aug. 30. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 22, in which we asked you to come up with slogans for the 1996 presidential campaign. We restricted the contest to plausible candidates such as Richard Nixon and Chuck Smith of Woodbridge, specifically excluding only the Energizer Bunny.

"Reelect Hillary" was clever, but it didn't win because our budget does not permit us to award 104 T-shirts.

Fifth Runner-up: Joe McGinniss in '96. He's No Jack Kennedy. But He Knows What Jack Kennedy Is Thinking. (A.K. Merryman, Washington)

Fourth Runner-up: Heidi Fleiss. Finally, Madam President (Holly McMullen, Potomac)

Third Runner-up: Bill Clinton. Because He May Be Your Long-Lost Brother. (Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

Second Runner-up: Joe Biden. Ask Not What Your Country Can Do for You, Ask What You Can Do for Your Country. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

First Runner-Up: Dan Quayle. "A Chicken in Every Garage." (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

And the winner of the framed photo of President Clinton, personally autographed by Tony Kornheiser:

How Does PACKWOOD FOR PRESIDENT Grab You? (R. Sharp, Fredericksburg)

Honorable Mentions:

Marion Barry - I Didn't Exhale. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Helms for President - Don't Stop Thinking About Gomorrah. (William Saletan, Washington)

Jack Kevorkian - Solving the Population Crisis One Person at a Time. (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

Hillary Clinton - I Am Not a Cook. (Michelle Stenger, Williamsburg)

Ted Kennedy - He'll Never Leave You High and Dry. (Jacki Drucker, Arlington)

Lamar Alexander - He'll Do for the Country What He Did for the Skools. (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

Bob Dole - Vote for Me, You Pinheads. (Tom Gearty, Washington)

Bush in '96 - Sushi. Puke. Bad Idea. Won't Do It Again. Promise. (Michael Scott, Arlington)

Paul Simon - Like a Bridge Over Tepid Water (Douglas H. Ricker, Beltsville)

Lyndon LaRouche - In an Unstable World, We Need an Unstable Leader. (Tom Gearty, Washington)

Jerry Brown - A Free-Range Chicken in Every Pot. (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

William F. Buckley Jr. - Plain Talk, Articulated in a Paradigm of Recondite Erudition, Eschewing the Patois of Obfuscatory Neologism. (Michael Scott, Arlington)

Cal Ripken Jr. in '96 - At Least He'll Show Up for Work Every Day. (Kurt Larrick, Burke)

Lick 'Em, Rosty. (William Saletan, Washington)

Please Vote for Miss Manners. Thank You. (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

Tony Kornheiser - A Natural-Born U.S. Citizen Over 35 Who Has Lived in This Country for at Least 14 Years. (Karsten Brown, Front Royal)

And Last:

Annoy the Media. Elect the Energizer Bunny. (Steven King, Alexandria)

Next Week: Happy Endings


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 26 : Casting About for an Idea


thee?

Full Text (815   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Aug 29, 1993

MARILYN QUAYLE as Nurse Ratched in "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest" BOB DOLE as Frank in "Blue Velvet" RONALD REAGAN as Jim on "Taxi"

ROSS PEROT as Grumpy in "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs."

This week's contest was proposed by Tom Gearty of Washington, who wins "Snot Nose," a rubber novelty item so appalling it cannot be further described. Tom wonders what would happen had certain individuals aspired to the stage instead of politics. Name a political person (past or present) and the TV or movie role in which he or she could have been cast. First-prize winner receives a peck of pickled peppers, a value of about $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 26, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Sept. 6. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes. Report from Week 23, in which we asked you to modernize old expressions by changing their endings. Sixth Runner-Up: How do I love thee? Let me count ... thy wage. (Joseph A. Pappano, Washington) Fifth Runner-Up: A penny saved is a penny ... taxed retroactively effective Jan. 1, 1993, at a marginal rate of 39.6 percent, accounting for a 10 percent surtax on income over $250,000. (Barry Hurewitz and Ali Smiley,

[Table]
Washington) Fourth Runner-Up: To be ... Press "1." Not to be,
press "2." Undecided, press "3." (Terri Dann, Fairfax Station)
Third Runner-Up: Shave and a haircut, two ... hundred dollars. (Joel
Kawer, Gaithersburg) Second Runner-Up: And God saw that it was ...
so-so, but went with it anyway. (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)
First Runner-Up: "I'll get you, my pretty ... and your little
potbellied pig too." (Mike Thring, Leesburg) And the winner of the
ugliest clock on the face of the Earth: He that layeth with dogs
riseth with ... Fleiss. (Pamela Zilly, Alexandria) Honorable
Mentions: The road to Hell is paved with ... Honorable Mentions.
(Carol Haney McVey, Olney) Four score and ... one plays defense.
(Brendan Lane, Gaithersburg) If it ain't broke ... your mechanic

will just make up something. (Cesareo Blanco, N. Potomac)

A rose by any other name ... is probably an infringement of

[Table]
copyright. (Anne-Marie Da Costa, Fairfax Station) I'd rather be
right than ... secretary of housing and urban development. (Harry
Richardson, Laurel) Behind every good man ... or woman is a good
woman or man. (Robin D. Grove, Washington) When a dog bites a man,
that is not news, but when ... Elvis bites an alien, that is news.
(Kevin Mellema, Falls Church) Don't put all your eggs in one ...
in vitro fertilization clinic, in case lawsuits develop later on.
(Tom Gearty, Washington) Sic transit Gloria ... Steinem. (Chuck
Smith, Woodbridge) He ain't heavy, he's my ... sister. (Chuck
Smith, Woodbridge) It's not whether you win or lose ... it's
whether you place higher than Chuck Smith, Woodbridge. (Paul
Sabourin, Greenbelt) O Canada ... BOOOOOO (Kurt Larrick, Burke)

Keeping up with the Smith-Joneses (Karsten M. Brown, Front Royal)

After coitus, every animal is ... worried. (Mark Johnson, Fairfax)

I am not a ... miserable rodent of a person. (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

Hi there! What's your ... sign-on? (Rhona Bosin, Germantown) Is that a pickle in your pocket or ... are you having an aggressive male fantasy that degrades, oppresses and reduces me to the status of sex object? (Jim Todhunter, Silver Spring)

Don't throw the baby out ... till you've checked with the biological father. (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

In the country of the blind, the one-eyed man is ... ostracized and executed on trumped-up charges. (Cesareo Blanco, N. Potomac)

Damn the torpedoes! ... Let's set achievable military objectives, make sure the United Nations will back us up, talk to the leadership of both parties of Congress, have the Pentagon prepare contingency plans and then proceed cautiously while maintaining deniability at all costs. (Eric E. McCollum, Fairfax)

It was the best of times, it was the ... worst-case scenario. (Harry Richardson, Laurel)

That's the oldest trick in the ... disk (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

Every cloud has ... some silver nitrate. (Cynthia Sewell, Falls Church and Becky Cohen, Washington. Also, Clinton T. Gann, Falls Church)

It's like looking for a needle in a ... Pepsi. (Siraj Ali, Silver Spring) Loose lips ... can be fixed with liposuction. (Michael Bonett, Mount Airy)

[Table]
And Last: But in this world, nothing can be said to be certain,
except death and taxes ... and references to Lorena Bobbitt's cq/er
filet knife in the Style Invitational. (Jon DeNunzio, Woodbridge)

And: Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers ... then sold it to the Style Invitational, which knows a good prize when it sees one. (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

Next Week: Ask Backwards.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 27 : It's the Eponomy, Stupid


him a persistent fungal infection.

Full Text (936   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Sep 5, 1993

Perot. verb. To stand or sit next to someone important and make him feel insecure by saying inane but profound-sounding things.

Pack. noun. An unwanted sexual advance more intrusive than a peck, as popularized by Sen. Bob Packwood of Oregon.

Bobbitt. verb. To bob "it."

Hooverville. noun. A room full of transvestites.

This week's contest was proposed by Kitty Theurmer of Washington, who wins a commemorative dinner plate from Hope, Ark., featuring a likeness of President Clinton that appears to have been drawn by a mule or some other animal without opposable thumbs. Kitty suggests coining an eponym, a word or figure of speech based on the name of a famous person. You must define the word, and, if you wish, use it in a sentence. First-prize winner receives a gigantic flag of a cow, a value of approximately $30. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 27, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Sept. 13. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes. Report from Week 24, in which we asked you to supply "Jeopardy!" questions to fit any of 16 answers we supplied.

But first, a brief aside. We have a letter here from Forrest L. Miller of Rockville, addressed to the editor of The Style Invitational. The salutation reads: "Dear Chuck Smith of Woodbridge's mother ..." Alas, there does appear to be a teensy tide of resentment out there against Mr. Smith because of his sustained success in The Style Invitational. We would like to make it clear, first, that we are not Mr. Smith's mother, so far as we know. And second, that we are just as tired of sending Mr. Smith merchandise as you are of watching us send him merchandise. Week after week, he forces our hand. We hate Chuck Smith of Woodbridge and wish upon him a persistent fungal infection.

Sixth Runner-Up - Answer: Socks. Question: Who has also been neutered at the White House? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Fifth Runner-Up - Answer: To get to the other side. Question: Why did the chicken enter Dan Quayle's ear? (Mark A. Hagenau, Bowie)

Fourth Runner-Up - Answer: Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Madonna. Question: Name two women whose IQ plus bust size equals 180. (Debby Prigal, Washington)

Third Runner-Up - Answer: Herbert Haft's hair. Question: What is the only element in the Haft family currently not parted? (Mary Lee Fox Roe, Mount Kisco, N.Y.)

Second Runner-Up - Answer: Socks. Question: What do the Clintons hide when hungry Arkansas relatives show up at the White House? (Audrey Kovalak, Springfield)

First Runner-Up - Answer: Lorena Bobbitt or Mahatma Gandhi. Question: Who are two people whose spouse had a big red dot somewhere on their body? (Joey Zarrow, Herndon) And the winner of the fuzzy moose bedroom slippers plus tickets to a Bowie Baysox game:

Answer: Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Madonna. Question: What do you get when you combine Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Madonna? (Jacob Weinstein, Washington)

Honorable Mentions:

Answer: To get to the other side.

Why did Dan Quayle break the mirror? (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

Answer: Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Madonna.

What two women are most readily recognizable by their buns? (Karen Troccoli, Bethesda)

Who are two women who wear cast-iron underwear? (Dot Devore, Frederick) Answer: The inventor of the urinary catheter.

Who had an initial failure with his "urinary infuser"? (Karsten Brown, Front Royal)

From whom would you not borrow tubing to siphon gas out of a tank? (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

What medical pioneer valued his peers among all others? (Scott Keeter, Arlington)

Who also invented the Flavor Straw? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Answer: Lorena Bobbitt or Mahatma Gandhi

Who was the wrong person to tell: "Don't make trouble. Just lie back, be quiet, and think of England"? (Jackson Bross, Chevy Chase)

Name a Virginia woman or a Hindu leader who was the center of a bloody uprising. (Joan and Frank Sellers, Falls Church) Which celebrity, living or dead, would be a bad choice as the next spokesperson for Esskay all-meat franks? (Paul B. Jacoby, Washington)

Answer: Janet Reno's shoes.

What did Eleanor Roosevelt donate to Goodwill in 1940? (Karen Kimmel-Militzer, Gaithersburg) What did William Sessions have surgically removed from his rear end? (Dan Shvodian, Bethesda)

Answer: Oo-bop-a-loo-bop-a-loo-bop-boom.

What is the sound of William Sessions going down a flight of

[Table]
stairs? (Tom Gearty, Washington) What was Alley Oop's name before
Ellis Island? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge) Answer: Heidi Fleiss's

notebook.

What is something that men would overpay to get into and pay

[Table]
anything to get out of? (Larry Brett, Washington) What's the only
place in Hollywood where Rodney Dangerfield comes before Harrison
Ford? (Jacob Weinstein, Washington) Answer: Marion Barry, Vaclav

Havel and that guy in the Taster's Choice ads.

Who are the three latest men to reveal they are Bill Clinton's half-brothers? (Mary Lee Fox Roe, Mount Kisco, N.Y.; also, Karen K.

[Table]
Kirschenbauer, Middleburg) Quien es mas macho? (Pasky Pascual,
University Park) Who are the only people Joe McGinniss interviewed
for "The Last Brother"? (Mary Lee Fox Roe, Mount Kisco, N.Y.)

Answer: Michael Jackson's face.

What is Janet Jackson's face? (Mimi Murray, Charlottesville)

What is Silicon Valley? (Tom Gearty, Washington)

Answer: Don't Ask, Don't Tell. What is the dullest game show on TV? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Next Week: Caption Crunch.


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Week 28 : THE MOTHERS-IN-LAW OF REINVENTION


name=fulltext>
Full Text (748   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Sep 12, 1993

To raise revenue, institute a two-drink minimum and $5 cover charge at White House state dinners.

To promote tourism, rename the bad states to make them sound more inviting. New Jersey would become "East California." Utah would be "Sexland."

To humanize our leaders and reduce government arrogance, pass a constitutional amendment requiring the president to wear short pants and a fez.

Change the doctrine of "one man, one vote" to "one man, one beer."

Require soldiers to car-pool into battle whenever possible.

Were you as disappointed as we were by the Clinton administration's much-ballyhooed proposal to "reinvent government"? After all these many months, the best they can come up with are things like: "Reduce mohair subsidies"? Hey, if we are going to reinvent government, let's reinvent government. This week's contest: Propose some drastic change in government to help the economy or otherwise improve the quality of life in America. First-prize winner receives a T-shirt of an exploding pigeon from Hegins, Pa., plus a "humane mousetrap" from PETA, plus some plastic dog poop, a total value of about $40. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 28, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Sept. 20. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 25, in which we asked you to supply captions to any of four photographs we supplied. All runners-up, as well as the winner, refer to Photo B.

Fourth Runner-up: Spring Break in Latvia (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

Third Runner-up: Early auditions for "The Coneheads" movie went poorly. (Bob Leszczak, Burtonsville)

Second Runner-Up: Controller of the Mars Observer mission continues to try to signal the errant spacecraft from mission control. (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

First Runner-up: "Children of William Jefferson Blythe, unite!" (Christopher P. Nicholson, Arlington)

And the winner of the eyeball-hologram watch:

Robert Reich, diminutive secretary of labor, registers displeasure at the results of well-meaning but tragically inept medical efforts to help him grow another foot. (Fritz Stolzenbach, Arlington)

Photo A:

The DuPont Co. unveils its new line of Stainmaster poodles. (Tom Gearty, Washington)

Socks's Secret Service guard. (Louise Trofimuk, Laurel)

"This safe sex stuff has gone entirely too far." (James Christopher, Springfield)

Superdog was foiled again as his approach was given away by the sound of his corduroy pants. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Photo B:

The early days of the Klan. (Andi Wildt, Vienna)

Caught cheating at the state cartwheel finals. (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

"This is the prince. I'm looking for the woman whose head fits this boot." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Amazing photos show Rasputin using a Water Pic! (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Early attempts to invent the shoehorn proved futile. (Bob Leszczak, Burtonsville)

During the 1960s, the Berkeley cheerleading squad went all to hell. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

After being fully restored and cleaned, the Capitol dome statue was actually revealed to be a sculpture of a drunken Rutherford B. Hayes. (Chris Rooney, Blacksburg)

Photo taken during the famous "I Have a Delusion" speech. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Photo C:

"Hmm. A cold fish as my next vice president? Worked for Clinton. Nope. Not gonna do it." (James Christopher, Springfield)

Ex-President Bush displays the "rabbit" that attacked Jimmy Carter. (Louise Trofimuk, Laurel)

"Isn't the 50th the Fish Anniversary, Barb?" (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

After Clinton played the sax on "Arsenio," President Bush tried to increase his hipness quotient by referring to his administration as "Country George and the Fish." (Douglas H. Ricker, Beltsville)

Evoking memories of LBJ and his basset hounds, President Bush hoists Tex, the First Fish, by the gills. (Art Stern, Arlington)

Photo D:

"Okay, Mr. Quayle. We have wiped that silly smirk off your face." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

"I told you not to play Rock-Paper-Scissors-Hand Grenade, didn't I? " (David Waldman, Silver Spring)

Doctors put finishing touches on the world's first snowman-to- human head transplant. (Karsten Brown, Front Royal)

Toilet-paper explosion survivor Josh Winkins considers himself blessed that he "wasn't sitting down when it went off." (Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

And last:

Having failed to "get a life" by conventional methods, contest geek Bob Zane attempts to have one surgically attached. (Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

Next Week: Casting About for an Idea.


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Week 29:; [FINAL Edition]
The Washington Post (pre-1997 Fulltext)Washington, D.C.: Sep 19, 1993. pg. F.02
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Column Name: THE STYLE INVITATIONAL
Section: STYLE
Publication title: The Washington Post (pre-1997 Fulltext). Washington, D.C.: Sep 19, 1993.  pg. F.02
Source type: Newspaper
ISSN/ISBN: 01908286
ProQuest document ID: 72187145
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Abstract (Document Summary)

This week's contest: Advertising slogans that still need a little work. Come up with an unfortunate slogan for any real product, service, or organization. First-prize winner receives a life-size inflatable moose head, plus a red playground ball, a value of approximately $55. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 29, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Urgent secret message to anyone still reading the fine print: Send us a photocopy of your awful driver's license picture. Worst pix win nifty, bizarre prizes. Thank you. All entries must be received on or before Monday, Sept. 27. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes. Report from Week 26, in which we asked you to cast a politician in a famous TV or movie role: Poor Al Gore. What a stiff. You cast him as Bernie the corpse in "Images/spacer.gif" width=1 border=0>
Full Text (617   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Sep 19, 1993

American Airlines - "Our Fares are Plummeting."

Trojan Brand Condoms - "We're Bursting With Pride."

Dateline NBC - "We Make it Happen"

Air Jordans - The Greatest? You Bet!

This week's contest: Advertising slogans that still need a little work. Come up with an unfortunate slogan for any real product, service, or organization. First-prize winner receives a life-size inflatable moose head, plus a red playground ball, a value of approximately $55. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 29, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Urgent secret message to anyone still reading the fine print: Send us a photocopy of your awful driver's license picture. Worst pix win nifty, bizarre prizes. Thank you. All entries must be received on or before Monday, Sept. 27. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes. Report from Week 26, in which we asked you to cast a politician in a famous TV or movie role: Poor Al Gore. What a stiff. You cast him as Bernie the corpse in "Images/spacer.gif" width=1 border=0>
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RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 30 : The Rorschach Of The Crowd


Full Text (798   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Sep 26, 1993

This Week's Contest: Interpret any of these ink blots. If you rotate one, please indicate which end is up. First-prize winner receives a two-person horse costume for Halloween, a value of $90. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T- shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 30, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Urgent secret emergency message to anyone still reading the fine print: For reasons that will become apparent, we are desperate for funny material next week! Get your favorite jokes to us by Wednesday. The best will win a fine vintage toaster. Thank you. Now back to our regularly scheduled blather. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Oct 4. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 27, in which we asked you to coin eponyms, words based on the names of famous people.

Fourth Runner-Up: STOCK- DALE noun The place your mind wanders off to when you daydream. (Paul Sabourin, Greenbelt) Third Runner-Up: To CUO- MO verb To edge forward and back up repeatedly when attempting to turn onto a busy thoroughfare, to the annoyance of

[Table]
other drivers. (Peter Owen, Williamsburg) Second Runner-Up: DEE

DEE noun Short, substanceless commentary. "I went to the press conference hoping for a good story, but all I got was dee dee." (Kate

[Table]
Sparks and Sarah Ducich, Washington, and Laura Sokol, Warsaw.)
First Runner-Up: To PACK WOOD verb To be glad to see someone. (Chuck
Smith, Woodbridge) And the winner of the giant flag of a cow:

To SHA- LIK- A- SHVI- LI verb To ensure a low profile for a program or agency by appointing a director whose name no one can pronounce or spell or even fit in a headline. "We finally shalikashvilied the White House travel office by appointing Joe Bkistellzrtngounmr!" (Sharon Kuykendall, Takoma Park) Elvises: SPIN- O- ZA noun A philosophical underpinning used to support a specious statement or argument. "The White House put the old spinoza on reactions to the

[Table]
president's health care plan." (Stuart A. Segal, Vienna) HAM-
LISCH MA- NEU- VER noun The hugging of oneself. (Chuck Smith,
Woodbridge) LIM- BAUGH- GER noun A huge, soft white cheese with a

very strong odor and flavor. Hard to digest. (Jeff Gold, Washington) GER- GEN- ZO- LA noun A smooth, bland cheese. (Tom Gearty, Arlington) To TED- DY verb To take off one's pants and act nonchalantly. "You know, I think Mike has been acting pretty weird lately. He's teddied before, but now he does it all the time at parties." (Nick Dierman, Potomac) To CHUNG verb To ruin something by making it too cute. "That was a great house till they chunged it up with Precious-Moment figurines." (Kate Sparks and Sarah Ducich, Washington, and Laura

[Table]
Sokol, Warsaw) To SU- NU- NU verb To fly long distances at

government expense to keep an appointment with the family dentist. "I'm Sununuing at Martha's Vineyard this year." (John Kupiec,

[Table]
Springfield) TSONG noun A sensible melody that no one wants to
hear. (Paul Sabourin, Greenbelt) MC- GINN- ISS STOUT noun Faux
beer. (Stefanie Weldon, Silver Spring) CLIN+TON noun A bulk unit
of fast-food hamburgers, usu. 2,000 pounds. "Over four Clintons
sold." (Larry Schuler, Fairfax) To SHAT- NER verb To chew the
scenery, swallow it and convert it to fatty tissue. (Paul Kondis,
Alexandria) DOLE- BY noun A sound system used to amplify unwanted
white noise. (Paul Sabourin, Greenbelt) LOV- ETT noun Someone
extremely lucky in love. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge) HELMS- MAN noun
Head of a knee-jerk conservative organization. (Linda and Eric M.
Drattell, North Potomac) HAFT & HAFT noun A dairy creamer with a
shelf-life of 40 years, after which it separates. (Joanne Findley,
West River, Md.) ROBB noun A nude massage, and nothing else.
"Mmmm, thank you Sven, dahling, you know I needed more than a robb."
(David H. Green, Great Falls) AL- GO+RITHM METH- OD noun A system
of birth control based on boring one's partner into disinterest.
(Kathy Weisse, Sykesville; also, Ken Linker, Falls Church) NIX- ON-

ER- ATED verb, past tense Cleared of criminal responsibility while still remaining guilty and pernicious in the popular mind. "Ollie North was nixonerated in the Iran-contra affair." (Tom Gearty,

[Table]
Arlington) And Last: CHUCK- SMITH noun A collector of T-
shirts. (Donald L. Thompson, Gaithersburg) CHUCK noun A T-shirt
for losers, as popularized by Chuck Smith, Woodbridge. "The Chuck's
in the mail." (Mike Thring, Leesburg) EL- VIS noun An honorable

mention. "Dang! Not another Elvis!" (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

Next Week: Some Desperate Attempt To Be Funny


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RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 31 : INVITATION TO A DUAL


panicked.

Full Text (845   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Oct 3, 1993

There are two kinds of people in the world ...

... People who talk about their colleagues and people who talk about people who talk about their colleagues.

... People without dentures and people who find Andy Rooney a hoot.

... People who are good with numbers, people who are bad with numbers, and people who are very, very bad with numbers.

... Carbon-based, and Michael Jackson.

... People who think they are God's gift to women, and women.

... Raw and cooked.

This week's contest: Translate "Beowulf" from the original olde English. No, obviously, this week's contest is to divide the world into two types of people. To the best of our knowledge, this conceit was first used in 1962 by some shmendrick comedian who said there were two types of people in the world, people who have the toilet paper spool out from above and people who have it spool out from below. Much has occurred since 1962 to help us further oversimplify the world, so have at it lustily. If you do not get the concept here, do not be upset. There are two kinds of people in the world: Those who get it, and those who do not.

First-prize winner receives one of those official American flags that have been flown over the U.S. Capitol for a few seconds, plus a certificate of its authenticity, a total value of about $50. Runners- up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 31, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334- 4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Oct. 11. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes. Report from Week 28, in which you were asked to come up with ways to reinvent government in order to save money or improve the quality of life in America. First, we'd like to say that you are all geniuses. We'd like to say that, but we cannot. We must report, with avuncular disapproval, that your entries this week were every bit as original and creative as a Bazooka Joe comic. As your thousands of doltish, pedestrian responses flooded our mail and fax machines, we panicked. Needing desperately to fill this space (we will not print unfunny things; this is just the way we are), deep in the fine print of the next contest, we inserted a pathetic plea for filler material. Two weeks ago we solicited bad photos from your driver licenses, and the best we got was from Linda K. Malcolm of Silver Spring, who apologized for how awful she looked, but it was a bad hair day, too early in the morning, she was feeling cranky etc. The photo was of Raymond Burr. Linda wins a plastic booger. The only other notable response came from the redoubtable Chuck Smith of Woodbridge, who appears, from his photograph, to be a woman. So last week, now wretchedly desperate, we again violated our fine print with requests for jokes, and of the dozens of jokes we received, this was the best: Q: "Why did the monkey fall out of the tree?" A: "It was dead." All in all, not a good week.

Anyway, back to reinventing government.

Third Runner-Up: To make Americans more secure abroad, create a small, mobile strike force of disgruntled postal workers. (Tom

[Table]
Gearty, Arlington) Second Runner-Up: Vanity postage stamps. (Nora
Corrigan, Reston; also, Dave Ferry, Potomac) First Runner-Up: To
balance the budget, make the new tax law retroactive to April 1925.
(Douglas H. Ricker, Beltsville) And the winner of the exploding-

pigeon T-shirt, the plastic dog poop and the humane mousetrap:

To raise money and solve the problem of unwanted animals, follow the example of the architect of the Capitol, who runs ordinary flags up the national flagpole for a few seconds and then sells them: Take dogs and cats from the local shelters, stampede them through the White House and then market them as prestige pets." (E. Gaston,

[Table]
Alexandria) Honorable Mentions: To reduce frivolous lawmaking,
require members of Congress to wear lederhosen and yodel their bills
on national television. (Hugh McAloon, Frederick) To save money,
change the signs in the National Zoo to read, "Please Feed the
Animals." (Paul Styrene, Olney) Stop paying for Secret Service
agents; let Clinton pack heat. (Chase Squires, Arlington) To
confirm Cabinet-level appointees, add a swimsuit competition. (Meg
Sullivan, Potomac) To revitalize the insurance industry, make all
traffic lights green. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge) To raise the
national grade point average, drop geography from the curriculum.
(Mike Thring, Leesburg) To camouflage and protect tourists,
require all rental cars to have religious bumper stickers, mirror
danglies, Garfield window dolls etc. (Peyton Coyner, Afton, Va.)

To save gas, require that only clown cars can use the HOV lanes. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

NEXT WEEK: Your Triumphant Recovery. Ad Nauseam.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 32 : Fatal Art Attack


slogans:

Full Text (841   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Oct 10, 1993

A man is crucified, with nails, to the back of a 1964 Volkswagen Beetle. A friend drives him around San Francisco.

A naked man locks himself in a closet with a coyote. They howl. A puzzled crowd gathers.

A priest conducts an elaborate wedding ceremony, complete with Scripture and organ music and best man and maid of honor, joining forever in holy matrimony the Statue of Liberty and a statue of Christopher Columbus.

A woman shakes hands with every garbageman in New York City.

A man circles the globe in a boat, dropping elaborately engraved boulders into the ocean, where they will sink to the bottom, never to be seen again unless the earth dries up, all life perishes, and we are visited by aliens.

A man passes through his body an entire double-decker bus. He does this by chopping it into bite-size portions, and eating it. It takes five years.

We thought of this week's contest after reading about a performance artist who got a $4,000 grant to paint feminist phrases on the sides of 70 cows, one word per cow, and then letting the cows graze so the words got jumbled. Is this a great country, or what?

This week's contest: In 50 words or fewer, describe a performance art concept that might get public funding. Winners will be audacious enough to seem like art, but pretentious enough to seem to have a social "message." Hey, this can't be very hard. All of the examples above are real. Someone proposed them, someone funded them, and they got performed. First-prize winner receives an elegant, adult-size Fred Flintstone costume, delivered in time for Halloween, a value of about $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 32, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Oct. 18. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes. Report from Week 29, in which we asked you for unfortunate advertising slogans:

Yeah, yeah. We know. "Eureka Vacuum Cleaners: We Really Suck." And, "Miami: A Vacation to Die For." Our rule of thumb is that if more than two people come up with the same idea, regardless of its wit, it flunks the originality test. So we cannot honor by name the four entrants who submitted this most excellent slogan: "Denny's. For People With Discriminating Taste." We also will not name the individual, well known to many of you, who gets a gigantic goose egg this week, a feeble zero, the big bagel, the toilet seat of shame, because he stank up the joint with his highly inadequate entries. Hahahaha. No shirts this week for your bulging closet, Mister I-Am- So-Clever-by-Half!

Not that we are bitter. Sixth Runner-Up: "Miami. Gateway to

[Table]
Paradise." (Rick von Behren, Glenn Dale) Fifth Runner-Up: The
Saturn. "Remember That First Car of Your Dreams? We Recall Ours."
(Kurt Rabin, Arlington) Fourth Runner-Up: The City of Los Angeles.
"We'll Treat You Like a King." (Michael R. Megargee, Arlington)
Third Runner-Up: "Lincoln. The Cadillac of Cars." (Gary Patishnock,
Laurel) Second Runner-Up: Trojan Condoms. "It's the One Your

Father Used." (Christina Bahl, Columbia)

First Runner-Up: Sears Auto Repair. "No Problem, We'll Fix It." (Geoff and Jacki Drucker, Arlington) And the winner of the life- size inflatable moose head:

The Hubble Telescope Corp.: "You Ain't Seen Nothin' Yet!" (Tom Gearty, Arlington)

[Table]
Honorable Mentions: Aquaban Diuretic: "We're Number One!" (Tom
Gearty, Arlington) Otis Elevators: "We Won't Let You Down." (Mary

Ann Curtin, Annapolis; also, Geoff and Jacki Drucker, Arlington)

R.J. Reynolds Tobacco: "A Growth Industry." (Susan Wenger, Montgomery Village)

Pepsi-Cola: "Don't Get Stuck With Any Other Soft Drink." (Gene Lesser, Falls Church; also, Holly Hacker, Rockville)

Amtrak: "Take the Plunge!" (David M. Howe, Pittsburgh)

Cellular One Telephone: "We Don't Give You a Lot of Talk." (Michael Scott, Arlington)

"Switch to Clearasil. Break Out From the Pack." (Michael Scott, Arlington)

Suzuki Samurai: "You'll Flip Over Our Low Prices." (Sheryl Katz, Washington; also, Katherine Fink, Burke)

Midas Brakes: "There's No Stopping Us Now!" (Ed Leonardo, Arlington; also, Paul F. Krause, Fredericksburg)

Bell Atlantic Cellular Phones: "When You Talk, We Listen." (Roz Jonas, Bethesda)

Dinty Moore Beef Stew: "We Put a Little Bit of Ourselves Into Everything We Do!" (Anne-Marie Da Costa, Fairfax Station) Weight Watchers: "Join Us. You Can't Lose." (Walter H. Kopp, Annandale)

AT&T: "We Stay Busy for You." (Walter H. Kopp, Annandale)

Denny's: "A Taste of the Old South." (Tony Buckley, Washington)

Michelin: "Going Flat Out to Keep Your Business." (Peggy Hyde, Charlottesville)

Schick Razors: "A Cut Above the Rest." (Fran Ludman, Baltimore)

Chiquita Bananas: "We'll Spoil You Rotten." (Michael Fribush, Burtonsville) Packwood Reelection Committee: "Keeping in Touch With Our Constituents." (Michael R. Megargee, Arlington)

Next Week: The Rorschach of the Crowd.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 33 : Post Impressionism.


name=fulltext>
Full Text (766   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Oct 17, 1993

If the Lincoln assassination had been covered by Tony Kornheiser:

SIC SEMPER ABSURDIS

By Tony Kornheiser

The other day I was thinking about myself, how I'm kind of bald and fat, not needing-a-forklift-to-get-outta-bed fat, just kind of soft and blubbery and with a lot of ear wax. Anyway, in comes my friend Nancy, which is not her real name because I made her up, and she tells me that some no-talent putz of an actor with a mustache like cow cud has administered a hot-lead noogie to President Abraham "Yes, My Name is Abe But I Didn't Go to No Yeshiva" Lincoln, who ...

This week's contest: Give us the opening lines of a big story from American history as it might have been written by someone whose work appears in the Washington Post. Maximum 100 words. You must choose one of three news stories: "Lincoln Assassinated," "Stock Market Crashes" or "Man Walks on Moon." You may choose any writer you wish: Richard Cohen. Miss Manners. Buchwald. Barry. Broder. The Reliable Source. Why Things Are. The Post editorial board. Anyone at all, anywhere in the paper. First-prize winner gets "Mickey's Clock Shop," a yammering plastic Christmas display featuring Mickey, Goofy, Pluto and Donald singing 40 festive seasonal songs in a ceaseless, tinny soprano. A value of $99, this is our finest prize to date, with the possible exception of the two-person horse costume.

Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 32, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071 or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Oct. 25. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 30, in which you were asked to interpret any of four Rorschach ink blots.

Disturbing results. Thousands of entries, many of them too crude to publish - even for the Style Invitational, which traffics proudly in subliminal poopy jokes. The things you saw in these innocuous blots! And you were unnervingly synchronous: More than a dozen of you turned Blot C upside down and saw "Ross Perot in a pith helmet explaining his economic program, using Richard Nixon hand puppets." Frankly, it weirded us out.

+Seventh Runner-Up: (Ink Blot A) Brain surgery by corkscrew, a money-saving procedure under the Clinton health plan (Patricia Smith, Fairfax Station)

+Sixth Runner-Up: (Ink Blot A, upside down) Bill Clinton's Harley, with training wheels (Ken Wood, Columbia)

+Fifth Runner-Up: (Ink Blot C) Minnie Mouse at the gynecologist (Wendy Borsari, Washington; also, Dave Zarrow, Herndon, and Heidi Moore, Alexandria)

+Fourth Runner-Up: (Ink Blot D) J. Edgar Hoover, playing "I'm a Little Teapot" (Sue Davis, Beltsville)

+Third Runner-Up: (Ink Blot D) The avenging angel of clubbed baby seals (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

+Second Runner-Up: (Ink Blot D, upside down) A rabbinical student flexes his muscles for the much-coveted Mr. Tel Aviv trophy (Matthew J. Peterkin, Washington)

+First Runner-Up: (Ink Blot C) "I can't keep going and going and going. My feet are killing me!" (James H. McDonough, Indian Head)

And the winner of the two-person horse costume:

(Ink Blot C) Disney horror! Mickey Mouse spotted carrying two severed heads! (Steven King, Alexandria)

Honorable Mentions:

Ink Blot A:

Carmen Miranda on a bad fruit day (Dan and Lecia Harbacevich, Stephens City, Va.; also, Claire Timms, Fredericksburg)

Dogs' spit-in-the-cup contest (Ann Hall, Fort Belvoir)

The Mayan god of panhandlers (Gregory Dunn and Karen Wright, Alexandria)

Two Bavarian beer drinkers with big hangovers (Barbara Kallas, Washington)

Ink Blot B:

[Table]
Socks found "sleeping" on Pennsylvania Avenue (Bob & Lisa

Waters, Andrews Air Force Base)

Socks, after 10 minutes in the dryer (Lynne DePaso, Herndon)

(upside down) Olive Oyl on the cotton-candy weight gain plan (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Garfield the Sailor Man (Bill Myrons, Crofton; also, Adam Hirschfeld, Annandale)

(upside down) Lani Guinier, cheerleader (Joyce Small, Herndon)

The Tasmanian devil at ballet class (Beth Tucker, Manassas)

Ink Blot C:

(upside down) The Big Bad Wolf polishes off that first little piggy (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

"Attack rabbit" as seen by Jimmy Carter (Stu Segal, Vienna)

New, non-threatening Tailhook convention logo (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

[Table]
(upside down) Bob Dole (Elizabeth Rangan, Dayton, Md.) Ink Blot

D

(upside down) The director of "Roseanne" backs the star into her chair through hand signals (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

A Lamb-Chop-skin rug (Dan and Lecia Harbacevich, Stephens City, Va.)

Cabbage Patch roadkill (Katherine Struck, Columbia)


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RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 34 : INSPECT A GADGET


prizes.

Full Text (750   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Oct 24, 1993

THIS WEEK'S CONTEST - Tell us: What do these machines do? Choose one, or more than one.

Winner receives a handsome first edition of "A Practical Book for Practical People," an eccentric volume published in 1895 containing celebrity monographs on such topics as "Tariff Legislation," "An Oration on Christopher Columbus," "The Importance of Sincerity," "How to Grow Potatoes" "The Rights of Married Women" (she may sign contracts, but in Rhode Island her note is not valid absent consent of her husband) and "The Proper Pronunciation of Commonly Used Words" ("yclept" and "zoave," for example). Because Mary Ann the Lawyer requires this, we hereby assign this obviously priceless prize an arbitrary value of $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 34, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Nov. 1. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. (Mary Ann the Lawyer also requires us to say this, though it is absurd on its face. As if, in homes all over greater Washington each Sunday, the following conversation occurs: "Where are you going, dear?" "To the local public library so that I may enter The Style Invitational without spending a buck and a half.") Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 31, in which we asked you to divide the world into two types of people.

For some reason, this contest, more than most, encouraged the flogging of dead horses and grinding of ideological axes. "Vegetarians, and ruthless murderers." "Those who teach, and those who couldn't do what they do if they hadn't been taught." Not to mention the always charming "Women, and rapists." One excellent entry was submitted by three people and therefore narrowly failed the recently established only-one-per-thousand-entries originality test: "People who leave the seat up, and people who fall in."

There are two kinds of people in the world:

Sixth Runner-Up: People who can't do anything right, and their mothers. (Nora Corrigan, Reston)

Fifth Runner-Up: People who support Ross Perot, and sleazy space aliens out to ruin his daughter's wedding. (Chase Squires, Arlington)

Fourth Runner-Up: People opposing abortion but favoring the death penalty, and people approving of abortion but opposing the death penalty. (Chas. A. Henry, Fairfax Station) Third Runner-Up: People with short attention spans. (David and Janie Honigs, Hagerstown)

Second Runner-Up: People who wish they were married, and people who wish they were single. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

First Runner-Up: Friends of Bill, and relatives of Bill. (Donald Courtney, Olney)

And the Winner of the official flag flown over the Capitol:

People who preferred when Miss America contestants had their hair and makeup done for them by professionals, and people who wish that the contestants be required to do their own hair and makeup after being blindfolded and spun around until they are dizzy, as part of the "talent" competition. (Chris Rooney, Blacksburg, Va.)

[Table]
Honorable Mentions: Below-average people, and grandchildren.

(Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

People who understand Dave Barry when, as Mr. Language Person, he tries to warn us about the imminent danger of COW'S cq that are at this very moment EXPLODING inside your neighbor's COMMODE!, and people who understand George Will. (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

People who dress shabbily, and people who can't afford designer clothes. (Forrest L. Miller, Rockville)

Solipsists. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

People who are good at grammar, and people whom are not good at grammar. (Mike Sacks, Washington)

Women, and men who don't have the courage to have a sex change. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Normal people, and people with bumper stickers that say "I my pygmy goat." (Steve Wangsness, Arlington)

People who think Elvis Presley is alive, and people who think Paul McCartney is. (Douglas Olson, Beltsville)

Oliver Stone, and conspirators. (Paul Sabourin, Greenbelt)

People who know how to drive, and hazardous-chemical truck drivers. (Ira P. Robbins, Bethesda)

Those who can read others' thoughts, and those who laugh behind my back but will feel the purifying fire. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Itchy, and scratchy. (Mandy Dramstad, Washington)

People who win the lottery, and people who win the plastic dog poop. (E. Gaston, Alexandria)

And Last:

Egotistical, self-absorbed megalomaniacs who need to get their names in the paper, and "Steven King, Alexandria." (Steven King, Alexandria)


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 35 : Light At The End


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Full Text (875   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Oct 31, 1993

This week's contest: Tell the federal government what it should do with the 14-mile-long, 15-foot-diameter sausage-shaped tunnel it dug near Waxahachie, Tex., for the Superconducting Super Collider project that was scrapped by Congress last week.

1. End world hunger by using it to make the world's largest bratwurst.

2. A Habitrail for rhinoceroses.

3. A very large diagram to explain to residents of the American southwest what a bagel looks like.

4. Lay down 15 miles of cheap, fuzzy carpet and make it a laboratory to unravel the mysteries of static electricity.

5. Build a really big city on top and make it the world's largest municipal septic tank.

First-prize winner receives three terra cotta lawn pigs, a value of $75.

Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 35, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Nov. 8. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Hi! This is the Faerie of the Fine Print. Do you have a really really bad middle name? Send your name, with proof (such as a photocopy of your birth certificate or driver's license). Dorkiest names get losers' T- shirts. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 31, in which you were asked to come up with concepts for performance art audacious enough to seem like art, but pretentious enough to get public funding.

