Week 18 : Punch Us In the Ear

Md.; also, Jan Verrey, Arlington)

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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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