Week 45 : Invitation to a Dual, II.

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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.

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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