Fourth Runner-Up: A man dressed as a police officer goes into Arlington National Cemetery, stopping at each tombstone and saying, "You have the right to remain silent." (Gary Patishnock, Laurel)

Third Runner-Up: Seven bistro-style tables surrounded by chairs are randomly arranged in a room. People are laughing, talking, eating and drinking. Suspended above them is a six-foot Plexiglas cube. Inside, a naked man hangs upside down by ankle shackles. He is smoking. He smokes until the glass box is filled with smoke and he can no longer be seen. The title of the piece is "Smoking Section." (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

Second Runner-Up: The poor are invited to a picnic featuring free watermelons, and are photographed randomly. They do not know that the watermelons were grown from seeds that have passed through the digestive systems of members of Congress. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

First Runner-Up: Five million yards of gold lame' are used to sew an evening gown for the J. Edgar Hoover Building. (Jan Verrey, Arlington)

And the winner of the Fred Flintstone costume:

A woman advertises a major speech on health care reform. When the 10,000-seat arena fills up, she stands at the lectern clearing her throat, tap-tapping the mike, and saying, "Hello? Hello? Is this thing on?" until every last member of the audience gets embarrassed and leaves. (Tom Gearty, Arlington)

Honorable Mentions:

A major art exhibit is scheduled, featuring many famous paintings. The paintings are displayed, but turned to face the wall, so only the backs of the canvases can be seen. Air is pumped into the gallery from the men's room of a nearby Mexican restaurant. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Two cars are hitched together with a towing bar. One artist gets in each of the cars, and they drive up and down the interstate in HOV- 2 lanes. (Douglas Olson, Beltsville)

A man attempts to place an entire side of beef in the overhead bin of a full shuttle flight to New York. (Stu Segal, Vienna)

A box is placed on display in a museum. The cover is closed, but not locked. A sign below the box explains that there is a magnificent painting inside, but that the box is booby-trapped. The instant it is opened, acid will spatter the artwork, ruining it. (Brian Easter, Centreville)

A deaf woman gives a dramatic sign-language rendition of the "I Have a Dream" speech to a room full of blind Ku Klux Klan members. (Tom Gearty, Arlington)

A woman dressed as a meter maid places $5 bills and "Thank you for parking in D.C." fliers on all cars parked on downtown streets. (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

A man dressed as the Easter Bunny drives a VW bus through tollbooths without paying until he gets arrested. A man dressed as the Tooth Fairy comes to bail him out. (Tom Gearty, Arlington)

A man and a woman play "Rock Paper Scissors Match" to the death. (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

A man writes a check, made out to himself, for the precise amount of the national debt. He tries to cash it at a bank. (Chris Rooney, Blacksburg)

The following phrase is displayed on buses and billboards throughout the city: "If you don't like this then you don't understand it." (Mark Horowitz, Los Angeles)

A man goes from one government agency to another applying for work using the voice and mannerisms of Curly from the Three Stooges. (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

And Last:

A man goes to work every weekday for 45 years, receives a gold watch, and dies. (Dick Chenoweth, Silver Spring)

NEXT WEEK: Post Impressionism.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 36 : Scam on Wry


prizes.

Full Text (961   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Nov 7, 1993

Week 36: Scam on Wry

1. Chisel onto stone tablets Bill Clinton's inaugural speech, translated into Sanskrit, and bury it at the site of a present archaeological dig.

2. Make a sign that says "Valet Parking." Rent a tuxedo. Stand outside a fancy restaurant. Some person will give you his nice car. Drive it away.

3. Walk into an ethnic restaurant and saunter past diners into the kitchen, carrying a cat in a cage.

4. Tell Bob Packwood that there is an attractive woman out there who thinks he should be forgiven and wants to date him. When he gets all lathered up, send over Lorena Bobbitt.

This week's contest: Come up with a trick you can play, for fun, profit, or deliverance of a well-needed comeuppance. This was inspired by an entry to last week's contest submitted by Mike Merman, of College Park. Mike wins some "Snot Candy" in an attractive plastic nose. First-prize winner receives a plastic clock with a tasteful Last Supper motif, including plastic cherubs, a value of $50. Runners- up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 36, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334- 4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Nov. 15. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Hi. This is the Faerie of the Fine Print, again. Any more dorky middle names out there? Send us your middle name, with proof, and maybe win a loser's t-shirt. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 33, in which you were asked to cover the moon landing, the Lincoln assassination or the stock market crash in the style of someone whose work regularly appears in the Washington Post.

One comment: You should all be lined up against a wall and shot.

Fourth Runner-Up

Bob Levey's Washington

Mary Todd Lincoln has a suggestion for the folks at Ford's Theatre. Seems Mrs. Lincoln was attending a play at the theater last week when an assassin shot her husband. Mrs. Lincoln believes the whole thing could have been avoided if Ford's adopted a policy requiring assassins to check their weapons. How 'bout it, Ford's?

(Elizabeth C. Kelley, Silver Spring)

Third Runner-Up:

Free for All

Dissing Mary Todd

In your report on President Lincoln's death, you describe Mary Todd Lincoln's attire as "tight-bodiced." I question whether a similar description of the snugness of President Lincoln's trousers would merit inclusion if the roles were reversed.

- Jane Smith

(Mike Megargee, Arlington)

Second Runner-Up:

By Colman McCarthy

Mourn not for Lincoln. As a young man, the future dictator murdered rabbits for "food" and "clothes" rather than eat and wear the plentiful and tasty acorns, twigs and dirt of his native Kentucky ...

(John McMahon, Warrenton)

First Runner-Up:

Moonlight Becomes Me

By Richard Cohen

As a boy growing up in New York, I felt a certain possessiveness concerning the moon. It shone more brightly not just on me, but on friends and neighborhood as well. I vividly remember an important occasion involving the moon. The eve of my bar mitzvah. That night, trying on my very first new suit, a shiny blue serge job, I recall the moonlight reflecting off the material. I had become one with the cosmos.

Years later, when Man actually walked on my moon, as an American I felt proud. Yet, somehow, violated. This dichotomy ...

(Peter Charles, Alexandria)

And the Winner of Mickey's Clock Shop:

CARTOON OF THE FAR SIDE

... Suddenly, Neil's day took a turn for the worse.

(Stephen Licht, Kensington)

Honorable Mentions:

Gentiles Walk on Moon

By Richard Cohen

While on vacation in Berlin last week - where, I might add, the women's couture is less dowdy than that of Washington, but lacks that certain gnadiges plutzenheimersheit of, say, Paris - I was reminded of the carefree days of my youth, some 25 years after Hitler invaded Poland... .

(Kitty Thuermer, Washington.)

Bob Levey's Washington

Hey, folks! Here's this month's neologism contest:

You're a Wall Street stockbroker, and you've just been ruined in the big crash. Bereft of hope, you leap off the roof of your downtown office building. As you plummet toward certain death, that funny little tickly feeling you get in your stomach is called ...

The winner receives an all-expense-paid lunch for two with yours truly at the soup kitchen of his or her choice.

(Paul Sabourin, Greenbelt)

By Judy Mann

As I was reading The Washington Post today, noticing yet again that all the meaty articles were written by men, my daughter rushed over to tell me the news she had just heard on the TV set in the den. (Den: Such a masculine word!) A man had walked on the moon. I shouldn't have been surprised that a man was doing the walking. Yes, men walk, leaving women to fend for themselves, while they go on to marry younger women ...

(Barbara Rich, Charlottesville)

Federal Diary, by Mike Causey:

Civil Servants Walk on Moon ...

(Dan Harbacevich, Stephens City)

The Reliable Source

April was a bad month for ...

Abraham Lincoln

(Joyce Small, Herndon)

And Last:

Style Invitational, Report from Week 17, in which you were asked to come up with President Lincoln's probable last words:

Second Runner-Up: "Did you hear something, Mary?" (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

First Runner-Up: "You've got a headache?" (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

And the winner of a big wad of leftover rebel hardtack:

"Aw, I need a bodyguard like a need a hole in my head." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

(Stan Capper, Waldorf)

Next Week: Inspect A Gadget


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 37 : A State of Disgrace


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Full Text (990   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Nov 14, 1993

State name: "New Colombia"

State Bird: The snipe. Or, the grouse.

State Slogan: "The Shoot-Me State." Also, "The Totally Square State."

State Flower: The Pink Parking Ticket.

State Capital: Kinko's Copy Center at 4250 Connecticut Ave. NW

State Joke: How many residents of New Colombia does it take to screw in a lightbulb? Five. One to screw in the bulb, one to chronicle the exploit in a press release, one to indignantly deny that anyone screwed anything, one to smoke a giant loaf of "crack," and Lorena Bobbitt.

Early next year, we are reliably informed, Congress is likely to take up the matter of statehood for D.C. We contend the proposed state name of "New Columbia" is not sufficiently descriptive for the nation's capital. Moreover, no serious thought has been given to other equally important considerations. This Week's Contest - Propose any of the following: A State Name. A State Flower. A State Bird. A State Slogan. A State Capital. A Governor. An insulting state joke. Best single item gets a framed photograph of Gov. Marion Barry, personally autographed by Chuck Smith of Woodbridge, unless the winner is Chuck Smith of Woodbridge, in which case the photograph will be autographed by Gary Patishnock of Laurel. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 37, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Nov. 22. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Last call for dorky middle names. Send them to The Style Invitational, Faerie of The Fine Print, with proof, and maybe win a loser's T-shirt. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 34, in which you were asked to tell us what any of these four gadgets did.

Eighth Runner-Up:

They are obviously sequential. Gadget 3 is "Star Wars" program as designed under Ronald Reagan. Gadget 1 is "Star Wars" program as modified under George Bush. Gadget 2 is "Star Wars" program redesigned and approved by Congress for $1.2 billion. Gadget 4 is actual "Star Wars" implemented after spending $4.3 billion. (David Graziano, Springfield) Seventh Runner-Up: Gadget 3 is the world's most obvious trick squirting flower. (Gary Patishnock, Laurel)

Sixth Runner-Up: Gadget 1 is a pooper scooper for a dog with a colostomy. (Lee Rainie and Rich Folkers, McLean and Kensington)

Fifth Runner-Up: Gadget 4 is a working model of the government's latest proposal to balance the budget. (Bob Ambler, Gaithersburg)

Fourth Runner-Up: Gadget 1 is the Energizer Bunny, as built in Mexico under NAFTA. Notice the sombrero. It keeps going and g (Joan and Frank Sellers, Falls Church)

Third Runner-Up: Gadget 1 is a tragically misdirected NASA probe to Pluto. (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring; also, Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Second Runner-Up: Gadget 3 is the "Wedding Disruptor" worn by the flower guy at the ceremony of Ross Perot's daughter. (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

First Runner-Up: Gadget 3, designed at a cost of $2.6 billion by the McDonnell-Douglas Corp. at the request of the Pentagon, is the long-awaited armed services "Pansy Detector." (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

And the winner of the bizarre 1895 book, "A Practical Book for Practical People":

Gadget 2 - Instruction: Welcome to your new machine. Steps a) to e) are in order to convenience you. Number a) is to start the turn. Place b) to gear in precise and careful to hear the satisfactory noise. c) Shoe part. Make the balance part d) therefore the toe of shoe part to point in similar direction to aperture f). Look! Danger to reverse this process. When all is connection, platform e) will benefit the result. (The Reef family, Gaithersburg)

Honorable Mentions:

Gadget 1:

The Ray-O-Vac Puppy. (Gary Patishnock, Laurel; also Forrest L. Miller, Rockville)

A device to help firemen find hydrants on crowded urban streets. (Bob Ambler, Gaithersburg)

A Golden Receiver. (Donna Costlow, Washington)

NASA's newest satellite tracking system, preparing for yet another "fetch" mission. (Paul Sabourin, Greenbelt)

The Chia TV. (Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

Hubble the Space Dog. (Chris Rooney, Blacksburg)

A typographical error in a NASA invoice leads government contractors to design a Solid Poopellant Rocket Launcher. (Paula Rubinoff, Oakton)

Gadget 2:

Automatic Monopoly token advancer (shown with "shoe"). (Gary Patishnock, Laurel)

I don't know what it does, but we have one at work. It breaks at least once a week. (Fil Feit, Annandale)

"How a Bill Becomes Law." (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

Random Comic Insertion Programmer - This device ensures that the Washington Post comics will never be placed in the same section during the weekdays. (John Anders, Westminster)

Gadget 3:

"Depends" enters the 21st century. (Hugh McAloon, Frederick)

RoboBee. (Dan Thomas, Woodstock, Md.)

Halloween accessory: Pre-frontal lobotomy or Treat! (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Department of Defense specification watering can. (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

Human Squirt gag. Large flowers often wear these on the lapel. (Vincent Rivellese, Washington)

Lets the wearer know what Bill Clinton is thinking. (Currently leaning left, looking over his shoulder, pointing in two directions, getting attention for his haircut, handling Flowers surprisingly well and weighted down by think tanks.) (Douglas Olson, Beltsville)

Gadget 4:

A Picasso portrait of Madonna. (James Day, Gaithersburg)

Playtex crossed the support of a push-up bra with the comfort of a pastie. (Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

New environmentally safe unleaded lead weights. (Dave Zarrow, Herndon)

Ross Perot trial balloon. (Gary Patishnock, Laurel)

Since the black box always survives the crash, the entire aircraft, with the exception of the balloons, is made of the black box. (Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

Prince's new middle name. (Chas. A. Henry, Fairfax Sation)

And Last:

Gadget 4: The next Style Invitational Prize, valued at $50. (Forrest L. Miller, Rockville; also Gary Patishnock, Laurel)

Next Week: Pranks for the Memories.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 38 : Ask Backwards II


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Full Text (1111   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Nov 21, 1993

Week 38: Ask Backwards II

Mexico, Canada and Burkina Faso

The Fattest Human Being On Earth

Anywhere He Wants To

A Great Big Sucking Sound

Th-Th-Th-That's All, Folks

Sharon Stone's Drawers

The Archbishop of Canterbury, and Beavis.

Goofy

Honk If You Like Feldspar

Yasser Arafat and Me

Yogi Berra and St. Francis of Assisi

My Other Car Is a Giraffe

Nine Janet Renos

Frank Sinatra, Eva Braun and Morley Safer

Ho Ho Ho

Funny You Should Ask

This week's contest: Our first variation on a theme. You are on "Jeopardy!" Here are your answers. What are the questions? Answer one, or more than one. First-prize winner gets a professional magician's guillotine with which to amaze your friends by cutting off your own hand, nose, etc., a value of $80. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 38, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Nov. 29. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. The Faerie of the Fine Print wishes to announce that no further entries for the Dorkiest Middle Name Contest will be accepted unless they are really, really funny. The Faerie also wishes to rebuke the reader who identified herself as Etta "Just Give Me the Lawn Pigs and No One Gets Hurt" Saunders, of Culpeper, Va.. Well, we checked with the Bureau of Vital Statistics and learned that her full name is really Etta "Just Give Me the Puke Candy" Saunders, of Culpeper. The Puke Candy is in the mail, Etta. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 35, in which you were asked to propose a use for the 14-mile-long, 15-foot-wide sausage-shaped tunnel the federal government dug under Waxahachie, Tex., for the Super Collider project scrapped by Congress last month.

Because of the Style Invitational's hallowed reputation for accuracy and integrity, we were forced to disqualify several worthy entries that were based upon the incorrect assumption that the tunnel is a completed circle. The best of these was submitted by John Hoover and Kathleen Akerley of Chevy Chase: "Coat the ground with ice and have National Hockey League players compete to see which of them have a hard enough slap shot to knock out their own teeth from behind." Many of you submitted reprehensible entries that proposed luring various people (Perot, Limbaugh, Stern etc.) into the tunnel, and then sealing it shut. These ideas were far too hostile to dignify by printing, except possibly for the one submitted by Mike Thring of Leesburg, who suggested doing this with a Trekkie convention.

And last, a heartfelt apology to Tom Gearty of Washington, whom we neglected to credit for suggesting last week's contest to come up with a state name, flower, slogan, etc. for the District of Columbia. Tom informed us of this oversight via fax, including a dated and certified copy of his original proposal, and just to be sure, he followed this up with a phone call. No doubt, Tom has by now contacted a squad of copyright-infringement attorneys. And so we wish to announce that Yes, By Jove, It Was Tom's Idea, and Tom's Idea Alone, And Tom Wins a Bottle of Whine. Er, wine.

Third Runner-Up: Tell Ross Perot that the "Mole Men" who tried to disrupt his daughter's wedding live in the tunnel. He'll take it from there. (Robert Walker, Fairfax)

Second Runner-Up: Run a marathon through it, giving new meaning to the phrase "hitting the wall." (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

First Runner-Up: The Texas School Bus Depository. (Kurt Rabin, Arlington)

And the Winner of the Terra Cotta Lawn Pigs:

Rename it the Martha Washington Monument. (Michael Sweet, Rockville)

Honorable Mentions:

Put a goal line at either end. Establish the World Underground Football League (WUFL). Disadvantages: Games would be very long, or there would be a lot of 0-0 ties. Advantages: Field goals would be almost impossible. (Peter Ramsberger, Alexandria)

Draw mastodons on the wall with charcoal. Seal it up and forget it. (Gary Desilets, Woodbridge)

Fill with water and use as Federal Divining Rod Test Facility. (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

"The 19th Hole," a 14-mile, par-500 miniature golf course. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Satellite parking for RFK Stadium. (Maggie Wolff Peterson, Winchester, Va.)

Fill it with whipped cream, then stretch a canvas over the entrance, and paint a big tunnel opening, creating the world's largest practical joke. (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

Correctly claim that it was dug by a primitive people, and sell admission tickets. (Forrest L. Miller, Rockville)

Designate the hole as the nation's official place to test glow-in- the-dark watches and vampire teeth. (Chase Squires, Rockville)

Advertise it as a shortcut to Hell and see who shows up. (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

Place giant ben-wa balls in it to appease Mother Nature during earthquakes. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Find a "sniper's nest" in it and close the case on JFK's assassination. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Flood with salt water, fill with galleons and costumed animated figures. Charge admission to "Pirates of Waxahachie." (Sue Lin Chong, Washington)

Use it as a research lab to investigate other burning questions of national importance, such as: Do guns kill people, or do people kill people? Will NAFTA revitalize oureconomyandallowustoshootintothetwentyfirstcenturylikeaspectacularm eteor or will it completelydestroythenationleavingitaruinedshellofamoraldepravity? Is it true that fetuses can play solitaire six weeks after conception? If a tree falls in a tunnel, does it make a noise? (Peter Ramsberger, Alexandria)

Sentence Lorena Bobbitt to 30 years of being chased around the tunnel by Oscar Mayer. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Roll a 14-foot-diameter steel ball around the track behind a group of marathon runners. The U.S. high-tech version of the running of the bulls in Pamplona. (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

Convert to "Super Bird and Window Collider." (Bob Zane, Woodbridge)

Give the tunnel its own NFL expansion football team, just to spite Baltimore. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Offer it for sale to the 37 other states that were willing to beg, borrow or steal to win original congressional approval for the project. (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

An indoor race track for Shriners on tricycles. (Paul Styrene, Olney)

Cut a slot in the top and use it as a suggestion box for how to fix the Redskins. (William Osborn, Alexandria)

Something with Joey Buttafuoco. (Jim Henley, Silver Spring)

And Last:

Fill with ear wax. Offer as Style Invitational prize, valued at $50. (Sue Lin Chong, Washington)

Next Week: Pranks for the Memories.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 39 : Way Outside the Lines


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Full Text (938   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Nov 28, 1993

Prozac

Description: Rose-colored. No hint of blue.

Honky White

Description: Completely colorless.

Mort Halperin Pink

Description: Not pink, exactly. But not entirely red, white and blue, if you get our drift.

Liberal Gilt

Description: Gold, but not ostentatious.

James Brown

Description: Really, really black.

This week's contest was proposed by Elden Carnahan of Laurel, who wins a photograph of an elephant pooping. Elden disdainfully notes that after a nationwide search for ideas, the manufacturers of Crayola Crayons (creators of "Burnt Sienna" and "Raw Umber" and other bewildering touchstones of our youth) have come up with 16 cutesy- poo new colors, including "Tickle Me Pink," "Asparagus" and "Macaroni and Cheese." We think you can do better. Name a new crayon color for the 1990s, with a description. First-prize winner gets a five-foot- long replica of a Crayola crayon, a value of approximately $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T- shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 39, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Dec. 6. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 36, in which you were asked to come up with clever pranks for fun, profit or delivery of a well-needed comeuppance.

Many of your entries were shockingly immature and hostile to the point of indecency. Congratulations.

Third Runner-Up: Construct an authentic-looking Denver boot and drive around Washington with it on your car. (Frank Rodriguez, Woodbridge)

Second Runner-Up: Replace the carbon monoxide in Dr. Kevorkian's tank with helium. (Steven King, Alexandria)

First Runner-Up: Call a service station and report that your engine is "sort of, like, sneezing" and the transmission is "jitterbugging a little" and you are a silly little goose who knows nothing about cars but will pay whatever is required to fix it. When the mechanic excitedly tells you to bring it in, say you might be able to bring it in by the end of the day. Then call that evening and postpone it one more day. Repeat every day for six years. (Mary Ellen Hughes, Gambrills)

And the winner of the battery-powered Last Supper clock with matching plastic wall sconces:

On the day Disney's new theme park opens after two years of shameless ballyhoo, arrive there with lots of spare nuts and bolts in your pockets. Every time you go on a ride, fling hardware from it, making sure to leave a handful on the seat. (Kirby Lamb, McLean)

Honorable Mentions:

Start a movement to get Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell to change his last name because it is offensive to people of Scottish heritage that a Native American is using their name. (Forrest L. Miller, Rockville)

Give fillet knives as wedding gifts. (Maria L. Rowan, Kensington)

Stand in the middle of a crowded movie theater and yell, "Chuckie, I told you to leave Willard at home! How do you expect me to find a rat in the dark?" (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

Visit the driveway of someone who brags about having moved to a low-crime area. Paint a dead man's silhouette in chalk. (Frank Rodriguez, Woodbridge)

While on a commercial airliner that is experiencing engine trouble, even one that is making an emergency landing, stand up in your seat and shout, "Now you will take the New Mexico raisin growers seriously!" (Matthew J. Linn, Arlington)

Sneak into Gov. William Donald Schaefer's bedroom late at night and replace every calendar with one reading Nov. 4, 1992. Awaken him by yelling that newly reelected President Bush has just called. When he protests, say that a Clinton presidency must have been all a bad dream, that Bush wants Schaefer to be secretary of the interior, but the word has leaked and ABC wants him to make a statement in time for "Good Morning America." Dial Sam Donaldson, hand the phone to Schaefer and depart quietly. (N. Peter Whitehead, Alexandria)

Call the animal shelter and ask how many dogs and cats are available for adoption. Turn away from the receiver and ask, "How much per pound did you say we can get?" (Frank Rodriguez, Woodbridge)

Call Larry King and suggest some guests he should have on upcoming shows. See how many times you can get him to refer to someone as a "good friend," someone he talks to all the time, then explain to him that every person you've named has been dead for years. (Michael Hunter, Washington)

Dress up as Barney, go to the mall, tell kids Santa isn't coming because Barney ripped his head off. (Chris Rooney, Blacksburg, Va.)

Send Ross Perot an anonymous message threatening to disrupt the conception of his grandchild. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Get a number of cats with the same colors and markings as Socks. Release them at various points on the block surrounding the White House. Watch the tourists and Secret Service scramble. (Jim Reynolds, Oakton)

Contact CNN at noon on Nov. 25, with breaking news that the little pop-up thermometers on frozen turkeys have been discovered to be used hypodermic needles. (Patricia Smith, Fairfax Station)

Run into a crowded firehouse and yell, "Movie!" (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

And last:

Submit an entry to The Style Invitational that meets none of the criteria for that week's contest, has no original idea, and is not even really an entry at all. (John Cushing, Washington)

NEXT WEEK: A State of Disgrace?


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 40 : NOT WRONG. JUST INCORRECT.


name=fulltext>
Full Text (832   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Dec 5, 1993

White House to Be Renamed "Multicultural House"

Th-Th-That's All, Folks

Warner Bros. Kills Off Porky Pig; Character Deemed Insulting to People With Speech Impediments

Spic and Span Banned From Grocery Shelves

Packers Concede `Insensitivity'; Team to Change Name

Washington Plans Monument to `Persons Who Have Been Offended by Something'

All these headlines are real.

Okay, they're not really real, but you were just about ready to believe them, weren't you? This week's contest: What's next on the political correctness agenda? First-prize winner gets the cow parts game, the cracker thrower and the nose spreader from Dave Barry's Gift Guide, plus a copy of this page autographed by Dave Barry, a value of about $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 40, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Dec. 13. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. The Faerie of The Fine Print resents being imprisoned in the agate type, deep in this contemptible feature. The Czar gets all the glory, and the Faerie does all the work. The Faerie has a sense of humor, too. Knock knock. Who's there? Your underwear. Your underwear who? Your underwear the yellow went when you brush your teeth with Pepsodent. Hahahaha. Chew on that one, Czar. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 37, in which we asked for a name, a capital, a flower, a slogan and a governor for the great state of Washington, D.C., plus a state joke.

No one came up with a decent candidate for governor. The closest was Jim Kolb, of Derwood, who suggested lawyer "Boogie" Weinglass, because he has the coolest name. This is no way to select a governor, Jim. Americans prefer the more conventional method of picking the person with the squarest head.

A lot of duplications in this contest. (Flower: The Croakus. Bird: The Robbin'. Slogan: The "Right to Remain Silent" State.) The runners- up are in the postcard below. State name wins the photo of Gov. Barry, autographed by Chuck Smith of Woodbridge, who incidentally proposed this as the State Song: "Bitch Set Me Up, Up & Away."

The Winners:

State Name: New Crimea (Peggy Hyde, Charlottesville; also, Gene Lawhun, Gainesville)

State Bird: The Great Horny Coot (Rosemary Walsh, Rockville)

State Capital: Department of Motor Vehicles Waiting Room (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

State Slogan: "A Work-Free Drug Place" (Harry Chesnoff, Great Falls)

State Flower: FTD Funeral Bouquet (C. Douglas Baker, College Park; also, Kara and Sam McWhorter, Greenbelt)

State Joke: "How many New Crimea cab drivers does it take to change a light bulb?"

"Vair ees light bulb, pliss?" (Anthony Roisman, Washington)

Honorable Mentions:

State Name

New Gimme (Joyce A. Sauter, Lusby, Md.)

Meterland (Andre Jones, Cambridge, Md.)

Tysons III (Sue Lin Chong, Washington)

Rhode Island Jr. (Chris Rooney, Blacksburg, Va.)

New Hades (Kevin Smith, Manassas)

State Bird:

The Heroin (Paula Rubinoff, Oakton)

The Cicada (Ira P. Robbins, Bethesda)

The Razor-Tongued Columnist (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

The Ruffled Grouch (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

The Common In-Tern (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

The police helicopter (Mrs. Myron's third-period civics class, Carl Sandburg Intermediate School, Alexandria)

The Tufted Blond Page (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

State Capital

D.C. Traffic Adjudication (Gary Patishnock, Laurel)

State Slogan:

"Expect Delays" (Philip Fleet, Arlington)

"No stopping or parking anytime - no parking 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Loading Zone from here to curb - Zone 1 Permit Holders excepted" (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

"Live Prudently or Die" (Peyton Coyner, Afton)

"They can't tell me that! My hair itches! The light is right in my ear! Spare change?" (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

"Everyone Is a Local Call" (Joe Milazzo II, McLean)

"Come for a Day, Stay for a Hearing" (Laura Martinengo, Silver Spring)

"We're Not Just a District Anymore" (Bruce Dean, Frederick)

"The `Get the $%- & Out of My Way' State" (Jim Lawson, Owings Mills, Md.)

"The Loophole State" (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

"Uzi Maschii, Mace Femine" - Men Tote Uzis, Women Need Mace (Jimmy Vincent, Alexandria)

"Carpe Maschine Visitorum" - Seize the Tourist's Car (Don Plambeck, Vienna)

"We Will Fill No Pothole Before Its Time" (Lynne Larkin, Reston)

"The Lawyer's Playground" (Jed Babbin and Wayne Keup, Arlington and Alexandria)

"The `It's Not My Department, Please Hold While I Transfer You' State" (Geoff and Jacki Drucker, Arlington)

"Statues? We Got Statues!" (Mary Donovan, Rockville)

State Flower

The Leek (Meg Sullivan, Potomac)

The Spreading Hubris (Jan Verrey, Arlington)

The Withering Glare (Brett Rushton, Rockville)

The Blooming Shame (E.J. Carroll, Alexandria)

State Joke

"Why are there so many drive-by shootings in D.C.?"

"Have you ever tried to park here?" (Stephen King, Alexandria)

Next Week: Ask Backwards II


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 41 : Rear-End Collusion


Booger?

Full Text (1018   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Dec 12, 1993

HONK IF YOU HATE CHUCK SMITH

MY OTHER CAR WON THE STYLE INVITATIONAL

McGOVERN/EAGLETON '72

SLIGHTLY ABOVE AVERAGE SENSE OF HUMOR ON BOARD

Some of you have complained that, week after week, the Style Invitational winner gets a nifty prize, like a bowl of gopher drool, and runners-up get the elegant Loser's T-Shirt featuring what appears to be the likeness of an individual on a toilet, but the Honorable Mention winners, whose mediocre offerings are after all the lifeblood of this squalid feature, get doodly. We have decided to rectify this situation. In the tradition of the Style Invitational, which operates on the hallowed principle "We Do as Little Actual Work as Possible," we will rely on you to rectify it.

This Week's Contest: Design a Style Invitational bumper sticker to be awarded to all Honorable Mentions. Something that somehow captures the spirit and humongous prestige of the contest. Direct reference to the Invitational is not required. Brevity is valued. First-prize winner receives a piping hot bowl of gopher drool. Just kidding. It would make a swell prize, but how would we keep it hot? Winner gets 10 of the bumper stickers plus an unbelievably flimsy Chinese accordion donated to the Style Invitational kitty by Kitty Thuermer of Washington, whose profession, alas, must remain a secret. Total first-prize value: $20. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 41, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Dec. 20. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Okay, you wormed it out of us. She is a notorious international trafficker in condoms. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 38, In which you were asked to submit "Jeopardy"- like questions in response to several answers we supplied. But first, an abject apology to "Boogie" Weinglass, the Maryland retailer whom we erroneously referred to as a "lawyer" in last week's Invitational. Mr. Weinglass is not nor has he ever been a lawyer, and The Post's counsel, Mary Ann The Lawyer, instructs us to emphasize that we believe Mr. Weinglass to be a person of unimpeachable integrity who would have to decline the position of pope because it does not befit his dignity. We wish to say to Mr. Weinglass that we are dreadfully sorry for this unintentional and inexcusable slur. By the way, what is "Boogie" short for? Booger?

Okay. The contest at hand:

+ Fifth Runner-Up - Answer: A Great Big Sucking Sound

What preceded the Big Bang? (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

+ Fourth Runner-Up - Answer: Yogi Berra and St. Francis of Assisi

What two people does Oliver Stone believe did not necessarily help plot the assassination of JFK? (Jim Henley, Silver Spring; also, Tom Reidy, Clinton)

+ Third Runner-Up - Answer: Yogi Berra and St. Francis of Assisi

Which two people never actually said most of the things commonly attributed to Yogi Berra? (Michael J. Hammer, Washington)

+ Second Runner-Up - Answer: Funny You Should Ask

What was John Bobbitt's answer to the police question, "Is anything missing?"

(Joe Guderjohn, Chantilly)

+ First Runner-Up - Answer: Nine Janet Renos

What is the distance from New York to Boston, in prescription- lens thickness units? (Mike and Louise Megargee, Arlington)

+ And the winner of the magician's guillotine:

Answer: Nine Janet Renos

Whom will David Koresh face when his appeal reaches the Supreme Court of Hell?

(Tom Meyer, Alexandria)

+ Honorable Mentions: Answer:

The Archbishop of Canterbury and Beavis

What doubles team plays tennis against the pope and Butt-head? (John Cushing, Washington; also, Lee Raby, Arlington)

After Butt-head died, what show did MTV pitch to the BBC in London? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Answer: Anywhere He Wants to

Where is The Post's editor allowed to put the comics? (Douglas Olson, Beltsville)

Where does John Bobbitt tell the tailor to put the fly in his pants? (Michael J. Hammer, Washington)

Answer: Nine Janet Renos

What will signify the beginning of the Apocalypse? (Robert Walker, Fairfax)

What is "nine the hard way"? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

In the Plain but Powerful Women bubble gum card series, what is the value of one Ruth Bader Ginsburg? (Peyton Coyner, Afton)

What is a baseball lineup that makes the Phillies look handsome? (Nancy Rogers, Centreville)

Answer: The Fattest Human Being on Earth

Who should the Capitals consider for goalie with their first pick in next year's amateur draft? (David Fitzpatrick, Alexandria)

Who will probably be seated next to me on a fully loaded 747 nonstop flight to Australia? (Donald Thomas, Bethesda; also, David Handelsman, Charlottesville)

Answer: Sharon Stone's Drawers

What's the only thing that gets used less than Desmond Howard? (David Fitzpatrick, Alexandria)

Answer: Goofy

What is G. Gordon Liddy's first name? (Robert Walker, Fairfax)

What did the mayor of Manassas agree to name his first-born child in exchange for a Disney theme park? (Mike and Louise Megargee, Arlington)

Answer: Mexico, Canada and Burkina Faso

What three places will achieve U.S. statehood before the District of Columbia? (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

What are the three largest countries in North America, according to a National Geographic survey of recent high school graduates? (Richard L. Wong, Arlington)

Answer: My Other Car Is a Giraffe

What does Ed Rollins wish he'd said when he was asked, "How did you win in New Jersey?" (Mary Olson, Springfield)

Answer: Yasser Arafat and Me

To what did they change the name of Suha Arafat's autobiography after "Why I Married an Incredibly Ugly Man" was rejected? ("Moses," Washington)

In what book by Yasser Arafat did it first become apparent that he had multiple personalities? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

+ And Last, a fax we received from Kirby Lamb of McLean. In giant, frantic block letters it said,

"I DON'T CARE ABOUT THE CONTEST! JUST GIVE ME THE GUILLOTINE!"

It was signed "Lorena Bobbitt, Manassas."

Next Week: Way Outside the Lines.


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Week 42 : Hey, It Could Be Worse


name=fulltext>
Full Text (657   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Dec 19, 1993

1. A TV docudrama starring Macaulay Culkin as Jesus Christ.

2. Okay, you are at a party, talking to someone whose name you have forgotten, and someone else comes up, and, like, it's incredibly obvious you have to introduce them, and just then a disgruntled postal worker blows the three of you away with an AK-47.

3. Being slapped to death by Zsa Zsa Gabor.

4. Having to eat all your meals for the remainder of your life while seated on the toilet at New Jersey Turnpike rest stops.

This Week's Contest: Things that are worse than the Washington Redskins.

We admit we put this contest off for weeks, long after it became not only justifiable but imperative, because the First Rule of Sniveling Journalism is not to make fun of something about which people care deeply. (For example, you will probably not see a contest anytime soon on "What God Looks Like," however good an idea it might be.) Alas, though, this past weekend the Skins forced our hands. So, cheer up, Washington. The local football team may be bad, but there are worse things in life. Just tell us what they are. Grand prize winner receives two tickets to a Redskin game next year. First runner-up receives four tickets. Other runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 42, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Dec. 27. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 39,

In which you were asked to come up with new, hip colors for Crayola Crayons.

Fifth Runner-Up: You'll Never Take Me Alive Copper - Description: The color of a dirty rat. (Tom Criss, Dayton, Md.; also, Dave Ferry, Leesburg)

Fourth Runner-Up: Kevorkian - Description: A bright, light white. (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

Third Runner-Up: Oxymaroon - Description: A perky brown. (Gina Morgan, Falls Church; also, Mike Thring, Leesburg)

Second Runner-Up: Rainbow - Description: Black. (Douglas Olson, Beltsville; also, Henry Lynton, Arlington, and Richard J. Swanson, Mount Airy)

First Runner-Up: I Can't Believe It's Not Buttafuoco - Description: The color and oily texture of rancid margarine. (Kelly A. Lindner, Washington)

And the winner of the giant Crayola Crayon, printed with the name of his color:

Govern Mint - Description: Please refer to specification Mil-Q- 17983245, Rev. G, w/Appendix J, which details the hue, tone, shade, tolerance, refraction, reflection, intensity and brilliance of this color. (Paul Styrene, Olney)

Honorable Mentions: Acapulco Gold - Like, any color you want, man. (Stacey Carter, Arlington)

Packwood - Just a touch of flesh. (Stu Segal, Vienna)

Trash White - A very common shade of white. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Aqua Velva Blue - Usually used in combination with Trash White. (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

Vanna White - Not too bright, but still shows up. (Abbie Thompson, Silver Spring)

Cincinnati Red - Multicolored, with a white flaky head. (Steven King, Alexandria)

Rust Limbaugh - A big fat crayon with no point, but very colorful. (Lowell Feld, Arlington)

Does This Look Infected Pink - Pink with a trace of red. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Ed Rollins - Toast. (Jennifer Hart, Arlington)

Where's William Kennedy Smith? - Cinnabar, usually. (Jennifer Hart, Arlington)

Petit-Bone - Very pale. Soon to be discontinued. (Tom Lehker, Silver Spring; also, Steve Shearer, Alexandria)

Redskin - Mud. (Linda Sheffield Miller, New Market)

Salmon-ella - Sickening Pink. (Frank Byrne, Springfield)

Off Gray - The color of the television screen when not on. (Theresa A. Bowen, Selinsgrove, Pa.)

Black Thing - I could describe it, but you wouldn't understand. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Next Week: Not Wrong, Just Incorrect.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 43 : Good Lord.


prizes.

Full Text (591   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Dec 26, 1993

We hereby affirm that God exists. More to the point, we are reliably informed that God has an excellent and forgiving sense of humor.

This Week's Contest: What does God looks like? Surely, you can do better than these overused images. Submit your concept of the Supreme Being, in a drawing, a photo, or just a description. First- prize winner receives the new King James version of the Bible, personally autographed by the Czar of the Style Invitational, plus a luxurious RWorm Ranch,S a total value of $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losersU T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 43, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Jan 3. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. It has recently come to our attention that we still owe merchandise to a few first-prize winners, some of whom have been waiting months. This is attributable to shocking malfeasance by The Faerie of the Fine Print, who has received a punitive demotion and is now, until further notice, The Faerie of The Ear No One Reads. We regret any inconvenience. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 40,

in which you were asked to come up with headlines representing the next step in political correctness mania:

Sixth Runner-Up:

Congress Outlaws Death It Is "Ageist," Lawmakers Conclude

(Allen R. Taylor, New Cumberland, Pa.)

Fifth Runner-Up:

Santa to Get Extra Reindeer Ahmed, Jorge and Motohiro Will Join Sleigh

(Hershal Shevade, Washington)

Fourth Runner-Up:

Candidates to Seek Verbal Consent Before Kissing Babies

(Sonya Winner, Falls Church)

Third Runner-Up:

Charlie Brown Called Offensive to Hydrocephalics

(Nora Corrigan, Reston)

Second Runner-Up:

Reflecting Pool to be Permanently Drained

Degrades Women, Panel Decides

(Stu Segal, Vienna)

First Runner-Up:

Kennedy Flame Doused

Non-smokers Rejoice at End of Secondhand Smoke on Federal Property

(Larry Hurley, Bethesda)

And the Winner of the Nose Spreader, the Cracker Thrower and the Cow Parts Game from Dave Barry's Gift Guide, plus a copy of this page autographed by Dave:

Congress Approves

Five-Day Waiting Period

for Men Wanting Sex

(Steven King, Alexandria)

Honorable Mention:

Children's Rights Groups Demand Clearer Definition of "Because I Said So"

(Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Broad Jump Eliminated From Olympic Competition

(Paul Sabourin, Greenbelt)

Manic-Depressives Protest Term "Gay"

Demeans Those Who Choose to Stay in Bed and Brood

(Anthony DUAntoni, Laurel)

Nobel Prize Discontinued;

Found to Discriminate Against Mediocre Persons

(Yvonne and Peter Pover, Arlington)

ACLU Sues Itself Claims Its Lawsuits Infringe on Others' Constitutional Rights

(Gary Patishnock, Laurel)

Sports Authority Discontinues Selling Dumbells

(Audrey Kovalak, Springfield)

Animal Rights Activists Arrested For Throwing Blood at Animals

"They Wear Fur," Protesters Shout

(David Seid, Bethesda)

Buckwheat Pancakes Removed from Cookbooks;

Stereotype Cited

(Roger Gross, Burke)

Native American Orgnization Protests Use of "Geronimo" by Paratroopers

Suggests Substitution of "Gesundheit"

(Robert Benson, Silver Spring)

Oppressors Defeat Victims

Field Goal Gives Dallas Victory at First Game in Laurel Stadium

(No Name Given, No Home Either)

New Laundry Laws Prohibit Separation of Whites and Colors

(Julie Allan, Falls Church)

Caucasian Group Protests Mimes' Use of Whiteface

(Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.H.)

Spelin Simplufkatun Bil Pases Hows. Grate Day Fr Rites of Ilitirits!

(Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

And Last:

Expression "Politically Correct" Deemed Offensive

Use Is Banned Under New Speech Code (Steve Amter, Washington)

NEXT WEEK: Rear-End Collusion


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Week 44 : ADVERB PUBLICITY


name=fulltext>
Full Text (616   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jan 2, 1994

"I am an innocent man," Bob Packwood said touchingly. "Thank you, Dr. Kevorkian," the new patient said breathlessly. "I still love my wife," John Bobbitt said gushingly. "I'm sorry, we do not accept walk-in clientele," Duke Zeibert sniffed unreservedly.

