Week 415 (LXXXII) : Sentence Us to Death


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Copyright The Washington Post Company Aug 19, 2001

Sentence taken from today's Post: A soft touch is needed here, not a sledgehammer.

Question it answers: If you are a panhandler, what is the wiser strategy for obtaining money -- trying to gently persuade

sympathetic passersby of your genuine need, or urging them to smash you in the head with a huge, blunt object?

This Week's Contest reprises one of our favorite contests of the past. Take any sentence appearing anywhere in today's Washington Post, and invent a question that it answers. The example above is taken from today's Ann Landers column. First-prize

winner receives a 1965 commemorative plate with the worst likenesses of the

presidents we have ever seen. James A.

Garfield looks like Charles Manson, John Quincy Adams looks like Mini-Me, James K. Polk looks like an ostrich and Thomas

Jefferson looks like Mamie Eisenhower. This is worth $50.

First runner-up wins the tacky but estimable Style Invitational Loser Pen. Other runners-up win the coveted Style Invitational Loser T-shirt. Honorable mentions get the mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper sticker. Send your entries via fax to 202-334- 4312, by e-mail to, or by U.S. mail to the Style Invitational, Week LXXXII, c/o The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071. Deadline is Monday, Aug. 27. 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. Entries may be edited 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. Pseudonymous entries will be disqualified. The revised title for next week's contest is by Phyllis Kepner of Columbia.

in which we asked you to update any pledge, oath, declaration or slogan.

{diam}Second Runner-Up -- Old Avis slogan: We're Number 2. We try harder. New Avis slogan: Okay, so 39 years later we're still Number 2. No biggie. (Mike Genz, La Plata)

{diam}First Runner-Up -- Old declaration: If you cannot afford an attorney, the court will appoint one for you at no cost. New declaration: The mouthpiece is on the house. He is 24 years old. He makes $17 an hour. Good luck. (Brian Broadus, Charlottesville)

{diam}And the winner of the Jesse Jackson mask:

Old slogan: Come to Marlboro Country. New slogan: Come toward the light. (Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

{diam}Honorable Mentions:

Old Communist Party slogan: Workers of the world, unite. You have nothing to lose but your chains. New Communist Party slogan: Hey, losers! Our party is looking for farmhands. (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

Old Communist Party slogan: From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs. New Communist Party slogan: Our slogans are better but we don't pay as well.

(Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

Old oath: Gadzooks! New oath: #$&!*! (Tony Hope, Washington)

Old declaration: Never send to know for whom the bell tolls. It tolls for thee. New declaration: Don't ask whose cell phone is ringing. It could be yours. (Chris Doyle, Burke)

Old Hippocratic oath: First, do no harm. New Hippocratic oath: First, get the insurance billing information. (Maja Keech, New Carrollton; Art Grinath, Takoma Park)

Old slogan: Ace is the place for the helpful hardware man. New slogan: Ace is the place that's being bankrupted by Home Depot. (Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

Old slogan: The best part of waking up is Folger's in your cup. New slogan: The best part of waking up is having a job, house, family, health, a car that runs, money in the bank, clothes on your back, respect, love, friends, food on the table, nice neighbors, a decent health plan, an adequate retirement fund, an honest mechanic, low interest on your mortgage and then, maybe then, Folger's. (Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

Old slogan: Visa. It's everywhere you want to be. New slogan: Visa. It's everywhere you want to be. (Scary, isn't it?) (Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

Old declaration: You have the right to remain silent . . . New declaration: You are so busted . . . (Blair Richardson, McLean)

Old Texaco slogan: You can trust your car to the man who wears the star. New Texaco slogan: Come on in for some chips and soda. (Mike Genz, La Plata)

Old Clinton slogan: It's the economy, stupid. New Clinton slogan: It's integrity? Really? (Mike Genz, La Plata)

Old Carlisle, Pa., slogan: Summer home of the Redskins. New Carlisle, Pa., slogan: Not far from Harrisburg. (Russ Beland, Springfield)

Old motto: We will sell no wine before its time. New motto: The vintage? You do realize this is printed on the side of a gallon jug, right? (Brian Broadus, Charlottesville)

Old Hippocratic oath: Whatever, in connection with my professional practice I see or hear, that ought not to be spoken of abroad, I will not divulge. New Hippocratic oath: The plaster cast we made of your genitalia while you were anesthetized for your ear operation was retained solely for the amusement of our staff. (Brian Broadus, Charlottesville)

Old New York motto: Excelsior! New New York motto: Styrofoam peanuts! (Al Toner, Arlington)

Old declaration: We find the defendant not guilty. New declaration: We find the defendant famous. (Rebecca Short, Washington)

Old Eastern Airlines motto: The wings of man. New Eastern Airlines motto: The wings of an ostrich. (Ted Einstein, Silver Spring)

Old motto: A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent. New motto: A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful but not gay, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent. (Dave Zarrow, Herndon)

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