The Style Invitational Week 881: What's in a name?

By The Empress

Saturday, August 7, 2010; C02


Redskin Albert Haynesworth, tackle from Tennessee:


Bet he's worthless.


Stefani Germanotta, a.k.a. Lady Gaga:


"A man??!!" "OK, a gag."


Here's a contest that two Losers recollected recently from when we did it back in 1999: Howard Walderman recounting the week that a record four of his entries were printed, and Chris Doyle griping that a similar earlier contest wasn't as good as this one.


It's certainly time to do it again, since we have another decade's worth of people to make fun of: Take the name of a person or institution. Find within it a hidden message, as in the examples above. You may add spacing and punctuation, but you may not move letters around: The hidden message must be found by pulling out letters and using them in the same order they appear in the original name. You may add titles or other identifiers to the name, but don't go wildly overboard; the first example here is pushing the length limit.


Winner gets the Inker, the official Style Invitational trophy. Second place receives a deluxe 12-piece set of Frogmen vs. Radioactive Octopus, which sounds better than it looks, even if it does glow in the dark. Donated by Occasional Loser Dan Steinberg.

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, Aug. 16. Put "Week 881" 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 Sept. 4. 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 Jeff Contompasis; this week's honorable-mentions subhead is by Phil Frankenfeld.


Report from Week 877, in which we asked for rhyming couplets on your choice of current events:


The winner of the Inker


Impostor in uniform drives Metrobus with passengers:


Well, first he got lost, and he then had a crash, and I'm lucky to be a survivor.

Amazing how well the impostor resembled our regular Metrobus driver! (Brendan Beary, Great Mills)


2.the winner of the book "Are You a Miserable Old Bastard?":


Queen Elizabeth's visit to New York: All aroun' Manhattan town Elizabeth careens;

(Ironically, the monarch's never set a foot in Queens.) (Beverley Sharp, Washington)


3.The mayor's traffic ticket:


Oops, Fenty is caught in an illegal turn.

His car may be Smart, but the man's yet to learn. (Nan Reiner, Alexandria, a First Offender)


4. Lindsay Lohan's sentencing:


Do legal guidelines really call for 90 days in jail

For getting a bad manicure? On just one fingernail? (Gary Crockett, Chevy Chase)


Couplets runneth under: Honorable mentions


Said Barack, "My agenda a title should bear, to maximize public appeal."

Said Biden, "I know, clean, articulate friend: We'll call it the Big Bleeping Deal!" (Mike Fransella, Arlington)


Swapped back to Russia, where life is monot'nous,

Anna's the Spy Who Came In From the Hotness. (Brendan Beary)


He shot off his mouth like a pearl-handled pistol,

And that marked the finish of Stanley McChrystal. (Mae Scanlan, Washington)


Crash test dummies' costumes given to Smithsonian:


Dummies Larry and Vince both reached 25:

They never used cellphones when learning to drive. (Roy Ashley, Washington)


Among many wounds, soldiers suffer from trauma.

(Just a reminder, Mr. Peace Prize Obama.) (Peter Metrinko, Gainesville)


Levi and Bristol are off again, on again.

Pinch me awake and I'll cough again, yawn again. (Pie Snelson, Silver Spring)


Sandra Bullock's divorce:


Sandra gave Jesse a kick on his hind side:

She'd finally learned what he did on her blind side. (Marty McCullen, Gettysburg, Pa.)


They're making a movie about John Edwards,

And how he traveled from forward to bedwards. (Mae Scanlan)


On the World Cup:


Americans just can't relate to the thrill

Of the rest of the world when the Cup ends 1 - nil. (Jim Reagan, Herndon)


Felipe Melo and Brazil, a bunch of kiss-my-boo-boo wailers,

Complaining their opponents got assists from vuvuzelers. (Gary Crockett)


Somali militants ban soccer:


The World Cup is boring enough to appall ya.

But at least they don't shoot you like they do in Somalia. (Cy Gardner, Arlington)


On the octopus that kept choosing the winning World Cup teams:


Spain or Holland -- who would win? Their chances were identical;

A brainy German got it right by sticking out his tentacle. (Beverley Sharp)


Switzerland won't extradite Roman Polanski:


The Swiss say Polanski

Is free to romanski. (Chris Doyle, Ponder, Tex.)


Left-handers lose iPhone reception:


iPhone 4 is a little bit flaw-ish;

Apple tells us: Just don't be southpaw-ish.(Jeff Contompasis, Ashburn)


Elections are won with gerrymandered maps,

Which is fine if they're drawn by our own kind of chaps. (William Bradford, Washington)


In Argentina now, it's deemed okay for gays to marry;

It still takes two to tango, but their sexes needn't vary. (Brendan Beary)


Genetic-testing kit mix-up:


You can now buy a gene-testing kit for a song.

('Course it may get your gender and roots a bit wrong.) (Ellen Raphaeli, Falls Church)


Mel Gibson's latest rantings:


Mel's "Braveheart" won two Oscars, but his film career's gone south

Since he showed the world that his most Lethal Weapon is his mouth. (Gary Crockett)


And last: On a Supreme Court ruling:


The FCC decency rules have to go!

So how 'bout a "Style Invitational Show"? (Kevin Dopart, Washington)


Next Week: Safety in Blunders, or The Errorists Win