This week's contest was proposed by Jim Metzger of Arnold, Md., or possibly by Jim Arnold of Metzger, Md. We cannot read our handwriting. Jim proposed resurrecting the Tom Swiftly joke, perhaps the only form of humor lower than the knock-knock joke. For his efforts, Jim receives a rubber severed finger. So. Write us a Tom Swiftly or two, updated for the '90s. Each must include a reference to a famous person or institution. First-prize winner receives a twitching rubber rat caught in a trap, a value of $35. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to The Style Invitational, Week 44, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to (202) 334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Jan. 10. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 41, in which you were asked to come up with a bumper sticker to be awarded to all Style Invitational Honorable Mention winners. But first, a digression. It is astonishing how the promise of free merchandise, however crappy, provokes paroxysms of greed in otherwise reasonable and mature individuals. More than a dozen persons who received Honorable Mentions in the past year have sent letters importuning us to award these bumper stickers retroactively. Are you people lacking even a shred of dignity? Are there no limits to your capacity for degradation? Tell you what. Let's find out: To the first 15 people who mail us some of their navel lint, we will send ABSOLUTELY FREE an item so stupid only a complete idiot would want it. Mail your lint to 'Special Idiot's Offer," The Style Invitational, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington D.C. 20071. Allow two weeks for delivery. Ahem. Now, for the bumper stickers. We will be printing and distributing The Winner and First Runner-Up, starting this week:

Fifth Runner-Up: (Frederick T. Dekuyper, Baltimore;also, Lori C. Fraind, Reston)

Fourth Runner-Up(Chuck Smith, Wodbridge)

Third Runner-Up: (Shana Wagger, Washington)

Second Runner-Up: (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

First Runner-Up:(Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

And the Winner of the 10 Bumper Stickers and the Flimsy Chinese Accordion: (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

Honorable Mentions: Often an Usher, Never a Bridesmaid (Elden Carnahan, Laurel) Keep It Stupid, Stupid (Ellen Raphaeli, Falls Church) The Style Inivtational! (Steven King, Alexandria) Coveted Bumper Sticker (Lisa Zucker, Bethesda; also, Bob Hodges, Manassas) Yes, I Can't (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge) IUm a Loser. Ask Me How. (Lisa Zucker, Bethesda) Brevity Is the Soul of Wit, Which Is Why I Got This Bumper Sticker Instead of the Big Prize or One of Them T-Shirts. (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring) Puns Don't Kill People, People Kill People. (Chris Lynt, Alexandria) They Ran Out of Porpoise Poop (Jim Reagan, Reston) It's the Bumper, Stupid (Paul Kondis, Alexandria) I and My Immediate Family Are Not Employed by The Washington Post (R.D. Chaney, Frederick) Willing to Not Vote for Money (Kevin Maher, Washington) Woke Up. Got Stupid. Entered Style Invitational. Lost. (Kathy Eanes, Burke) I Never Win Anything Good (Dan Kaufman, Washington) lanoitatinvI elytS. (Paul A. Alter, Hyattsville) Brevity Is the Soul of (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

And Last: I Don't Know Chuck Smith, But Apparently I'm No Chuck Smith. (Pai Rosenthal, Sterling)


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 45 : Invitation to a Dual, II.


name=fulltext>
Full Text (762   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jan 9, 1994

The Good News:

Because of snow, the federal government announces a liberal leave policy.

The Bad News: Only liberals can leave.

[Table]
The Bad News: North Korea has The Bomb.

The Good News: They won't deliver it unless you order $70 worth of "bok choy."

This Week's Contest: Deliver us a Good News-Bad News scenario. The Good News: First-prize winner receives a special $80 boxed CD set of the complete works of a major recording artist. The Bad News: Does the name "Manilow" mean anything to you? Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 45, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Jan. 17. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 42,

in which you were asked to come up with things that are worse than the Washington Redskins. But first, a startling observation about the sociology of humor. Ordinarily, Style Invitational winners are more or less evenly divided between men and women, only slightly skewed toward men by the irritating Chuck Smith factor. But this week, of the 22 entries selected for publication, 21 turn out to have been submitted by guys. Initially, we suspected this was because the premise was sports-related, but further examination revealed an equal gender division in total entries. And so we were forced to conclude that men were simply better at this week's contest, perhaps because it was grounded on a paranoid and infantile view of the world and required the invention of hostile and degrading scenarios featuring toilet humor, flagrant sexual innuendo, violence and sadism.

But that's just a guess.

Anyway, things worse than the Redskins:

- Fourth Runner-Up: Execution by "lethal suppository." (Gary Patishnock, Laurel)

- Third Runner-Up: Being born with the name Lee Harvey Hitler. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

- Second Runner-Up: Discovering you have a long-lost half brother named Bill Clinton but he works at the Dixie Pig. (Mary Olson, Springfield)

- First Runner-Up and winner of the four 1994 Redskin tickets: Suspecting that you are drunk, the D.C. police handcuff you, in a miniskirt, to a fire hydrant in the middle of winter. In the distance, heading toward you, is a dogsled race. (Jim Day, Gaithersburg)

- And the winner of the two Redskin tickets: Being a fourth-grade civics teacher the day after Zhirinovsky's "Today Is the Beginning of Orgasm" speech. (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

- Honorable Mentions: You win the Powerball jackpot the day after you entered the Witness Protection Program. (Glenn W. Chong, San Diego, Calif.)

You realize Bea Arthur is beginning to look pret-ty sexy. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Amputation by paper cut. (Kevin Cuddihy, Washington)

It is Friday at 6 p.m. on the I-270 Spur after two Cheez Whiz trucks have collided. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

You are the guy who has to fire a postal service employee. (Nick Dierman, Potomac)

Your Philippine mail-order bride turns out to be Imelda Marcos. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

You think you are dreaming, but then realize you actually are running in slow motion naked through the socks department at Kmart. (Brad Graf, Leesburg)

Seeing your son-in-law at a gay pride demonstration. (Frederick T. DeKuyper, Baltimore)

You're driving behind a group of Hell's Angels in a tunnel when your horn gets stuck. (Dale A. Rice, Fairfax)

WETA gets the rights to NFL football, and halftime lasts two days. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

La Toya Jackson could be your sister. (Mike Ancell, Chillum, Md.)

Going to the optometrist and being told that the only frames that will hold your lens prescriptions look like Jack Kent Cooke's. (Edward Owens, Hanover)

Noticing that Pee-wee Herman is sitting behind you at the movies. (Tom Meyer, Alexandria)

Salman Rushdie comes to stay at your house for a while. (Walt Kopp, Annandale)

Trapped in an elevator with a fantastically attractive member of the opposite sex, you have a sudden attack of galloping diarrhea. (Leonard Osterman, Potomac)

You discover that tinfoil in your hat no longer deters evil thoughts. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

- And Last: Your wife finds out via her father and her boss at the bank that you have again gambled away the Christmas money instead of using it to pay for your underage girlfriend's abortion like you promised the last time you were sober. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)


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RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 46 : 'We Want Stupid Entries Only'


name=fulltext>
Full Text (668   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jan 16, 1994

This week's contest was proposed by Sarah Worcester of Bowie, who receives an elegant selection of clear plastic ice cubes containing embedded insects. At first, we thought Sarah had come up with a terrible idea for a contest. But the more we considered it, the more we liked it: Make up a sentence that, were it not for this contest, would never otherwise be uttered. First-prize winner receives a really fancy harmonica featuring a wah-wah button or whatever it is called, a value of $40. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 46, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Jan. 24. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. The seriously underappreciated Faerie of the Ear No One Reads wishes to inquire as to whether anyone has noticed the FaerieUs handiwork, and to solicit ideas for future weeks. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 43, in which you were asked to describe God. We expected trouble with this one. What we anticipated was a mailbag full of hilarious, bladder-weakening entries far too tasteless to publish. The good news is, we got almost nothing that was tasteless. The bad news is, we also got almost nothing that was funny. Fact is, we got almost nothing at all, a mere 200 entries, possibly because the premise of this contest was so insulting that decent human beings gave it a wide berth. Or possibly we were being punished by God Himself, who - mandibles flailing and blowhole snorting - bollixed up the responses. Possibly this contest was simply an idiotic idea.

Fortunately, we know we are idiots. We are nothing if not self-aware. And so, many weeks ago, in the fine print, we solicited entries for a "Dorkiest Middle Name" contest, for use someday when we had blundered into a bad contest and had nothing funny to print. We got 40 responses from persons with aggressively cheesy middle names, including one from Bernadette Scholastica Hearn of Rehoboth Beach, Del. She was to be our first-prize winner right up until the final week of the contest, when we received an entry, together with confirming documentation, from the parents of a spunky 2-year-old lad in Baltimore. Suddenly the contest was over. We flushed all prior entries and did not even bother to open new ones. Mom 'n' Dad win a six-pound wheel of imported Brie cheese, a value of $50, and young Valentino AssateaguePonyFootfalls Wiebel wins a real live pony. Hahaha. Just kidding. Lucky he canUt read yet, eh, Mom 'n' Dad? Val gets a big fuzzy toy.

+ Now that we have expended the required number of column inches, here is the Winner of the Week 43 contest, the very best entry we got. It arrived in an envelope marked "Fragile - God Enclosed," and contained a drawing and an explanation:

I often thought God looks like that guy on the pizza boxes. He's gotta be God. He's everywhere. I couldn't get a copy in time, but He looks like:

For efforts artistic and literary, Tom Gearty of Arlington wins the Worm Ranch and Chia Pet.

+ First Runner-Up: On Christmas night, my in-laws prepared themselves to leave my house at 9:03 p.m. They peered outside and announced that they would never be able to get up the hill with all that snow on the ground. This meant they would be staying overnight. Just then, God appeared in the form of a snowplow coming down the street... (Keith Drewes, Chantilly)

+ Honorable Mention: (Tom Gearty of Arlington)

+ And Last: Look in a mirror and disregard what you see. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Next Week: Adverb Publicity


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Week 47 : Can You Do Verse


name=fulltext>
Full Text (736   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jan 23, 1994

This week's contest: Bad Valentine's Day poetry. Any rhyme scheme, any form of literary dysfunction: We will reward the clumsy, the cloying, the clunky, the just plain inappropriate. First-prize winner receives, delivered to his or her home, a grotesquely ornate Valentine's Day bouquet, a value of $100. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable Mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper sticker. Published entries will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 47, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Jan. 31. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced on Feb. 13. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 44, in which we asked you to come up with a Tom Swiftly joke for the 1990s: A huge response this week, more than 5,000 entries, of which nearly 32 were publishable. The unusable fit into three categories: 1. The unfunny (Rush Limbaugh estimated conservatively; Howard said sternly) 2. The clever but obvious: (John Bobbitt said detachedly; Jack Kent Cooke said dismissively; Les Aspin said defensively; Michael Jackson said fondly) and, 3. Ideas shamelessly recycled from the 1960s ("I am coming down from my cell now," Mike Tyson said condescendingly; "I miss my sweetie," said Donald Duck lackadaisically.) A note to the two dozen individuals who wrote self-righteously to inform us that the joke form is a "Swifty" and not a "Swiftly": Wrong. The Tom Swiftly is an exercise in adverbial excess that parodies the adolescently overwritten Tom Swift adventure novels. It carries the adverbial ending. Just because something gains legitimacy through common misuse does not make it correct. If you disagree, we could care less.

Sixth Runner-Up: "Oh yeah? Well, you try mooring this ship," Captain Hazelwood said cantankerously. (Lee Giesecke, Falls Church)

Fifth Runner-Up: "Well, that was a great season," Richie Petitbon declared pointlessly. (George and Karen Kirschenbauer, Middleburg, plus their leftover New Year's Eve guests from North Carolina)

Fourth Runner-Up: "Great movie," Pee-wee Herman said anticlimactically. (William Jensen, Rockville)

Third Runner-Up: "We take stealing very seriously," Saddam Hussein said offhandedly. (Harold Kerr, Washington; also, J. Neil Killalea, Falls Church)

Second Runner-Up: "And then there was the fact that my front line" Mark Rypien explained incompletely. (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

First Runner-Up: "Well, at least she didn't cut off everything," John Bobbitt said testily. (Leonard Greenberg, Herndon; also, Tony Ditrapani, Reston, and Michael D. Jahr, Arlington.)

And the Winner of the Rubber Rat Caught in a Trap: "We didn't inhale," declared Bill and Hillary jointly. (Mrs. Airey's English classes, St. Andrew's Episcopal School, Bethesda)

Honorable Mentions: "It could have been worse," Lorena Bobbitt said bitingly. (Stephanie Reiss, Rockville; also, Jeff Clineff, Silver Spring)

"I think I can get it over the plate," Mitch Williams said aimlessly. (Chuck Nelson, Alexandria)

"My life is not a fairy tale," said Princess Diana grimly. (Louise G. Barnett, Chevy Chase)

"My name has been withdrawn," said Zoe Baird disappointedly. (Louise G. Barnett, Chevy Chase)

"I won't be leaving 'Jeopardy!' " Alex Trebek declared categorically. (Kurt Rabin, Arlington)

"I have to cancel the rest of my tour," Michael Jackson said disconcertedly. (Meg Sullivan, Potomac)

"I am what I am," Madonna said imprudently. (Joseph Broderick, Reston)

"Gee, these are great playoff games," Richie Petitbon said absently. (Tony Ditrapani, Reston)

"Hillary's given all my underwear away," the president chafed rashly. (Dan Trigobogg, Baltimore)

"I must be more careful," said John Bobbitt circumspectly. (Don Maclean, Burke)

"Why me?" asked Nancy Kerrigan lamely. (Don Maclean, Burke)

"It was a joke," Ted Danson said darkly. (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring; also, Nadine Devay, Arlington)

"We'd better turn back, Admiral Columbus," said the first mate flatly. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

"I do not have a drinking problem," Ted Kennedy said cordially. (Christine Keiner, Columbia)

"I never done nothing to that girl," Joey Buttafuoco said penetratingly. (Kurt Rabin, Arlington)

"My, that was tasty!" Jeff Dahmer said heartily. (Stephen Bates, Silver Spring)

"There are things more important than one's physical appearance," Janet Reno asserted plainly. (Andrea and Alan Pendleton, Arlington)

"Hey, babe, what's your sign? I'm currently unattached," John Bobbitt said bluntly. (Les Greenblatt, Washington)

And Last: "What's the big deal about winning the Invitational?" Rose Stack said unwittingly. (Rose Stack, Arlington)


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RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 48 : Snivel War


name=fulltext>
Full Text (895   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jan 30, 1994

Want one?

Beg.

Against all sane predictions, we are approaching the end of our first year in business, not yet closed down by the gendarmes of polite society. And so we have reordered the coveted Style Invitational loser's T-shirts; the new ones will indicate "Year II" on them. This leaves us with a small surplus of shirts from the first year, which by now, because of the rampaging success of this idiotic competition, have acquired an approximate resale value of $12,500 apiece.

This Week's Contest

Beg us for them. Grovel. Propose deals. Threaten. Cajole. Flush your dignity right down the pooper. Whatever it takes. The more wretched and outrageous the better. All published entries will be considered runners-up, and will win a shirt. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 48, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Feb. 7. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 45,

in which we asked you to deliver a good news/bad news scenario. First, the good news. Last Sunday, for the first time in months, the unbelievably annoying Chuck Smith of Woodbridge did not win even a single honorable mention, raising the possibility that Mr. SmithUs years of recreational drug use finally caught up with him, rendering his brain a sac of goo, and clearing the field for other worthy contestants. The bad news:

+Fourth Runner-Up: The Good News: You get an expensive designer bag.

The Bad News: It's a colostomy bag. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

+Third Runner-Up: The Good News: Jack Kent Cooke has finally agreed to rename the Redskins.

The Bad News: They're going to be called the Laurel "William Donald Schaefers." (Bill Swedish, Arlington)

+ Second Runner-Up: The Good News: You traded in that gun youUve been afraid to keep in the house for a new pair of shoes.

The Bad News: On your way out of the store, you're shot by someone who wants your shoes. (Thom Lieb, Crofton)

+ First Runner-Up: The Good News: A thorough investigation of all available Whitewater company records exonerates the Clintons of any wrongdoing.

The Bad News: The White House toilets are clogged. (Beth Chalecki, Washington)

+ And the Winner of the Barry Manilow Boxed CD Set:

The Good News: At long last, the Navy has redesigned its uniforms for women.

The Bad News: They look like this:

(Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

+Honorable Mentions:

The Good News: Three ghosts visit you on Christmas Eve and change your life forever.

The Bad News: They are Larry, Curly and Moe, and Moe puts your eyes out. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

The Good News: Your dentist is very generous with the nitrous oxide.

The Bad News: He always asks you to disrobe and put on a paper gown. (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

The Good News: Grandpa has been taken off the respirator and released from the hospital.

The Bad News: He's dead. (Phillip A. Harrell, Upper Marlboro)

The Good News: D.C. alleviates prison overcrowding.

The Bad News: D.C. begins Quarterway Houses. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

The Good News: Schools in the Washington area will never again close for less than one foot of snow.

The Bad News: We lied. (Mary Ann Johnson, Leesburg)

The Good News: You are finally considered a man of letters.

The Bad News: The police trace the letters to you. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

The Bad News: Lorena found the fillet knife.

The Good News: She could not find the cheese grater. (Bernie Augustine, Forestville)

The Good News: In a high-speed car crash, air bags save your life.

Bad News: In the emergency room, the doctor tells your mother that you had on dirty underwear. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

The Good News: You just picked all the winning numbers in the Virginia Lottery.

The Bad News: Your ticket is in the Maryland Lottery. (Dave and Adele Odegard, Alexandria; also, Jane Bancroft, Wheaton)

The Good News: God speaks to you.

The Bad News: He wants you to sacrifice a loved one. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

The Good News: Bacon is found to be good for you.

The Bad News: Only if it is boiled. (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

The Good News: Children are thrilled as Bambi is considered for the job of one of Santa's replacement reindeer.

The Bad News: Nepotism rears its ugly head as Rudolph's brother, Randolph the Brown-Nosed Reindeer, is chosen instead. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

The Good News: You finally win the Style Invitational, in Week 57.

The Bad News: Week 57 is "My Most Embarrassing Flatulence," and the results are printed the Sunday you have the minister over for dinner. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

The Good News is in the bottom left corner of Page A23.

The Bad News is the rest of the paper. (Forrest L. Miller, Rockville)

The Good News: Chuck Smith's wife is hired by The Washington Post!

The Bad News: He divorces her. (Mary Olson, Springfield)

And last:

The Good News: The Style Invitational lifts you to international prominence.

The Bad News: Groupies drain you of your precious bodily fluids. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Next Week: Bad Entries Only


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 49 : A Slalom Occasion


three weeks. No purchase necessary.

Full Text (784   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Feb 6, 1994

RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 50 : Give Us This Day


prizes.

Full Text (654   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Feb 13, 1994

New Holiday: Vice Presidents' Day.

Date: Some day in March; no one really remembers or cares.

How Celebrated: Going to a stranger's funeral.

This week's contest was proposed by Elden Carnahan of Laurel, who wins a working harmonica the size of a maggot. Elden points out, shockingly, that there are no federal holidays between Presidents' Day and Memorial Day, a cheerless run of more than three months. Let's stick one in there, somewhere. The holiday should celebrate something or someone uniquely American. Tell us the date, the name of the holiday and how it should be observed. First-prize winner gets a pair of "Poo Pets," which are garden fertilizer bricks in the shape of animals, made from deodorized, 100 percent cow manure. This prize has a dollar value of $25, though obviously its sentimental value is far greater. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable Mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper sticker. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 50, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Feb. 21. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 47, in which you were challenged to write very, very bad Valentine's Day poetry.

- Third Runner-Up:

Darling, I neglected you, it's true,

And then you were lost to me.

But now that you're back,

I'd do anything for you,

Except possibly get a colostomy.

(Nick Dierman, Potomac)

- Second Runner-Up:

You are so handsome and so kind,

And your shoes are always shined.

Your skin is flawless, your teeth so white,

Your hair and eyes shine so bright.

Your clothes are tailored, very hot.

Your butt is perfect, your stomach taut.

You're sensitive, you have a way. . . .

Omigod, you must be gay.

(Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

- First Runner-Up:

When it comes to verse I'm no Stephen Sondheim,

But you could do worse, I'll always use a condheim.

(Fred Dawson, Beltsville)

And the Winner of the really ostentatious bouquet, delivered tomorrow:

My love for you, it sails with the wind.

It's like one of them sailing ships.

I want to kiss you again and again,

With not one, but both of my lips.

My love for you is much stronger

Than my love for travel and fine luggage,

My . . . pancreas . . . gets longer

When we embrace in human huggage.

(Michael Paulkovich, Burtonsville)

- Honorable Mentions:

I love you, my darling,

Really, really, really.

If life were like the Pentagon,

You'd be my Shalikashvili.

(Bruce W. Alter, Springfield)

The Secret Agent's Lament

When I ... of you I scarce can ... my ...,

And all of ...'s dark ... come a-... down,

I cannot ... but for my ...'s ...,

And for respite do I ...ak... ... a clown.

"O damn'ed ...," I ..., as I in... ...,

And ...! And ...! To put my ... in ...,

Just try and stop me!

(Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

There once was a girl from Nantucket.

I love you more anyway.

(Bruce W. Alter, Springfield)

I'd moon the Super Bowl for you

The QE II with all her crew,

I'd moon the monster of Loch Ness,

My love for you is bottomless.

(Mary Olson, Springfield)

I love you more than

The Style Invitational

But think haiku sucks.

(Robin D. Grove, Washington)

- And Last:

What would I do for your love? You name it.

I'd scale C.S. Lewis's pink handramit.

I'd lease my soul on weekends to the Fiend,

I'd re-wash dishes someone else has cleaned.

I'd take a bath in cut-rate Serbo-Croatian oil,

But I will not write poems for the Style Invitational.

(Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Next Week: You Beg Us for Shirts.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 51 : Caption Crunch, Vol. II


shirt.

Full Text (766   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Feb 20, 1994

This week's contest:

Supply captions for any of these pictures. First-prize winner receives a fancy pogo stick, a value of about $85. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable Mentions get the mildy sought-after Style Invitational bumper sticker. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 48, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Feb. 28. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. The Faerie of the Fine Print & The Ear No One Reads, making a triumphant return, hereby urgently requests photographs of your pets wearing costumes. Best picture wins a picture of an elephant pooping, and an elegant papier-mache duck. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 48,

in which we asked you to beg for our year-end surplus Loser's T-Shirts: First, the easy ones: Persons who bribed us. Shirts go to:

Elizabeth Gaston of Alexandria, who sent us a huge homemade chocolate cake in the shape of a severed horse's head.

David Smith of Washington, who composed and recorded a rap song. The final verse is: "Why not make me the happiest of men/ And give me a shirt before I rap again/ But if instead you put me on the shelf/ You can put pickles up yo'self."

Brad Graf of Leesburg, who surrendered to us his cherished collection of loser bubble gum cards, including Mitch Williams, the Dallas Mavericks, Thurman Thomas and Wes Unseld, all of which will forevermore adorn the wall of the Style Invitational treehouse.

And last, librarian Tom Mann of Washington, who sent us, by way of inducement, a letter gleefully divulging the whereabouts of two amusing misprints in obscure periodicals, including an unfortunate misspelling of the word "fugue" in the New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, first edition, in the agate bibliography of the article on "Gudmundsen-Holmgren, Pelle (b. Copenhagen, 21 Nov. 1932)". Nice going, Tom! How very droll! You get a shirt! Now all you need is a life!

A special Maniac's Award to Kacey Kology of Catlett, Va., who appears to have written the succinct message "Give Now" in her own blood. We don't want to know, Kacey. We just don't want to know. Us give you shirt, ok? Kacey get shirt. Now Kacey go away.

More than five hundred people promised to do various extreme things for a shirt, like eating cicada stew or driving the Beltway backward in a Pinto, but these don't win because, well, let's be frank here: You get the shirt, and then we never hear from you again. What do you think we are? Idiots?

The point was to publicly humiliate yourself the way Erin J. Dingle of Thurmont, Md., did. Erin wrote, "Please send me a T-shirt, because I am too stupid to win one any other way." Erin gets a shirt.

A shirt goes to Don Maclean of Burke, who said, "I am twelve years old and I didn't get any presents for Christmas because my parents are in jail for selling nude Michael Jackson photos to my classmates. Also, while I was outside in a shelter food line, a snow plow ran over my puppy. People in line the next day told me he was deliciousI"

A shirt goes to Eleanor Grass of Washington, who says the picture of the pathetic genderless pooping individual on the front of the shirt "looks just like me!"

A shirt goes to Stephen Dudzik of Silver Spring, who reports: "I am dying of pleonasms, a rare parasitic worm, and a T-shirt would brighten my remaining days."

And a shirt goes to to "Poor, pitiful little Bert Worcester," son of Sarah Worcester of Bowie, who writes: "My mommy says if you send her a shirt she'll give me one of her kidneys and I won't have to go to dialysis anymore."

In the category of T-shirts awarded merely to avoid having to finish reading an entry, first prize goes to Daniel Riley of Woodbridge, who writes, "I am in need of a soft, soothing cotton shirt because my religion requires me to worship three hours a day with jumper cables clamped to my nipples, and..."

And the last T-shirt winner:

"Sorry I haven't come over recently, Mom. The kids keep us awfully busy. How about another T-shirt or two? Love, Chuck." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Next Week: The Washington Olympics.


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Week 52 : Testimonial


prizes.

Full Text (955   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Feb 27, 1994

Tonya Harding for The Club

Madonna for Virgin Records

Mitch Williams for Control-Top Pantyhose

This Week's Contest was proposed by Nick Dierman of Potomac, who wins a packet of "Shakti Tongue Cleaners," a tragically neglected personal hygiene product. Nick suggests coming up with inappropriate celebrity endorsements for real products. (And no, Lorena Bobbitt for Ginsu Knives won't win doodly. Be creative.) First-prize winner receives a framed poster of Rocky Marciano, a value of $80. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable Mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper sticker. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 52, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, March 7. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. The Faerie of the Fine Print and The Ear No One Reads again urgently requests photos of your pets wearing costumes. Winner gets a papier-mache duck and a picture of an elephant pooping. If you want the photos returned, send a SASE. Mail to Stupid Picture Contest, The Style Invitational, The Washington Post, 1150 15th Street NW, Washington D.C. 20071. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 49, in which you were asked to come up with events for a Washington Olympics. These were all good ideas: The Congressional Breast Stroke, the Broad Jump and the Penis Toss. Unfortunately, they were also as hackneyed as, um, Nancy Kerrigan. Sorry.

Fourth Runner-Up: The How-High Jump - Event limited to middle-level bureaucrats. (Rosemary Walsh, Rockville)

Third Runner-Up: Women's Mogul Skinning - Competitors must fleece a D.C.-area millionaire without being deported, excommunicated or brought up on drug charges. (Kurt Rabin, Arlington)

Second Runner-Up: The Washington Pentathlon - A series of events in which contestants must first hit the ground running, then get up to speed, then get ahead of the curve, then push the envelope, and finally, think outside the box. (Charles A. Lauer, Potomac)

First Runner-Up: Downhill Rostenkowskiing - Employees on the payroll of Rep. Dan Rostenkowski race to find jobs in the private sector before it is too late. (Richard Barna, Wheaton; also, Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

And the Winner of the Magician's Wrist Guillotine:

The Stay Put - A whole inch of snow is dumped on the field and competitors attempt to not go out in it. (Paul Styrene, Olney)

Honorable Mentions:

Poll-Faulting - An event for spokespersons of underdog candidates. (Dan Morgan and David Smith, Washington; also, Linda Shevitz, Greenbelt)

The Bobbittsled - Two-man teams of eunuchs career though Manassas streets, pushing hospital gurneys, trying to find the nearest trauma center. (Andrew S. Goldman, Conshohocken, Pa.)

The Wench Press. Open to members of Congress only. (Rosemary Walsh, Rockville)

Approval Ratings Dive - George Bush holds the world record with his 1992 gold-medal performance. (Michelle Morgan and Nazan Armenian, Washington)

Off-Balance Beam - Competitors must give confusing, offputting answers to panelists' allegations, to distract them. Judged on poise and originality. ("You've been accused of nepotism." "Don't tell my mother!") (Mary Olson, Springfield)

The BalderDash - The most outrageous lies in response to a reporter's question. Points awarded for audacity and apparent sincerity. (Mary Olson, Springfield)

The Platform Jive - The gold is awarded to whichever athlete can best persuade the crowd that he or she should win. This event has no rules and no judges. (Maggie Heinz, Washington)

Bureaucratic Obstacle Course - Entrants have two years to: speak personally to their congressperson on the phone; get a building permit; apply for and receive federal funds of any kind; complain about and have fixed one pothole; successfully challenge a parking ticket; and obtain one document through the Freedom of Information Act. There has never been a winner in this event. (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

Jackknifing - A Beltway event, open to hazardous materials truck drivers. Points awarded for style, sprawl, and duration of traffic disruption. (Roz Jonas, Bethesda)

Pairs Skating - Large-breasted women on skates, judged by Rep. Martin Hoke. No actual skating required. (Meg Sullivan, Potomac)

Freestyle Crowd Estimation - A generic crowd is marched through the streets of Washington. Opposing groups inflate or deflate the total and provide rhetorical commentary. (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

The D.C. Rodeo - A timed event for District police officers. Object is to corral drunk women and hogtie them to mailboxes. (Derek Parks and Cristina Anzelmo, Arlington)

Thin-Ice Skating - Civil servants must skate one-quarter mile on the barely frozen Potomac while Congress and the president use their hair dryers to melt it. (Will and Joan Riegger, Crofton)

Obfu-Skating - Verbal twists, turns and leaps of logic to avoid stating an unpleasant truth. (Bob and Diane Prokop, Ellicott City)

The Hot-Coffee Slalom - Drivers must hold full cup (no lids) of hot coffee in hand (or on lap for extra degree-of-difficulty points) and navigate a pothole slalom course on I-395 at 40 mph. To win, competitors must have some coffee left in cup. (Jim Reagan, Reston)

"Apres Moi Le De" Luge - A competition for spin doctors. After a crisis bell, opposing teams of scandal handlers sled through deep stuff to save their boss. (Rosemary Walsh, Rockville)

Whitewater Grafting - Once again, the Clintons are the team to beat. (Steven King, Alexandria)

Figure Skating - Teams of federal bureaucrats see how long they can talk about new projects without actually mentioning costs. (Stephen King, Alexandria)

Synchronized Swining - Two politicians yoked together wallow in the mud until all spectators leave. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Next Week: Happy Birthday to Us.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 53 : Cruel Fete


name=fulltext>
Full Text (1097   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Mar 6, 1994

How the Style Invitational

Has Changed America:

1. Restored dignity to colostomy jokes.

2. Umm . . .

3.

This week's contest was proposed by the Czar of the Style Invitational, who wins a 1994 Honda Prelude. The Czar proposes that on the occasion of its first birthday, this contest finally get the credit it is due. Tell us how the Invitational has changed America. First-prize winner receives a framed Official Photograph of President Clinton, in which he is slightly out of focus, personally autographed by Frank Ahrens. This is worth about $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable Mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to The Style Invitational, Week 53, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries must be received on or before Monday, March 14. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. The Faerie of the Fine Print & the Ear No One Reads makes a final call for photos of your pets wearing costumes. Mail to Dumb Pet Pix, The Style Invitational, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071. If you want the pix returned, send a SASE. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 50, in which you were asked to come up with a new federal holiday between Presidents' Day and Memorial Day:

Fifth Runner-Up: DISGRUNTLED POSTAL WORKER DAY Date: First Monday in April. How observed: Fired postal workers come in to seek revenge, only to find that everyone is at home due to the new holiday. (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

Fourth Runner-Up: PMS DAY Date: Just before one of those days in March. Observed: Tell off someone who supposedly loves you but who has inconsiderately hurt you deeply. You have license to use phrases such as "If you don't know, I am not going to tell you" and may routinely begin sentences with "If you think for one moment that . . ." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Third Runner-Up: MALE RIGHTS DAY Date: Whenever they want. Observed: However they choose. (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

Second Runner-Up: FEMALE POWER DAY Date: Some crappy day in February that nobody ever remembers. Observed: Running errands and catching up on the laundry. (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

First Runner-Up: NATIONAL CULTURAL ILLITERACY DAY Date: The Ides of March, the day Sid Caesar was murdered. Observed: People gather at designated places to discuss why most Americans don't know such simple things as the title of Geoffrey Chaucer's last opera, the name of the artist who painted the "1812" Overture, and the date World War I broke out in Luxembourg. (Thomas Edward Knibb, Walkersville)

And the Winner of animals made of cow dung:

PALINDROME AWARENESS DAY Date: 4/9/94. How observed: Gag; Poop; Step on no pets. (Laura M. Clairmont, Centreville)

Honorable Mentions:

SOCIAL SECURITY DAY Date: May 9. Observed: Children costumed as elderly people go door to door asking for cash "entitlements." (Peyton Coyner, Afton, Va.)

DEPENDENCE DAY Date: The Fourth of April. Observed: Constituents write to their congressmen to ask when taxes are due, how to apply for Social Security and where to buy postage stamps. (Don Maclean, Burke)

RELIGIOUS FREEDOM DAY Date: May 16, James Madison's birthday. Observed: You visit the homes of Jehovah's Witnesses and urge them to convert to your religion. (Jane Paulkovich, Burtonsville)

JEFFREY DAHMER DAY Date: Feb. 29. Observed: Eat your heart out. (Laura M. Clairmont, Centreville)

PALM MONDAY Date: March 28. Observed: Hire a lobbyist to grease a public official's hand. (Don Maclean, Burke)

NATIONAL CHILDREN'S EAR INFECTION DAY Date: The day the round-trip tickets become nonrefundable. Observed: Buying a round of amoxicillin for the house. (Bruce W. Alter, Springfield)

MAY ONE DAY Date: May 1. Observed: Doing all the fun things you've been promising yourself during the past year: "I may one day have time to do that." (Kathy Weisse, Sykesville)

WHISTLEBLOWER APPRECIATION DAY Date: April 1. Observed: Federal employees get a holiday. Agency management uses the day to install new hidden recording devices at whistleblowers' workstations. (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

GROUNDHOG ANNIHILATION DAY Date: March 16, six weeks after Groundhog Day. Observed: Everyone seeks revenge for bad winter weather by declaring open season on groundhogs. (Chris Rooney, Blacksburg)

DAYLIGHT SAVINGS DAY Date: The first Monday in April. Observed: You cut off the end of your blanket, and sew it onto the other end to lengthen it. (Susan Wenger, Montgomery Village.)

PRESIDENTIAL ASSASSINATION DAY Date: April 14. Observed: Northerners go to the theater and hide under a seat. Southerners run into a barn and burn it down. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

NON-GEOCENTRIC LIFE FORMS APPRECIATION DAY Date: Variable. Observed: Celebrated so as not to marginalize individuals born elsewhere in the solar system. If inhabitants of Mercury are so honored, this holiday has the additional attraction of recurring every 88 days. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

NATIONAL PERJURER DAY Date: I really don't remember. Observed: I'm not sure. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

REAL ESTATE TAX ASSESSORS DAY Date: Third Monday in April. Observed: Small furry animals are shaved, equipped with miniature three-piece suits and clipboards, then hacked into small pieces and fed, bit by bit, to packs of ravening wolves. (Kate Koutsavlis, taxing authority withheld by request)

BIRTH GIVING DAY Date: Third Sunday in March, nine months after Father's Day. Observed: Flushing any extra savings down the toilet. (Kevin Cuddihy, Blacksburg)

DAR DAY Date: April 19, the anniversary of the battles of Lexington & Concord. Observed: Open a vein to see who has the bluest blood. Tea and tourniquets to follow. (Robert Schoeberlein, Baltimore)

NATIONAL BUREAUCRATS DAY Date: A weekday between March 15 and April 15, the exact day to be determined each year by an interagency committee; however, the holiday may not fall on the same date more than once every five years except in the case of leap years, when it shall fall on the same date as the year before. In the event the committee cannot reach a consensus on the date, the holiday may be skipped unless the year number is odd, in which case the date shall be March 16. Observed: Watch the delayed C-SPAN coverage of the committee deliberations to set the date.

DIVERSITY DAY Date: May 1. Observed: In public gatherings, heterosexual males of Western European descent are stripped and flogged with rolled copies of The Washington Post. (Tod Butler, Kensington)

Next Week: Caption Crunch, II.


Copyright The Washington Post Company Mar 13, 1994

If Julia Child married Jack Kent Cooke, she would become Julia Child Kent
Cooke.

If you crossed Flip Wilson with the Birdman of Alcatraz, you'd get Flip
the Bird, Man.

If Tuesday Weld married Alonzo Mourning and then died, she would be the
Late Tuesday Mourning.

If Meat Loaf formed a band with Spuds MacKenzie and Wavy Gravy on the
trombone, they would call themselves "Meat With Spuds and Gravy on the
Slide."

This week's contest was proposed by Chris Rooney of Blacksburg, who wins
a 1994 Tasteless Joke calendar. Chris proposed the comical combinations
of famous names, by marriage or other conceit. First Prize winner gets a
fabulous framed painting by Rembrandt, or possibly one of his lesser
students, depicting a vaguely religious motif featuring Marilyn Monroe,
James Dean, Humphrey Bogart, Stan Laurel etc. This is several degrees
more tacky than a Velvet Elvis, and has a value of $60. Runners-up, as
always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable
Mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers.
Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your
entries to the Style Invitational, Week 54, The Washington Post, 1150
15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312. Entries
must be received on or before Monday, March 21. Please include your
address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No
purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate
families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 51, in which we asked you to write captions for pictures
we supplied. This contest prompted the largest response to date, nearly
7,000 entries, the most ludicrous of which appear below. But first, an
important announcement for individuals with impaired social skills: This
week the Style Invitational goes on line. You can submit entries through
the Internet at this address: losers@access.digex.net. Just think of it
as the Vince Lombardi rest stop on the Information Superhighway.

Sixth Runner-Up: Picture } Ned shuddered with dread. This elevator ride
would not improve his reputation for rubbing people the wrong way.
(Preston Williams, Alexandria)

Fifth Runner-Up: Picture } Seventh Floor! Coffins! (Chuck Smith,
Woodbridge)

Fourth Runner-Up: Picture } No one gives a hoot about my weather
predictions, complains Punxsutawney Harold. (Michael Garawski and
Michelle Lefferts, Arlington)

Third Runner-Up: Picture } These are your kidneys on decaf. Any
questions? (David Waldman, Silver Spring)

Second Runner-Up: Picture } The Doublemint Twins decide it is finally
time to switch to sugarless. (Bob Weber, Purcellville, Va.; also, Stephen
Bates, Silver Spring, and Christopher W. Moon, Gaithersburg)

First Runner-Up: Picture } "Seat 14B? Sure, right between us." (Tom
Meyer, Alexandria) u And the winner of the really fancy pogo stick:
Picture } The elevator reaches the top of the Gateway Arch. (Paul Kondis,
Alexandria)

Honorable Mentions:

PICTURE 1: Why Sidney Freud forever lived in his brother's shadow. (Mike
Thring, Leesburg)

A recent $3.1 million government study establishes that squirrels prefer
acorns to tuna fish. (Steven King, Alexandria)

PICTURE 2: After some discussion, the judges decided to have two winners
in the musical chairs contest. (Laura Jennings, Rockville) Under the
electron microscope, two vanilla ice cream cholesterols. (Bud Quigley,
LaPlata, Md.)

Cover models for the Russian Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. (Jon
Gianiny, Charles Town, W.Va.)

At six months, the twins began to look suspiciously like Dr. Cecil
Jacobson. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge; also Jim Citron, Herndon, and Ceola
McNeil, Clinton)

Hillary now hires the president's personal secretaries. (Carol Lantz,
Sharpsburg, Md.)

At night, the soldiers descended the ladders from the Trojan Women.
(Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Fashion Tip: To appear slimmer, don't part your hair on the side. (Andre
Barbera, Annapolis)

Two of the women Sharon Stone beat out for the lead in "Basic Instinct."
(Paul Styrene, Olney)

PICTURE 3: Where Exxon Valdez Captain Hazelwood will spend eternity.
(John Brodman, Washington)

PICTURE 4: (drawing from "Close to Home," by John McPherson/Universal
Press Syndicate):

Metro's first attempt to connect the Green Line to the rest of the
system. (Richard Rosen, Silver Spring)

Boy, that must have been some fart! (Art Rottenborn, Fishersville, Va.)

The elevator worked so slowly that people had to be put into suspended
animation for the journey. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

To his horror, the repairman realized he had replaced the elevator with a
garbage compactor. (Terry Bauknight, Columbia)

Another day for the Under-the-Bed Dust Bunny Inspectors comes to an end.
(Kimbra K. Morris, Harrisonburg)

Tired of the same old rut? If you can find something wrong with this
picture, you may be qualified for a career with the CIA! (Paul A. Alter,
Hyattsville)

What the red button on an elevator does. (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

For the second time in as many weeks, Martin awakened on the Y axis.
(Mike Rayburn, Lorton) Er, thanks, I'll wait. (These people are strange.
They have no mouths.) (Fred Darfler, Elkton)

And Last: Picture 1: "Doctor, I've been so depressed since Henry Mitchell
died." (Laura Jennings, Rockville)


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 55 : Escape Clauses


announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary.

