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Week 399 (LXVI) : IT PAYS TO BE GENDEROUS


Spring)

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Copyright The Washington Post Company Apr 29, 2001

"Gladiator": A remarkably sensitive Roman soldier carries on a lingering romance in his imagination with his beautiful late wife. In the end, at great expense, he arranges an intimate reunion with her in Elysium.

"Mary Poppins": Stern, no-nonsense au pair moves in with family to take care of kids, but you get the sense she'd "put out" if a couple bottles of Guinness and a few extra tuppence were involved. Crazed rooftop scene shows her dancing and getting down-n-dirty with about a dozen working-class chimney sweeps. When she talks, close your eyes and you'd SWEAR she was Elizabeth Hurley. WOOF!

This week's contest is an exercise in the art of persuasion suggested by Chris Hanson, Washington. Most of us have been drawn into the perennial conflict between man and woman over which movie to see -- the chick flick or the guy flick. The idea for this contest is to write a short film description that could persuade a woman that the guy movie in question is really close to being a gal movie, or vice versa. First-prize winner gets a promotional CD for the album "Freedom's Light," containing three of the album's songs "on family, patriotic and volunteerism themes" written by Sen. Orrin G. Hatch.

First runner-up wins the tacky but estimable Style Invitational Loser Pen. Other

runners-up win the coveted Style

Invitational Loser T-Shirt. The Uncle's Pick wins the shockingly ugly "The Uncle Loves Me" T-shirt. Send your entries via fax to 202- 334-4312; by e-mail to

losers@washpost.com; or by U.S. mail to The Style Invitational, Week LXVI, c/o The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071. Deadline is Monday, May 7. All entries must include the week number of the contest and your name, postal address and telephone

number. E-mail entries must include the week number in the subject field.

Contests will be judged on the basis of humor and originality. All entries become the property of The Washington Post.

Editors reserve the right to edit entries for taste or content. Results will be

published in four weeks. No purchase

required for entry. Employees of The Washington Post, and their immediate relatives, are not eligible for prizes. The revised title for next week's contest (horse names) is by Jonathan Paul,

Garrett Park, who wins a T-shirt.

in which we asked for descriptions of specific Hells for particular people. It turns out that we offered this contest many years ago, back in 1994 when, instead of e-mail, most of the entries arrived by ox cart. But amazingly, almost no one stooped to enter the very same entries as last time. Almost.

{diam}Fourth runner-up: Jesse Jackson's Hell: He must be a cameraman at everyone else's press conference. (Joe Morse, Charlottesville)

{diam}Third runner-up: Charlton Heston's Hell: He is thrilled to be appointed Keeper of the Armory, until he learns he will spend eternity beating guns into plowshares. (Courtney Knauth, Washington)

{diam}Second runner-up: A sardine's Hell: A seat in coach. (Jonathan Paul, Garrett Park)

{diam}First runner-up:Jennifer Lopez's Hell: "Here's your chador." (Stu Solomon, Springfield; Phyllis Kepner, Columbia)

{diam}And the winner of the Laundromat Pick-Me-Up Cologne: Dante's Hell: He must forever teach "The Divine Comedy" to a class of high school freshmen, each of whom will ask him repeatedly, "What's so funny about it"? (Andy Lees, Minneapolis)

{diam}Honorable Mentions:

Andy Rooney's Hell: He is given a room in which the temperature is perfect, the furnishings tasteful, the view exquisite and the room service superb: There is absolutely nothing to complain about. (Mel Loftus, Holmen, Wis.)

Tom Clancy's Hell: A screening room that shows all his movies reshot with Woody Allen as the hero. (Jonathan Paul, Garrett Park)

Jacques Cousteau's Hell: He is allowed to swim underwater forever, but only at the Blue Plains Treatment Plant. (Jennifer Hart, Arlington)

Dan Snyder's Hell: He must spend eternity as owner-operator of D.C.'s old Griffith Stadium, where it cost 60 cents for a bleachers ticket and a dime for a hot dog. (Bill Moulden, Frederick)

Jeff Gordon's Hell: He is given a new Ferrari Testarossa to drive, but his only corporate sponsors are Cruex, Tampax, Anusol, Beano and Depends. (Stephen Dudzik, Olney)

Marty Feldman's Hell: His ophthalmologist is Luis Bunuel. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Miss Manners's Hell: They don't even chill the salad plates! (Russell Beland, Springfield)

Satan's Hell: His abode is forgotten as Disney opens the Eternal Flames theme park down the road. (Ben Aronin, White Plains, N.Y.)

Albert Einstein's Hell: He learns that his seat in Paradise is across from God at the craps table. (John Muehl, Springfield)

A Red Sox fan's Hell: Why bother? (Ervin Stembol, Alexandria)

Virginia state Sen. Warren Barry's Hell: He is pledging allegiance shoulder to shoulder with thousands of high school students -- in Havana. (Ervin Stembol, Alexandria)

Ally McBeal's Hell: Every time she loses a pound, her hemline goes down one inch. (Steve Fahey, Kensington)

Hell for Sarge of "Beetle Bailey": He is traded to "Zippy the Pinhead." (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Hell for The Czar of The Style Invitational: He is compelled for eternity to submit droll, ironic juxtapositions to his own contest, which is now judged by The Aunt, who is The Uncle's slightly stodgier wife. (Tonya Miles, Silver Spring)

Pat Buchanan's Hell: He is in a never-ending line at the DMV. Another window opens. The cashier beckons. Above the window it says: "Espan~ol solamente." (Chris Doyle, Burke)

John Bobbitt's Hell: He has remarried Lorena and just noticed that inside his wedding band is the inscription "Measure once, cut twice." (Sue Lin Chong, Washington)

Martha Stewart's Hell: She becomes violently allergic to garden- fresh rosemary and chopped-dill seasoning in a delightful vinaigrette. (Bob Sorensen, Herndon)

Sam Donaldson's Hell: He is assigned to an investigative piece on wind tunnels. (Chris Doyle, Burke; Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

John Gielgud's Hell: He must endure daily elocution lessons from a rotating team of Gilbert Gottfried, Fran Drescher and Elmo. (Phyllis Kepner, Columbia)

John Ashcroft's Hell: He learns that he is a direct descendant of Thomas Jefferson. But not of Mrs. Jefferson. (Jonathan M. Kaye, Washington)

Dolly Parton's Hell: She spends eternity pushing two boulders uphill. (Jennifer Hart, Arlington)

John Q. Public's Hell: He is forced to spend Sunday mornings reading pathetic attempts at humor written by no-life dorks. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Julia Child's Hell: She is named head chef at a three-star restaurant, but she may use only Rookie Cookie recipes from the Mini Page. (Greg Arnold, Herndon)

{diam}The Uncle's Hell: Buried alive, he can choose any one tool for his escape. He selects what he believes to be a very sharp pick, unaware that it is dull and pointless. (Jonathan M. Kaye, Washington)

The Uncle Explains: Oh, don't you hate it when that happens!


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