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Week 179 : A Clockwork, Um, Um . . . Er.


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Copyright The Washington Post Company Aug 18, 1996

"I said a filthy Richard the Third when the Trouble and Strife called on the Rag and Bone to say she had left me for a damned Septic Tank."

I took the Red Line to the Heaven-Knows-Who, where a two-humped Dorothy Hamill was giving rides to a bunch of spoiled little Baseball Bats.

This Week's Contest is based on "Cockney rhyming slang," a bloomin' English form of street jive. Certain key nouns in a sentence are replaced by phrases ending with an unrelated word that rhymes with the original word. The sentence above, for example, makes sense when you realize that "Richard the Third" stands for "word," and "Trouble and Strife" means "wife," and "Rag and Bone" means "telephone," and "Septic Tank" means "Yank." See? Each entry must be a single sentence containing no fewer than three examples of rhyming slang; you may define the phrases separately, though you need not if you feel the meanings are obvious. Best entries will show a subliminally appropriate link between a word and its new translation. Trust us, this sort of grows on you as you noodle around with it. (Spare us dirty words disguised in rhyme. They won't win.) First-prize winner gets a working vintage Lyndon Johnson kitchen clock featuring portraits of all the presidents of the United States, with Lyndon at the top, larger than Lincoln, Washington or FDR. This is worth $30. Runners-up, as always, receive the coveted Style Invitational Loser's T-shirt. 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 179, c/o 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. Internet users: Please indicate the week number in the "subject" field. Entries must be received on or before Monday, Aug. 26. Please include your address and phone number. Winners will be announced in three weeks. Editors reserve the right to alter entries for taste, humor or appropriateness. No purchase necessary. The Faerie of the Fine Print & the Ear No One Reads wishes to thank David Genser of Vienna for today's Ear No One Reads. Employees of The Washington Post and their families are not eligible for prizes.

Report from Week 176, in which we asked you to describe any of five celebrities in the style of a famous writer.

+ Third Runner-Up:

Hillary Clinton, described by Margaret Wise Brown:

Goodnight, lawyer who passed the bar

Goodnight, converser with Ms. FDR,

Goodnight, investor so totally able,

Goodnight, first lady -- hey, what are these files on the table...?

(Sue Lin Chong, Washington)

+ Second Runner-Up:

Bob Dole, described by Robert Burns:

Auld.

(Jennifer Hart, Arlington)

+ First Runner-Up:

Bill Clinton, described by Edgar Allan Poe

Republicans, no friends of Bill's,

Not Bill's.

Their world of wealth and privilege,

With policies he kills.

When he tinkers, tinkers, tinkers,

With defense and our health care,

He encourages those stinkers

Who have talk shows on the air.

Putting Dole Dole Dole in a dark and ghastly hole.

With the kind of legislation

That the right wing never thrills,

They are Bill's bills, Bill's bills, Bill's bills, Bill's.

The conservatively

lib'ral bills of Bill's.

(Dave Zarrow, Herndon)

+ And the winner of the annotated copy of "Primary Colors":

Prince Charles, described by Rudyard Kipling:

If you can trim your bleedin' ears, they're such an eyesore

And your royal acne looks like gopher holes

It's your title, not yer bum, that ladies Di for

If you're not sure, just ask Ms. Parker Bowles

If you can down her highness's gin and not be stinkin'

And squeeze into last year's jodhpurs just for fun,

If you can keep your polo balls from shrinkin',

You'll still be dead before you're king, my son.

(Kitty Thuermer, Washington)

+ Honorable Mentions:

[Table]
Bob Dole, described by Samuel Taylor Coleridge: It is an

ancient Senator,

And he stoppeth one of three.

By thy long gray beard and glittering eye,

Now wherefore stopp'st thou me?

"I fear thee, ancient Senator!

I fear thy skinny hand!

And thou art long, and lank, and old,

And thy message is so bland."

He went like one that hath been stunned,

And is of sense forlorn;

A sadder and a wiser man,

Back to the Kansas corn.

(Joseph Romm, Washington)

Sylvester Stallone, described by Adelaide Crapsey

See how

His eyelid droops

Like the flag at half mast

Of a nation deeply mourning

Its dead.

(Sandra Hull, Arlington)

Sylvester Stallone, described by Howard Stern:

I love chicks. Especially knockers. A fine set of hooters really drives me wild. And a tight butt. You know who has good hooters? Pamela Anderson Lee. That Lois Lane, Teri Hatcher, she's got a good rack, too. She did that "Seinfeld" episode, and believe me, they're real. Sly will confirm this. He's a good guy.

(Hugh McAloon, Syracuse, N.Y.)

Bob Dole, described by Tony Kornheiser: Look, I may be old, fat and bald, but Bob Dole is so old his high school prom date was that Peruvian mummy babe. Of course, Dole has hair, but who does his hair, Jiffy Lube? And what was up with walking around in that T-shirt and shorts? Put an old bathrobe and some slippers on him and he's my Uncle Sid in the nursing home. And what's the deal with that pen in his hand? Did he sign an endorsement deal with Paper Mate? Ba-da-BOOM! (Dave Zarrow, Herndon)

Bill Clinton, described by Jane Austen:

Some whispered (or, in truth, shouted) that Mr. Clinton was a gentleman of dubious character, and others suspected he was no gentleman at all. Indeed, he owed his high office more to happy turns of Fortune than to lofty birth. His countenance bore the stamp of his simple upbringing in Arkansashire; it was ruddy, and perhaps too generously endowed with flesh. Yet he had a felicitous talent for persuasion, and his manner was easy and amiable. Thus many townspeople declared Mr. Clinton quite to their taste, while adjudging the dour Mr. Dole altogether too disagreeable. (Gloria Bruce, Hyattsville)

Prince Charles, described by Albert Camus:

The queen died today. Or maybe it was yesterday. The prince wasn't sure. When someone told him, he didn't say anything. Anyway, he could be king now. It didn't matter, really--it was just a word, king. It only meant a better crown. It was that kind of year, two birds with one stone. First his wife, now his mother. The timing was interesting. He got up on his polo pony and sat. The horse didn't know the queen had died. It was just as well. (Drew Limsky, Washington)

Bill Clinton, described by J.D. Salinger:

Now there's the phoniest bastard ever to hold public office. He keeps saying how welfare needs reform and all, but that every bill is too hard on the kids. And then you get depressed as hell thinking about some nice kid starving and all just so you could save some dough, so you vote for Clinton because he's this nice sensitive guy. Sensitive my ass. He's just now signing the goddamn thing because he promised he would and he wants to run again. He just wants the votes. All anybody ever wants is the goddamn votes. (George Lazopoulos, Arlington)

And Last:

Bill Clinton, described by the scribes at the Washington Times:

Sources in Little Rock revealed today that President Clinton is an insect. His eyes are at the ends of long crawdad-like stalks, and his tentacles leave a trail of slime. In other developments, it was revealed that Hillary Rodham Clinton, who claims to be his wife, is the shell casing of the larval form of a giant, venom-spitting Sumatran cockroach. . . .

(Jonathan Paul, Garrett Park)

[Illustration]
ILLUSTRATION,,Bob Staake For Twp


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