Full Text (561   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Mar 20, 1994

If extramarital sex isn't cheating as long as you never actually "sleep" with anyone, then . . .

It isn't shoplifting if what you swiped was overpriced.

You are still a vegetarian so long as your burger came from a cow that never ate meat.

This week's contest was suggested by Virginia Sen. Charles Robb, in a manner of speaking. The senator wins a bottle of Indian Spirit "Jinx Remover" bath and floor wash, an excellent product for sale in various dingbat grocery stores and, for some reason, at the Rite Aid Drugs near The Post. Anyway, the senator's semi-explanation last week for his randy behavior raises all sorts of handsome opportunities for other self-serving moral loopholes through which the enterprising 1990s transgressor can crawl. Send them to us. First-prize winner gets the amazing Sword-Through-the-Neck Trick, a value of $100. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable Mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 55, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via Internet at this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, March 28. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 52, in which we asked for inappropriate celebrity endorsements for real products.

Yes, yes, of course. Dolly Parton for Bounce; Louis Farrakhan for Wite-Out; Ollie North for Nabisco Shredded Wheat; Pee-wee Herman for the Pocket Fisherman; Heidi Fleiss for Trix; Bob Packwood for Huggies. Tell us something we don't know, like:

- Fourth Runner-Up: Oksana Baiul for Saab (Randy Wetzel, Boonsboro, Md.)

- Third Runner-Up: Sens. Claiborne Pell and Strom Thurmond for Congressional Olds (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

[Table]
- Second Runner-Up: Adm. Bobby Ray Inman for Chicken of the

Sea (Roy Highburg, Bentonville, Va.)

- First Runner-Up: The Jackson family for Chock Full O'Nuts (Nick Dierman, Potomac)

- And the winner of the framed poster of Rocky Marciano:

John Wayne Bobbitt for Microsoft (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

[Table]
- Honorable Mentions:
Marla Maples for Gravy Train (Randy Wetzel, Boonsboro, Md.)

Marion Barry for D.C. Comics (Rose Stack, Arlington)

Fidel Castro for Banana Republic (Barbara Sullivan, Potomac)

Jeff Gillooly for TrashMasher (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Dr. Cecil Jacobson for Jiffy Pop Popcorn. (Don Buening, Dayton)

John Gotti for E-Z Off (C. Buffington, Silver Spring)

John Wayne Bobbitt for No-Doz (Allison Grad, Silver Spring)

The ex-Oriole goldbrick Glenn Davis for La-Z-Boy (Roy Highburg, Bentonville)

Leon Lett for Butterfingers candy bar (Chris Coneeney, Atlanta)

Exxon Valdez pilot Joseph Hazelwood for Cap'n Crunch (Preston Williams, Alexandria; also, Andrew S. Goldman, Conshohocken, Pa., and Jennifer Hart, Arlington)

Sting for Johnson & Johnson baby shampoo (Thom Leib, Crofton)

Bill Clinton for Dodge (Dan Goldberg, Burtonsville)

Rose Mary Woods for The Gap (Eileen Kirby, Philadelphia)

Johnny Rotten for Fresh Fields (Heidi Jean Waters, Arlington)

Jack Kevorkian for Curtains Unlimited (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Dexter Manley for ABC (Fred Burton, McLean)

Michael Dukakis for General Dynamics (Stephen W. Buchanan, Mount Airy, Md.)

Michael Jackson for Kinko's (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

- And Last:

John Wayne Bobbitt for Woodies (Linda Douglas, Fairfax)

Next Week: How We Changed America.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 56 : Do The Hooky Pokey


prizes.

Full Text (1013   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Mar 27, 1994

"My doctor says I have the 24-hour Fire Hose Diarrhea virus, and it is extremely contagious. I could try to come in . . ."

"Hey, I'm a little stressed out today and - CHOPPER! WE NEED A CHOPPER OVER HERE! - I seem to be having some sort of strange flashbacks but I'm sure - INCOMING MORTARS! KISS THE DIRT! - I'll be OK as long as - MEDIC! MEDIC! - no one at the office is wearing black and . . . "

"Nightline wants to come over and interview me about what I think of the company."

"My uterus exploded. I could give you details if you want. . . ."

This week's contest was proposed by Leslie Burket of Alexandria, who wins a realistic foam-rubber brick, perfect for hurling at people's heads. Leslie suggests that the suddenly beautiful Washington weather has made it essential to come up with inventive ways to call in sick or otherwise persuade your employer you must miss a day. First-prize winner receives the fabulous talking parrot, who repeats whatever is said to him, plus the Kodak Funsaver ("the film that's a camera!"), a total value of $40. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 56, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312 or submit them via Internet at this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, April 4. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 53, in which we present the first annual Style Invitational Quiz, responding to commonly asked reader questions. Test your knowledge about America's most sophisticated newspaper column regularly featuring rectal humor. Answers below.

1. Who has won the Style Invitational the most times?

2. Who is the Czar of the Style Invitational? And who appointed him the world's greatest authority on what's funny?

3. Why are we reading this? Why aren't you awarding prizes for "How the Style Invitational Has Changed America," like you promised three weeks ago?

4. So who is this Chuck Smith of Woodbridge, anyway?

5. What are the average person's odds of winning the Style Invitational?

6. How many readers does the Style Invitational have?

7. Who has been the most successful female entrant?

8. Where is Lenoir, N.C.?

9. Who is the Faerie of the Fine Print & the Ear No One Reads? Is it a man or a woman? What is the Ear No One Reads?

10. Has the Style Invitational ever been censored for taste by prudish journalistic overlords? Specifically, in Week Three, "Celebrity Monuments," did someone submit a hilarious entry for "The Pee-Wee Herman Public Clock" that never ran?

11. What would be a great name for a dog?

12. Who are these people? (pictures)

1. Wrong. The most frequent first-prize winner is Tom Gearty, a mysterious Washingtonian who enters sporadically, but often wins. Tom has four wins. Chuck Smith of Woodbridge is second with three, tied with Steven King of Alexandria, who is not, so far as we know, obsessed with reanimating the dead.

2. The Czar's identity, known only to himself and Bob Woodward, is stored on microfiche at the Copenhagen headquarters of the Trilateral Commission. Washington Post editors communicate with the Czar via "drop," involving chalk marks made on the base of a public toilet somewhere in greater Washington. The Czar was appointed for a three-year term by God himself.

3. Because your entries sucked. The only good ones were: "Offers a forum for the odd and the offbeat to meet, chat and fall in love, and yet provides an excellent barrier to reproduction" (Paul Kondis, Alexandria). Paul wins the autographed, out-of-focus Bill Clinton photo. Winning T-shirts were: "By comparison, Ernest Borgnine seems like a more attractive man" (Dan Riley, Woodbridge); and, "Increased volunteerism for Biosphere III" (Mike Thring, Leesburg). And of course, these: "Started a fad for wearing T-shirts inside out" (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge); and, "The Style Invitational T-shirt worn by Shane Stant helped finger him to authorities" (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge). And: "It has allowed the triumphant return to The Post of Janet Cooke, writing under the pseudonym Linda K. Malcolm" (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge). But that's about it.

4. Chuck was a minor functionary in the personnel department of the Environmental Protection Agency until approximately 10 minutes ago, when his boss read this paragraph and realized to his horror that it is that Chuck Smith.

5. Zero. The average person does not enter the Style Invitational.

6. According to the most recent Roper-Yankelovich survey, the Style Invitational has slightly in excess of 31 readers. But they are extremely enthusiastic readers, particularly when they are off their medication, and The Washington Post does not wish to aggravate them in any way, such as by canceling this patently offensive dirtball feature.

7. That would be Linda K. Malcolm of Silver Spring. The second most successful woman would be Robin D. Grove of Washington, except we have been reliably informed that Robin D. Grove is not, technically, a woman. So No. 2 is Cindi Rae Caron of Lenoir, N.C.

8. Who cares?

9. The Faerie of the Fine Print & the Ear No One Reads is a trained ferret named Francine. The Ear No One Reads is in the Style section every Sunday, but no one reads it.

10. (picture)

11. Whee-whee. Also, Pliny The Elder.

12. Chuck Smith of Woodbridge; Cindi Rae Caron of Lenoir, N.C.; The Baron de Longueuil; Linda K. Malcolm of Silver Spring; Tom Witte of Gaithersburg; Tom Gearty of Washington; Stephen Dudzik of Silver Spring; Elden Carnahan of Laurel; that guy in the Taster's Choice ad; Meg Sullivan of Potomac; Steven King of Alexandria; and the Mayor of Tuscaloosa, Ala., though not necessarily in that order.

Next Week: Odd Couplings.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 57 : Calling the Toon


prizes.

Full Text (861   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Apr 3, 1994

This week's contest: Who are these people, and what are they doing? Explain one, or more than one. First Prize Winner gets an authentic Rotting Skull, a magician's prop valued at $30. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable Mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 57, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312 or submit them via the Internet at this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, April 11. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. The Faerie of the Fine Print & The Ear No One Reads wonders if anyone might come up with a term for Style Invitational Plagiarists, morons who submit as original entries things they heard elsewhere, like on Garry Moore in 1971. To wit, if Kaye Ballard married Sirhan Sirhan, she would become Kaye Sirhan Sirhan. Best term for these morons wins a Jinx Remover candle. Send entries to "Idiot Terms," The Style Invitational etc. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 54, in which we asked you to come up with comical names resulting from marriage or other collaborations.

Our favorite entry violated the rules of the contest, and so doesn't win anything, but George Chase of Alexandria should be flogged for the following: A special police unit has been formed to clear prostitutes from the trees and bushes south of the White House. It is called "The Whore-Force Men of the Park Ellipse."

Fifth Runner-Up: If Fairchild Communications merged with Honeywell International, the new company would be called Fairwell-Honeychild. (Dennis Skoff, Sterling)

Fourth Runner-Up: If former athletes Jim Kiick and Don Aase ran together for president and vice president, they would be the Kiick-Aase ticket. (Scott Warner, Hagerstown)

Third Runner-Up: If Judith Light married and divorced, in succession, Terry Waite, Joseph Cotten and Richard Gere, she would be Judith Light Waite Cotten Gere. (Gloria Mehrtens, Huntingtown, Md.)

Second Runner-Up: If the daughter of mimeograph magnate A.B. Dick married the son of designer Edith Head, she would probably keep her maiden name. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge; also,Paul Styrene, Olney)

First Runner-Up: If Picabo Street broke her leg and needed intensive care, you could mail get-well cards to "Picabo, I.C.U." (Lynn Stanton, Silver Spring; also, Bill Rubacky, Germantown)

And the winner of the framed painting by Rembrandt or possibly one of his lesser students:

If singer Wynonna Judd married and divorced, in succcession, Chinese film director John Woo, former interior secretary James Watt, Rep. Bob Weir, comedian Ed Wynn, former hockey star Gordie Howe, the father of figure skater Katarina Witt and ABC correspondent Brit Hume, she would become Wy Woo Watt Weir Wynn Howe Witt-Hume. (Paul Sabourin, Greenbelt)

Honorable Mentions

If Heidi Fleiss married C. Everett Koop, she'd be Heidi Fleiss Koop. (Mary Cronin Cherry, Fairfax)

If Sybil Leek married and divorced, in succession, Paul Simon, Zubin Mehta, I.M. Pei, Thomas Mann, Gale Gordon, Edward Tudor and Jamie Farr, she'd be Sybil Simon Mehta Pei Mann Gordon Tudor Farr. (George H. Chase, Alexandria)

If Hillary Rodham married Bill Clinton, she would remain Hillary Rodham unless her husband ran for governor of a conservative state. (Lynn Stanton, Silver Spring)

If Jay North and Adam West wrote a book about Oliver North, they could call it "North," by North/West. (Gloria Mehrtens, Huntingtown)

If Queen Latifah married Michael Farraday, she'd be Queen Farraday. (Annie, Ben, Sandy and David Tevelin, Burke)

If Marlene Chalmers married Jack Kent Cooke, she'd be Mrs. Marlene Chalmers. (Paul A. Alter, Hyattsville)

If Mother Teresa had married L. Ron Hubbard, she'd be Old Mother Hubbard. (Jill Roessner, Washington)

If Estelle Getty married Mad Magazine's David Berg, they would live at the Getty-Berg address. (Alex Robbins, Bethesda)

If Mama Cass had married John Donne, divorced him and married Alexander Ptolemy, we'd get Mama Donne Ptolemy. (Al Hattal, Potomac)

The law firm of Alan Alda, Jake Garn, Herbert Haft, Robin Weir and Gennifer Flowers would be Weir, Haft, Alda, Flowers, Garn. (Jan Verrey, Arlington)

If Aldrich Ames married Anita Hill and call their son McKinley, it would be making a mountain out of a mole-Hill. (Steven King, Alexandria)

Okay, Tippi Hedren, Keanu Reeves and Twyla Tharp star in a movie, right? It does great, so they make a sequel. You with me so far? So the sequel is billed as "Tippi, Keanu & Twyla, II" (Bob Leszczak, Burtonsville)

If Julia Roberts left Lyle Lovett for Bobby Orr, then divorced him and married Utah Gov. Mike Leavitt, she would be Julia Lovett Orr Leavitt. (Kimbra Morris, Harrisonburg, Va.)

If Al Capp and Al Pacino were rubbed out in a mob hit, you would have Iced Capp-Pacino. (Preston Williams, Alexandria)

If you crossed Frank Sinatra ... maybe that's not such a good idea. (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

And Last:

If Chuck Smith married an employee of The Washington Post, we'd all be ecstatic. (Meghan Meyer, Olney)

Next Week: Moral Loopholes


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Week 58 : Play It Again, Denzel


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Full Text (818   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Apr 10, 1994

Good move for Rick, not getting on that plane. Nazi saboteurs had rigged it with dynamite, and it explodes in an extremely cinematic fashion, featuring many spectacular leaps into the Mediterranean by stunt men strapped into seats. Victor Laszlo survives the explosion but dies an ugly death; Brylcreem is like catnip to sharks. Ilsa, her blouse seductively torn in the crash, is scooped up by a Greek freighter whose captain's second cousin is a powerful, skirt-chasing Hollywood mogul.

Ilsa goes on to become a film goddess with a tragic cocaine dependency and a hatred of men. She and Rick will "always have Paris" in more ways than one. Ilsa never told Rick about the birth of their out-of-wedlock daughter, Paris, who is being raised by singing nuns in Austria . . . .

This Week's Contest was suggested by Jerry Knight, who doesn't win anything because his wife is married to a Washington Post employee. Jerry suggests that since a sequel to Casablanca is being planned as a TV miniseries, we should give the producers a hand. Bring Casablanca into the 1990s. Write the opening of a plot outline, in 120 words or fewer. You may, but are not required to, cast the roles. The winner gets a videotape of "Plan 9 From Outer Space," the worst movie ever made. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 58, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312 or submit them via Internet at this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, April 18. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 55,

in which you were asked to emulate Sen. Charles Robb and come up with self-serving moral loopholes for the 1990s, as in "It's not extramarital sex if you don't actually sleep with the person."

Miranda Marsh of Annapolis wins the coveted brevity award, a pair of briefs, for: "Chocolate is a vegetable."

- Fifth Runner-Up: It doesn't count as tabloid reporting if you're only reporting that the tabloids reported it. (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

- Fourth Runner-Up: You're still sober as lounge as you can still say your worms promperly. (Steven King, Alexandria)

- Third Runner-Up: It isn't a preexisting condition unless you had it before you existed. (Lori C. Fraind, Reston)

- Second Runner-Up: It isn't plagiarism if you write, say, "Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you - yeah, that's right, you - can do for your country." (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

- First Runner-Up: You're not fat if clothes are actually made in your size. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

- And the winner of the incredible Sword-Through-Neck Trick:

You are not guilty of DUI if you thought someone else was driving.

(Helen Sheingorn, Washington)

- Honorable Mentions:

It is not vote fraud unless you can prove those dead guys would have voted the other way.

(Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

You are not abusing drugs if you store them in a cool, dry place and never yell at them.

(Paul A. Alter, Hyattsville)

You haven't lost your virginity as long as you remember where you left it.

(Allison Grad, Silver Spring)

You are not really bald if hair grows out of your nose.

(Wayne McCaughey, Columbia)

It is not premarital sex if you have no intention of getting married. (Andy Cohen, Woodbridge; also, John P. Fitzpatrick, Falls Church, and Richard E. Swindell, Alexandria)

It is not speeding if there are still cars in front of you. (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

It isn't adultery if she reminds you of your wife. (Preston Williams, Alexandria)

It's not racketeering if you use a bat. (Andrew S. Goldman, Conshohocken, Pa.)

It is not plagiarism if it is just the way you would have written it. (Paula Gesmundo, Alexandria)

It isn't reckless driving if you get into a wreck. (Dabe Murphy, Silver Spring; also, Paula Gesmundo, Alexandria)

It's not illegally diverting funds to contras if the president is sleeping in the corner when you agree to do it. (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

You are not overweight if you can touch anybody's toes. (Debbie Ruffing, Bowie)

You're not drinking alcohol if you plan to puke it all back up. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

It isn't sexual harassment if you use clever code words such as "hooters" and "jabongas." (Larry Hinders, Fredericksburg)

It isn't procrastination if you decide to postpone it right now. (Dick Biederman, Potomac)

And Last:

It is not an official Style Invitational Report unless the words "Chuck Smith, Woodbridge" appears somewhere in the results. (Andrew S. Goldman, Conshohocken, Pa.)


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Week 59 : A GRAVE AFFAIR


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Full Text (995   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Apr 17, 1994

This Week's Contest was proposed by several people, but credit goes to Cindi Rae Caron of Lenoir, N.C., because she was the first to provide good examples. Cindi, who wins her choice of a live rat or a $10 gift certificate to Shoney's, suggests writing appropriate epitaphs for the not-yet-dead. Winner gets four coffee mugs featuring the three-dimensional likenesses of Popeye, Olive Oyl, Wimpy and Bluto, a value of $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable Mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 59, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312 or submit them via Internet at this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, April 25. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 56, in which we asked you to come up with excuses to miss a day of work.

But first, a hearty Style Invitational apology goes out this week to Benjie Watts, a columnist for the News-Topic newspaper of Lenoir, N.C. Benjie, who writes under the pseudonym Tar Heel, read our question-and-answer column two weeks ago and took offense at the part where we asked, "Where is Lenoir, N.C.?" (Answer: "Who cares?") Benjie felt this was disrespectful to his town and urged his readers to call The Post to complain about our "highfalutin" ways. We wish to say we are very, very dreadfully sorry. We are certain that the only reason we have received just one call is that most folks in Lenoir haven't had time to hitch Ol' Bessie up to the buckboard, drive all the way to Mount Pilot to use the pay phone at the feed store.

Back to playing hooky:

Fourth Runner-Up: "If it's all the same to I won't be coming in to work. The voices told me to clean all the guns today." (Peyton Coyner, Afton, Va.)

Third Runner-Up: "When I got up this morning, I took two Ex-Lax in addition to my Prozac. I can't get off the john, but I feel good about it." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)Second Runner-Up: "I set half the clocks in my house ahead an hour and the other half back an hour Saturday and spent 18 days in some kind of space-time continuum loop, reliving Sunday (right up until the explosion). I was able to exit the loop only by reversing the polarity of the power source on exactly e+log(pi) clocks in the house while simultaneously rapping my dog on the snout with a rolled-up Times. Accordingly, I will be in late, or early." (Sydd Souza and Jim Eagles, Upper Marlboro)

First Runner-Up: "My stigmata's acting up." (Cindy Aldrich, Silver Spring)

And the winner of the fabulous talking parrot and Kodak Funsaver:

"I can't come to work today because I'll be stalking my previous boss, who fired me for not showing up for work. OK?" (E.J. Wassmer, Olney)

Honorable Mentions:

"I have a rare case of 48-hour projectile leprosy, but I know we have that deadline to meet ... " (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

"I am stuck in the blood pressure machine down at Giant." (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

"Yes, I seem to have contracted some attention-deficit disorder and, hey, how 'bout them Skins, huh? So I won't be able to, yes, could I help you? No, no, I'll be sticking with Sprint, but thank you for calling." (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

"I was on my way to work when this man dressed like a ninja asked me where he could find you. I thought fast and said I was meeting you at the ballpark. If there's any place I can lose him, that's it." (Fred Dawson, Beltsville)

"Constipation has made me a walking time bomb." (Chris Rooney, Blacksburg)

"I just found out I was switched at birth. Legally I shouldn't come to work knowing my employee records may now contain false information. I should get it cleared up by tomorrow." (Donna Kerns, Winchester)

"This darn brain aneurysm of mine is acting up again." (Leo Solimine, Washington)

"The psychiatrist said it was an excellent session. He even gave me this jaw restraint so I won't bite things when I am startled." (Chuck Hawkins, Oakton)

"The dog ate my car keys. We're going to hitchhike to the vet." (Ray Smith, Germantown)

"She's having ... uh, I'm having an identity crisis." (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

"I prefer to remain an enigma." (David L. Jaquith, Free Union, Va.)

"My mother-in-law has come back as one of the Undead and we must track her to her coffin to drive a stake through her heart and give her eternal peace. One day should do it." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

"I can't come to work today because the EPA has determined that my house is completely surrounded by wetlands, and I have to arrange for helicopter transportation." (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

"I am converting my calendar watch from Julian to Gregorian." (David L. Jaquith, Free Union, Va.)

"I am extremely sensitive to a rise in the interest rates." (David I. Gilbert, Miami, Fla.)

"My wife makes more than I do, so I have to stay at home with our sick son." (Julie Brinkman, Gaithersburg)

"I refuse to travel to my job in the District until there is a commuter tax. I insist on paying my fair share." (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

"I'm feeling a little disgruntled this morning. You want I should come in?" (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

"I can't come in because the deadline is Monday and so far I only have seven different fun things to do with a barrel of snot." (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

And Last:

"I injured myself with a wrist guillotine that I won in some stupid contest." (Paul Styrene, Olney)


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Week 60 : Ask Backwards III


prizes.

Full Text (814   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Apr 24, 1994

By Striking Him Repeatedly on the Tuchus

Peter, Paul and Murray

Only Roseanne Arnold

Because No One Asked

Vladimir Zhirinovsky's Toothbrush

That First Geeky Day of a New Haircut

It Rhymes With Orange

Stinkle

Gargantua and Pantagruel

The Ear No One Reads

Confucius Rosenblatt

Jonathan Livingston Maggot

Mooooooo

Because You Can't Eat a Bowling Ball

Dr. Jonas Salk & Larry From the Three Stooges

Hitler? Who Said Anything About Hitler?

This Week's Contest: You are on "Jeopardy!" These are the answers. What are the questions? Answer one or more than one. First-prize winner gets a terra-cotta lawn pig and a terra-cotta lawn bunny, a total value of $60. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 60, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312 or submit them via Internet at this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, May 2. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 57, in which you were asked to write captions to one of four cartoons we supplied.

Fourth Runner-Up (Picture C): Bernice misunderstands her promotion to Head Waitress. (Ron Kaufman, Springfield)

Third Runner-Up (Picture A): The Other Wright Brother, Shemp. (David Waldman, Silver Spring)

Second Runner-Up (Picture D): At a press conference announcing his candidacy for mayor, Marion Barry insists he suffers no residual effect from his prior cocaine use. (Stuart Beardall, Fairfax)

First Runner-Up (Picture D): The "fishbowl" carcinoma, a rare tumor that develops only after years of sticking cigarettes up the nose. (Christopher L. Parkin, Washington)

And the Winner of the Rotting Skull:

(Picture C) A flight attendant cheerfully demonstrates the new recommended dining procedure enabling airlines to further compress knee space. (Peyton Coyner, Afton, Va.)

Honorable Mentions:

Picture A:

Weird Uncle Bernie, the Flying Wallenda no one talks about. (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

As the Cold War ends, it becomes apparent that Solzhenitsyn's exile had little to do with his writings. (Tom Meyer, Alexandria)

The true story of Rasputin's death was less dramatic, but still arresting. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

The Guinness record holder for the most consecutive times saying "What are you looking at?" (Phillip A. Harrell, Upper Marlboro)

Tolstoy sets out to prove that "War and Peace" is really light reading. (Chris Rooney, Blacksburg, Va.)

Eventually a security guard watching the roof of the Library of Congress caught on as to how the first editions were disappearing. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Picture B:

Davy Crockett's capmaker during a raccoon shortage. (John Cushing, Washington)

The wrong way to milk a cat. (Steve Dunham, Fredericksburg)

Time was of the essence to John Wayne Bobbitt's doctor. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Picture C:

Suzy, ever the optimist, decided to make the best of having a plate in her head. (Christopher L. Parkin, Washington)

Buffet-style dining for lap-impaired people. (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

Julia Child creates a meal off the top of her head. (Kathy Hanger, Arlington)

The no-seefood diet. (Sarah Guy, Mechanicsville, Va.)

Picture D:

After turning 60, Paul McCartney's efforts to be the walrus got more and more pathetic. (Douglas Olson, Beltsville)

When Steve had ordered fish and chips this was not quite what he had in mind. (Steven King, Alexandria)

Charles Kuralt in his new job promoting ways to conceal baldness while cultivating enough nose hair to sustain a transplant. (Joseph H. Sisk, Arlington)

The oldest trick in the book - breathing through reeds while under water. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

The inventor of the bong demonstrates an early unsuccessful prototype. (Sue Lin Chong, Washington)

Ernest Borgnine disguises himself as a walrus hoping for a free lunch at Sea World. (Nancy Kramer, Lovettsville)

Under new anti-smoking guidelines, smokers are permitted to patronize restaurants provided they adhere to certain conditions. (Earl Gilbert, La Plata, Md.)

Fearless D.C. Council member Jack Evans demonstrates that quality nighttime entertainment will still be available after his ban on nude dancing takes effect. (Rafael Eschly, Washington)

After the first two shots, William Tell had to admit he wasn't as good with a spear gun. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Joe's night was not going well at all. He left his house in a fury, missing his toupee and grabbing the fishbowl instead. To top it all off, he misread the no-smoking sign, thinking it said "Nose Smoking Allowed." (Michael Graver, Laurel)

Mr. Paul found it increasingly difficult to hold the attention of the missus. (Donna Kerns, Winchester, Va.)

And Last:

This should get me back into the Style Invitational, Ross Perot thought grimly. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Next Week: Play It Again, Denzel


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Week 61 : No Hard Feelings


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Full Text (934   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company May 1, 1994

This Week's Contest was occasioned by the fact that the Style Invitational is changing artists. After a spectacular run of 60 weeks, Marc Rosenthal is being replaced by Bob Staake, though Marc will be returning for occasional guest appearances. Just to show he is not bitter, Marc has drawn us a few cheerful farewell panels. All you have to do is fill in the balloons. Answer one or more than one. (Answers on a separate page are fine.) First prize winner receives magician's escapable leg shackles, a value of $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable Mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 61, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312 or submit them via Internet at this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, May 9. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. The Faerie of the Fine Print announces that the winner of the contest to invent a word for idiots who submit old, unoriginal entries to the Style Invitational is Jacob Weinstein of Washington. Jacob has coined the term "plagiarists," which, he says, comes from plagiarus, which means kidnapper in Latin. "Latin is a complicated language I made up when I was in kindergarten," he reports. "Kindergarten is a concept I came up with in 1840 under the pseudonym Freidrich Froebel." Jacob wins a Jinx Remover candle. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 58, in which we asked you to write a script for "Casablanca II," planned as a TV miniseries.

Second Runner-Up: Widow Ilsa (Jessica Tandy) returns to Casablanca on a tour and is surprised to find that Rick (Hume Cronyn) is still alive. They repeat lots of dialogue from the original movie. Tandy acts coy. Cronyn acts spry. Reviewers gush and hail it as a sensitive exploration of romance in the golden years. It is actually four hours of crushing boredom. Tandy and Cronyn get nominated for Emmys because they are old. They lose. (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

First Runner-Up: Rick (Bill Murray) wakes up to find that Ilsa (Andie MacDowell) has not arrived in Casablanca yet. After putting Ilsa and Laszlo (Chris Elliott) on the plane for the umpteenth time, Rick catches on that he is reliving the same plot over and over. The next day he punches Sam (Ted Danson) in the mouth for playing "As Time Goes By" and he can no longer finish his hill o' beans speech without bursting into laughter. The movie ends when Rick finally says "Play It Again, Sam." (Joseph Romm, Washington; also, Ward Kay, Gaithersburg)

And the Winner of "Plan 9 From Outerspace":

The flight to Portugal turns into a nightmare when a malevolent alien life form attacks passengers and crew. With full splatter effects, the humans are killed one by one until only Victor (Sly Stallone), flying the plane, and Ilsa (Sigourney Weaver) are left. Hearing their distress call over the radio, Rick (Arnold Schwarzenegger) and Sam (Wesley Snipes) fly to the rescue in a stolen German fighter. Rick makes a sensational midair transfer to the larger plane, and he and Ilsa force the creature out onto the wing where Sam annihilates it with machine-gun fire. But as Rick and Ilsa embrace, Victor emerges from the cockpit, his features strangely distorted . . . (David Laughton, Washington)

Honorable Mentions:

Opening shot: Close-up of Victor drinking a can of Diet Coke. Ilsa flies by Northwest from wherever she was to meet Victor. Later that night: Ilsa walks into Victor's room wearing nothing but a Swatch watch. For the next 15 minutes, Victor and Ilsa have sex. After sex, they smoke Marlboros. While all this is going on, Rick is captured by Islamic fundamentalists in Egypt, where many violent things occur in slow motion. He is rescued by Victor and Ilsa, driving a Toyota 4-by-4. (Ryuta Ohtani, Canton, N.Y.)

Laszlo and Ilsa are returned to Casablanca when the Nazis suddenly remember they don't really give a damn about de Gaulle's signature on letters of transit. Ilsa reports Rick to the National Organization for Women, claiming he insists on doing the thinking for both of them. Sam objects to being sold with Rick's Cafe and reports Rick to the EEOC . . . (Dennis McDermott, Alexandria)

Ilsa (Sharon Stone) wakens from her morning slumber. The place next to her in the bed is empty. She looks out past the bedroom window and rubs her eyes in disbelief. She sees the Eiffel Tower. She hears the shower running and moves into the bathroom. She wipes the steam from the shower door. There stands Rick (Tom Cruise). "But Rick," she says, "you stayed at the airport in Casablanca!" Rick laughs. "It must have been another of your dreams. Why don't you come in and soap my back? After all, we have a train to catch!" (Joe Willmore, Alexandria)

Rick and Louis' friendship blossoms into something truly beautiful. They spend many nights lamenting the fact that they will not be able to openly join the U.S. Army until they are both nearly 100 years old . . . (Jim London, Rockville)

Rick does in fact reach America, where he opens a fast-food chain called "Rick's Hill o' Beans" . . . (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Ilsa has lost her accent, providing, finally, a breakthrough role for Meredith Baxter Birney . . . (Randy Rieland, Washington)

Next Week: A Grave Affair


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Week 62 : Bad News Bearers


prizes.

Full Text (698   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company May 8, 1994

"This is your . . . suuuuuuck . . . captain speaking. We might be experiencing . . . lay some flame on me, dude, the rock's gone out . . . a certain amount of turbulence . . ."

From your barber: "Hey, don't worry, it will grow back."

From the foot doctor: "Geez, would you take a look at that. Hey, would you mind if I took a few Polaroids?"

From your brain surgeon: "Hey, when I touch this thing, that thing moves!"

This Week's Contest was suggested by Gabriel Goldberg of Chantilly, who wins a box of 500 Desmond Howard bubblegum cards that we have somehow obtained. Inspired by a barber's actual comment to a closely shorn friend of his, Gabe suggests coming up with statements one would not like to hear from friends, relatives, service personnel etc. First-prize winner gets a realistic gorilla mask, a value of $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable Mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 62, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312 or submit them via Internet at this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, May 16. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. The Faerie of the Fine Print & the Ear No One Reads hereby solicits humorously decorated envelopes mailed to The Style Invitational. Best will win a rare antique commemorative presidential plate from the Bush administration. This idea came from Stephen Dudzik of Silver Spring, who wins a festive dispenser of puke candy. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report From Week 59, in which we asked you to come up with epitaphs for the still living.

Sixth Runner-Up: Kevin Costner - Dancing with worms. (Stephen Buchanan, Mt. Airy)

Fifth Runner-Up: Mark Rypien - We mourn his passing (Paul Kondis, Alexandria; also Edward Seiler, Lanham)

Fourth Runner-Up: Here lays Heidi Fleiss (Blake Reid, Bethesda)

Third Runner-Up: Andy Rooney - Have you ever noticed how stuffy it is when you're six feet under? You'd think coffins would have a ventilation system or something. And another annoying thing about being dead . . . (Andrew C. Spitzler, Silver Spring)

Second Runner-Up: Shaquille O'Neill - Heart attack! (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

First Runner-Up: Victor Kiam - I liked the farm so much, I bought it. (Larry Cynkin, Kensington)

And the Winner of the Wimpy, Bluto, Popeye and Olive coffee mugs:

(with line graf showing life expectancy charted against age) Ross Perot - It's simple. Do the math. (Ira P. Robbins, Bethesda)

Honorable Mentions:

Henny Youngman - No, I said take my wife (Paul A. Alter, Hyattsville)

Jack Kevorkian - I did it my way (Don Maclean, Burke)

Al Gore - Biodegrade in peace (John Verba, Washington)

Mrs. William Jefferson Clinton - Beloved cookie-making First Lady who stood by her man and is right now turning over in her grave (Linda Sheffield Miller, New Market)

Any D.C. Resident - No radio in casket (Jennifer Hart, Arlington)

Robin Ficker - Now, we rest in peace (John Callebaut, Arlington)

Al Gore - Hmm. Better check. Anybody got a mirror? (Mary Olson, Springfield)

Richard Nixon - His final coverup (Paul Kondis, Alexandria. Nixon was still living at the time this was submitted)

Michael Jordan - b. 1963 d. 2051 NHL MVP. 2036-37 (Douglas Olson, Beltsville)

Bill Watterson - Is on sabbatical. "Calvin and Hobbes" will resume on his return. (Douglas Olson, Beltsville)

Here lies Charles Manson. May he burn in peace (Bryan Camp and Susan Gillette, Alexandria)

Ronald Reagan - We are eternally in his debt (Peyton Coyner, Afton)

Here Lies Madonna - Necrophiliacs welcome (Tom Gearty, Arlington; also, Gary Buzbee, Alexandria)

Engelbert Humperdinck - Someone finally released him, thank God (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Dolly Parton - Did not drown (Richard N. Crenshaw, Reva, Va.)

Who was the host of Jeopardy? (Jim Eagles, Annapolis Junction)

Chuck Smith - He lived his life in Style (Linda Nevitte, Herndon)

And Last:

The Style Invitational, 1993-1995. All pooped out (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 63 : Bad About You


prizes.

Full Text (1077   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company May 15, 1994

Using only the letters in the name of a famous serial killer, come up with the name of a country or a large city. You do not have to use ALL the letters in the killer's name. Example: John Wayne Gacy - Ghana.

Name an annoying celebrity and the planet you would send them to live on. Examples: Roseanne Arnold, Saturn. Ross Perot, Pluto.

Come up with a funny caption for either of these photographs. (a nature scene; a portrait of hitler)

Now, don't jump to conclusions. This Week's Contest was suggested by the literally hundreds of you who keep writing in with stupid ideas for new contests. The latest, just received in the mail, is: "Come up with things to eat that are not edible. Example: A phone book!" Another one, and we swear this is for real: "Come up with a slogan celebrating the empowerment of women and minorities in the Clinton administration. Example: `This Is the Dawning of the Age of Empowerment.' " So we thought we'd run a contest to Come Up With A Lame Idea for a Style Invitational Contest, an idea destined to create unfunny results. You must give at least one example. First-prize winner gets a framed Botticelli painting, featuring the likeness of Marilyn Monroe on the upturned scallop shell. It is possible this is not an original Botticelli, though we have obtained it for $50 from highly reputable art dealers who operate out of the back of a truck on Rockville Pike. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 63, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312 or submit them via Internet at this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, May 23. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 60, in which you were asked to come up with questions to any of several answers we supplied.

Sixth Runner-Up - Answer: Peter, Paul and Murray. Question: Who were two of the Apostles and their bookie? (James Christopher, Springfield)

Fifth Runner-Up - Answer: Jonathan Livingston Maggot. Question: Who wrote "Today is the first day of the rest of your lice?" (Ted Spencer, College Park)

Fourth Runner-Up - Answer: Only Roseanne Arnold. Question: Did Arnold the Pig have any siblings? (Joseph H. Sisk, Arlington)

Third Runner-Up - Answer: Peter, Paul and Murray. Question: Who recorded the hit song "Don't Think Twice It's All Right Already"? (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Second Runner-Up - Answer: Vladimir Zhirinovsky's Teeth. Question: What song title did Kim Carnes reject before recording her 1981 hit, "Bette Davis Eyes"? (Preston Williams, Alexandria)

First Runner-Up - Answer: Dr. Jonas Salk and Larry from the Three Stooges. Question: What two people hold the record for hearing the word "Ow!" the most? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

And the Winner of the terra-cotta Lawn Pig and Lawn Bunny:

Answer: Stinkle. Question: What is the primary drawback of the Dick Gregory "all-asparagus" diet? (Bruce Evans, Washington)

Honorable Mentions:

Answer: Dr. Jonas Salk and Larry from the Three Stooges

What medical research team developed the vaccine shot to the back of the head? (Jon Patrick Smith, Washington)

Answer: Jonathan Livingston Maggot

What is the title of Richard Bach's unpublished manuscript about a seagull who wants to be a fly? (Jon Patrick Smith, Washington; also, J. Calvin Smith, Washington)

What do I find when Jonathan Livingston I exhume? (Ron Prishivalko, Reston)

Answer: By Striking Him Repeatedly on the Tuchus

How do you get candy out of the new Marquis de Sade Pez dispenser? (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

How do the Singaporeans create an American celebrity? (Paul A. Alter, Hyattsville)

Answer: Gargantua and Pantagruel

Question: Which children of Frank Zappa have the most common names? (Preston Williams, Alexandria)

What are the two sizes of hosiery larger than Queen? (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

Answer: Peter, Paul and Murray

Who was at the Next-to-Last Supper? (R. Scott Krick, Richmond)

Answer: The Ear No One Reads

What hears the sound of one hand clapping? (Christopher L. Parkin, Washington; also, John Cushing, Washington)

Where would be a good place for Salman Rushdie to promote his new book, "In Your Face, Rafsanjani"? (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Answer: Mooooooo

What is the dyslexic's mantra? (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

What do blades of grass yell out to scare each other on Halloween? (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

Answer: Vladimir Zhirinovsky's Teeth

What is the best reason to get rid of your color TV? (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

What is the last place in the world to find a Jew's harp? (Scott Thornton, Beltsville)

Answer: Al Gore. Al Gore. Al Gore. Bullwinkle.

Instead of "You are getting very sleepy," what have hypnotists begun saying? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

What was the total vote count at the 1984 Democratic primary in Dixville Notch, N.H.? (Scott Thornton, Beltsville)

What's the world's dullest set of multiple personalities? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Answer: Hitler? Who Said Anything About Hitler?

What show-stopping number closes the hit Austrian musical "Waldheim!"? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

What was David Duke's reply when asked if he had ever hit his wife? (Rick Lewis, Bowie)

Answer: Only Roseanne Arnold

Who is more interested in Roseanne Arnold than Style's Reliable Source column? (Michael Fribush, Burtonsville)

Answer: If You Don't Get It, You Don't Get It

What clever marketing slogan does Dan Quayle not get? (John Gadd, Washington)

Answer: It Rhymes With Orange

What does Bob Dylan think "it" rhymes with? (Jim and Tana Reagan, Reston)

Answer: Because You Can't Eat a Bowling Ball

Stranded on a desert island with only a bowling ball and Brussels sprouts, why would one starve to death? (Penny Dash, Bethesda)

What is the ad tag line that lost the Frito Lay account? (Mary Lee Fox Roe, Mount Kisco, N.Y.)

Answer: Stinkle

What is the new singing duo formed by Art Garfunkel and Sting? (Deborah Howell, Herndon)

What was the last name of Casey, who managed the Mighty Skunks? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

What was the last finalist eliminated before the selection of Snap, Crackle and Pop to represent Kellogg's Rice Krispies? (Rosemary Walsh, Rockville)

And Last:

What is another way to spell my name wrong? (Richard W. Stickle, Laurel)


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RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 65 : Desperately Seeking Humor


name=fulltext>
Full Text (675   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company May 22, 1994

From Jeffrey Dahmer:

SWM seeks a relationship to really sink his teeth into ...

From a leper:

". . . A part of me likes to slip away from time to time ...

From a Siamese twin:

" . . . SWF, very close to her family . . .

From a bulimic:

... easy to please, pretty much enjoys whatever comes up . . .

From a circus geek:

... accustomed to getting stares from women ...

