The Style Invitational Week 872 Har monikers

By The Empress

Saturday, June 5, 2010; C02


Agrab: Scramble to answer the phone (Alexander Graham Bell).


Geke: Someone who prances around downtown screaming during rainstorms (Gene Kelly).


The District's own Kevin Dopart, whose perfect combination of impressive smarts, obsessive persistence and massive geekiness (see this week's results) have helped him become the top-Losing Loser in each of the past four years, suggests another neologism contest based on people's names: Combine the first parts of each word in a famous person's or character's name -- in order -- and define it or use it in a sentence that somehow refers to its source, as in Kevin's own examples above. You must use at least the first letter in each word in the name.


Winner gets the Inker, the official Style Invitational trophy. And for the lucky person who'd never be seen in a Loser T-shirt, second place wins this stylish drop-waist dress designed and created from two T-shirts from early in the Empress's reign (hence the slogan "Under New Mismanagement") by 60-time Loser Barbara Turner of Takoma Park, who models it here.


Other runners-up win their choice of a coveted Style Invitational Loser T-shirt or yearned-for Loser Mug. Honorable Mentions get one of the lusted-after Style Invitational Loser Magnets. First Offenders get a smelly, tree-shaped air "freshener" (Fir Stink for their First Ink). One prize per entrant per week. Send your entries by e-mail to or by fax to 202-334-4312. Deadline is Monday, June 14. Put "Week 872" in the subject line of your e-mail, or it risks being ignored as spam. Include your name, postal address and phone number with your entry. Contests are judged on the basis of humor and originality. All entries become the property of The Washington Post. Entries may be edited for taste or content. Results to be published July 3. No purchase required for entry. Employees of The Washington Post, and their immediate relatives, are not eligible for prizes. Pseudonymous entries will be disqualified. The revised title for next week's results is by Kevin Dopart; this week's honorable-mentions subhead is by Craig Dykstra.


Report from Week 868, in which we asked rather unspecifically for nerdy, quantitatively leaning musings:


The winner of the Inker


Since license plate characters are interpretable in base 36 (for the set of all letters and digits), you can slip expletives past the DMV by converting them to base 10. (Oh 1198393, now I'm 61721544325!) (Kevin Dopart, Washington)


2. the winner of the lame-wordplay book "Pun Enchanted Evenings":


"Why isn't Santa's workshop always portrayed in darkness in the days before Christmas? Um, winter? High northern latitude? Any of this sinking in?" (Jeff Contompasis, Ashburn)


3. Oh sure, you've got Hitler and Stalin, but when it comes to real extermination, only Cain killed a fourth of the world's total population. (Russell Beland, Fairfax)


4.They say that the U.S. president is the most influential person in the world. But based on percentage of annual income, Barack Obama's 2 cents' worth is only 1/30 of a cent compared with your average pole dancer's. (Lois Douthitt, Arlington)


Geek tragedy: Honorable mentions


It's ironic that the lead in "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum" was played by Zero Mostel, since the Romans had no numeral to represent zero. (Craig Dykstra, Centreville)


Not only does it take on average 63 percent less time to walk up an escalator than just to stand, but it's also the best way to look up skirts. (Kevin Dopart)


Turns out cleanliness isn't really next to godliness, it's next to cleanly. At least it is in my dictionary. (Russell Beland)


If you want to give 110 percent, do you have to work 26.4/7.7? (Edmund Conti, Raleigh, N.C.)


Few of God's wonders are as inspiring as a waterfall: Ah . . . wide-angle lens, 1/8-second exposure (without a tripod), f-stop, let's see . . . (Mae Scanlan, Washington, photographer of the book "Beautiful America's Washington, D.C.")


It's not accurate to talk about global warming, since the Earth's core is really hot already. I always remind people to call it global surface warming. (Martin Bancroft, Rochester, N.Y.)


Well, she said I'd never change. So I pointed out, "Au contraire: I replace body cells at a rate of 200,000 per day, especially intestinal lining cells, which last only five days . . ." (M.C. Dornan, Scottsdale, Ariz.)


If pollywolly doodle all day, how long does a monowollus doodle? (Tom Kreitzberg, Silver Spring)


You know what doesn't make sense about "The Flintstones"? Between work and home, Fred's car reconfigures itself from two- to four-passenger mode. That sort of variable seating would not have been offered back then, even in the New Stone Age. (Jeff Contompasis)


The average IQ is 100. The good news is that you are above average. The bad news is that you are frighteningly outnumbered. (Brad Alexander, Wanneroo, Australia)


Miley Cyrus's "See You Again" begins, "I've got my sights set on you, and I'm ready to aim." But if you have your sights set, you've already aimed. Why didn't anyone explain this to her? (Jeff Contompasis)


Curiosity only collapsed the quantum superposition of Schroedinger's cat into a definite state. What killed it was leaving it in a box for a week. (Kevin Dopart)


Doughnuts? A doughnut measures of only 0.7 on the Mohs hardness scale: Obviously it should be reclassified as a doughy squishoid. (Martin Bancroft)


I'm worried that the gradual shifting of the magnetic pole to the south will mean that Loser magnets will have to be printed upside down. And with the strong magnetic force on Russell Beland's car, will it turn over on its roof? (Dot Yufer, Newton, W.Va.)


Next Week: Clue us in, or Retrogrid