This week's contest was suggested by the fact that Sunday Style today begins running personal ads, those earnest little tidbits of creative falsehood where people try to paint themselves in as favorable a light as possible without actually lying. So, in 40 words or fewer write a personal ad. It may be for a celebrity or for anyone in need of adroit euphemism. Winner gets an atrociously cute 30-pound cement lawn sculpture of two kittycats in a bedroom slipper, a value of $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable Mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 65, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312 or submit them via Internet at this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, May 30. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 61, in which we asked you to fill in the balloons for Marc Rosenthal's farewell cartoons.

Sigh. We knew this would happen eventually. As we have said before, The Style Invitational does not seek or practice diversity. The Style Invitational is America's last remaining pure meritocracy. We choose winners based entirely on humor. We do not try for balance - not on the basis of ethnicity, geography, socioeconomics, or gender. We are objective, but we are not fair.

There were 1,400 entries this week, submitted by 445 individuals. The winners follow.

So what are you going to do, sue us? Mary Ann The Lawyer eats sniveling, mewling whiners like you for breakfast.

Fifth Runner-Up (Cartoon C): "I couldn't afford the little castle, so I let the fish swim in and out of my nose." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Fourth Runner-Up (Cartoon C): "A one-piranha suicide is going to take some time." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Third Runner-Up (Cartoon C): "I still think this is too much ether, but tell the proctologist I'm ready now." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Second Runner-Up (Cartoon C): "Yay, it does look bigger this way!" (Rod Reynolds, Bowie)

First Runner-Up (Cartoon D): "Yippee! With my new Hackey-Cat toy, I'll make millions!" (Tom Gearty, Arlington)

And the winner of the escapable magician's leg shackles (Cartoon C):

"Dandruff shampoos are okay, but they miss the nose hairs." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Honorable Mentions:

Cartoon A

"Look, the headline says there's some guy running around strangling cats! I hope they catch him." (Mike White, Alexandria)

Cartoon B:

"Lessee, I've carefully packaged the bomb with untraceable explosive, cleaned all fingerprints, and done a pretty good imitation of a real postmark. They'll never figure out who ... hey, where the hell is my toupee?" (Chuck Harman, District Heights)

"If they get it, they GET it." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Cartoon C:

"By God, you're right. From inside the fishbowl, my cat does look like a poorly drawn knockoff of Krazy Kat!" (Bill Ade, Burke)

"Who's the wise guy who said it was easier to stand on your head in water?" (Chuck Harman, District Heights)

"You mean, you don't think The Post literally meant for me to go soak my head?" (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

And Last (Cartoon B):

" `By removing my scalp and mailing my imagination directly to the Style Invitational editors, I can let them pick a winner for me every week and save time for really important stuff,' Chuck Smith said to his dog, Woodbridge." (Matt Wagner, Chantilly)

Next Week: Bad News Bearers


Copyright The Washington Post Company May 29, 1994




 

RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 67 : Exit Laughing


ideas:

Full Text (1177   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jun 5, 1994

This Week's Contest was suggested by Douglas Olson of Laurel, who proposed this as a lame contest idea doomed to provoke unfunny results. (Doug obviously doesn't realize how pathetically desperate we are.) He wins a handsome clay fire hydrant suitable for holding dog biscuits, toilet paper etc. Doug suggests making up the last lines of famous dead people whose last lines are unknown. First-prize winner gets a life-size cardboard cutout of Hillary Rodham Clinton, a value of $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational Losers T-shirts. FINISH WITH REST OF REGULAR AGATE Josef Stalin: "Well, it's time for another purge! The only question is, who?" Amelia Earhart: "Wow, cool! The gauge says we haven't used any fuel in 1,300 miles!" Report from Week 63, in which we asked you to come up with lame ideas for Style Invitational Contests. But first, a brief note to the dozens and dozens of readers out there who laboriously responded to our examples of idiotic contest ideas (create "humorous" captions for a picture of Hitler or of dirt; find geographic anagrams in the names of famous murderers) by actually entering those contests. One person submitted six pages of tedious anagrams for "John Wilkes Booth" and another did the same for "Theodore Bundy," apologizing at one point because "Borneo" is not technically a "country" but rather an "archipelago." Now, we hope none of our esteemed readers takes this the wrong way, but WHAT ARE YOU, A BUNCH OF IMBECILES?

Those were examples of bad contests. They were not the contest. Even WE aren't that stupid. Only Len Taylor of Gaithersburg retained any dignity at all, idiotically misunderstanding the contest, but at least doing it with style. His caption for Hitler: "Marion Barry was set up too?" His caption for a vast empty field of dirt: "The Fourth Annual Chuck Smith Fan Club rally and cookout." Lastly, we would like to thank the many of you who proposed, as the lamest contest idea ever, coming up with a contest for the lamest contest idea ever, and those of you who came up (get this) with a contest to illustrate what God looks like. Ahem. Bad ideas:

Fourth Runner-Up: What are some humorous things to say to brighten up a funeral? Example: A penny for your eyes. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Third Runner-Up: Describe the objects depicted in these drawings. Maximum 50 words. Example: A.) Gas grill. (Tom Gearty, Alexandria)

Second Runner-Up: Develop an alphanumeric formula for famous baseball players. Example: {(N-1}+{A+B}+{(Z/2)x2}+C}+{(W-10}+{Z+1/2}+J+C+{Ex3}=Minnie Minoso (Chuck Snowdon, Arlington)

First Runner-Up: Name a movie that would not have been successful if Herve Villechaize had played the lead. Example: "Citizen Kane." (Joseph Romm, Washington)

And the Winner of the Botticelli painting featuring Marilyn Monroe: Create a series of numbers beyond 1 and 2 to signal the need to attend to other bodily functions. Example: Number 3, Vomiting. Number 5, Weeping facial sores. Number 6, Hemorrhaging. Number 7, Body parts sloughing off. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Honorable Mentions:

Create snappy replies to panhandlers, using only upper-class diction. Example: "My good man, if you expect the world to owe you a living, you will never get anywhere." (John Cushing, Washington)

Name the body parts that most resembles an artichoke, a rutabaga, and a cam shaft from a '64 Chevy. Example: Pineal gland, eyeball, teeth with braces. (Chuck Snowdown, Arlington)

You are riding in a hot-air ballon with all the mass murderers in history; to land safely at Dulles you must jettison one of them. Which one, and why? Example: Josef Stalin - because he is fat. (Steven King, Alexandria)

President Clinton has authorized you to rearrange the alphabet. Change the order in such a way that no word of three or more letters is present. Example: KDLFOSVGAJCQZBIYTXEHMURWPN. (Kevin Cuddihy, Fairfax)

Assign mob-style nicknames to famous people. Example: Jimmy "The Fornicator" Swaggart; Daniel "Duh" Quayle. (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

Name a book that would probably not be a bestseller. Example: A Finnish-Swahili dictionary. (Thomas Knibb, Walkersville, Md.)

Bubba is too old-fashioned. Come up with a new nickname for Clinton. Example: "Cap'n" (Kevin Cuddihy, Fairfax)

State a celebrity and an appropriately named perfume they can promote. Example: Elizabeth Taylor, Obese (Forrest L. Miller, Rockville)

Find a place name from a foreign country, remove all the vowels, and then predict in what kind of sport a player with that name would best fit. Example: Tegucigalpa. Tgcglp. Soccer. (Gary F. Hevel, Silver Spring)

Come up with exciting euphemisms for pooping. Example: Launching a flotilla. (Mary Mazer, Nashville)

Name the titles of shows even Geraldo rejected at first, but is thinking about. Example: "Prison Guards Who Eat Leftovers From Death Row Prisoners' Last Meals." (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

Name a famous person and somebody else you wish they'd turn into. Example: Hillary Clinton - Moms Mabley. (Rosemary Walsh, Rockville)

Take a well-known piece of classical music and put it in a different key. Example: Toccata and Fugue in D major. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Come up with products to fit the following prices, a` la "Price Is Right." A: $2.49 B: $1.19 C: $5.79. Example: B: Brillo Pads. (Tom Gearty, Arlington)

Assume the St. Lawrence Seaway does not exist. Describe how you would get from New Brunswick to Lake Ontario. Example: Walk. (Rosemary Walsh, Rockville)

Name a celebrity whose name, when spelled backward, looks like it could mean, "NO SHIRT, NO SHOES, NO SERVICE" in the native language of some 7-Eleven clerks. Example: YLLIER NOSLEN SELRAHC. (Jon Patrick Smith, Washington)

In 25 words or fewer, describe a scene from "The Simpsons" as it would unfold if everyone in the family were smart. Example: Homer sees an ad for souvenir chunks of the world's largest doughnut for only $39.95 each. He doesn't buy one. (David Laughton, Washington)

Come up with titles of Michael Dukakis's likely beach reading this summer. Example: "Negative Ecological Ramifications of Applying Zero-Based Budgeting Methodologies to Generalized Government Procurement." (John Callebaut, Arlington)

What are some humorous sobriquets that gently mock feminists? Example: Some feminists tend to be just the weensiest bit unfunny. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Name a product that should be kept off TV because its name is so suggestive. Example: Lavoris. (Paul A. Alter, Hyattsville)

Assume Basque shepherds had conquered the known world rather than the Romans, and suggest resulting changes to modern-day English. Example: "Liberty and Zuzentasy for All," or, "The Style Norgehiagoketational." (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Point out logical inconsistencies in movies that only anal-retentive bozos would notice. Example: In "The Sound of Music," how come the kids have summer vacation, since the Anschluss happened in March 1938? (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Give a celebrity a hilarious new first name. Example: Earl Pavarotti. (Tom Gearty, Arlington)

Come up with a breed of dog not recognized by the AKC. Example: An Australian Frog Hound. (Tchaka Owen, Charlottesville)

If humans couldn't laugh: A) What would they do instead, and B) How would it be written? Example: A) Hiccup B) hic hic hic. A) Suck air between teeth. B) Sfee sfee sfee. (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

Next Week: Trying to be Sexy, You Bomb Big Time


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Week 68: Give Us A Sign; [FINAL Edition]
The Washington Post (pre-1997 Fulltext)Washington, D.C.: Jun 12, 1994. pg. f.02
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Column Name: The Style Invitational
Section: STYLE
Publication title: The Washington Post (pre-1997 Fulltext). Washington, D.C.: Jun 12, 1994.  pg. f.02
Source type: Newspaper
ISSN/ISBN: 01908286
ProQuest document ID: 72254810
Text Word Count 749
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Abstract (Document Summary)

This week's contest was suggested by Elden Carnahan of Laurel, who wins a fabulous prank hypodermic syringe. Elden suggests coming up with new astrological signs for the 1990s, together with one day's horoscope. First-prize winner gets a framed painting of the "Abbey Road" album cover, featuring the likenesses of Elvis, James Dean, Marilyn Monroe and Humphrey Bogart, purchased from the official Style Invitational art curators, who operate out of the back of a truck on Rockville Pike. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 68, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via Internet at this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, June 20. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Anurgent message from the Faerie of the Fine Print & the Ear No One Reads: Many alert but confused readers wrote in to observe that something peculiar appears to have happened to Week 64, inasmuch as Week 63 was followed by Week 65, even though we later referred back to Week 64, as though it had existed, and once incorrectly reported the results of "Images/spacer.gif" width=1 border=0>
Full Text (749   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jun 12, 1994

Femini - It is a bad time of the month for you.

Testes - You have an unlimited amount of gall.

Vertigo - Cut down on your partying.

This week's contest was suggested by Elden Carnahan of Laurel, who wins a fabulous prank hypodermic syringe. Elden suggests coming up with new astrological signs for the 1990s, together with one day's horoscope. First-prize winner gets a framed painting of the "Abbey Road" album cover, featuring the likenesses of Elvis, James Dean, Marilyn Monroe and Humphrey Bogart, purchased from the official Style Invitational art curators, who operate out of the back of a truck on Rockville Pike. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 68, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via Internet at this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, June 20. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Anurgent message from the Faerie of the Fine Print & the Ear No One Reads: Many alert but confused readers wrote in to observe that something peculiar appears to have happened to Week 64, inasmuch as Week 63 was followed by Week 65, even though we later referred back to Week 64, as though it had existed, and once incorrectly reported the results of "Images/circlei3.gif" border=0>Washington Post, etc. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes. The winner of the contest to come up with snapshots of your pets wearing costumes was Sue Hanson of Montgomery Village, who we are fairly certain cheated by sending in a picture from a post card. But we are choosing to ignore this inasmuch as it is great, and all the other ones bit the braunschweiger. Sue wins a papier-mache duck and a picture of an elephant pooping. Thank you.

Report from Week 65,

or possibly 64, in which you were asked to come up with personal classified ads that do not actually lie but creatively stretch the truth a bit.

Third Runner-Up: From a Devil worshiper - "SWF, willing to make sacrifices . . ." (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

Second Runner-Up: From someone with multiple personalities - "I am a real people person . . ." (Tom Meyer, Alexandria)

First Runner-Up: From John Bobbitt - "SWM, recently divorced AND recently separated . . ." (Sue Lin Chong, Washington)

And the winner of the hideous cement lawn sculpture:

From a morbidly obese person: "SWM with an enormous heart . . ." (Nick Dierman, Potomac)

Honorable Mentions:

From Chuck Smith of Woodbridge: "MWM ISO a life. . ." (Linda Bakley, Falls Church)

From a person with split personalities: "Looking for woman interested in multiple organisms . . ." (Dawn-Michele Gould, Germantown)

From a physician - {scrawls ending in $1,000,079.98} (Paul A. Alter, Hyattsville)

From Shane Stant: "Olympic trials participant. Enjoys clubs, swinging and bars . . ." (Larry Gordon, Potomac)

From Jack Kevorkian: "Let me help you see the light . . ." (Steven Dudzik, Silver Spring)

From avant garde director David Lynch: "I want someone to sit on my coffee table and call out the names of the presidents. That would really be great. And a dog. Shouldn't a dog be in here? But he has to be holding a human hand. That would be neat." (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

From an asylum inmate: "Are you looking for a committed individual? . . ." (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

From John Bobbitt: "Unattached male seeking companionship . . ." (Peggy M. Hyde, Charlottesville)

[Table]
From Stuttering John Melendez: "SSSSSSWWWWWMMMMMM, ssseeeks .

. ." (Christie Kennedy, Syosset, NY.)

From "desperate": "SMWBPJMF seeks therapist specializing in the treatment of persons suffering from indentity crisis." (Harris Shettel, Rockville)

[Table]
From Vladimir Zhirinovsky: "Object: adventure, travel,

getting a little crazy now and then . . ." (Tom Meyer, Alexandria)

From Jack Kevorkian: "Seeking someone patient, long-suffering, for long drive in your garage . . ." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Next Week: The Son-of-Smith Law.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 69 : Laying Down The Law


prizes.

Full Text (747   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jun 19, 1994

Murphy's Law: If Anything Can Go Wrong, It Will.

Zymurgy's First Law of Evolving Systems Dynamics: Once you open a can of worms, the only way to recan them is to use a larger can.

Law of Selective Gravity: An object will fall so as to do the most damage.

Jenning's Corollary to the Law of Selective Gravity: The chance of the bread falling with the buttered side down is directly proportional to the cost of the carpet.

Gordon's First Law: If a research project is not worth doing at all, it is not worth doing well.

The Nonreciprocal Laws of Expectations: Negative expectations yield negative results. Positive expectations yield negative results.

This Week's Contest: We recently discovered these wonderful principles in a book by Arthur Bloch titled "Murphy's Law, and Other Reasons Why Things Go Wrong." The book was published in 1978, so we figured it is high time to identify some exciting new principles that explain why things happen the way they happen. Send us some. First-prize winner gets a spectacular sunbleached steer skull, a real one just like in Georgia O'Keeffe paintings, with big horns and crummy rotting teeth and everything, suitable for mounting on a wall if you are really weird, a value of $80. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable Mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 69, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312 or submit them via Internet at this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, June 27. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. The two pseudonymous Chuck Smith entries below were submitted by Edward T. Tweddell of Berkeley Springs, W.Va., who has a funny name, and Fred Darfler of Elkton, Md., who has a funnier name. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 66, in which we asked you how to solve the problem of (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge), specifically that over the last year this contest has been more or less hijacked by one precocious bureaucrat from some dirtball Washington suburb.

Third Runner-Up: Begin to assign him little nicknames in print. Like, (Chuck "Poopy Drawers" Smith, Woodbridge). Or, (Chuck "Sexually Transmitted Disease" Smith, Woodbridge). (Earl Gilbert, La Plata)

Second Runner-Up: Get the Tobacco Institute to prove there's no such thing as Chuck Smith of Woodbridge. (Joan Delfattore, Newark, Del.)

First Runner-Up: Announce that Week 70 is a contest to write threatening letters to the president. Then forward Chuck's entry, and only Chuck's entry, to the Secret Service. (Paul Styrene, Olney)

And The Winner of the Bust of Richard Nixon: In order to discourage me, alter my entries prior to publication so I seem to be a complete jackass. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Honorable Mentions: Get the Bullets to select Chuck Smith as their No. 1 draft pick. That will guarantee no one will ever hear from him again. (Steven King, Alexandria)

Have all contestants start entering under the name "Chuck Smith," until the real one just sort of shambles away. (Chuck Smith, Elkton, Md.; also, Chuck Smith, Berkeley Springs, W.Va.)

Renegotiate his pact with the Devil. (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

Tell Chris Smith that "as long as your old man is alive you'll never have a shot at the big prize." (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

Slowly kill him through T-shirt poisoning. (Steve Ahart, Sterling)

Have him and (Elden Carnahan, Laurel) compete in a quicksand-sinking contest. (Fred Dawson, Beltsville)

Ask him to stop using gags I give him when he gets me drunk. (Don Maclean, Burke)

Do you think he has declared the value of all those shirts? Turn him in to the IRS. That's how they got Capone. (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

Call him every 15 minutes, day and night, and ask, "Have you come up with anything funny yet?" (John Vogel, Upper Marlboro)

Award him the Pulitzer Prize. This will stoke his gigantic ego, and loosen his defenses. Send the prize to his home, in a box. It will be spelled the Pull It Sir, Prize. It will have a pull tab. It will be a hand grenade. (Peyton Coyner, Afton, Va.)

And Last: Select winners based entirely on distance the entry has traveled. (Woody Franke, Canberra, Australia)


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Week 70 : Sounds Like a Bad Idea


name=fulltext>
Full Text (749   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jun 26, 1994

Q: What is "Clop Clop Clop Clop BANG Clop Clop"?

A: An Amish drive-by shooting.

Q: What is "Kabloom, Kablooie, Kablamm, Duhh."

A: Three smart bombs and a dumb one.

Q: What is "Pull! Fizz! Bang! Pull! Fizz! Bang!"

A: Skeet shooting for Alka-Seltzer in the rain.

Q: What is "Me Me Me Me Me Me Me"?

A: A prima donna warming up at the Metropolitan Opera.

This week's contest was proposed by the Czarina of the Style Invitational, who wins five years of free orthodontia for her children. The Czarina proposes a contest to come up with jokes based on noises. First-prize winner gets a gigantic antique plaster Miss Piggy bank, vintage 1979, a value of $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 70, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via Internet at this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Tuesday, July 5. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 67, in which you were asked to come up with the final words of famous dead people whose real final words are unknown. But first, the Czar wishes it to be known that he finds nothing at all funny about death, that he in fact intends to die himself one day, and that he wishes to urge all readers to skip over the remainder of this column, inasmuch as it is completely tasteless and will offend anyone with even a rudimentary sense of decency.

Fourth Runner-Up - Richard Nixon: "{unintelligible} {expletive deleted} {unintelligible}" (David Laughton, Washington)

Third Runner-Up - Lou Gehrig: "Lou Gehrig's disease! Damn! I should have seen that one coming." (Jonathan Lechter, Rockville)

Second Runner-Up - Rene Descartes: "Think! Think!" (Stephen W. Buchanan, Mount Airy, Md.)

First Runner-Up - Dr. Seuss: "I would not eat them with a cop/ I would not eat them with a . . . {Plop.}" (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

And the winner of the life-size cardboard cutout of Hillary Clinton:

Richard Nixon: "I am not dying." (Peyton Coyner, Afton, Va.)

Honorable Mentions:

Napoleon Bonaparte: "Why does my hair smell like arsenic?" (Harold Weiss, Reston)

Cass Elliot: "That prima donna? I can sing better than she can while eating a ham sandwich! Watch this!" (Alex Thornton, Beltsville)

Leon Trotsky: "Oh, yeah, Josef? Who died and made you boss?" (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

Pearl S. Buck: "The Buck stops here." (Kristie Lyn Dunleavy, Falls Church)

Isaac Newton: "When an apple fell on my head, I discovered gravity. I wonder what I can discover with this here anvil?"

Jimmy Hoffa: "You grznaks are taking all the risks of selecting and capturing human specimens and preparing us for examination, but the flzcrajds up on the mother ship are getting all the performance bonuses. You've got to stick together and demand what's yours. Let me tell you what joining the Teamsters can do for you . . ." (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

John Crapper: "Do you think anyone will know I ever lived?" (Len Taylor, Gaithersburg)

U.S. Grant: "If it is not already taken, I would like to be buried in Grant's Tomb." (Jon Patrick Smith, Washington)

Elvis: "Ungh. Unnghh. Unnnngghhh." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Isadora Duncan: "A silk scarf would make this outfit a real head-turner." (Susanne B. Duncan, Alexandria)

Richard Nixon: "I tell you, it is not a significant amount of time! Here, let me show you by not breathing for 18 1/2 minutes." (Alex Thornton, Beltsville)

The Big Bopper: "Wanna hear something really funny, Buddy? I told the pilot I only weigh 175 so he'd let me come." (Don Beale, Arlington)

Chicago Mayor Richard Daley: "At least I can still vote!" (Catherine Sloss, Washington)

Thomas Malthus: "Here's one less mouth to feed." (Kom Kunyosying, Kearneysville, W.Va.)

Bill Casey: "No way. I'd rather die than talk to Bob Woodward." (Bill Verrey, Richardson, Tex.)

Benito Mussolini: "Everything looks upside down." (John Cushing, Washington)

Will Rogers: "Wiley, you've got the patch over the wrong eye." (John Cushing, Washington)

And Last:

Johann Gutenberg: "O, I die! What a vision I see before me now: Bibles, sacred works, penny dreadfuls, flatulence jokes in a major daily newspaper . . ." (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)


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RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 71 : Caption Crunch, III


prizes.

Full Text (777   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jul 3, 1994

This week's contest was proposed by Fred Kaiser of Washington. Fred wants you to come up with a new, funnier caption for any picture or illustration anywhere in today's newspaper. This is particularly interesting because the Style Invitational is printed a day in advance, and as we write this, we have no idea which pictures will appear in the Sunday paper. Isn't this exciting? Fred wins a realistic human arm that can dangle outside a car trunk or extend up from a toilet bowl or something nifty like that. Anyway, make sure to include with your entry either the picture or a photocopy of the picture you are captioning. First-prize winner gets a colorful, working Coca-Cola clock featuring a 1950s soda fountain scene, an item everyone agrees would be a real period-piece work of art if it were constructed of ceramic or wood instead of plastic the approximate thickness of a human cornea. It is worth $40. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 71, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, July 11. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness, or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report From Week 68, in which you were asked to come up with new signs of the zodiac, together with one day's horoscope. But first. . .

CORRECTION AND APOLOGY

Because of an editing error, a major figure in world history was misidentified in last week's Style Invitational. Coming from the editors of this vulgar feature, the mistake was as appalling and inexcusable as if the Washington Post had written "President Elmo Clinton" or "the composer Marvin van Beethoven," or "The Messiah, Rutherford B. Christ."

Accordingly, The Washington Post extends its apologies to the descendants of inventor Thomas Crapper, who was tragically misidentified as "John Crapper."

Fifth Runner-Up: TUCHUS: You'll get a little behind in your schedule today. (Kathy Weisse, Sykesville, Md.)

Fourth Runner-Up: LIBRIUM: You will have a terrible day, but you won't care. (Linda Shevitz, Greenbelt)

Third Runner-Up: OREO: You may feel yourself pulled apart today. (Lyell Rodieck, Washington)

Second Runner-Up: TSURIS: Better you should stay home. (Stu Segal, Vienna)

First Runner-Up: FECES: Watch your step. Avoid electric fans. (Jean C. Clancy, Fairfax; Joe Sisk, Arlington)

And the winner of the painting of the "Abbey Road" cover featuring Bogie and Dean and Marilyn and Elvis:

TEDIUS: You will wake up. You will stretch your left arm. You will stretch your right arm. You will yawn. You will stretch your left leg. You will rub your right eye. You will yawn again. You will . . . (Christie Houser, Alexandria)

Honorable Mentions

CUOMO: Do not make a decision today. (Gary F. Hevel, Silver Spring)

LEONA: Everybody hates you. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

ENIGMA: Spend Sunday as if it were Thursday. Monday finds you wishing it were Wednesday. Avoid non-sequential weasels. (Bev Wiedeman, Manassas)

HYPOCHONDRIA: You have cancer today. You will have pimples tomorrow. (Kate Weizel, Bowie)

ENNUI: Today will be so, oh I don't know, dissatisfying. (Sue Lin Chong, Washington; also, Dawn-Michele Gould, Germantown)

HILARIUS: Today you have to screw in a light bulb. Be original. (Bill Harvey, Alexandria)

TAURIST: You are going to visit new places, meet new people and pay 20 bucks for a seven-block cab ride. (Jon Patrick Smith, Washington)

ARSENIO: You are past your prime. (Larry Gordon, Potomac)

ZEBRA: It's not a good day to be with a Leo. (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

CAPRIATI: Stay off the grass. (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring; Chris Rooney, Blacksburg, Va.; Gordon A. Janis, Washington)

HERPES: Avoid flare-ups with loved ones. (Larry Cynkin, Kensington; Annie Wauters, Washington; Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring))

GIGOLO: Stay away from Virgos. (Dave Ferry, Leesburg)

JIMINY: Stay on the straight and narrow! Don't steal, cheat or lie! (Eric Chang, Silver Spring)

THESAURUS: Find new ways to express yourself. (David Siltman, Gaithersburg)

ZEPPO: Your siblings may garner more attention than you. (Paul Sabourin, Greenbelt; Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

BIMINI: Avoid photographers. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

VACUOUS - Smile. Have a nice day. Today is the first day of the rest of your life. (Starr Mayer, Hayes, Va.)

CAPRACORN: You will live happily ever after. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Next Week: There Oughta Be a Law


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 72 : Oh, hell.


prizes.

Full Text (1126   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jul 10, 1994

Pee-Wee's Hell: Darkened theater. Fabulous dirty movie on an endless loop. Both hands stuck in bowling balls.

June Allyson's Hell: She keeps waking up in the Lincoln Bedroom with her hand in a bowl of water.

George Bush's Hell: He is at a lectern, speaking to a group of deaf people. For all eternity they sit there, reading his lips.

Tammy Faye Bakker's Hell: She is at her dressing table. She has just awakened. The Archbishop of Canterbury awaits her momentarily. All her makeup is missing. In desperation, she must consider using the only three things that are available: spackle, Pla-Doh and lime Jell-O with floating grapes.

This week's contest was suggested independently by Mike Sam of Fairfax and some dipstick who keeps sending in mediocre entries under the pseudonym "Chuck Roast, Woodbridge." Sam wins an unbelievably ugly T-shirt featuring a highway map of Columbus, Ohio. Roast will win one too if he ever reveals himself. Sam 'n' Roast (Salmon Roast?) suggest coming up with the perfect vision of hell for a famous person, living or dead. First-prize winner gets a nifty music-activated swaying plastic Frog Band, a $30 toy advertised "For Ages 3 and Up." Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 72, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, July 18. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 69, in which you were asked to come up with sequels to Murphy's Law. As often happens when a contest seeks new variations on old themes, you bombarded us with plagiarism. Dozens of people submitted blatantly recycled material as their own, including: "The secret of success is sincerity. Once you can fake that you've got it made." Also: "Men's desire for sex sometimes results in intimacy; women's desire for intimacy often results in sex." Also: "Cole's Law: shredded cabbage." Hahahaha. This is our last benign warning to all you Steal Invitationalists. Next time, we Act.

Fifth Runner-Up - Boyle's Law of Inevitability: If you go on living long enough, you will die. (Charles P. Boyle, Annapolis)

Fourth Runner-Up - The Law of Imitation: It's not plagiarism if you would have said it the same way had you said it first. Biden's Corollary to the Law of Imitation: It's not plagiarism if you would have said it the same way had you said it first. (Peter Orazem, Bethesda)

Third Runner-Up - Bates's Law: The phone always rings when you are outside the shower with a knife. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Second Runner-Up - Jason's Law: An unbreakable toy is good for breaking other toys. (Bruce W. Van Roy, Vienna)

First Runner-Up - J. Calvin Smith's Observation on Entropy: There is no un-fan for the ca-ca to un-hit. (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

And the Winner of the Real Steer Skull With Rotting Teeth and Everything:

The Principle of Documentary Fallibility: Every important document you write will contain at least one egregious typographical error. The more pubic the document, the more embarrassing the error. (Pat Scully, Sunderland)

Honorable Mentions:

Boyle's 63rd Principle: The ears have walls. (Charles P. Boyle, Annapolis)

The Paradox of Bad Circumstances: Something bad will always happen to someone else. However, we are all someone elses to someone else. (Bill Glassbrook, Gaithersburg)

The Kellogg's Conundrum: Why do some people achieve greatness and others have Grapenuts thrust upon them? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Boyle's First Law: If not controlled, work will flow to the competent person until he submerges. (Charles P. Boyle, Annapolis)

The Alter Ego Scenario: Older, more experienced workers are a valuable resource because when they retire, all mistakes can be blamed on them. (Paul A. Alter, Hyattsville)

Dr. Doolittle's Theorem: If an animal is unusually vicious, then it is more likely to survive any usually fatal disease. (W. S. Furie, DVM, Frederick)

The Rule of Male Drivers: If you don't care where you are, you are not lost. (Kevin Cuddihy and Liz Lee, Fairfax)

Boyle's Conundrum: Like it or not, America is inching toward the metric system. (Charles P. Boyle, Annapolis)

The Metro Principle: The clarity of a PA system on public transportation is inversely proportional to your familiarity with the system. (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

O.J.'s Axiom to Avoid Being Pulled Over: Stay out of the left lane, keep it under 55 and keep a gun to your head. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

J. Calvin Smith's Absolute Certainty No. 1: I don't know who, why or when, but somewhere at some time someone will have a life and death need for two snowflakes exactly alike. (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

Clinton's Law: Being too smart by half is even worse than being stupid. (Thomas R. McCabe, Lorton)

The First Law of Government: An executive agency in motion tends to remain at rest. (Bruce Ramsay, Gaithersburg)

Smith's Observation: The person who says, "Where did you last have it?" actually believes he is providing valuable assistance. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

The Law of Disproportionate Pain: A ton of bricks weighs the same as a ton of feathers unless it hits you in the head. (John F. Cissel, Fairfax)

The Porcelain Magnetism Corollary to the Law of Selective Gravity: An object dropped in the bathroom will always land in the toilet. (Jim Reed and Jennifer Bostic, Columbia)

The Cartoon Law of Gravity: A person will not fall until he looks down and realizes that there is nothing underneath him. (Bill Glassbrook, Gaithersburg)

The Angler's Credo: If you give a man a fish, he will eat for today. If you teach him to fish, he'll understand why some people think golf is exciting. (Jon Patrick Smith, Washington)

And Last:

The Style Invitational Theorem: The opportunity of winning is directly proportional to the willingness to submit oneself to public humiliation. Do I pull my pants down yet? (Chuck Snowdon, Arlington)

First Runner-Up Rule: Your chances of winning the Style Invitational are directly proportional to the humor and originality of your entry and pigs can fly. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Carnahan's Rule Of Three: The longer one works to bring ironic Talmudic allusion and elegant Chaucerian wit to one's entry, the greater the likelihood the winner will prominently feature "drool," "snot" or "poopy." (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Next Week: Sounds Like a Bad Idea.


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Week 73 : LUNACY


name=fulltext>
Full Text (811   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jul 17, 1994

"Watson, come here, I need you!"

"I claim this land for the King of Uruguay. Hahaha."

"Golly, this is neat!"

This Week's Contest: Wednesday marks the 25th anniversary of the moon landing, as well as the greatest gaffe in the history of Historic Sayings. Neil Armstrong, a fine American but not exactly a poet or an orator, having rehearsed his little immortal line 6,000 times until no mistake was possible, put his foot onto the moon's surface and then into his mouth. Neil fluffed the line, big time. "That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind," Neil said. Used like that, of course, "man" and "mankind" are the same thing. He meant one small step for a man. But it's a lousy quote anyway. Stiff, formal, no spontaneity, predictable. Tell us: What should Neil have said?

First-prize winner gets a giant antique rag doll that looks like an employee of an 1890s San Francisco bordello, a value of $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 73, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, July 25. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 70,

in which we asked you to come up with jokes based on sounds. But first, a special prize of "The Toilets of New York," a hilariously humorless book reviewing public restrooms in New York City, to Bill Swisher of Silver Spring, who submitted the following:

Q: What is "Q: What is Sis Boom Bah? A: The sound of an exploding sheep."

A: It is the sound of a Style Invitational reader plagiarizing Johnny Carson, circa 1982.

No, this is not particularly funny, but it wins Bill an award for honesty because it distinguishes him from the many, many other people who submitted the identical joke but claimed it as their own. We are now going to name all those people, a truly pathetic assemblage of thieves and idiots: Elliott R. Howard of Leesburg, Scott Ferry of Poolesville, Dann Dickerstein of Washington ... Okay, we are making these names up. Next time, we won't be so kind. Get the picture, all you Steal Invitationalists out there? Splendid.

Third Runner-up: What is "Cling! Dink! Knock! Phump! Bang! Doink! Bump! Clonk! Fong! Brick! Whack! Glorp! Cloong! Padagoink!"? Kevin Duckworth, shooting baskets. (Adam K. Lee, Washington)

Second Runner-up: What is "Doodly-dingly-doodly-dingly-doodly-dingly-pow-pow-pow-doodly-dingly- doodly-dingly"? The Good Humor drive-by killer strikes again. (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

First Runner-up: What is "Swish Swish, Swish Swish"? Michael Jordan switching careers. (Gene O'Neill, Gaithersburg; also, Noah Schenendorf, Gaithersburg)

And the winner of the Miss Piggy bank:

What is "AAAAAAaaaaaa ... "? Unfortunately, no one had taken the trouble to explain to the Wicked Witch of the West the difference between a bidet and a toilet. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Honorable Mentions:

What is "Fssssss ... Fssssss"? On his deathbed, Robin Hood shoots again, deciding not to be buried in the cesspool. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

What is "Biff! Grunt. Pow! Wheeze. Bap! Moan"? Adam West reprises his role as Batman. (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

What is "Ring ring ring ring ring ring ring ring ring ring ring ring ring"? A call to a D.C. government office. (William J. Irvin, Fort Washington)

What goes "Vroom Screech, Vroom Screech"? A blond at a flashing red light. (Sandi Quallich, Germantown)

What is "Snap Crackle Poop"? The sound of a bowl of Rice Crappies. (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

What is "Wham! Boing! Wham! Boing! Wham! Boing! Ding!"? Round 11 of the Ali-Gumby fight. (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

What goes "BOOM! BOOM! BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!"? A cannonball-only rendition of the "1812" Overture. (Kevin Cuddihy, Fairfax)

What is "Scratch. Sniff. Plop"? The gas company's Chloroform Awareness Card, another bad idea. (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

What is "Meow plink plink, Meow plink plink"? The world's fastest violinmaker. (Jennifer Hart, Arlington)

What is "Ow! Ow! Ow!"? A man with stigmata on his palm runs for office in Virginia. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

What is "Bibbity Bobbitty Boo"? The ghost of severed parts. (Ken Kaufman, Gaithersburg)

What is "Xxxxxxxxx Xxxxxxxxxx Xxxxxxxxx"? Malcolm X, snoring. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

And last, and the winner of a handsome toidy:

What is "Hippety-hop, hippety-hop, hippety-hop, thud"? How I hope to tell my husband that I'm pregnant, by having him read it in the Style Invitational. (Joann Rizzo, Woodbridge)

Next Week: Caption Crunch III


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Week 74 : Week 73_ Shirt Happens


contest.

Full Text (882   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jul 24, 1994

This week's contest was prompted by our profound respect for women. Alas, in the last few months, the Style Invitational has been a debacle for the fillies. Male winners have been seriously outnumbering female winners, and here is why: The leading numero-uno Big Kahuna smartypant woman contestant has stopped submitting entries. What happened to "Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring"? Why has she abandoned her sisters to the foul odiou ness of Chuck Smith of Woodbridge? At first we thought it might be because we were a teensy bit late in mailing out Linda's first-prize award of a complete boxed set of Barry Manilow CDs, which she won in 1993 but which was not shipped until, er, last Tuesday. But then we remembered that Linda once wrote in that she does not even own a CD player and planned to use the $90 set of high-resolution CDs as "coasters." So that couldn't be it. Desperate for a clue, we riffled through old entries to find Linda's last one. It was in April. With it was appended a little note, politely observing that our blue "Year 2" T-shirts were just a bit tacky, inasmuch as they are the color of cheap gum balls, the sweaty, sticky kind you get in machines raising money for Taiwanese softball leagues. Also, the shirts appeared to feature an image of a person pooping. IS THAT ALL, LINDA? YOU HAVE BETRAYED YOUR GENDER BECAUSE OF ... FASHION CONSCIOUSNESS? Fine. Splendid, then. Just for you we have redesigned the T-shirt, featuring the elegant artwork of the official Style Invitational designer, Mr. Robert Staake, of the St. Louis, Mo., Staakes. We think you will find Mr. Robert's stylings much more tasteful. Okay? You back in the fold? Anyway, in 10 words or fewer, what should the back of the T-shirt say? We are looking for a slogan that befits the prestige and dignity of this contest. Winner gets a huge burlap sack filled with barley goo and yeast, which allegedly you can brew at home into 2 1/2 gallons of beer, a value of $40. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 74, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, or fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received by Monday, July 31. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 71, in which we asked you to submit new captions for any photo or illustration appearing anywhere in The Washington Post on July 3.

Fourth Runner-Up: Before the invention of the color copier, the Army spent millions perfecting the high-resolution Silly Putty print. (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

Third Runner-Up: The newest chic dish in trendy Washington restaurants is deep-fried rat in a light tomato puree. (Earl F. Gilbert, La Plata; also, Kathleen Pendracky, Avella, Pa.)

Second Runner-Up: Terminally ill with cancer, Colombian defender Andres Escobar knocks the ball into his own goal on the advice of his doctor, Jack Kevorkian. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

First Runner-Up: Sen. Donald Riegle Jr., left, goes the distance in beating nine-time champion Martina Navratilova in the 1994 Dristan nose-pick challenge. Sen. David Pryor, center, failed to qualify. (Richard Gillcrist, Rockville)

And The Winners of the cheap Coca-Cola clocks:

A brazenly unrepentant Marion Barry campaigns in D.C. with a misspelled T-shirt plainly advertising that he is "Buying Powder." (Richard E. Brock, Adelphi; also, Ellen Meyerson, Bethesda)

Honorable Mentions

"I've got your health care package right here." (John Kammer, Herndon)

Ape is caught smuggling naugahides out of Africa. (Larry A. Gordon, Potomac)

Many naive consumers in the early 1950s purchased floor model radios with still photographs mounted on top, believing that these were "those television sets everybody's talking about." (Earl F. Gilbert, La Plata)

Teacher recertification standards hit an all-time low. (Seraj Ali, xxxx)

Spring training for Michael Jordan was a bigger adjustment than he had figured. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

In a debate with former surgeon general C. Everett Koop, the president of the American Tobacco Institute maintains that cigarettes do not cause health problems. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Dark lines indicate the route traveled by O.J. during live TV coverage of the chase. (John Wallington, Silver Spring)

Early pornography was more symbolic than explicit. (Christie Houser, Alexandria)

Maryland Lt. Gov. Melvin Steinberg attacks the doctor responsible for replacing his left arm with several microphones. (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

Luis Martinez performs the traditional Mexican Testicle Dance celebrating a goal against Switzerland. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Yes, Mr. Hoffa. All we need is your footprints in this box of cement, and you can have this free painting. (Gary Cornelison, Monrouth, Md.)

Uh-oh! Foul! In soccer, only the goalkeeper is allowed to touch the ball with his hands. (Judy Premer, Baker, W.Va.)

One imaginative but ultimately unsuccessful experiment used a live killer whale instead of an internal combustion engine. (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

Next Week: Visions of Hell.


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Week 75 : Curses!


Bowie)

Full Text (1033   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jul 31, 1994

"You should grow like an onion, with your head in the ground."

"May you lose all your teeth except one, so you can still get a toothache."

"May you become famous, so famous they name a fatal disease after you."

"You should live like a chandelier, hanging by day and burning by night."

This week's contest was prompted by the fact that Yiddish, the language of this Czar's sainted grandma, is a dying tongue. With it will disappear some of the most colorful curses ever devised, such as all those above. We must not let this happen. Your challenge: Come up with modern maledictions in the wise and entertaining Yiddish tradition. Printable ones only, please. First-prize winner gets an official dorky Star Trek Space Pen, part of a limited edition, a value of $40. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 75, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received by Monday, Aug. 8. Please include your address and phone number. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 72, in which we asked for concepts of Hell for famous people. But first a response to several whiny letter writers who urged us to exercise compassion toward people who send in old jokes as their own, people we threatened to punish via public humiliation. Very well. We have reconsidered, and welcome all you drooling boneheads back to the game, without penalty other than the one God has already assessed you.

Third Runner-Up: Ollie North's Hell: Under oath, with his mortal soul on the line, in front of the heavenly tribunal, he swears he's a liar. No one believes him. (Edward Roeder, Washington)

Second Runner-Up: Imelda Marcos's Hell: She is a minimum-wage sales associate at Shoe Galaxy, and her only customers are Blondie Bumstead, Cathy and her mother, and Lucy Ricardo. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

First Runner-Up: Dr. Kevorkian's Hell: In eternal private practice, he has a lavish office but only two patients: Rasputin and Lazarus. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

And the winner of the Fabulous Frog Band:

Bill Clinton's Hell: He actually feels our pain. Every time someone stubs a toe, gets a root canal, falls down the stairs, suffers a stabbing hemorrhoidal burn . . . (Jack Bross, Chevy Chase)

Honorable Mentions:

John Bobbitt's Hell: Night after night he is a guest on Johnny Carson. Ed Ames is throwing tomahawks at him. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

William F. Buckley's Hell: He is forced to talk continually, but is not permitted to use the subjunctive mood. (Greg Arnold, Herndon)

Geraldo Rivera's Hell: Deep in the bowels of Hades, Geraldo comes upon a sealed door marked "Entrance to Heaven." After toiling for centuries, he is finally able to pry it open. There is nothing there. Geraldo comes to another door marked "Entrance to Heaven . . ." (Larry Covey, Columbia)

Daniel Patrick Moynihan's Hell: The entire U.S. is redistricted and he must continually run for reelection as a senator from West Virginia. (Larry Covey, Columbia)

Michael Eisner's Hell: The glove found at the L.A. crime scene belongs to Mickey Mouse. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Bill Gates's Three Levels of Hell:

1. They are using OS/2.

2. They are using Kaypro IIs.

3. He is handed an abacus. (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

Thomas Malthus's Hell: His publisher insists on printing Malthus's name on the flyleaf as: THOMAS MALTHUS

Hertz Corp.'s Hell: The only celebrities who agree to become its new spokesperson are Mike Tyson, Pee-wee Herman and Michael Jackson (Steven J. Cohen, Fairfax)

Nancy Kerrigan's Hell: She is at Disney World. It is corny as hell. She is playing a Whack-a-Mole game. She is the mole. (Peyton Coyner, Afton, Va.)

John Bobbitt's Hell: Mumps. (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

H.L. Mencken's Hell: He is sent to the Ozarks to arbitrate grammar disputes. (John L. Brown and Lynn Sidehamer, State College, Pa.)

Bill Clinton's Hell: He is surrounded by shapely women with big hair, miniskirts and white plastic boots. Every hour they deliver to him an Arkansas state trooper. (John Brock, Reston)

Harry Houdini's Hell: Every ticket in the theater is sold. The orchestra is playing his entrance fanfare. He is locked in his dressing room and can't get out. (Ken Trombly, Bethesda)

Charles Goren's Hell: For this rubber, deuces and one-eyed jacks are wild. For the next rubber, aces may be used as high or low. For the following rubber, pass three cards to the left after the bidding is closed. For the . . . (Christie Houser, Alexandria)

Joyce Kilmer's Hell: He is abandoned in a dense forest from which there is no escape. (John L. Brown and Lynn Sidehamer, State College, Pa.)

Michael Dukakis's Hell: Everyone drives a tank while he's issued a Barney Big Wheel. (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

Hillary's Hell: She goes to what she thinks is Heaven, until she realizes everyone but her has a halo. (Tom Neven, Spotsylvania, Va.)

William Safire's Hell: He meets St. Peter. He is given a choice between two doors. One is marked "Flammable." The other is marked "Inflammable." (Alison Sohmer, Reston)

Philip Morris Executive's Hell: The research performed by our scientists provides conclusive proof that these people are in no pain at all. The increase in the sulfur concentration only serves to improve the air's aroma. Scriptural reports of suffering and eternal torment are biased accusations by extremists in the anti-Hell lobby. (Ken Kaufman, Gaithersburg)

Chuck Smith's Hell: He never again wins the Style Invitational but appears only in other people's winning entries. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

And Last: Katharine Graham's Hell: Every Sunday, her copy of the Washington Post consists of pages A1, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2, F2 and Parade magazine. (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

Next Week: Lunacy


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Week 76 : Adios.


name=fulltext>
Full Text (835   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Aug 7, 1994

Sorry. No examples this week. It's August, and we're outta here.

This week's contest was prompted by the fact that August gets no respect. Washington gets as empty as a dumpster full of anxieties. Public discourse gets as thin as a soup made from the shadow of a chicken that starved to death. People make like infinitives and split. This is an intolerable affront to a month with many fine qualities. Tell us: In 40 words or fewer, what is great about August in Washington. You'll have to wait six weeks for your answers, because the Invitational is on sabbatical. First-prize winner gets a fabulous giant-size 1975 calendar featuring the tortured likenesses of all the presidents of the United States and spotlighting, in a large portrait, President Gerald R. Ford, a value of $30.

Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 76, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received by Monday, Aug. 22. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in six weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 73, in which we asked you what Neil Armstrong should have said when he landed on the moon.

Several disturbingly popular themes emerged: 1. Neil has to pee real bad, usually because of excessive consumption of Tang. 2. Neil steps in poo from the cow that jumped over the moon. 3. Neil "cuts the cheese." 4. Neil and/or Buzz drops trou and "earths" the moon.

What is wrong with you people? This here is a classy contest. We would no sooner dignify this sort of crude humor than we would stick a subliminal toilet joke in our ear.

Fourth Runner-Up: "Is it my imagination, Buzz, or does the moon look really big tonight?" (Jonathan M. Kaye, Washington)

Third Runner-Up: "Line!" (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge; also, Chuck Coleman, Oakton, and Bill McClatchie, Fairfax)

Second Runner-Up: "At last, a place where white men can jump." (Christie Houser, Alexandria; also, Robert Lisle, Staunton, Va., and Austin Doyle, Silver Spring)

First Runner-Up: "Cool! Now the moon is flat and the Earth is round!" (Mark P. Hurst, Germantown)

And the Winner of the bordello rag doll:

"One hundred eighty-seven thousand six hundred forty-four bottles of beer on the wall . . . " (Stu Segal, Vienna)

Honorable Mentions

"If we can do this, why can't we make a painless nose hair remover?" (Jennifer Hart, Arlington)

"Help! I've risen and I can't get down!" Mark P. Hurst, Germantown)

"Houston? Armstrong here. . . . No, dammit, Neil Armstrong." (Angus MacLean Thuermer, Middleburg, Vt.)

"A man on the moon! Good God, what's next, the Mets winning the World Series?" (David Avagliano Treber, Silver Spring)

"Houston? I thought this would be a good time to ask for a raise." (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

"Hey, Buzz. I bet ya `Who is Michael Collins?' will be a great `Jeopardy!' question . . . in, like, about two weeks! Hahahaha." (Gregory A. James, Fairmount Heights)

"Okay, Buzz. I'm throwing the key in. You can undo the cuffs and come out now." (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

"Bein' as how there's no other place around the place, I reckon this must be the place." (Jim Barnes, Leesburg)

"That's one small step for an individual of male gender, one giant leap for non-gender-specific pan-ethnic chronologically diverse beings whose different methods of worshiping an omnipotent creator who/that meaningfully guides history and their lives, or not recognizing any such being at all, are equally meritorious." (Joan Koury, Washington)

"Wow! Deja vu!" (Russ Beland, Springfield; also, Waldo L. Jaquith, Free Union, Va.)

"Houston, I am picking up some kind of alien transmission. I hear a laugh track, and now someone, or something has just said, `To the Earth, Alizorg! Do you hear me, to the Earth!' " (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

"Hello, Domino's? Let's get this straight. You guarantee delivery anywhere within 30 minutes or the pizza is free, right?" (Chris Rooney, Blacksburg, Va.)

"Hey guys, this plaque says "Richard F. Nixon." (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

"Hey, look. There's a monkey hitting another monkey with a bone over there." (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

"Houston, this is Buzz. Armstrong told me to come out first. He, ah . . . didn't want all the glory, and he was tired too. Also, um, his radio is broken, and he's decided not to go back to Earth." (Russ Beland, Springfield)

"I lost 180 pounds in three days, and I ate all the foods I really like!" (Geoff and Jacki Drucker, Arlington)

And Last:

"I can't help wondering how this moment will be memorialized in the newspapers in 25 years - probably something real dignified, I am sure." (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)


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Week 77 : The Rorschach of the Crowd II


name=fulltext>
Full Text (644   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Sep 4, 1994

We're back. It's a brand-new season, we have a brand-new T-shirt and a brand-new reader-friendly attitude. In the past we may have seemed a trifle arrogant at times, as though we were some sort of infallible planetary authority on humor and you were, to put it bluntly, a battalion of doofs. Well, that is all in the past. We will no longer be condescending. "Condescending" is a great big word that means talking down to people. Anyway, This Week's Contest: What Do These Ink Blots Mean? Explain one, or more than one. You can flip them over, if you wish, but make sure to specify which side is up. First-Prize Winner gets an elegant desk sculpture, crafted from road kill by fine Mexican artisan-taxidermists, depicting two frogs playing billiards, a value of 90,000 pesos. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 77, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received by Monday, Sept. 12. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 74, in which we asked you to come up with a slogan for the back of the new and improved Style Invitational T-shirt. The funniest entry ineligible for a prize (it violated the word-length rule) was submitted by Larry Covey of Columbia, Md.: "My Parents Went to Colombia and All I Got Was This Lousy T-Shirt With Little Bags of Sugar Sewn Into It."

Fifth Runner-Up: Need Help. Call Police. (David King, Washington)

Fourth Runner-Up: Right. Like YOU'RE Stephen Hawking. (Jessica Steinhice, Washington)

Third Runner-Up: Losing Is Like Death, but Without Your Eyelids Sewn Shut (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Second Runner-Up: I'm With Stupid ART DEPT: `WITH' IS CROSSED OUT (Linda "Kvetch" Malcolm, Silver Spring)

First Runner-Up: Ask Me About My Bodily Function Joke (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

And the Winner of the Burlap Sack Filled With Goo:

New and Imporved T-Shirt (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

Honorable Mentions:

It's a Lousy Contest and I'm Lousy at It (Gary D. Michaels, Potomac)

I Am Not an Animal (Stu Segal, Vienna)

"And Thus Do I Clothe My Naked Villainy." - Shakespeare I Think (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

When the Thermometer Pops Out of My Butt, I'm Done (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Oh, I Thought You Said Butt Light (Larry A. Gordon, Potomac)

Not an Employee of The Washington Post or a Member of Their Immediate Family (Bruce W. Alter, Springfield)

My Other T-Shirt Is the Nobel Prize (J. F. Martin, Falls Church)

Don't Bother Me, I'm Trying to Walk (Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

I'm Going to Euro Disney! (Jessica Steinhice, Washington)

Smith Happens (Paul Styrene, Olney)

Puns of Steel (Jennifer Hart, Arlington)

The Eastern Bloc Judges Screwed Me (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Don't Stop Thinking About Next Week (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

That Which Does Not Kill Us Often Hurts Us Badly (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Attn. Colleagues: Knife Goes Here (Don Maclean, Burke)

Virtual Banality (Chris Rooney, Reston)

It's a Geek Thing. You Wouldn't Understand. (Jim Day, Gaithersburg)

Warning: Objects in T-Shirt Are Closer Than They Appear. (James M. Lopez, Quantico; also, Kevin Cuddihy, Fairfax)

How's My Walking? FAX 202-334-4312 (Joseph Romm, Washington; also, Kevin Cuddihy, Fairfax, and Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

Almost as Funny as "The Family Circus" (Ignatius McBundy, Silver Spring)

I Yield to the Gentleman From Woodbridge (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Veni, Vidi, Olfeci (I Came, I Saw, I Stank) (Jessie Geitl, Washington)

Next Week: Curses!


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Week 78 : Seeking Smart Morons


name=fulltext>
Full Text (924   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Sep 11, 1994

A Personal And Confidential Fax

District Government

Great Britain

Family Vacation

This Week's Contest was suggested by Tom C. Korologos of Washington, who wins a skull and crossbones flag. Tom proposes that you come up with an oxymoron for our times: an expression made bogus by the fact that it combines incompatible, contradictory ideas. First-prize winner gets a spectacular, mint-condition wire hubcap from a 1986 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham, purchased from and authenticated by none other than Dick Terselic, The Hubcap Man of Rockville Pike. This is a value, believe it or not, of $84 and is suitable for framing or affixing onto the wheel of a 1986 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 78, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received by Monday, Sept. 19. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 75, in which we asked you to come up with colorful curses in the great Yiddish tradition.

Fourth Runner-Up: May your hair never turn gray, so everyone thinks you dye it. (Stephen Mather, College Park)

Third Runner-Up: May you be caught shoplifting by a security camera, which adds 10 pounds to you in court. (Sue Lin Chong, Washington)

Second Runner-Up: May the ladies on 14th Street call out your name as you drive by with your wife. And may your wife call back to them by theirs. (Paul A. Alter, Hyattsville)

First Runner-Up: May you be a contestant on "Jeopardy!" playing against my 7-year-old son and the only categories are Power Rangers, X-Men and fart noises. (Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

And the Winner of the dorky Star Trek Pen:

May your children be so clever they are acquitted of murdering you. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Honorable Mentions:

May your final sight be buzzards fighting over your best parts. (Chuck Hawkins, Oakton)

May your yeast infection grow so large it will yield enough bread to feed all the starving of the world. (Erica Hughes, McLean)

May your teenage daughter's grades show radical improvement, but only in the classes in which she has a male teacher. (Earl Gilbert, La Plata)

May you be 72 hours away from being executed for a murder you didn't commit when the real killer confesses to authorities in a letter he mails from the District of Columbia. (Bernie Harris, Woodbridge)

May your ex-spouse's new lover work for the IRS. (Starr Mayer, Hayes, Va.)

May you own a mansion with 10 bedrooms, and on each bed may there lounge an unemployed son watching MTV. (John Cushing, Washington)

May your toenails grow into your shoes. (David L. Howison, Lexington, Va.)

May your rock album be declared obscene and create a vast parental outcry across America, and still not sell. (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

May you fall on your tuchus into a vat of Rogaine. (Janet Millenson, Potomac)

May you be so handsome your cell mates fight over you. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

May you die in a fiery crash with Jim Carrey and entry into Heaven depends on who can make the best faces. (Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

May you become wealthy when your wife writes a bestseller. May it be titled: "Size Isn't Everything: The Unlucky Married Woman's Guide to Somehow Finding Satisfaction." (Jack Bross, Chevy Chase)

May you get a call from Blockbuster because you returned a tape of you and your spouse instead of "The Firm." (Steve Kent, Crofton)

May your life be like a fairy tale. May you be eaten by a wolf. (Jack Bross, Chevy Chase)

May you become a poster child for Spontaneous Human Combustion. (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

May you grow old gracefully, just like Howard Metzenbaum. (Jessie Gietl, Washington)

May the O. J. Simpson verdict come in at the moment your news conference is scheduled. (Karen Lubienicki, Laurel)

You should live to be 120 years old. Beginning in 1875. (Bernie Harris, Woodbridge)

May you see the dawning of an era of peace in which all men and women, of every nation, race and creed, come together, united by their hatred of you. (Jacob Weinstein, McLean)

May you become a serial killer, hoping for a cool nickname like "Zodiac Killer" or "Midnight Maniac," but instead be labeled something stupid like "The Noogie Murderer." (Kevin Cuddihy, Fairfax)

May you be so beautiful and famous that Michael Jackson marries you just to prove he isn't an antisocial virgin or pervert-pedophile. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

May the parents of the Jackson 5 get to name your children. (Russ Beland, Tel Aviv and Queens, N.Y.)

May your contact lens pop out into the urinal at the bus station. (Woody Franke, Canberra, Australia)

May you live long enough to see a movie starring the offspring of Michael and Lisa Marie. (Woody Franke, Canberra, Australia)

May you become an insult comedian in Medellin, Colombia. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

May you be drafted by the Baltimore Orioles as their backup shortstop. (Greg vArnold, Herndon)

And Last:

May all your bat mitzvah gifts be the envy of the guy who shops for Style Invitational prizes. (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

Next Week: August in Washington


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Week 79 : TERROR-DACTYL


T-shirts.

Full Text (863   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Sep 18, 1994

Piggledy

Jiggery Pokery

Doc Jack Kevorkian

Gave us a gizmo

To make people croak.

Abracadaver!

Nothing remarkable!

Marlboro did it

With mere puffs of smoke. Higgledy Piggledy Benjamin Harrison,

Twenty-third president

Was, and, as such,

Served between Clevelands

And save for this trivial

Idiosyncrasy

Didn't do much.

This week's contest is very very difficult. It was proposed by Paul Richard, the Washington Post's art critic. Paul gets a velvet Elvis. man Paul suggests that you come up with a double dactyl, which is an obscure type of poetry that is to the limerick what Leonardo da Vinci is to a dung beetle, in terms of life-form comparisons. We must admit this contest idea seems more appropriate to the weekly Competition in New York magazine, which fancies itself a literary adventure and regularly solicits frightfully amusing pastiches of 16th-century iambic verse, than to the Style Invitational, which traffics fairly exclusively in colo-rectal humor. However, we wish to prove our readers every bit as pretentious as New York readers. So. Send us a double dactyl. Here are the rules: The first line must be a nonsense phrase of five to seven syllables containing exactly two downbeats. HIG-gle-dy PIG-gle-dy is often used. The second line must be a name, in five to seven syllables but only two downbeats (GEORGE Steph-an-OP-ou-los; PEE-Wee the OR-gan-ist). The remaining six lines must contain four to seven syllables and two downbeats each, with Lines 4 and 8 rhyming. Are you getting this? Somewhere in the poem, one line must consist of only one word (EX-tem-por-AN-e-a). And the whole thing has to be on the subject of national health care reform. Hahaha. Just kidding. We wouldn't want to make it too hard. You can write about any subject. Listen, it's easier than it looks. Just read the above poems aloud (the first is ours, the second the work of double-dactyl pioneer John Hollander) and you will get it. First Prize Winner, should there be one through some miracle, gets a fairly spectacular working chrome 1950s art deco one-slice toaster, a value of $80. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 79, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received by Monday, Sept. 26. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 76, in which we asked you to discuss the great advantages of Washington in August:

Third Runner-Up: The mulberry slime is gone from the sidewalk, and the black walnut slime has not yet appeared. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Second Runner-Up: In August, lawmakers leave town, creating a "power vacuum" that D.C. residents may then use to do end-of-summer cleaning around the house. (Mark P. Hurst, Germantown.)

First Runner-Up: It offers the chance to be memorialized in thousands of family scrapbooks around the world by popping up behind those unsuspecting two- and threesomes just as their pictures are taken. (Stu Segal, Vienna)

And the winner of the Gerald Ford Calendar:

August in Washington is GREAT! The skies are sunny, temperatures rarely get above 80 degrees, the mountains are majestic and snow-capped, the evenings are bracingly chilly with fabulous grunge nightlife. . . . (Sue Witner, Bellingham, Wash.)

Honorable Mentions:

Anyone likely to say "hot enough for ya?" has already been killed. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

One has a better chance of seeing Janet Reno in a bikini. (Chris Rooney, Reston)

Washington in August is as good a place as any to stay away from Woodstock again in. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

We don't use as much ammunition driving on Interstate 395. (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

At least this August we weren't the only major U.S. city without big-league baseball. (Mike Thring, Leesburg; Elsa Newman, Bethesda)

Perp walks are conducted under "dress down day" rules. (Sue Lin Chong, Washington)

No matter how hot it gets, you can always cheer yourself up with the knowledge that there are actually people who pay money to take their vacations here. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

The following persons will have a birthday and therefore be one year closer to death and/or mandatory retirement: Elvis Costello, Steve Guttenberg, Ron Brown, Connie Chung, Alfonse D`Amato, Geraldine Ferraro, Pee-wee Herman, Michael Jackson, Robin Leach, Madonna, Sean Penn, Jerry Falwell and Bill Clinton. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

You can take your Aunt Bessie and Uncle Ned to see the cherry trees without running into everyone else's Cousin Merle. (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

In August, the world Gee Haw Whimmy Diddle competition takes place here. (Barbara Bryce, Adelphi)

You can sit naked on your front porch with the Sunday Post on your lap and no one can tell the difference. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

And Last:

I am a teacher. (Laura Ditrapani Clairmont, Centreville)

Next week: The Rorschach of the Crowd.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 80 : Nick Knacks


prizes.

Full Text (679   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Sep 25, 1994

Henry "The Impotent" of Castile

Pope Clement VII, "The Butcher of Cesena"

George "The Mad Bomber" Metesky

Fred "Bonehead" Merkle

Vyacheslav "Stone-Ass" Molotov

Jimmy "The Weasel" Fratianno

Margaret "The Gorgeous Hussy" Eaton

William "Pussyfoot" Johnson

Except possibly for Mafiosi, and they are a dying breed, no one has cool nicknames anymore. All of the above were taken from the Dictionary of Historic Nicknames. This Week's Contest: Come up with a great nickname for any contemporary celebrity. First-prize winner receives "The Cottage Physician," a fabulously misinformed antique medical text autographed by the Czar of the Style Invitational, who purchased it at an antiques store for $5 but hereby assigns it a value of $62,300. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 80, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to (202) 334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received by Monday, Oct. 3. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. The Faerie of the Fine Print & the Ear No One Reads, making a startling reappearance, requests onomatopoeia, made-up words that sound like the things they are describing. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 77, in which you were asked to interpret Rorschach blots. Many of the better entries utilized more than one of the blots. One of our favorites was by Noah Schenendorf of Gaithersburg, who said all six blots, taken together, represented "works of modern art by Desmond Howard, for which Redskins GM Charlie Casserly paid millions."

Third Runner-Up: (Blot 3) This ultrasound view of the female abdomen shows that storks really are involved in human reproduction. (Steve Dunham, Fredericksburg)

Second Runner-Up: (Blot 1) What xxxx intends to name his first son. (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

First Runner-Up: (Blot 6) It was not until deeper excavations on Easter Island that the colostomy bags were discovered. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

And the Winner of the Two Frogs Playing Pool:

Halloween in Georgetown (Dennis Goris, Alexandria)

Blot No. 1

A chandelier made from the spines and vertebrae of politicians. (Richard E. Brock, Adelphi)

Major league baseball owners have resorted to genetic engineering to produce replacement players. Initial attempts have been unsuccessful. (Kurt Larrick, Burke)

The common wishbone, redesigned to meet federal safety standards. (John J. Kammer, Herndon)

Blot No. 2

Marilyn Quayle comes face to face with the Devil. (D.J. Dohahey, Reston)

The controversial Shroud of Mary Tyler Moore. (Gloria Federico, Springfield)

Blot No. 3

The Cowardly Lion after cosmetic surgery. His doctor misunderstood when told the lion wanted little tucks around his eyes. (Ann M. Burton, N. Bethesda)

Dan Quayle's Zero Population Growth Plan involves Air Force fighters destroying stork habitats. (Earl Gilbert, La Plata)

The June Taylor Dancers performing "Swan Lake." (Larry Gordon, Potomac)

Blot No. 4

What Madonna wears to church. (Susan Davis, Beltsville)

A reflected image of a decapitated buffalo, next year's Bills logo if they lose the Super Bowl again. (T.L. McBride, Upper Marlboro)

Blot No. 5

(Upside down) Opus, bound and gagged. (Stu Segal, Vienna)

(Upside down) A rear view of refrigerator repair men building a human pyramid. (Marta Graffy Sparrow, Springfield)

Mickey Mouse checking Stan Laurel for head lice. (Doug Burns, Falls Church)

The ill-conceived Mighty Morphin Power Penguin. (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

Blot No. 6

The jacket cover for the new book "Women of the Supreme Court." (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Manic-depressive thought balloons. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

There were constant arguments between the twins as to who would get to wear both earrings that night. (Paul A. Alter, Hyattsville)

(Upside down) A new form of birth control: ankle weights for sperm. (Bill Epstein, Bethesda)

And Last:

Mr. Style Comes a-Courtin' (Kathleen Pendracky, Avella, Pa.)

Next Week: Smart Morons


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RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 81 : Heads You Lose


name=fulltext>
Full Text (703   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Oct 2, 1994

Week 81: Heads You Lose

This Week's Contest: Take any two or more headlines anywhere in today's Washington Post, and combine them to make a funnier headline. You can do all sorts of cutting and pasting: You may discard words and redistribute words, but you may not cut up words. (The smallest movable unit is the word, not the letter.) We would prefer that you do actual cutting and pasting, but will not disqualify written or typed entries. In either case, please indicate on which pages the constituent headlines appeared.

First-prize winner receives the fantastic magicians' Knife-Through-the-Arm Trick, with a coupon for free blood-spatter capsules, a value of $85. Runners-up, as always, receive the coveted Style Invitational Losers T-Shirt. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Entries will be judged on the basis of humor and originality. Mail them to the Style Invitational, Week 81, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Oct. 10. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. The Faerie of the Fine Print & the Ear No One Reads again requests examples of onomatopoeia, words that sound like what they define. Mail to Style Invitational, Onomatopoeia Contest, etc. Employees of The Washington Post and members of their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 78, in which we asked you to come up with Oxymorons, expressions composed of contradictory or incompatible elements. But first, the winners of the "Whatever Happened to Week 64?" contest, in which you were asked to explain the mysterious jump from Week 63 to Week 65. The winner of the clock featuring an American Indian who looks about as much like an American Indian as Lawrence Welk did is Joyce Rains of Bethesda, for multiple good entries, including "It got stuck to the back of Week 63" and "It was disowned from the Week 60 Family because it married Week 7, its `common' denominator." A special mention to Larry Covey of Columbia, who pointed out that Lawrence Welk was actually an American Indian named Lawrence Walking Elk. "At the reservation the young bubblemeister-to-be learned to write his name as Lawrence W. Elk. An army recruiter later got confused. . . ." And lastly, a special mention to Sarah Worcester of Bowie, who has been bombarding us with picture postcards fashioning a bizarre and frankly insane explanation for the whereabouts of Week 64, involving a pet alligator named Leland, rampant substance abuse and an orgy at a place called Bob's Goat World. Sarah is a humongous genius who should be courted by royalty and pampered for the remainder of her life. Will you stop now, Sarah?

Back to the Oxymorons: Many, many good ideas were too widely entered to reward with prizes: Civil War, Rap Music, Clinton Policy, Madonna, Clinton Plan, Rush Hour, Clinton Agenda, Postal Worker, The Honorable (Marion Barry, Oliver North, Dan Rostenkowski etc.), Priority Mail, Civil Servant, Baseball Players and, of course, Style Invitational Winner.

Fifth Runner-Up: U.N. Resolution (Steven King, Alexandria)

Fourth Runner-Up: Soccer Score (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

Third Runner-Up: The Jackson Family Honors (Anne Wolfson, New York)

Second Runner-Up: Tobacco Futures (Timothy Morgan, Laurel)

First Runner-Up: True North (David Kuebrich, Fairfax; also, Chuck Nelson, Alexandria)

And the winner of the spectacular Cadillac hubcaps:

Reagan Memoirs (Jessica Steinhice, Washington; also, L. Woodall, Arlington)

Honorable Mentions:

Low-Speed Chase (Glenn W. Chong, San Diego)

Reader's Digest Sweepstakes Final Notice (John Wallington, Silver Spring)

Monosyllabic (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

The Haft Family (Dick Holt, Arlington; also, J. Lakshmanan, Lanham)

Butt-head (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

The Untold Story of O.J. Simpson (Thomas Coffey, Chantilly)

A Mild-Mannered Reporter (Greg Arnold, Herndon)

The Nature Co. (Steve Bunyak, Arlington)

Industrial Park (David Shorr, Arlington)

Hare Krishnas (Chris Rooney, Reston)

Mars Observer (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Sleeping Like a Baby (Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

Briefings (Shelley Crossland, Centreville)

Mrs. Jack Kent Cooke (Joe Willmore, Alexandria)

Yom Kippur (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

And Last:

Spectacular ... Hubcap (Cole Arendt, Washington)

Next Week: Pterror Dactyls


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RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 82 : Picture This


prizes.

Full Text (1031   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Oct 9, 1994

Week 82: Picture This

This week's contest marks the first triumphant return of former Style Invitational Cartoonist Marc Rosenthal, the gifted illustrator whose offbeat stylings graced these pages until we kicked his butt out the door when we got tired of him. Tell us: Who are these people, and what are they doing? First-prize winner receives a talking Pee-wee Herman doll, which sold new in 1990 for $25 but for some reason shortly thereafter became a hard-to-find collector's item. We purchased it at an antique store, a little soiled and frayed at the collar, for $75. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 82, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071; fax them to 202-334-4312; or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received by Monday, Oct. 17. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. The Faerie of the Fine Print & The Ear No One Reads makes a last call for onomatopoeia, made-up words that sound like the sounds they are describing. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 79, in which we asked you to write double dactyls, a devilishly complicated and erudite poetic form we figured you could not possibly master, inasmuch as you are, as we have pointed out before, a battalion of doofs. Well, we apologize. You turned out to be a battalion of doofs with a frankly astounding facility for literary arcana. Special mention to Inger M. Pettygrove of Arlington, who violated our rule that the rhyme had to be about someone famous but nonetheless produced this gem: "Hippety hoppity/ Inger M. Pettygrove/ Wanted three kids--`I don't/ Care what the sex is.`/ Lives in a house now so / Hypertesticular/ Said to her spouse, `don't you / Have any X's?' " Likewise, special mention to Jim Hedlund of Springfield, who should send us a steamer trunk full of cash for publishing this: "Higgledy piggledy/ Betta M. Eskeli/ Constant musician/ Occasional wife;/ Gardener, mother, and/ Bibliomaniac/ Teacher, gourmet, and/ Love of my life."

Fourth Runner-Up:

Higgledy piggledy

Jacqueline Kennedy

Wed Ari the Toad as

Prince of her dreams.

Mythopoetically

Hoping for fairy tales,

But sometimes a toad can be

Just what it seems.

(Barbara Holland, Bluemont, Va.)

Third Runner-Up:

Jiggery Pokery

President Kennedy,

Murdered In Dallas by

Oswald alone?

Incontrovertible

Evidence implicates

Elvis and O.J., says

Oliver Stone

(Chris Doyle, Burke)

Second Runner-Up:

Higgledy Piggledy

Style Invitational

Yahdahdah Yahdahdah

ThisIsOneWord.

Yahdahdah Yahdahdah

Yahdahdah Yahdahdah,

I know this ain't winning

But can't it be third?

(John Kammer, Herndon)

First Runner-Up:

Bibbity Bobbitty

Marion Barry and

John the aforementioned

Both came to grief.

Emasculation

Real or political

Isn't irreparable,

To their relief.

(Dorothy Gaillard, Woodbine, Md.)

And the winner of the fabulous one-slice toaster:

Chippety Choppety

Jean-Bertrand Aristide

Turned rather brutish but

Withstood the shock

Of returning to Haiti so

Tontonmacoutish

That now they are calling him

Reverend Doc.

(Kitty Thuermer, Washington)

Honorable Mentions:

Jiggery-pokery

Contraman Oliver

Asked for a permit to

Armpit a gun.

The judge said, "I'm sorry, it's

Jurisprudentially

Very much tougher to

Smuggle just one."

(Barbara Holland, Bluemont, Va.)

Higgledy Piggledy

Marion What's-His-Name

Now back to serve us, this

Altruist bold.

Promising new days, he

Unegotistically

Seeks highest office

With Vistas untold.

(M. Gallagher, Oxon Hill)

Higgledy Piggledy

Lyndon and Ladybird

Lunched with Westmoreland, and

Got quite upset.

Asked if their troubles were

Gastrointestinal,

Johnson replied,

"It was something Viet."

(Carol Uri, Alexandria)

Diggety Doggety

Ollie the Senator

(Would-be, that is) doesn't

Merit the prize

Due to his penchant for

Swearing to numerous

Unsenatorial

Little white lies.

(Janis Marie Gibbs, xxx)

Wonkity Bonkity

Hillary Clinton

Wrote health legislation

To save our old bones.

Uncompromisingly,

Reps balked at covering

All U.S. citizens

But Paula Jones.

(David Gionfriddo, Washington)

Higgledy piggledy

Gilbert & Sullivan

Musical satirists,

Hardly sublime.

Unhesitatingly

Would have approved of their

Names being used in this

Ludicrous rhyme.

(Robin Pemantle, Madison, Wis.)

Higgledy piggledy

Musicotherapy,

New-age psychiatry

For the effete;

Best known for being a

Hexasyllabical

Word in which none of the

Letters repeat.

(Robin Pemantle, Madison, Wis.)

Higgledy Piggledy

President Aristide,

What do you look like,

O myth in the mist?

Geopolitically,

What do you stand for?

Is there something we're hiding?

Do you exist?

(Barbara Holland, Bluemont, Va.)

Higgledy piggledy

Eleanor Roosevelt's

Voice on the radio

Shattered the night.

People found Eleanor's

Bark even worse than

Orthodontarily

Speaking, her bite.

(Barbara Holland, Bluemont, Va.)

Hackery Quackery

Robert the Dolorous

Plenipotentiary

Thinks he is God.

Glorifies handguns and

Ridicules basketball

Pampers the powerful

I think he's odd.

(Edith L. Marsden, Washington)

Deja-vu-istically,

President Cleveland

Served us in two terms

Divided in date,

Bracketed Benjy

Historiographically,

Fathered a bastard,

Died one-nine-oh-eight.

(Myra Purdom, Springfield)

Piggery Pokery,

King Michael Jackson

Married the Princess

Lisa Marie.

Who is the husband?

Who is the wifey?

Gives a new meaning to

Androgyny.

(Trudy Wayne Howland, Alexandria)

Higgledy Piggledy

J. Martin Tupperman,

Little-known scientist,

Not quite renowned.

Proved his First Theorem of

Defenestration,

But landed before he could

Jot it all down.

(Jennifer Hart, Arlington)

Hippety Hoppety,

Linda Byrd Johnson Robb

Roots for her Chuck as his

Campaign goes forth.

Hoping that galloping

Anti-incumbency

Won't cause Virginians to

Choose to go North.

(Bob Lieblich, Arlington)

Higgledy Piggledy

William J. Clinton

Bespoke his affection for

Burgers and fries.

Why does he patronize

Greaselumpatoriums?

Makes him just one (and a

half) of the guys.

(Joe Hoffman, Falls Church)

And Practically Last:

Nickety Pickety

J. Martin, Miss Manners,

Fights hard for etiquette

Fears its demise

Incontrovertible!

Yet she is losing!

This boorish feature is

Twice her own's size.

Steve Wartik, Rockville

And Last:

Hippety Hoppity

Pee-wee the organist

Was better than Bobbitt

At holding his own

Which we mention because the

Style Invitational's

Phallocentricity's

Very well known.

(Barbara Holland, Bluemont, Va.

Next Week: Nick Knacks.


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 83 : Bedroom Farce


name=fulltext>
Full Text (860   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Oct 16, 1994

Week 83: Bedroom Farce

1. Why, in your opinion, do some women think it is sexy to shave off their eyebrows and paint on new ones, higher up?

2. Have you ever had sex in an airplane? Have you ever had sex on a luggage carousel?

3. Which of these words do you find most offensive? a) seersucker; b) organism; c) but.

For men: Betty, or Wilma? For Women: Maynard G. Krebs or Lumpy Rutherford?

4. Have you ever ordered a pair of edible underwear at the drive-through window of a McDonald's?

This Week's Contest: We have just finished reading the Great New American Sex Survey, which reports all sorts of questionable results, such as that Americans do not cheat on their spouses a lot, that Baptists are wild animals in the sack, and that Americans don't like oral sex all that much (a result we find in, er, poor taste). We are thinking that even if true, these results are unspeakably dull, because the researchers asked all the wrong questions. What we want to know is: What questions were left out? What do you want to know about intimate relations between the genders that this survey has not told us? Please, folks, exercise restraint and maturity. Remember that the editors of this reprehensible feature must answer to individuals in business suits who, in terms of personal rectitude, make the Queen of England seem like Heidi Fleiss. First-prize winner gets a foot-tall full-color plaster statuette of Lou Costello, a value of $75. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 83, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received by Monday, Oct. 24. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 80, in which we asked you to come up with nicknames for famous people. An odd statistic: We received 1,250 entries, about 400 of which involved Bill Clinton or the Bobbitts. Emasculation appears to be the "in" topic. A special thank you to librarian Jessica Steinhice of Washington, who apparently did some research and sent us her all-time favorite nickname, California Angels catcher Doug "Eyechart" Gwosdz. Jessica, you are spending waaay too much time in the stacks.

Fifth Runner-Up: "Curtains" Kevorkian (Mary Whittington, Washington) Fifth

Fourth Runner-Up: Bill "Have You Noticed I Never Talk When Hillary Is Drinking a Glass of Water" Clinton (Thomas Edward Knibb, Walkersville)

Third Runner-Up: Boutros Boutros "Boutros" Ghali (Philip Delduke, Bethesda; also, Deena MacDonald Andrus, Hughesville)

Second Runner-Up: X, the "X X X X" (Paul "Wonderboy" Styrene, Olney; also, David Sullivan, Washington; and Michael Garawski and Michelle Lefferts, Arlington)

First Runner-Up: Ollie North, "The Lyin' King" (Jim Town, California, Md.; Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

And The Winner of "The Cottage Physician," a hilariously misinformed 1902 home medical book:

John "Magic Johnson" Bobbitt (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Honorable Mentions:

Bill "Buckner" Clinton (Eric Robert Jablow, Reston)

John " " Bobbitt (Buster Baker, Silver Spring)

Henry "The Philanthropist" Cisneros (Patricia Smith, Fairfax Station)

Lorena "The Mohel" Bobbitt (Steve Cohen, Fairfax; also, Robert Oshinsky, N. Bethesda; Bill Epstein, Bethesda)

Tony "Sentence. Fragment." Kornheiser (Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

Andy "Don't You Just Hate Nicknames? I Know I Do" Rooney (Jon Patrick Smith, Washington)

Barry "The Commander of Pander" Diller (Rose Stack, Arlington)

Lorena "The Impaler" Bobbitt (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg) v

Marion "The Inhaler" Barry (Delores A. Shaffer, Alexandria)

Tony "Why on Earth Should I Use Just One Word When There Are Many, Many Other Assorted Words That I Can Use Very Extremely Appropriately, If Somewhat Redundantly and Repetitively, for Both Emphasis and Even Also for Emphasis in This Particular Journalistic Situation, to Fill Space" Kornheiser (Patricia Smith, Fairfax Station)

"Oily" North (Fred Darfler, Elkton)

Bill "Flip" Clinton (Keith Willauer, Blacksburg)

Dave "CAPS LOCK" Barry (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Yo-Yo "Yo Ma-Ma" Ma (Mary Whittington, Washington)

Chuck "Throb" Robb (Blair Ewing, Clarksville)

"Interim" President Clinton (Rob Carter, Bethesda)

Mack "The Knifed" McLarty (Austin Doyle, Silver Spring)

Rose "By Any Other Name" Anne (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Janet "Buckstopper" Reno (Bev Wiedeman, Manassas)

Monica "Old Yeller" Seles (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Lorena "The Tungsten Sickle" Bobbitt (J. Kammer, Herndon)

John "The Prince of Wince" Bobbitt (Greg Wilinski, Springfield)

"Blink" Cedras (Stu Siegal, Vienna)

Bill "I Can't Make Up My Mind What My Nickname Is" Clinton. (Cara Liebenson, Potomac)

John "Slack Willy" Bobbitt (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Cecil "Pops" Jacobson (Ira P. Robbins, Bethesda)

Richard "Millstone" Nixon (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Zsa Zsa "The Sultan of Slap" Gabor (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Boutros "Duplicate Words Found. Delete Second?" Boutros-Ghali (David Mathiason, Washington)

And Last:

Jimmy "Images/spacer.gif" width=1 border=0>
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Week 84 : The Washington Irvings


appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary.

Full Text (618   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Oct 23, 1994

Week 84: The Washington Irvings

The Suffern (N.Y.) Succotashes

The Manlius (N.Y.) Guys-in-Town

The Simpson (S.C.) Media Frenzies

The Moody (Ala.) Bastards

The Maalaea (Ha.) Vowels

The Kenedy (Tx.) Misspellers

This Week's Contest was suggested by Michael Faden of Bethesda, who wins some owl puke. This is not just any old owl puke. This one is guaranteed to contain mouse or insect bones, and be suitable for dissection. A big gob of the stuff arrived in our office as part of a press kit from the Children's Museum of Washington. You would have won this fine prize too if you had been as smart as Michael, who proposed that you come up with creative names for the high school football teams of real towns in America. You will probably need an atlas for this one. First-prize winner gets a really fancy harmonica with a wah-wah button, a value of $60. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 84, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Halloween. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Results of Week 81, in which you were asked to cut up any headlines from that Sunday's Post, and rearrange the words into more interesting headlines.

Fifth Runner-Up: North Stuffed Robb in Toilet: Campaign Going Down the Drain (Elaine Lederman, Herndon)

Fourth Runner-Up: O.J. Hopes to Catch Plague (Karen Rogers, Fairfax)

Third Runner-Up: It's Cheaper to Let Armed Men Rob People as Alternative to Costly Rides in D.C. Taxicabs (Ted Huntington, Upper Marlboro)

Second Runner-Up: Barry Urges Speed as Alternative to Blow (Daniel G. Rosen, Bowie)

First Runner-Up: O.J. Freed, Police Search for 3-Armed Man (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

And the Winner of the Magician's Knife-Thru-Arm Illusion with free blood spatter:

God Upset at Washington Liar Parade - Reprimands Stun Clinton, Reagan, Bush, Robb, North and Marion Barry (Dave Zarrow, Herndon)

Honorable Mentions:

What's for Dinner? Turtle Heads Aren't Always Best Bet (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

Barbara Bush Bears Alien Baby (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Clinton Dreams of Dirty Fantasies With 11-Year-Old Swedes (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Clinton Urges Robb to Stray With Him (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Carter Discusses Five of His Finest Fantasies About Clinton's Behind (Elaine Lederman, Herndon)

Baby Turns Into Million-Ton Beast and Eats Everything in Baltimore (Darren C. Mitchell, Washington)

Clinton Sleeps With Just About Anything Which Turns His Way (George W. McGregor, Annandale)

Clinton and His Old Lady Unhappy All the Time (George W. McGregor, Annandale)

Clinton Leaves Toilet Seat Up (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

Nunn Beats Panetta for Swearing in Church (Malcolm Harden, Falls Church)

Mary Chapin Carpenter Captures GOP Fantasies, Baring All in Senate (Malcolm Harden, Falls Church)

Japan Purchases U.S. for a Buck (Geoff and Jacki Drucker, Arlington)

Plague Turns Sweden Into Mexico (J. Kammer, Herndon)

Robb Accuses North Accuses Clinton Accuses Carter Accuses ... Trust Is Not a Part of the Washington Power Game (Bev Wiedeman, Manassas)

Reagan, on Drugs, Bit Lady (Jo Robbins, Bethesda)

Armed Post Office Employees React to Negative Stereotypes (Jonathan G. Price, Chevy Chase)

Clinton Eats, Turns Into a 3 1/2-Ton Publicity Problem (Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

Oliver North Agrees: `Liar' Hits Close to Home (Carol Dent, Fairfax)

Next Week: Picture This


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 85 : Play Mythty for Me


prizes.

Full Text (904   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Oct 30, 1994

Week 85: Play Mythty for Me

1. The guy who plays Kramer on "Seinfeld" has a baboon heart. The transplant was done several years ago but hushed up because of fear of arousing animal-rights activists.

2. One day about six years ago, before he was really popular, someone slipped Rush Limbaugh some LSD and he went on the air raving about how Hitler was still alive and Mexicans were descendants of Satan. Technicians quickly cut him off, but a tape is out there, somewhere.

3. A woman who had saline breast implants was getting this tickling sensation. She insisted on having the implants removed. In one of them, there was a live shrimp.

4. The reason we haven't put anyone on the moon in so long is that scientists have determined the astronauts brought back AIDS.

5. "Chuck Smith of Woodbridge" is a pseudonym for a famous, powerful politician in Washington who cannot politically risk being revealed as a devotee of toilet humor. He is a very famous and powerful politician, if you get our drift.

This week's contest was suggested by Sarah Worcester of Bowie, who wins a Fighting Nun hand puppet. Sarah suggests coming up with new urban myths, those vaguely believable, wildly paranoid stories that circulate by word of mouth until they are generally accepted as true. (Think: Alligators in the New York City sewers. Reggie Jackson and his dog in the elevator. The kid who played Mikey choking to death on fizzing candy.) The first-prize winner receives a pair of fabulous metal toys made in China, "Duck on Bike" and "Elephant on Bike," each featuring "Wind-Up Funny Action." These sell for $35 apiece. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 85, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Nov. 7. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 82, in which we asked you to describe what is going on in these pictures.

Fourth Runner-Up (Cartoon B) - "Handless Messiah" (Roy Highberg, Bentonville)

Third Runner-Up: (Cartoon B) - The Harriman Trust also invested heavily in the performing arts. (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

Second Runner-Up: (Cartoon D) - Although it was an exclusive, Geraldo wondered whether it was worth $30,000 to interview O.J.'s rectal polyp. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

First Runner-Up: (Cartoon D) - Incompetent pollsters attempt to interview a random sapling. (Jessica Steinhice, Washington)

And the winner of the Pee-wee Herman doll:

(Cartoon E) - The night had turned cold, and Hillary was worried, so the U.S. Park Police tried to lure the president back into the house. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Cartoon A

The spell wore off, and the Frog Prince regained his original form in the barest nick of time. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

9 p.m., 2, 4, 8 SEINFELD (CC) George (Jason Alexander) bets a new waitress at the diner that she can't carry him on a platter. Nothing else happens. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Okay, who ordered the burgher? (Kent Rogers, Annandale)

Like other condemned prisoners, Jeff Dahmer got to request a last meal. (Ken Kaufman, Gaithersburg; also, Paul Styrene, Olney)

Tailhook '95 (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Cartoon B

Leperace, the composer of "Chopsticks." (Mark Robers, Springfield)

It took a few times, but Dudley soon learned not to skim the tips at Hussein's piano bar. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Boy! This is harder than working on a tuna boat. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Roger Clinton dreams he can play the piano as well as he can sing. (Jan Verrey, Alexandria)

Beethoven's "Prosthetique" Sonata. (Leonard Greenberg, Sterling)

Cartoon C --

Joe misunderstood when his priest suggested he let the Madonna into his life. (Debbie Pieper, Arlington)

The world was not yet ready for a transvestite version of "The Honeymooners." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Art Buchwald guaranteeing himself a seat and plenty of personal space on the Metro at rush hour. (Kathy Weisse, Sykesville)

The first edition of the "Victor's Secret" catalogue did not do as well as expected. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

One of the least popular of the American Gladiators. (Jerry Podlesak, Arlington)

Cartoon D

The fly that is the friend of the flea that hangs around the dog that lived next door to O.J. Simpson's dog is hounded by CNN reporters. (Rose Stack, Arlington)

Geraldo gets ethics tips from an insect. (Mark P. Hurst, Germantown)

Desperate for filler material because of the baseball strike, ESPN's Keith Olberman interviews a future baseball bat. (Jessica Steinhice, Washington)

In these politically correct times, some reporters still seek out the opinions of a WASP. (Jerry Podlesak, Arlington)

Warren Christopher vehemently denies press reports that his role as secretary of state is diminishing. (James Anderson, Woodbridge)

Cartoon E

Officer O'Reilly wins an office bet that he can cut back to one doughnut per day. (James Christopher, Springfield)

After the Statue of Liberty sank, it was replaced with a tribute to New York's Finest. (Donna Bell, Arlington)

Next Week: The Sex Survey


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST



prizes.

Full Text (1125   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Nov 6, 1994

The Style Invitational

Week 86: Excuses, Excuses

Donald Beale of Arlington won Week 9. His promised prize was a set of books on committing murder and mayhem. We just mailed it out last week. Here are our excuses for stiffing him for so long:

1. We sent it to Donald Graham by mistake, and he won't give it back, and we can't very well demand it from him.

2. The mailman stole it for personal use.

3. Don's address got stuck to the back of a manuscript predicting the return of Marion Barry. The essay was so preposterous, we pitched it.

This Week's Contest was inspired by the fact that we have been a teensy bit tardy in dispatching some of our prizes. (At one point we considered amending the fine print to "allow 75 weeks for delivery.") Anyway, your challenge this week is to come up with funny excuses for various malfeasances. State the offense (for example, missing someone's birthday) and an excuse (for example, "I had been reliably assured that you were dead"). First-prize winner gets a life-size seated female mannequin from a clothing store, a value of $75. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 86, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Nov. 14. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 83, in which we asked you to come up with questions that should have been asked on the Great American Sex Survey. A couple of readers took us to task for insensitively presuming heterosexuality in the examples we gave. Guilty as charged. So for gay readers, in the entries below please substitute "same" for "opposite," "men" for "women," "women" for "men," and "partner" for "wife" or "husband." Hermaphrodite readers, please substitute for any gender reference the phrase "men, women or yourself." We hope this clears things up.

Third Runner-Up: For women: Whom would you rather have sex with? 1. Al Gore. 2. Bill Clinton, again. (Susan Wenger, Montgomery Village)

Second Runner-Up: For men: Which would you prefer as a condition of living the rest of your life? 1. Always wearing a condom during sex. 2. Receiving all of your meals intravenously. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

First Runner-Up: Which president had the naughtiest name? 1. Johnson. 2. Pierce. 3. Polk. 4. Bush. (Joe Sisk, Arlington)

And the winner of the Lou Costello statuette:

All things being equal, would you rather have sex with: 1. a "10." 2. two "5s." 3. five "2s."

(Robb Mathews, Falls Church)

Honorable Mentions:

For men: Whom would you rather spend the night with?

1. Sharon Stone and her ice pick. 2. Lorena Bobbitt and her fillet knife. 3. Roseanne. (Bonnie Speary and Walt Devore IV, Rockville)

For men: If your wife is making soft-boiled eggs and can't find the timer, does she ask if you want to have sex? (Larry Covey, Columbia)

Do you believe your dog may have a more active sex life than you? (Bob Damien, Baltimore)

I would describe a healthy sexual relationship as one between myself and: 1. a mature member of the opposite sex. 2. a mature member of the primate family. 3. a pulse-bearing inhabitant of the planet Earth.

(Greg Arnold, Herndon)

A recent study suggests that men think about sex every 9 minutes, women every 14. Does this mean that, once every 2 hours 6 minutes, we are all thinking about it at the same time? (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

For women: Would you rather pay the federal deficit out of your salary as a cocktail waitress, or go on a date with Bob Packwood? 1. Pay off the federal deficit.

(Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

For men: How would you describe your incidence of self-abuse when you were a teenager: 1. Frequent. 2. Compulsive. 3. Chronic. 4. Obsessive. (Bob Damien, Baltimore)

Where do you go to "score" with the opposite sex? 1. Bars. 2. The library. 3. The laundromat. 4. The White House. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Do you face backward or forward while having sex on Metro trains? (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Do you still, at the age of 42, have to resist the impulse to put down some smartass answer when a form asks "Sex?" (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

My mate and I have sex: 1. Daily. 2. Weekly. 3. Monthly. 4. If he/she died, I could not identify the body. (Earl Gilbert, La Plata)

When you and your paramour visit your illicit love nest, does the manager of the bowling alley on the ground floor keep pounding on the ceiling and hollering at you to keep it down? (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

For Men: On your wife, a garter belt and fishnet stockings look: 1. unbelievably sexy. 2) Like a cargo-restraining device. (Earl Gilbert, La Plata)

Men: The Wonderbra is: 1. A subtle enhancement of nature. 2. A charming, seductive deceit. 3. A fraud that should be investigated by the Consumer Products Safety Commission. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

How come women's jeans used to have the zipper on the side, but now they're on the front? Are women, ah, changing in some way they have not told us? (Joe Sisk, Arlington)

For married men: Have you ever thought your wife is too tired for sex because she takes care of three kids, works part time, keeps the house clean and all I want is some rest? She. All she wants is some rest? (Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

Agree or disagree: Men, when finished, should put the seat down if women, when finished, would put it up. (Joe Sisk, Arlington)

Have you ever wondered if anyone thinks Whoopi Goldberg is sexy? (Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

Why do women need their own brand of laxative? (Joe Sisk, Arlington)

Men: Have you ever had to enter a fat farm because of edible panties? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

If you were a bar of soap, what celebrity would you want to buy you? (Paul Styrene, Olney)

Is this the first week in a long time you haven't encouraged your teenager to help you think up entries? (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

And Last:

Have you ever had sex with someone because you won the Style Invitational? Could I have their phone number? (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Next Week: The Washington, D.C., Fightin' Style Invitationals.


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Week 87 : West Easy, Ann


prizes.

Full Text (917   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Nov 13, 1994

Week 87: West Easy, Ann

This week's contest was suggested by Ann Joliffe of Kingwood, W.Va., who wins a three-pronged frog gaff. Ann wrote us an earnest letter complaining that Washingtonians are not nice to her home state. She cites many examples of perceived insensitivity, cruel characterizations implying West Virginia is home to illiterate toothless thieving bumpkins who intermarry at 15, swill moonshine and dine furtively on roadkill, and she wonders why we big-city slickers cannot just once "shine a positive light" on her "misjudged state." Well, Ann, we're gonna fix you right up. The challenge this week is to ckome up with good things about West Virginia, in 50 words or fewer. First-prize winner gets a high-quality rubber Halloween mask featuring the likeness of a toothless West Virginian plus some snot candy, a total value of $60. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 87, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Nov. 21. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 84, in which we asked you to come up with fictional names for high-school sports teams of real American cities. This was the biggest response to date: 26,000 entries from 1,950 people, including an all-time one-person record of 516 entries by Milt Eisner of McLean, who wins a life. Many worthy duplicates this week, including the Reston (Va.) Laurels, the Hardy (Miss.) Har Hars, the Lansing (Mich.) Boils, the Sioux City (Iowa) Lawyers, the Village (Okla.) Idiots, the Helena (Mont.) Handbaskets, the Horseheads (N.Y.) Godfathers, the Wana (W.Va.) Bees, the Two Buttes (Mont.) Partons and the Bras D'Or (Nova Scotia) Knobs. Also we note the many unprintable entries involving Coxsackie, N.Y.; Fouke, Ariz.; and Jackson Hole, Wyo. And lastly, we wish to take this opportunity to publicly chastise Mr. Cole Arendt of Washington, who submitted an entry so profoundly revolting it is not only unpublishable but cannot be uttered in the presence of houseplants, which would wilt and die. Cole, you dirty dog. You win a T-shirt.

Ninth Runner-Up: The Broad Run Farms (Va.) Agribusinesswomen (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Eighth Ninth Runner-Up: The Juneau (Alaska) Diddly Squats (Mike Geary, Germantown)

Seventh Runner-Up: The Walhalla (S.C.) Toothless Vikings (Cole Arendt, Washington)

Sixth Runner-Up: The Limerick (Pa.) Men From Nantucket (Bob Schlosser, Herndon)

Fifth Runner-Up: The New York (N.Y.) &%$+ing &%$#@s (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

Fourth Runner-Up: The Square Butte (Mont.) Office Workers (Genesee Adkins, Frederick)

Third Runner-Up: The Ypsilanti (Mich.) Qwertyuiops (Kenneth April, Arlington)

Second Runner-Up: The Lackawanna (Pa.) Underachievers (Stephen Serban, Arlington)

First Runner-Up: The Eutaw (Ala.) Puddytats (Jennifer Hart, Arlington)

And the Winner of the Really Fancy Harmonica With a Wah-Wah Button:

The Assinippi (Mass.) Guard Dogs (Karla J. Dickinson, Springfield)

Honorable Mentions:

The Bond (Miss.) James Bond (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge; Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

The Dripping Springs (Tenn.) Bedwetters (Jennifer Hart, Arlington)

The Kaaawa (Hawaii) A's (Russ Beland, Springfield)

The Jamaica (N.Y.) Mess (Michael J. Hammer, Washington)

The Clinton (Md.) Bashers (Don Beale, Arlington)

The Echo (Ala.) Echo (Bill Franklin, Clinton)

The Virginville (Pa.) Liars (Emily Schilling, Lancaster, Pa.)

The Arnot (Pa.) Amtoos (Bob Ferry, Montvale, N.J.)

The Lyon (Miss.) SOBs (Walt Kopp, Annandale)

The Athol (Mass.) Zen Elbows (Harry F. Cole, Vienna)

The Hinkley (Calif.) Bruntleys (Bob Lieblich, Arlington)

The Frederick (Md.) Flintstone Esquires (Mike Geary, Germantown)

The Economy (Pa.) Stupids (Chris Cleary, Charlottesville; Jerry Pannullo, Chevy Chase)

The Arkadelphia (Ark.) Pennsykansans (Jacob Weinstein, McLean)

The Athol (Mass.) Fugard Because We Decided to Be High-Minded About Its (Jacob Weinstein, McLean)

The Kaka (Ariz.) Doodies (Charles Layman, Silver Spring)

The Clinton (S.C.) Exprez (Mac Lloyd, Churchville)

The Froid (Mont.) Strippers, I Mean Slippers (Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

The Milwaukie (Ore.) Brooers (Michael J. Hammer, Washington)

The Effingham (Kan.) Damned Sandwiches (Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

The Collyer (Kan.) Mothers (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

The McDonald's Chapel (Ala.) Praying Hamburgers (Arthur C. Adams, Laurel)

The Buckingham (Va.) Rodeo Pigs (Jon Patrick Smith, Washington)

The Lakehurst (N.J.) Huge Exploding Balloons (Walter Cronin, Bethesda)

The Y City (Ariz.) Existentialists (Kate Renmer, Rockville)

The Severn (Md.) Elevern (Dave Jenkins and Suzanne Gesin, Arlington; George Montgomery, Bethesda)

The Boom Furnace (Va.) Incompetent Heating Contractors (J.F. Martin, Falls Church)

The Show Low (Ariz.) Decolletages (Kathy Weisse, Sykesville)

The Three Forks of Williams River (W.Va.) Eleven Man Squad With Pigskin Zeppelin (James A. and Tanis R. Moher, Manassas)

The El Paso (Tex.) El Catchos (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

The Schwenksville (Pa.) Studs (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

The Kissimee (Fla.) Good Knights (Jerrold M. Witcher, Takoma Park)

The Flippin-Hamburg (Ark.) Consolidated High School English Majors (Elden Carnahan, Laurel) The Akaka Falls (Hawaii) Hat-Wearers (Nick Dierman, Potomac)

The Rushsylvania (Ohio) Vampire Dittoheads (Joseph Romm, Washington)

The Blue Ball (Pa.) Third Basemen (Lisa Clark, Alexandria)

The St. Augustine (Fla.) Epistemologists (John Cushing, Guatemala City)

The Inyo (Calif.) Facemuthas (Mark Updike, Crownsville, Md.)

The Russiaville (Ind.) All-Tsars (Milt Eisner, McLean)

The Bayonet Point (Fla.) Sucking Chest Wounds (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

And Last:

The Soso (Miss.) Contest (Miller & Chevalier, Washington)

Next Week: Mything In Action


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Week 88 : Give Us Some Good Newts


doorstep.

Full Text (787   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Nov 20, 1994

Week 88: Give Us Some Good Newts.

This Week's Contest: Come up with ways Washington is going to be different now that Republicans have ascended to power. First-prize winner gets a fabulous, never-opened 1983 Groucho Marx doll by Efanbee, a value of $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 88, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312 or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Nov. 28. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 85, in which we asked you to come up with new urban myths. A brief thank you to Kym Helbig, a graduate student in Bowling Green, Ky., who cheerfully informs us that this entire contest was based on a misconception and is therefore invalid. Technically, Kym says, these are not urban myths at all, but urban legends, myths being more like folklore. Right you are, Kym. Kym wins a burning bag of poop on her doorstep.

Fourth Runner-Up: The rifle that was found at the Texas School Book Depository was the same one that killed Old Yeller. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Third Runner-Up: Early in this century, workers at meatpacking plants regularly fell into rendering vats and became a frequent ingredient of premium sausage. With OSHA safeguards now in place, it doesn't happen anymore, but the public has grown so demanding of the taste that company officials need to kidnap vagrants and hitchhikers and insert them manually. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Second Runner-Up: The smoke detector industry is covering up research that shows more people are killed every year falling from ladders and stepstools while trying to replace smoke detector batteries than are killed in house fires. (Brian Easter, Centreville)

First Runner-Up: There really is a government office where a million monkeys sit banging away at typewriters. It has been going on for 65 years, and already the output has resulted in one Pulitzer Prize-winning novel and a hit screenplay. (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

And the winner of the life-size female clothing-store mannequin:

The bloody glove has six fingers. (Ben Lea, Lexington, N.C.)

Honorable Mentions:

The Avon Corp. pays a secret $1 million annual advertising fee to Metro for using the "ding-dong" sound every time a subway train is about to depart. (Paul Styrene, Olney)

The reason expensive delicacies usually "taste like chicken" is that they really are chicken. Frog legs, rattlesnake, sweetbreads etc. are actually totally inedible, and fancy restaurants have been fleecing us for decades. (Earl Gilbert, La Plata)

Last Halloweeen, some kid was out trick-or-treating in a ghoul costume with great fake latex wounds when he was hit by a car. Doctors spent so much time trying to sew up the phony wounds that the kid died on the operating table. (Thomas A. Logan, Alexandria)

While many conspiracy theorists have seen the so-called "Zapruder film" of the Kennedy assassination, Dallas city officials hastily destroyed the only known print of the "Zuckerman film," a Super 8 movie that clearly shows President Kennedy being struck by a rock flung from the blades of a Dallas Public Works Department lawn mower trimming the grassy knoll. (David Geonfriddo, Washington)

Cool "Disco" Dan is really Dan Quayle. (Wendell Wagner, Greenbelt)

Coca-Cola has been gradually altering its formula. The Classic Coke we are now drinking is identical to the New Coke we rejected several years ago. We're just accustomed to it now. (Earl Gilbert, La Plata)

The Wonderbra provides so much supportthat it causes breasts to atrophy, like a leg in a cast, within months. (Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

Johns Hopkins University is willing to pay $25,000 to anyone willing to grow a goiter. (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

Tom Hanks did "Forrest Gump" because he suffered brain damage in an auto accident and he was really speaking and acting that way. (Mary Whittington, Washington)

The comics "Blondie" and "The Family Circus" were secretly taken over by the Japanese years ago. The cartoons are actually still very funny, but lose something when translated into English. (Russ Beland, Springfield)

A renegade assistant sculptor working on Mount Rushmore carved out a giant booger in Teddy Roosevelt's nostril. It's still there. (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

And Last:

Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley are very much in love. (Daniel Riley, Woodbridge)


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 89 : Toy


name=fulltext>
Full Text (793   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Nov 27, 1994

Week 89: Toy

Mr. Tomato Head--A variation on the classic. Don't push in the nose too hard, or he'll ooze.

Tiddlywonks--The pieces are imprinted with the likenesses of famous agronomists and mechanical engineers.

What's That Smell?--A game of skill, action and revolting aromas.

Today's contest was proposed by Mr. Bob Staake of St. Louis, who wins his choice of an Amana Frost-proof freezer or continued employment by The Washington Post. Bob suggests we come up with bad ideas for new toys for the Christmas season. First-prize winner receives a fantastic lurching raccoon-in-the-potato-chips-bag animated toy capable of revolting crowds large and small, a value of $25, donated to the Style Invitational kitty by Kitty Thuermer of Washington, who is, need we remind you, an international trafficker in condoms. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 89, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Dec. 4. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 86, in which you were asked to come up with infractions of behavior, and creative excuses to explain them away.

Third Runner-Up - Infraction: Attacking Roseanne with a machete. Excuse: "My AK-47 was in the shop." (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

Second Runner-Up - Infraction: Drinking under age. Excuse: I don't believe the law specifies 21 Earth years. (Russ Beland, Springfield, and Jerry Pannullo, Chevy Chase)

First Runner-Up - Infraction: Unauthorized use of HOV lane. Excuse: It's okay, officer, this is a vehicle that I am occupying, and I happen to be very high at the moment. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

And the Winner of the life-sized seated female mannequin:

Infraction: The CIA's failing to notice Aldrich Ames's spying in the 1980s. Excuse: "We were too busy failing to notice the collapse of the Soviet Union." (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Honorable Mentions:

"Trust me, my dear, the lingerie in my car must have fallen off my Style Invitational mannequin." (Ted Huntington, Upper Marlboro)

A man leaves his children home alone for a week: "I was taking prescription medication, and the directions said `Keep Away From Children,' so I did." (Greg Arnold, Herndon)

For being caught cheating: The meaninglessness of this incident will make me appreciate our rich, deep, almost spiritual experiences all the more. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Getting caught peeking into the women's showers: Have any of you fellows seen my glasses? I think I left them in there. (Paul A. Alter, Hyattsville)

Speeding: I heard there was just one ticket left for the annual policeman's ball, so I was rushing to the station. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Charles Murray on why he and the late Richard Herrnstein wrote a book alleging, in part, that blacks are genetically inferior to whites: "Herrnstein wrote that part." (Stephen Bates, Silver Spring)

Not paying your maid's Social Security: I didn't know illegal aliens had Social Security. (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

Losing an election: People threatened to disrupt my daughter's wedding. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Failure to deliver a severed penis to the emergency room: My dog ate it. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Exhibitionism: It's okay because on weekends I am a voyeur, so it balances out. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Lying: I was just positioning myself for a possible U.S. Senate campaign. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Drinking under age: I believe life begins at conception, so I turned 21 four months ago. (Russ Beland, Springfield, and Jerry Pannullo, Chevy Chase)

Being late for work: I had to wait for a Metro train that had an empty orange seat facing forward. (Sue Lin Chong, Washington)

Failing to recognize an old friend: I thought you were in the witness relocation program, and I didn't want to blow your cover. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Not voting: I knew the governor's race was going to be close, and I couldn't stand the pressure of having my vote actually matter. (Allen R. Breon, Columbia)

Entering the Style Invitational: I used to enter Publishers Clearing House sweepstakes, and was devastated when I lost. With Style Invitational, I'm almost relieved when I don't win. (Allen R. Breon, Columbia)

And Last:

Why I am often late on Style Invitational entries: Because Chuck Smith is often late deciding first which entries he wants to buy. (Dave Garratt, Greenbelt) Next Week: West Easy, Ann


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Week 90 : Bill Us Now


prizes.

Full Text (1281   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Dec 4, 1994

Week 90: Bill Us Now

The Snowe-White dwarf anti-defamation bill.

The Tate-LoBiondo crime bill.

The Cubin-English foreign accent discrimination act.

The Doyle-Lee antimacassar preservation act.

This week's contest was suggested by Ira P. Robbins of Bethesda, who wins a can of "spiced octopus in spicy tomato sauce," personally donated to the Style Invitational by Dave Barry. Ira suggests reprising one of our earliest contests, in which you were asked to come up with funny legislation based on the names of real congresspersons. This time, however, we will limit the names to the 102 freshmen. Their names follow:

Abraham, Ashcroft, Baldacci, Barr, Bass, Bentsen, Bilbray, Bono, Brooks, Brownback, Bryant, Bunn, Burr, Chabot, Chambliss, Chenoweth, Christensen, Chrysler, Coburn, Cooley, Cremeans, Cubin, Davis, DeWine, Doggett, Doyle, Ehrlich, English, Ensign, Fattah, Flanagan, Foley, Forbes, Fox, Frelinghuysen, Frisa, Frist, Funderburk, Ganske, Graham, Grams, Gutknecht, Hastings, Hayworth, Heineman, Hilleary, Hostettler, Inhofe, Jones, Kelly, Kennedy, Kyl, LaHood, LaTourette, Largent, Latham, Lee, LoBiondo, Lofgren, Longley, Luther, Martini, Mascara, McCarthy, McIntosh, Metcalf, Moppert, Munster, Myrick, Nethercutt, Neumann, Ney, Norwood, Radanovich, Riggs, Rivers, Salmon, Sanford, Santorum, Scarborough, Seastrand, Shadegg, Smith, Snowe, Souder, Stockman, Tate, Thomas, Thompson, Thornberry, Tiahrt, Waldholtz, Wamp, Ward, Watts, Webber, Weldon, Weller, White, Whitfield, Wicker, Witt.

Choose your bill titles carefully; in the event of identical sponsor combinations, the most cleverly worded bill title will win. First-prize winner may choose any three items from Dave Barry's Christmas Gift Guide, a value of approximately $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 90, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received by Monday, Dec. 12. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness and humor. No purchase necessary. The Faerie of the Fine Print & The Ear No One Reads requests explanations for the artwork on the bottom of the page. Winner gets a giant goose flag. Send to Inscrutable Cartoon, c/o The Style Invitational, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 87, in which West Virginia reader Ann Joliffe wrote in to suggest that we publicize good things about her state, and we obliged with a contest. Before we get to the winners, we would like to extend a heartfelt big-city apology to Ann and each and every West Virginian who was offended, including the many Nobel laureates who wrote in to express their indignation. Apparently goaded into it by a local newspaper (the Charleston Loogie-Taterhead, as we recall) many angry persons sent letters, including entire high school classes, little old ladies, sputtering municipal officials and various other unamused citizens of the Mountain State. These correspondences were long and injured and furious, filled with words like dagnabit, many of them volunteering happy facts about West Virginia, such as the location of all its parks and libraries and fat-rendering plants.

One West Virginia folk artist sent us, as a postcard, the original cartoon reproduced at the bottom of this page, which we are fairly gol-danged certain is some sort of grievous insult involving the launching of cow doodyballs at the Capitol. Anyway, to all these West Virginians who feel we unfairly stereotyped their fine state, we offer only this lame explanation for our poor judgment: We were too busy smoking crack, having babies out of wedlock at taxpayer expense and perpetrating random drive-by shootings.

Fourth Runner-Up: West Virginia is a mecca for major appliance spotters. (Steven King, Alexandria)

Third Runner-Up: If it weren't for West Virginia, the Yosemite Sam Mudflaps Co. would have closed years ago. (Sherry Brown, Alexandria; also, Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Second Runner-Up: If it weren't for West Virginia, no one would have discovered that toad-licking was hallucinogenic. (Gerald Hrenko, Jr. Houston)

First Runner-Up: West Virginia takes education seriously, having introduced a successful "Stay in Skule" program. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

And the winner of the toothless Halloweeen mask:

Almost Haiti, West Virginia (Dave Zarrow, Herndon)

Honorable Mentions:

West Virginia, the Firewood State. (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

Due to missing teeth, West Virginia has the highest rate of success of mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

It's a place where everybody knows your name, because it's their name too. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

In West Virginia, it is possible to bury your dead without a lot of government meddling. (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

In addition to snow days, ringworm days have been built into the school system. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

If it weren't for West Virginia, we would be homeless. (Karen and Ken Troccoli, West Virginia Avenue, Bethesda)

If I ever wanted to disappear, no one would look for me there. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Linguistic experts vouchsafe that West Virginians have more than 50 words for "cootie." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

It is the only state that can boast having these anagrams: In Grits I Wave, I Grin At Wives, and I, Virgin Sweat. (Russ Beland and Jerr Pannullo, Springfield)

The incidence of gunshot-related cow deaths has declined dramatically since the introduction of the "Hunters Silhouette Series." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

West Virginia: Where we don't even know the meaning of the word "illiteracy." (Russ Beland, Springfield)

Discounting accidental gun-discharge injuries, West Virginians now average only 5.5 toes per foot. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

It is so mountainous that the mule poop usually rolls downhill and out of the way. (Peyton Coyner, Afton, Va.)

Dental appointments are always easy to get. (Heather Nann Davis, Terra Alta, W.Va.)

West Virginia has the lowest incidence of white-collar crime in the country. (Austin Doyle and Elisa Braver, Silver Spring)

We, like the royal family, find no shame in marrying our cousins. (Heather Nann Davis, Terra Alta, W.Va.)

In West Virginia, one never has a problem finding a genetically compatible donor for an organ transplant. (Roland Williams, Burke)

There are valleys in West Virginia in which one cannot pick up the 4 p.m. news with Mike Buchanan. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

If it weren't for West Virginia, Waldorf, Md., would have no tourist industry. (Noel Hern, Alexandria)

You see some great tube tops at weddings in West Virginia. (Marshal Greenblatt, Potomac)

Great State Motto: You've Got a Relative in West Virginia! (John Kammer, Herndon)

West Virginia, where the rubber meets the dirt. (Russ Beland, Springfield)

In West Virginia, it is easy to find guys at work who can talk intelligently about the upcoming match between Hulk Hogan and Sergeant Slaughter. (Marshal Greenblatt, Potomac)

If it weren't for West Virginia, the country wouldn't have ANY tar paper quarries. (Walter Erickson, Southampton, Pa.)

Miss West Virginia is always a contender in the Miss America talent contest with a flawlessly performed seven-minute lube job. (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

If West Virginia had not split from Virginia during the Civil War and joined the Union, the delicate balance of military power would never have shifted to the North, and the Confederacy would have won, with unimaginably horrible consequences, like control of the government by power-crazed Southern politicians. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

West Virginia gives the citizens of Lenoir, N.C., a place to feel superior to. (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

If it weren't for West Virginia, the Style Invitational Week 87 Contest would have instead solicited entries involving random references to bodily functions, e.g., puking. (Sue Lin Chong, Washington)

And Last:

We usually spell things correctly. (Ann Jolliffe, not Joliffe, Kingwood, W.Va.)


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 91 : Ask Backward IV


Laurel)

Full Text (960   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Dec 11, 1994

McGovernicks

It's Not A Pun. It's A Bagel.

Marge, O.J., and Alan K.

Mrs. Howell, but Not Gilligan

Eenie Meenie Miney Moo

Spelling, Punctuation and Gas

Jack Kent Goldfarb

Moses, Jesus, and Cool "Disco" Dan

Those Seven Tobacco Company Executives

Pliny The Elder, but not Snoop Doggy Dogg

The Mighty Morphin Power Dentists

The Kid Who Plays D.J. on "Roseanne"

This Week's Contest: You are on "Jeopardy!" These are the answers. What are the questions? Answer one or more. First-prize winner receives a festive clock made from a rotary saw blade, plus a bust of Chopin, a total value of $30. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 91, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Dec. 19. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 88, in which you were asked how things will be different now that Republicans have ascended to power. But first, an observation. A careful reading of your entries detected just the weensiest suggestion of bitterness ("Welfare moms will be roasted on spits, basted with the sweat of decent working stiffs, and fed to fat-assed philandering robber baron industrialists ..."), leading us to conclude that the regular readers of the Style Invitational are - how can we put this most kindly? - pinkos and McGovernicks.

Just an observation.

Third Runner-Up: Food stamps will be replaced with Gruel Stamps. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Second Runner-Up: The Environmental Protection Agency's role will be limited to cleaning up after the mounted cavalry in the annual Armed Forces Day parade. (Philip "Dipstick" Delduke, Bethesda)

First Runner-Up: Restaurants will no longer offer Smoking and Nonsmoking sections. From now on it will be Regular or Menthol. (Dave Zarrow, Herndon)

And the winner of the Groucho Marx doll:

Instead of receiving condoms, schoolchildren will be encouraged to pray that they don't get pregnant. The word "pregnant" will not be used. The term will be "great with child." (Arthur C. Adams, Laurel)

Honorable Mentions:

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms will be replaced by the Bureau of Drinking, Smoking and Shooting. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

In order to prevent the Republicans from cutting social programs, the slogan "No Newt Axes" will become popular. (Paul Styrene, Olney)

In an effort to look more like America, Kweisi Mfume will change his name to Bob Johnson. (Russ Beland, Springfield)

The income tax laws will exempt the very rich and the very poor. The very poor must wear signs that say "The Very Poor." The very rich will pay for the signs. (Charles Jeffries, Lanham)

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration will be replaced by the Stop Whining and Get Back to Work Administration. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Voter registration can be completed in gun stores. (David Nachtsheim, Silver Spring)

Gluing a nickel to the pavement and watching people bend over to pick it up will become a popular prank once again. (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

Sex scandals will still occur, but with a better class of woman. (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

Food stamps can be used as Camel Cash. (Howard Mortman, Washington)

Planned Parenthood will beis restricted to dispensing aspirin to hold between the knees. (Cindi Rae Caron, Lenoir, N.C.)

The Kennedy Center Honors will go to Pat Sajak, Chuck Norris, Wayne Newton, Billy Ray Cyrus and those seven tobacco company executives. (Timothy Morgen, Laurel; also Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

NOW members will be assigned to Robert Packwood's Senate staff as "comfort girls." (Philip Delduke, Bethesda)

Constipation will once again be fashionable. (Philip Delduke, Bethesda)

Cake will be declared the fifth basic food group. (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

The last remaining plot on the Mall will be used to build the National Paint by Numbers Museum. (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

There will be a boom in employment opportunities for accordion teachers. (Ivan Sussman, Laurel)

The list of vegetables for school lunch programs will be expanded by adding "ice" and "tobacco." (J.F. Martin, Falls Church; Gilbert McCrary, Gaithersburg; Thomas A. Logan, Alexandria)

Roger Clinton's career will stall. (J.F. Martin, Falls Church)

South Africa will wind up boycotting us. (David Avagliano Treber, Silver Spring)

After Sen. Helms's committee removes Castro, Cuba will be admitted to the Union as a "slave" state. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

By 1998, Ellen Sauerbrey will still be contesting the election in court, and can then run as both the experienced incumbent and a fresh and exciting outsider. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel; Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Rush Limbaugh leaf bags will appear. (Gilbert McCrary, Gaithersburg)

The "eternal flame" on the JFK gravesite is replaced with a Duraflame log from an Arlington 7-Eleven. (D. Gionfriddo, Washington)

The "Contract With America" starts with a flurry. The entire government infrastructure is torn apart within the first week. Then, on the eighth day, with debris everywhere, the GOP contractors call in sick. Within a week it becomes obvious the contractors aren't coming back. (Dave Zarrow, Herndon)

Church and state will be separated by an imaginary friend. (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

Political correctness becomes an anachronism. President Clinton proudly refers to the First Lady as his "squaw." (Marshall Goldstein, Reston)

And Last:

This is the last time I will be able to get the word "smartass" in a family newspaper. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Next Week: Play Duh


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 92 : Plotboilers


prizes.

Full Text (918   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Dec 18, 1994

Week 92: Plotboilers

From "Plumbed," by G. Gordon Liddy

He mashed his swarthy, work-hardened body against hers with tender cruelty, crushing her bosoms like a steamroller flattening origami zeppelins. The Contessa whimpered and succumbed.

Later, he ate a rat.

From "A Tale of Two Municipalities," by Joseph Biden

It was the best of times. It was the worst of times . . .

This Week's Contest was suggested by Newt Gingrich, who has revealed to everyone's delight that he has been working on a potboiler novel featuring a "pouting sex kitten." We wondered what other celebrities' novels might look like, if they wrote one, in 100 words or fewer. First-prize winner gets an antique ceramic flying elephant with huge pontoons for oil and vinegar, a $25 item that will stop dinner-table conversation as effectively as a chunk of kangaroo meat lodged in one's trachea. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 92, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Dec. 26. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 89, in which you were asked to come up with bad ideas for Christmas toys. Many of you did not really understand this contest, offering up dreadfully precious political drolleries such as "The Hillary Health-Care Jigsaw Puzzle," whose pieces do not fit together, or "IdeoLogs," which can be assembled one way and one way only. How amusing of you. Our hands sting from making prissy little pat-pat noises of appreciation.

Fourth Runner-Up: "The Li'l Naturalist Hornet Farm." (Dean Evangelista, Gaithersburg)

Third Runner-Up: A Pee-wee Herman pull toy. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Second Runner-Up: "The Duncan Yo" - It unwinds and rolls away on the first try. Teaches children about warranties. (C.G. Owens, Indian Head)

First Runner-Up: "5,200 Pick-Up" - A jumbo deck of cards designed for every kid's favorite game! (Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

And the winner of the fantastic lurching raccoon in the potato chips bag animated toy:

The Learn-About-Puberty Chia Pet. (Paul A. Alter, Hyattsville)

Honorable Mentions:

"SuperSoaker 9000" - For use on normally hard-to-reach targets: NFL referees, low-flying aircraft, and many more. At short range it can strip paint, clean rusty grill tops, dig utility trenches. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

"The Laff-o-Minit Majic Spellin' Tootor" (Elizabeth Kugler, Silver Spring)

"Dan Quayle/John Kennedy Transformer" - The Young Republicans in your house will be delighted to learn that Dan Quayle really is Jack Kennedy after all. (Russ Beland, Springfield)

A set of bathtub toy fish that always float upside down. Teaches tots a true understanding of nature. (Adam Koons and Yukari Horiba, Washington)

"Fool-'Em Transformers" - Fake dog poop that converts in seconds to fake vomit! (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

"Water Retention Wanda" - Teaches kids the principles of the calendar. (Sue Lin Chong, Washington)

"Advanced Play Medical Kit," with colonoscope and speculum. (Robert Herscowitz and Terri Strassburger, Cabin John)

"Where's the Spotted Owl?" book contains large, complex scenes in which a small spotted owl is hidden in a vast forest among burly loggers, dope-smoking hippies, rabid environmentalists etc. The joke is that there really is no spotted owl in the book, and moreover, the paper used to make the book comes from trees in the owl's natural habitat. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

"Aw, Shoot" - Real handguns that look just like toys. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

"Humpy Puppy." Batteries not included. (Mary Whittington, Washington)

"Plugger" - Variation of the old classic game, Pin the Tail on the Donkey, but the blindfolded child with wet hands tries to get the electrical plug into the outlet! (Mike E. Butcher, Waldorf)

"Tas-Tee Jars" - Toy cleaning-agent bottles, available in several fruit flavors. These are placed under the sink in place of the yucky real stuff. (Mike E. Butcher, Waldorf)

"Dottie Depends" - Betsy Wetsy's grandma. (Ginger and Kelly Fitzpatrick)

"Disease Balls" - Let your kids learn about illness with these enlarged rubber simulations of the AIDS virus, smallpox virus, tuberculosis etc. They can throw them around like ordinary balls and pretend they are "catching" all kinds of ailments! (Fred Dawson, Beltsville)

"Will It Burn?" - E-Z Lite kid's lighter helps children discover what's flammable in the home. (Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

"Islamic Strip Poker" - Lose a hand, lose a hand. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

"Doggie Dentist" - Kids learn about dentistry on the family pooch. (Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

"Bungeroo!" - Kid-size bungee kit for second-floor bedrooms. (Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

"Scabby Sam" - Scablike growths randomly appear on Scabby Sam. They will disappear in a week to 10 days if left alone, but will result in permanent scarring if picked off. ( Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

"Cute as a Button" - This amazing doll is created entirely out of nickel-size buttons. For ages 2 and under. (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

"Cuisin-Art" - Turns Mommy's food processor into a spinning paint tool. (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

Chocolate-covered lead soldiers. (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

And last:

The fantastic lurching raccoon in the potato chips bag animated toy. (Paul A. Alter, Hyattsville; Diego Hernandez, Montgomery Village)


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RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 93 : I Want the Mongoose


you.

Full Text (726   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Dec 25, 1994

This Week's Contest is easy. Pictured above is the finest prize we have ever obtained, an elegant piece of taxidermy featuring a snake being killed by a mongoose. This would lend instant "class" to the den or living room of any domicile inhabited by morons, yokels or blind people. It was purchased for $65 but is obviously priceless. All you have to do is tell us, in 50 words or fewer, why you must have it. Best answer gets it. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 93, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Tuesday, Jan. 3. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 90, in which you were asked to invent legislation using only the names of the 102 congressional freshmen. More than 9,000 entries this week, including dozens of fine ones submitted by too many people to credit the authors. Among them: the Fattah-Flanagan orphanage bill; the Watts-Hayworth farm subsidy bill; the Ney-Burr-Lee community development act; the Burr-Bryant college football empowerment act; the Barr-Burr-Nethercutt bikini wax amendment; the Smith-Jones motel registry act. There were so many entries, and so many duplicates, we fear we may have inadvertently omitted the names of some people with entries identical to the winners below. If you feel we snubbed you, and wish recognition, you may follow this simple procedure: Have your original entry notarized along with an affidavit swearing to its authenticity. Submit this in triplicate to "I Deserve Credit," c/o The New York Times Op-Ed Section, 229 W. 43rd St., New York, N.Y. 10036. Thank you.

Sixth Runner-Up: The Frisa-Bunn RFK Stadium dome appropriations bill. (PDKL Letellier, Arlington)

Fifth Runner-Up: The Wamp-Bass weapons procurement act. (Nick Yokanovich, Arnold; Mollie Peek Roland, Falls Church)

Fourth Runner-Up: The Lee-Kyl-Kennedy anti-conspiracy bill. (Peyton Coyner, Afton, Va.; Bill and Judy Kelly, Gaithersburg; Janet Millenson, Potomac)

Third Runner-Up: The Bono-Snowe-English athlete literacy act. (Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills; John Holder, Washington)

Second Runner-Up: The Bentsen-Snowe-Kennedy delayed snappy comeback act. (Scott Jordan, Derwood)

First Runner-Up: The Watts-DeWine-Witt-Salmon sommelier education act. (Bill Purvis, Dave Finkbinder and Mike Duffy, Washington; Mark W. Johnson, Chevy Chase; Paul Bickart, Washington)

And the winner of the three items from Dave Barry's Gift Guide:

The Cubin-Bass-Tiahrt resolution condemning Fidel Castro. (Jerry Pohl, Rockville)

Honorable Mentions:

The Barr-Bunn-Ney-Mascara animal-testing prohibition act. (Joe Weissman, Washington)

The Hilleary-Souder-Barr-Burr hairdresser liability act. (Lisa Massarella, Falls Church)

The Witt-Watts balanced budget amendment. (Gene Reiher, Burke)

The Thomas-Lee-Jones motion picture violence act. (Jesse Salter, Washington)

The Barr-Fattah-Kennedy combined congressional term-limits and weight-limits bill. (Meg Sullivan, Potomac)

The Munster-Bentsen-Sanford bad sitcom preservation act. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

The English-Frist dyslexic empowerment act. (Harry Richardson, Laurel)

The Munster-Bunn obesity anti-defamation act. (Stephen Connard, Crofton)

The Bilbray-Lee family reconciliation act. (Stu Segal, Vienna)

The Barr-Burr-Seastrand ticket-gouging prevention act. (Eric F. Barr, Front Royal; Preston Williams, Alexandria; Paul Sabourin, Silver Spring; Jill Drain, Alexandria)

The Weller-English language proficiency act. (Gina Morgan, Falls Church; Geoff and Jacki Drucker, Arlington)

The Munster-Bunn-Ney bill funding medical research into alcohol-induced hallucinations. (Jerry Pohl, Rockville)

The Abraham-Martini & Jones song-title infringement act. (Steven J. Bienstock, Rockville)

The Hilleary-Luther-Fattah-White-Bunn act to add an aerobics room to the White House. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

The Ensign-Bunn don't ask, don't tell bill. (Karl Means, Silver Spring)

The Nethercutt-Munster anti-flatulence act. (Mike Duffy, Washington)

The Snowe-White-Bunn-Brownback standards for decency in sunbathing act. (Joel J. Roessner, Arlington; Michael Newberg, Bel Air)

The Inhofe-Lee Bad Taste bill to honor Polacks, Krauts and Japs. (Scott Kirkwood, Rockville)

The Doggett-Lee-White segregation bill. (Laurel Bergold, Washington)

The Watts-Neumann anti-slang bill. (Kate Renner, Rockville)

The Mascara-Rivers Tammy Faye Bakker appreciation resolution. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel; John Alvey, Annandale)

The Kennedy-Martini bill to prohibit cheap shots in contests. (Jay D. Majors, Alexandria)

and Last:

The Barr-Smith Style Invitational reform act. (Scott Harshman, Washington, and about 150 others)

NEXT WEEK: Ask Backward III


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 94 : Weeks 1-93.


name=fulltext>
Full Text (1018   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Jan 1, 1995

This Week's Contest was proposed by Jessica Steinhice of Washington, who wins something we cannot describe because it is waaay too tasteless. But for some time we have been watching and admiring Jessica's entries, including many that we have not chosen to publish, and we are confident - how to put this nicely? - that she will not be offended. We are confident, in fact, that she will make this the centerpiece of her living room. Anyway, Jessica suggests that you come up with a great answer to any previous Style Invitational contest, an answer you may have thought of after the contest deadline was over. Any previous contest is eligible, even the famous Week 43, in which we asked you to Tell Us What God Looks Like and people were so appalled that no one came up with anything funny and we had to print limericks or something. The first-prize winner gets "Dogs Playing Pool," a masterpiece in genuine velvet, discovered by the unsung hero of this cheesy contest, the Czarina of the Style Invitational, who selflessly has made a science of scouring the back roads of America for you, the reader, in order to find total crap. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 94, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312 or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Jan. 9. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 91, in which we asked you to supply questions for any of 12 answers we provided.

Fifth Runner-Up - Answer: Spelling, Punctuation and Gas. Question: What are the first three items on a skywriter's preflight checklist? (Robert E. McCarthy, Clifton, Va.)

Fourth Runner-Up - Answer: Moses, Jesus and Cool "Disco" Dan. Question: Who is Marion Barry going to need help from to clean up Washington? (Mary K. and Larry T. Phillips, Falls Church)

Third Runner-Up - Answer: Mrs. Howell, but not Gilligan. Question: What is one way of bowing out of the Mary Ann-Ginger debate? (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

Second Runner-Up - Answer: The Kid Who Plays D.J. on "Roseanne". Question: What is the name of the kid who plays D.J. on "Roseanne"? (Allen R. Breon, Columbia; Michael Rosman, Chevy Chase)

First Runner-Up - Answer: The Kid Who Plays D.J. on "Roseanne." Question: To whom is Robert Shapiro attempting to shift suspicion based on a startling similarity in nicknames? (Greg Pryor, Washington)

And the winner of the Buzz Saw Clock:

Answer: Spelling, Punctuation and Gas. Question: What are three things related to the use of a colon? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Honorable Mentions:

Answer: The Mighty Morphin Power Dentists

What is the only thing the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers are terrified of? (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

What toy outsells the Mighty Morphin Power Proctologists? (Mary M. Olson, Springfield)

When the Tooth Fairy went bad, who became her mortal enemy? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Where do Teenage Mutant Ninja CPAs go when they have a cavity? (George-Ann Rosenberg, Washington)

What toy plays "All I Want for Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth," and then belts you in the mouth? (Mary M. Olson, Springfield)

Who, in addition to fighting evil, own a string of apartment buildings in Florida? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Answer: Spelling, Punctuation and Gas.

What are two things that seventh-grade boys fail, and one that they pass? (Susan K. Hill, Roanoke)

What are three things you can't find on the information superhighway? (Don Druker, Rockville)

What was the original name of "Earth, Wind and Fire"? (Preston Williams, Alexandria)

Answer: Moses, Jesus and Cool "Disco" Dan.

Question: Who are three people whose names are written in, or on, stone? (Marnie Reed, Washington?)

Answer: McGoverniks.

Where can you order a Quarter-Pounder with welfare cheese? (Paul Styrene, Olney)

Answer: Pliny the Elder, but not Snoop Doggy Dogg.

Who has been called "The father of Pliny the Younger"? (Allen R. Breon, Columbia)

Who would never have written "Historia Naturalis Mutha Pigg"? (Steve Cohen, Reston)

Proving how unfair life can be, who was killed by poisonous gases? (Preston Williams, Alexandria)

Answer: Marge, O.J. and Alan K.

From most to least, in what order do Simpsons rate on the credibility scale? (Preston Williams, Alexandria)

Who loses a lot, has a lot to lose and lost to Lott? (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Answer: The Kid Who Plays D.J. on "Roseanne."

What child actor has the same high name recognition as the kid who played Lumpy on "Leave It to Beaver"? (Chris Ubik, Gaithersburg)

Which young actor unsuccessfully auditioned for the lead role in "Pinocchio" because the director deemed him to be too wooden? (Margaret Welch, Arlington)

Answer: Those Seven Cigarette Company Executives.

Who were thankful that Congress has a lightning rod on the dome? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Democrats are to Republicans as the Chicago Seven are to what? (Bryan W. Van Norden, Cedar Halls, Iowa)

Answer: It's Not a Pun, It's a Bagel.

What other highly amusing rearrangement can you make out of the letters of the following Washington Post headlines: "I Toast a Bulge in Pants;" "I, Satan, Plotting Abuse"; and, "Blast Out a Giant Penis"? (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

What, even when raisin, is not raised? (Paul Kondis, Alexandria)

If sea gulls fly over the sea, what flies over the bay? (Jean Sorenson, Herndon)

Answer: Jack Kent Goldfarb

Who drafted Heath Shul-er? (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Answer: Eenie Meenie Miney Moo

What is NOW's approved method of selecting a Miss America? (Chuck Snowdon, Arlington)

What is the latest effort by those pinkos at the Style Invitational to solicit tasteless jokes at the expense of the great state of West Virginia? (Philip Delduke, Bethesda)

Next Week: Plotboilers


Copyright The Washington Post Company Jan 8, 1995




 

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Week 96 : Stick It In Your Ear


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Copyright The Washington Post Company Jan 15, 1995

1940s: The War Years

1950s: The Age of Innocence

1960s: The Flower-Power Decade

1970s: The Me Decade

1980s: The Yuppie Years

1990s: ?

This Week's Contest was sort of proposed by Joseph Romm, of Washington, except we improved on his idea and anyway he is getting too full of himself so he doesn't win squat. Wait, no, we just found something here for him. Joseph wins a photocopy of a photograph of a performance artist lying naked under a heavy lead weight suspended precariously over his face by string attached through a pulley to his private parts. Anyway, the new contest idea is to come up with a catch phrase to describe the 1990s. If it will help, you can explain your entry, but an explanation isn't necessary. First-prize winner receives a Velvis, a genuine framed Velvet Elvis in which the King appears to be crying tears made of half-and-half and glitter, a value of $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirt. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 96, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Jan. 23. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. The Faerie of the Fine Print also solicits ideas for renaming previous decades; winner gets a drinking duck. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Results of Week 93, in which we asked you to tell us why you should win the fabulous piece of taxidermy featuring a mongoose killing a snake. We would like to comment first upon the surprising popularity of vomitous stuffed-animal sculptures, judging from the vast numbers of snapshots we received from people like Ted Hirt, of Washington, who owns a pair of stuffed squirrels wearing miniature boxing gloves in a miniature boxing ring; Ellen A. Blackwell, of Washington, who keeps on a table in her rec room a day-old baby donkey; and Pamela King, of Mechanicsville, who displays above her fireplace, mounted on a handsome plaque of burnished wood, a deer's behind. Those three people win T-shirts because we were fresh out of spittoons. Also winning a shirt is Mister Daniel Riley, of Woodbridge, who sent us an elegant hardcover coffee-table book consisting entirely of high-quality photographs of wild animals pooping and peeing.

Second Runner-Up: I need the mongoose because my husband says if I bring one more ugly tchotchke into the house, he's leaving. (Jo Ann York, Germantown)

First Runner-Up: It would be fun to see the kids' expressions when, as they shine a flashlight under the bed to make sure there are no monsters, they see this. (Ann Wilkinson, Upperville, Va.)

And the winner of the mongoose killing the snake:

All I really want is a runner-up T-shirt, but like women everywhere, to get what I want I have to fake it. So let me say I want that repulsive mongoose. Yes, I want it, I need it bad, I love it. Please, please give it to me. Give it to me now, baby, now, ooooooh baby. (Judith Daniel, Washington)

Honorable Mentions

I must have the mongoose because I feel the need to add a luxury high-rise to my maggot farm. (Larry Hinders, Fredericksburg)

I should get the mongoose because this is the first Invitational entry to have a footnote, and novelty must count for something.1

(Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

I went short on stuffed-mongoose futures and I must have it to cover my position. (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

The new Contract With America stipulates that I am entitled to it. (Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

I deserve the mongoose because, ah, some day I would like to work with disadvantaged children. (Russ Beland, Springfield)

I should get the mongoose because though I have brushed my teeth every day for 26 years, my dentist no longer gives me toys. (Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

I love Ellen Sauerbrey and for some strange reason this reminds me of her. (Paul Styrene, Olney)

I must have the mongoose because I need a place to mount my stuffed fleas. (Yvonne Easter Driggers, Reston)

I want the mongoose to be used as a hood ornament on my Yugo. (Rosie Connard, Crofton)

I'm building a Morse code key for my ham radio and need a piece of wood about that size. (Martin Schulman, Herndon)

If you give it to me, it will be kept out of the hands of someone who might throw it over the White House fence at the president. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Sal told me to get it for him by any means necessary. I thought I'd ask first. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

And Last:

I need a thank-you gift for Elden Carnahan, who kindly sends me computer printouts documenting just how far I've fallen behind Tom Witte of Gaithersburg in your overall standings. (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

1. Racial and gender repression, multiculturalism and, of course, sex, as represented by the snake and mongoose thing. Grimm's Journal of Dour American Pop Psychology, Vol. 47, pp. 62-63.


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Week 97 : Newtonian Philosophy


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Copyright The Washington Post Company Jan 22, 1995

Week 97: Newtonian Philosophy

Newt Gingrich on the sexes:

"Women don't have upper body strength but are better with laptops. Men are better in traditional combat roles because if women had to spend a month in a ditch, they would get infections. But men are basically little piglets who like to roll around in mud. Women, though, would be better sitting around at consoles and directing warship traffic because men get frustrated sitting down since they are biologically programmed to go out and hunt giraffes."

This Week's Contest was suggested by the incredible Newt Gingrich, who wins a tube of Monistat 7. Newt teaches a college course on American Civilization, and when we read quotations from one of his lectures in Wednesday's Reliable Source (appearing above in slightly condensed form) we saw Week 97 written all over it. Your challenge is to Come up with more Newtonian philosophy to explain the differences between men and women, Democrats and Republicans, dogs and cats, whatever needs explaining. The world according to Newt. Fifty words or fewer. First-prize winner gets a pet salamander, a value of $75. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 97, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312 or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Jan. 30. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. The Faerie of the Fine Print also solicits examples of corny Hillary-isms, like `Okey Dokey, Artichokey,' disclosed by The Washington Post last weekend. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 94, in which you were asked to submit entries to any previous contest. But first, a special hello to Jacob Weinstein of McLean, who politely wonders if we are ever going to get around to sending him the Jinx Remover candle he won in Week 39 or thereabouts. He has been hesitant to complain before now because he fears we might get mad and make fun of him in print. Jacob, you truly wound us. We apologize for the delay. Your candle is on the way. And it is just the right shape, if you get our drift.

Anyway, the most appalling and shameless entry received this week was from Sarah Worcester of Bowie, who, thinking she could curry favor with the Czar of the Style Invitational and win a T-shirt, knit him a handsome sweater. It has a rat motif. Sarah, if the Czar were the kind of person whose influence could be bought so cheaply, this would be one lame-brained, crappy excuse for a contest, now wouldn't it? Sarah wins a T-shirt.

Second Runner-Up:

From the contest in which you create a new expression by adding or deleting a letter from an old expression:

"Ma About You" - New TV show in which Connie Chung interviews your mother and gets her to disclose stupid things you said or believe. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

First Runner-Up:

From the contest seeking double dactyls:

Accurate, shmaccurate!

Olivers, North and Stone

Find fudging history

Hard to resist.

Their troubles adhering to

Verisimilitude

Earn them the nickname of

Olivers Twist.

(Beryl Benderly, Washington)

And the winner of velvet painting of Dogs Playing Pool:

(Casting celebrities in well-known roles from TV or movies):

Sharon Pratt Kelly as Tweety Bird. (Gary McKethan, Washington)

Honorable Mentions:

Double dactyls:

Lickety Stickety

Lady Madonna

Showed us her midriff and

Much more than that.

Now even herdsmen in

Boputhatswana

Know she exemplifies

"{Censored} for tat."

(David Mills, Los Angeles)

"Jeopardy!" questions:

Answer: A great big sucking sound. Question: What has replaced "Hail to the Redskins" as the team song?

(Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Topics for a TV talk show:

Women who leave the toilet seat up.

(Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Change one letter in an expression:

Star Trek: The Newt Generation: A rousing adventure of space exploration, with a smaller budget and no aliens.

(Joseph Romm, Washington)

A new motto for the District of Columbia:

Tread on Me.

(Joseph Romm, Washington)

Good-news/bad-news scenarios:

The good news: The Redskins have decided to change their name. Bad news: They will now be called the Washington Wagon Burners.

(Mark Miller, Vienna)

Bad ideas for Style Invitational contests:

Come up with humorous reasons why you cannot invent an excuse for not being able to come up with humorous names for people who cannot come up with good Style Invitational entries.

(Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Suggest alternate names The Washington Post could have if it were published elsewhere. Example: The Baltimore Post.

(Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

Make up a really bad name for a new car. Example: The Plymouth Crapola.

(Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

Dividing the world into two kinds of people:

There are people who are respectful of their fellow human beings, and then you have all the other scum-sucking pus-wads.

(Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

New urban legends:

[Table]
Chap Stick has become less hard and waxy over the years as

the company has gradually added chunks of human lips to the mix.

(Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

Ideas for performance art:

In an arena, spectators are formed into teams and equipped to test the feasibility of some well-known but difficult tasks. They will: (1) nail Jell-O to the wall; (2) shovel sand against the tide; (3) take a long walk off a short pier; (4) attempt to get blood from a stone; and (5) go $%+&@ themselves.

(Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Epitaphs:

John Wayne Bobbitt - Fondly Re-membered.

(Steven Smith, St. Mary's City, Md.)

A new name for the Redskins:

(symbol of Prince, with football at top.)

(Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

Good things about West Virginia:

If it weren't for West Virginia, you couldn't have your dead tree cut down for just $200 (cash only) by two guys in a 1973 pickup with no bumpers, and get to watch it fall through your neighbor's roof. (Carleton MacDonald, Gaithersburg)

What God looks like:

I am not sure, but He definitely doesn't resemble anything from West Virginia. (Paul Styrene, Olney)

Interesting pranks:

Write an indignant letter to the editor in the Post under the name of Sen. Jay Rockefeller, humorlessly defending the state of West Virginia and denouncing the Style Invitational. Then submit a flurry of Sen. Rockefeller put-downs to the Style Invitational.

(Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)


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Week 98 : Your Cheatin' Art


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Copyright The Washington Post Company Jan 29, 1995

Week 98: Your Cheatin' Art

I Gave Her My Ring, but She Gave Me the Finger

If She Don't Want My Hot Dog, All She'll Get Is Beans

I'm A-truckin' My Way to Your Heart Like the Throbbin' Angioplasty Procedure That I Am

This Week's Contest was suggested independently by Jeanie DeLisi of Sterling and Kevin Cuddihy of Blacksburg, who are, to the best of our knowledge, not in any way involved with each other, though who knows what could happen now that we have officially "linked" them in print? Innuendo is a powerful tool. Anyway, Jeanie wins a freebie Naugahyde carrying case distributed to the media at the 1993 Miss America pageant, and Kevin wins an official 1993 Miss America pageant pen. Kevin and Jeanie, who we emphasize are not, so far as we know, living together in a tawdry love nest swilling cheap wine beneath an unforgiving moon, suggest coming up with titles for country music songs featuring any one or more of the following themes: cheatin', thievin', drinkin', truckin', lovin' or dogs. This is almost too easy. One of the two song titles above is real, one is made up. Can't tell which is which, can you? First Prize winner gets a lightweight jacket with the Beano company logo on it. Beano makes a product that reduces intestinal gas. The jacket is a windbreaker. GET IT???? This fine item has a value of $40. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 98, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Feb. 6. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. The Faerie of the Fine Print wonders if anyone might submit lyrics to "The Ballad of Jeanie and Kevin." Best entry wins something cheap but appealing, in a trashy sort of way. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 95, in which you were asked to reinterpret headlines appearing in The Post. Several headlines proved too juicy to resist, and produced dozens of nearly identical entries: BANKER WITHOUT PARTY TIES TO LEAD ITALY resulted in countless items about a politician lacking a colorful wardrobe. STREETS THAT ARE PAVED WITH THE POOR produced 20 variations of "Newt Gingrich announced his proposal today for reducing the budget of the Transportation Department ..." And, ZEDILLO'S STRATEGY -- MEXICANS MUST BE CONVINCED OF NEED FOR SACRIFICES produced a dozen of these: "To appease the gods and help the sagging economony, the new Mexican president called today for a return to ritual Aztec killings of virgins . . . "

Fourth Runner-Up: SPIRITS RISE ALONG WITH THE TEMPERATURES -- District residents were horrified yesterday to discover that, as the temperatures climbed into the sixties, the dead were rising from their graves to enjoy the weather. (Arthur C. Adams, Laurel)

Third Runner-Up: JOHNSON CONNECTS FOR 42 -- Wilt Chamberlain today claimed that he had broken his own one-day scoring record ... (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Second Runner-Up: WARM UP THOSE ZAMBONIS -- Doctors at the Centers for Disease Control issued a warning today that hundreds of Americans will suffer from salmonella poisoning unless they properly heat zambonis before eating. "Salmonella thrive in the popular Italian snacks ..." (Jerry A. Pohl, Rockville)

First Runner-Up: WOMAN FATALLY SHOT IN SOUTHEAST -- Decency prohibits us from saying precisely where Mrs. Anna Koster was shot, but ... (Saul Jay Singer, Silver Spring)

And the winner of the Elvis guitar clock:

DOING A NUMBER ON D.C. -- It remained unclear today whether Congress intends to do a No. 1 or a No. 2 ... (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

Honorable Mentions:

GINGRICH FIRES HIS PICK FOR HOUSE HISTORIAN -- In a farewell salute to Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders ... (John Kammer, Herndon)

MARILYN QUAYLE SPEAKS OUT ON GRAMM, ALEXANDER -- Citing a need to "return to those values that made America the technological leader of the world," the former vice president's wife quoted her husband: "We must remember our landmark achievements such as Thomas Edison's light bulb and the invention of the Bell telephone by, ah, that guy with the beard, ah, you know, Alexander Gramm. (J. Calvin Smith, Laurel; also, Robin D. Grove, Washington)

THE `VIRTUAL DAD' -- Michael Jackson announced today that he was "virtually a father," and that his wife, Lisa Marie, would get pregnant just as soon as they started having sex. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

WHY NOT YOU ASK? -- What's wrong with this, headline? (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

DESPERATE DEMOCRATS SCRAMBLE IN TIGHT JOB MARKET -- How bad is it for out-of-work Democrats? Ask Mack O'Donnell, former top aide to Dan Rostenkowski, as he stands at the grill of the Clipper Diner, whipping up an omelet ... (Fred Dawson, Beltsville)

FIRST LADY, EYE TO EYE WITH HERSELF -- A controversial oil painting of Hillary Clinton, in the style of Picasso, was unveiled today ... (Jennifer Hart, Arlington)

BETTER HANDLE ON D.C. HOMICIDES -- The total amount wagered on D.C. homicide totals reached a record high last year, as a flurry of late wagers on the District's 1994 murder tally pushed the pool's total "handle" past the $100,000 mark. (Michael J. Hammer, Washington; also, Saul J. Singer, Silver Spring)

PEACE ACCORD JEOPARDIZED IN BOSNIA -- In a humanitarian visit to war-torn Sarajevo, Alex Trebek said to a group of Muslims, "It doesn't stand a chance here in Bosnia," and the throng shouted back, "What is the peace accord?" (Diego Hernandez, Montgomery Village)

THE REAL "BELOVED"? Antonie Brentano (1780-1969) -- Reputed to be the secret lover of Ludwig van Beethoven, Antonie Brentano lived to be 189 years old and died after dropping some bad acid at Woodstock. (David Howison, Lexington, Va.)

GOP OUTLINES BROAD WELFARE REFORM ... Programs for kids and minorities also affected. (Jack M. Rudolph, Charlottesville)

BLAZERS DRIVE PAST SKIDDING BULLETS -- In the latest fad to hit the D.C. streets, teams of teenagers speed in Chevy trucks past their opponents, who shoot at their tires ... (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

THINGS TO WATCH FOR IN THE DAYS AFTER BIRTH -- Infants are being advised to watch for bare breasts shortly after birth, as this is where their food sources are ... (Jerry Pannullo, Chevy Chase)

LEAD ATTORNEYS FOR SAUERBREY ARE REPLACED -- Would-be governor Ellen Sauerbrey continued to demonstrate her mettle by replacing her lead attorneys with lawyers fashioned from tin and gold. According to a Sauerbrey spokesperson, the new attorneys are expected to be more malleable. (Rick Wasser, Sterling)

HOW DO THEY LIKE THEM APPLES? While Intel has finally solved the math problems of its Pentium chip, a similar problem has just been found in the new line of Apple computers' word-check functions. The Macintosh will occasionally miss correcting a mistake, and will also change something that doesn't need to be corrected, such as changing "We are fine" to "We is fine." (Kevin Cuddihy, Blacksburg)

And Last:

LOAN GUARANTEES GET CAUTIOUS HILL BACKING -- "The Washington Post has published one of the most boring headlines I've ever seen," according to Elden Carnahan of Laurel. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

NEXT WEEK: Stick It In Your Era.


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Week 99 : WHAT'S WRONG WITH THESE PICTURES


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Copyright The Washington Post Company Feb 5, 1995

This Week's Contest was suggested by Jennifer Hart of Arlington, who wins a Russian-language Archie comic book. Jennifer proposes that you tell us What's Wrong With These Pictures? Choose one or more. First-prize winner gets a fabulous copper music box outhouse that plays "Those Were the Days" while the door swings open, revealing a little man engaged in traditional outhouse activity, a value of $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 99, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Feb. 13. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 96, in which you were asked to come up with a catch phrase to describe the 1990s. But first, a special citation to Mike Thring of Leesburg, who wins Dan Quayle's book, "Standing Firm," for coming up with catch phrases for the '50s through the '90s, which we print here without comment: '50s -- The Dick Clark Years; '60s -- The Dick York Years; '70s -- The Dick Nixon Years; '80s -- The Richard Simmons Years; '90s -- The Age of Bobbitt.

Back to the '90s:

Third Runner-Up: The Great Sobriety (Joseph Atkins, Bethesda)

Second Runner-Up: How's My Decade? (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

First Runner-Up: The Times That Sold Men's Trials (Kurt Rabin, Fredericksburg)

And the Winner of the framed Velvis:

The Age of Innocence Not Guilty (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Honorable Mentions:

The Honorable Mention Years. (Joseph Romm, Washington)

The Decade So Politically Correct It's Afraid to Label Itself (Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

The 1990s: The '80s With a Salary Cap. (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

The Short Attention Spa Decade (Sue Lin Chong, Washington)

The Self-Referential Decade, as Named by Peter Owen of Williamsburg. (Peter Owen, Williamsburg)

The Days of Whine & Roseanne (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

THE TABLOID TIMES (Fred Dawson, Beltsville)

The 21st Century: The Early Years (Joseph Romm, Washington)

The Nineties. The Ninesters, the Nine-o-ramas, the Ninety-Meisters, the Age of Nine-ishness... (Paul Styrene, Olney)

The Twilight of the Goods (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

A Decade to Be Named Later (Joseph Romm, Washington)

The Guilted Age (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

The 1990s: NFC 10, AFC 0 (Dan Byrne, Falls Church)

The Rough Age (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

The Rolodecade (Mike Thring, Leesburg)

Rappin' With the '90s. The One 2 Ten Years Lacing Music With Our Fears +&%#@ the Rest 'Cause These Are Best. (Jim and Tana Reagan, Herndon)

The Decade of the 1990s -- Brought to you by your good friends at Allstate, who remind you, "You're in Good Hands With Allstate," and by your local Coca-Cola bottler. (Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

The Decade Shortened by the Astronomers' Strike (Russell Beland, Springfield)

Next Week: Newtonian Philosophy


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Week 100 : The Joke's On You


prizes.

Full Text (912   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Feb 12, 1995

Joke 1 --

A herd of ostriches is standing in the desert when the scent of a lion wafts by. Terrified, the ostriches bury their heads in the sand. An hour passes. Then another ostrich lopes by, sees all the ostriches with their heads in the sand and says: "Say, where is everybody?"

Joke 2 --

A reporter walks up to four diplomats - a Russian, an American, a Frenchman and an Iraqi - and asks them all, "Excuse me, what is your opinion of the meat shortage?" The American says, "What is a shortage?" The Russian says, "What is meat?" The Iraqi says, "What is an opinion?" And the Frenchman says, "What is `excuse me' "

Joke 3 --

"My dog has no nose."

"Really? How does he smell?"

"He stinks."

This Week's Contest: Retell any of these jokes as they would be told by some celebrity, living or dead. You can alter the joke as much as you wish. First-prize winner receives a Treetop Singer, a plastic bird that warbles every time anything makes a noise anywhere in its vicinity. This obnoxious twitty object costs $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 100, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Feb. 20. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 97, in which we asked you to come up with Gingrichisms, colorful if slightly Neanderthal explanations of the basic principles of life. Fortunately, your entries stank up the joint, leaving us with needed space to tie up some loose ends.

First, we have received a correspondence from Kevin Cuddihy of Fairfax hotly denying that he and Jeanie DeLisi of Sterling are an "item." Reviewing where matters now stand, we have an unfounded scurrilous rumor that has been: 1) hotly denied by one alleged participant while the other alleged participant remains: 2) suspiciously silent. More on this breaking sex scandal as it develops.

Next: The winner of the fine-print contest to come up with creative new examples of onomatopoeia, or words that sound like what they are describing, is Stu Segal of Vienna, who wins a fabulous book on the prostate gland for "Panache--The sound a dollop of spaghetti sauce makes hitting a designer suit."

And in the contest to explain the inscrutable cartoon below, the winner of the giant flag of a goose is Jerry Pannullo of Chevy Chase, who writes: "It is a little-known fact that shortly after George Washington's death in 1799, Martha Washington's childhood sweetheart exhumed George's body, cut of his head, and mounted it on a post. In a fit of rage he then ripped off his own kneecap, hurled it at our first president's head, and then danced a jig. The only witness was a cow." Special mention goes to Lisa Zucker of Bethesda, who described a miniature golf course consisting only of "a tiny Capitol building and a George Washington Pez dispenser."

Next: The winner of a drinking duck for coming up with the most accurate explanation for how a drinking duck works is Thomas J. Murphy of Bowie, whose explanation is so long and stultifying we will not repeat it here except to say that it involves volatility and vapor pressure and the Second Law of Thermodynamics. We fear Tom may not be the most scintillating human being on Earth, but he certainly knows his refrigerants. Winner of a drinking duck for the funniest explanation of how a drinking duck works is Fil Feit of Annandale, who writes: "1. Drinking ducks love vodka. 2. Drinking ducks hate water. 3. Drinking ducks cannot tell vodka from water without tasting. 4. Drinking ducks are senile."

And now, Gingrichisms:

Second Runner-Up: "We should consider employing an entirely female navy, because a woman's anatomy makes her particularly well suited for use as a flotation device." (Mark Briscoe, Arlington)

First Runner-Up: "Joan of Arc? Dead of infection. Look it up." (Dave Yanchulis, Washington)

And the winner of the pet salamander:

"Men are better decision makers than women. This capacity is developed at an early age during toilet training. Every time a man goes to the bathroom, he makes a conscious decision to stand or sit. That trait is underdeveloped in women, who are always dithering over every little thing." (Greg Arnold, Herndon)

Honorable Mentions:

"Women are better at sweatshop work. Their perspiration doesn't smell as bad in close quarters and they like to sew clothes. Men need to work outside where they can sweat and urinate freely. Children can be kept in orphanages above the sweatshops." (Kim Patterson, Gaithersburg)

"Bill Clinton is a Democrat. The Democrats are donkeys. That means he is an ass. I am a Republican. The Republicans are elephants. That means I have large genitals." (Rick Sasaki, Arlington)

And Last:

"T-shirts are a symbol of acceptance and honor. Bumper stickers are cold and hurt like crazy when you take them off." (Allen R. Breon, Columbia)

Next Week: Cheatin' Art


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Copyright The Washington Post Company Feb 19, 1995

First-Prize Winner gets an antique Oliver Hardy ventriloquist's dummy, a
value of $50. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational
losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style
Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of
humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week
101, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071, fax
them to 202-334-4312, or submit them via the Internet to this address:
losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday,
Feb. 27. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be
announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for
taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. Don't look for
help here. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families
are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 98, in which we asked for country-western song titles,
on the general subjects of Lovin', Cheatin', Thievin', Drinkin', Truckin'
or Dogs. Great results. Many people submitted real song titles, the best
of which was "I've Got Tears in My Ears From Lyin' on My Side Cryin' in
My Sleep Over You."

Seventh Runner-Up: "Jump in the Hefty Bag, Baby, 'Cause I'm Takin' Out
the Trash" (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

Sixth Runner-Up: "She Gimme Any More Lip, You Gonna Have to Call Me
Jagger" (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

Fifth Runner-Up: "My Best Man Was Her Daddy's Shotgun" (Rajiv Suri,
Washington)

Fourth Runner-Up: "Why Don't We Get Drunk and (Thud)" (Tom Witte,
Gaithersburg)

[Table]

Third Runner-Up: "I Knifed the Forklift Driver 'Cause He Was
Spoonin' With You" (submitted posthumously for Somerby Dowst by his
loving nephew Rich Inman, Reston) Second Runner-Up: "Won't You Be


My Ballantine?" (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

First Runner-Up:"I'd Rather Pass a Kidney Stone Than Another Night With
You" (Sarah Worcester, Bowie)

And The Winner of the Beano Windbreaker:

"Lovin' You Clogged My Arteries With Your Big Fat Lies, Then You Bypassed
My Heart for Some Other Guy" (Lois and Tony Roisman, Washington)

Honorable Mentions:

"Stand by Your Dog" (Paul Styrene, Olney)

"You Left Me in a Ditch, Brokenhearted and Infected, You Giraffe-Hunting
Bastard" (Meg Sullivan, Potomac)

"I Stagger the Line" (Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

"Fancy Garbage-Truck Drivin' Man" (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

"You Stole My Heart, but Lojack Found It" (Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

"Like a Rolling Home" (Kevin Mellema, Falls Church)

"You're as Sweet as Tupelo Honey on My Spam" (Robin D. Grove, Washington)

"I May as Well Be Gay If You're Not Straight With Me" (Stephen Dudzik,
Silver Spring)

"They Say Our Love's Illicit, but I'm Still Prayin' for a Conjugal Visit"
(Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

"(Our Love Is So Hot) You're Meltin' Nadine's Tattoo off My Butt" (Mary
Lee Fox Roe, Mount Kisco, N.Y.)

"A Replacement Player Hit a Home Run With My Cheatin' Wife" (Russ Beland,
Springfield)

"I Fought the Dog, and the Dog Won" (Ian & Melissa Fossberg, Washington)

"I Wanted His Truck, but All I Got Was the Dipstick" (Philip D. Delduke,
Bethesda)

"My Man Is Up in Lorton and His Boyfriend's Name Is Norton." (Linda K.
Malcolm, Silver Spring)

"If I Were a Dog I Wouldn't Sniff Your Cheatin' Butt" (Ken Krattenmaker,
Landover Hills)

"You're the Missing Link in My Chain Saw, and I Just Can't Cut It No
More" (Marian Carlsson, Lexington, Va.)

"She Swore She'd Be Faithful but There's WD-40 on the Zipper of Her
Jeans" (Paul A. Alter, Hyattsville)

"My Love for You Is Bigger Than My Prostate" (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

And last:

"If You Ever Leave Me, Take the Mongoose With You" (Stephen Dudzik,
Silver Spring)

NEXT WEEK: What's Wrong With These Pictures



 

RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 102 : HELP! I'M A PRISONER IN THIS CONTEST


name=fulltext>
Full Text (368   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Feb 26, 1995

You will win the lottery, and then die. Your lucky numbers are 12, 23, 9, 38, 17 and 40.

This restaurant never serves cat meat. To our knowledge.

You must find the jade monkey to save the Pu Ping Dynasty.

Report from Week 99,

in which you were asked to find what was wrong with any

of three pictures.

+ Third Runner-Up: (Picture A) Although the tuba is stuffed

with a man's torso, the little notes indicate that the player is making musical sounds somehow. You people are absolutely disgusting.

(J. Calvin Smith, Laurel)

+ Second Runner-Up (Picture B) No pitchfork.

(Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

+ First Runner-Up (Picture B): I never really cared for Hillary's

personal style during the Arkansas years. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

+ And the winner of the copper outhouse music box:

(Picture B) After having posed 30 straight days for the great artist, the woman seemed serene and surprisingly free of infections. (George Wills, Blacksburg)

Picture A:

There is a pig flying. As the Style Invitational has yet to show a sign of good taste, pigs should not have flown yet.

(Arthur C. Adams, Laurel)

The newsboy cannot be selling The Washington Post, because the headline would be "Feds Register Concern Over Beverage Ramifications." (Jennifer Hart, Arlington)

Picture B:

It's a brilliant forgery, but to fool the experts it should be a bit larger. (Russ Beland, Springfield)

Fashion no-no: Failure to accessorize.

(Linda K. Malcolm, Silver Spring)

Leonardo da Vinci could not have painted a portrait of J. Edgar Hoover since da Vinci died a few hundred years before Hoover was even BORN. (Russ Beland and Jerry Pannullo, Springfield)

Insert credit line to avoid artist's lawsuit:

By Leonardo da Vinci for The Washington Post. (Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

Picture C:

The cabbie in the lower right-hand corner speaks fluent English (Kurt Beals, Staunton)

No one has any feet. Shoe City would have folded months ago. (Ken Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

And Last:

(All pictures) They're damp, smeared and torn. You tell the delivery person to wrap my Sunday paper in one of those damn plastic bags or I cancel my subscription. (John Kammer, Herndon)

Next Week: The Joke's On You


RETURN TO MASTER CONTEST LIST

Week 103 : Send Help.


stinks!"

Full Text (1365   words)
Copyright The Washington Post Company Mar 5, 1995

1. Sit in the Speaker's Chair, $10. Sit in the Speaker's lap, $5.

2. Seek corporate sponsorship for the monuments. Who could object to "The Bic Washington Monument" or "The Ford Lincoln Memorial"?

3. Declare "crack" a commodity. Start trading futures on the open market.

This Week's Contest was suggested by Larry Hinders, of Fredericksburg, who wins a nun-motif snow globe. Larry proposes that you come up with ways to raise badly needed cash for the District of Columbia. (Ideas can require cooperation by the federal government, on federal property.) First-prize winner gets a tasteful pencil holder made from the hoof and ankle of an elk, a value of $40. Runners-up, as always, get the coveted Style Invitational losers' T-shirts. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper stickers. Winners will be selected on the basis of humor and originality. Mail your entries to the Style Invitational, Week 103, The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071; fax them to 202-334-4312; or submit them via the Internet to this address: losers@access.digex.net. Entries must be received on or before Monday, March 13. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, appropriateness or humor. No purchase necessary. The first person who correctly identifies Forsyth P. Jones wins a T-shirt. Employees of The Washington Post and their immediate families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 100, in which we asked you to retell any of these jokes in the style of someone famous. Joke 1: A herd of ostriches is standing in the desert when the scent of a lion wafts by. They bury their heads in the sand. Then another ostrich lopes by and says, "Say, where is everybody?" Joke 2: A reporter comes up to four diplomats and asks them, "Excuse me, what is your opinion of the meat shortage?" The Ame