Week 472 (CXXXIX) : Water Stupid Idea

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Copyright The Washington Post Company Sep 22, 2002

"Remember, using an adult diaper not only conserves water -- you'll also never miss another important moment of televised football."

"Lower your shower head two inches. Those two inches, over the course of an entire shower, amounts to a lot of water saved!"

"When drowning puppies, use the toilet rather than the bathtub."

This Week's Contest was suggested by Brian Broadus of Charlottesville: bad ideas for saving water in the continuing drought. First-prize winner gets a Battle Mountain, Nev., "Armpit of America" T-shirt.

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, or by e-mail to U.S. mail entries are no longer accepted due to rabid, spit-flying fanaticism. Deadline is Monday, Sept. 30. 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 Seth Brown of Williamstown, Mass.

Report from Week CXXXV, in which we asked you to come up with, and define, a new word crafted from a well-known prefix and a well- known "ism."

{diam}Fifth Runner-Up -- Gyno-evangelism: An attempt by women to "flip" gay men.

(Bird Waring, New York)

{diam}Fourth Runner-Up -- Eco-alcoholism: You puke into your compost heap.

(Steve Fahey, Kensington)

{diam}Third Runner-up -- Meta-pessimism: The belief that pessimism is a hopeless philosophy that will never work. (Seth Brown, Williamstown, Mass.)

{diam}Second Runner-Up -- Judeo-cannibalism: Eating human flesh is okay, but not with milk. (Greg Krakower, New York)

{diam}First Runner-Up -- Osteo-witticism: A humerus play on words; a bone mot.

(Chris Doyle, Burke)

{diam}And the winner of the "Master of Disguise" promotional kit:

Bi-jingoism: The feeling of revelatory elation that comes with the sudden slap-to-the-

forehead realization that the thing to do is to attack both Iraq and Iran.

(Paul A. Stone, Silver Spring)

{diam}Honorable Mention:

Sub-minimalism: The daily output of work by a member of Mayor Williams's petition committee.

(Brooks E. Bowers, Damascus)

Geo-Prizm: The act of buying a car you know full well will be sporting the bumper sticker "My other car is . . ."

(Michael Clem, McLean)

Cardio-authoritarianism: Extremely

compassionate conservatism.

(Stu Gallant, Little Rock)

Pseudo-Zoroastrianism: A belief that the world is a never-ending struggle between the forces of light and of darkness for the grace of the supreme deity Ormazd insofar as it gets that cute little Zoroastrian from the gym to go out with you Saturday.

(Greg Krakower, New York)

Lipo-synergism: How 10 grams of fat,

consumed over three meals, can add two pounds of fat and a half- inch to one's hips. (Walt Johnston, Woodstock, Md.)

Poly-materialism: A preference for man-made fabrics.

(Mitch Mularz, Aberdeen, Wash.)

Crypto-cannibalism: I8U.

(Scott Watson, Jemez Springs, N.M.)


Opposition to the assertion that

"antidisestablishmentarianism" is the

longest word in the English language, such opposition being the central tenet of the

philosophy known as

anti-antidisestablishmentarianism-ism. (Richard Marcus, Gaithersburg)

Auto-masochism: A cross-country family vacation. (Bird Waring, New York)

Infanti-populism: A childish urge to play with that plastic bubble-wrap stuff.

(Dylan Presman, Rockville)

Retro-defeatism: The practice of finding fault with past successes. Very popular with liberals. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Litho-anthropomorphism: The strategy employed by Al Gore's campaign advisers. (Walt Johnston, Woodstock, Md.)

Ex-humanism: Digging up people,

particularly Renaissance philosophers.

(Paul A. Stone, Silver Spring)

Extra-cubism: Thinking outside the box. (Roy Ashley, Washington)

Eco-lesbianism: A tactic used by women whose goal is preventing global

overpopulation. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Nano-onanism: The premature completion of a palindrome. The complete term is


(J.F. Martin, Talkeetna, Alaska)

Litho-defeatism: Perpetual feeling of being caught between a rock and a hard place. (Cecil J. Clark, Arlington)

Pre-anachronism: Feeling old before your time. (Max Sudol, Richmond, Australia)

Quasi-feminism: Seething when guys talk to your chest, while allowing some poor schlep to pay for dinner, hold open doors and send you expensive gifts he can't afford. (Roger and Pam Dalrymple, Gettysburg, Pa.; Angie Krause, Annandale)

Pyro-Marxism: The widespread belief that there was another Marx Brother, Zippo, who invented the hotfoot. (Chris Doyle, Burke)

Homo-anthropomorphism: The optimistic attribution of human traits to people.

(Mike Genz, La Plata)

Gluco-capitalism: Belief in the "treacle down" theory. (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Seismo-romanticism: The notion that

sexual fulfillment requires the Earth to move. (Chris Doyle, Burke)

Di-realism: The increasingly prevalent worldview that the death of the Princess of Wales was, in the end, no biggie.

(Frank Mullen III, Aledo, Ill.)

Pseudo-eroticism: Hotel room porn. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

Auto-cubism: A genre of compact

industrial art emerging from the scrap metal industry. (Walt Johnston, Woodstock, Md.)

Oto-eroticism: Whispering sweet nothings in the ear. (Chris Doyle, Burke)

Counter-egotism: A compulsion to boast that your kitchen surfaces are Italian marble. (Sue Lin Chong, Washington)

Tele-anachronism: Saying a telephone is "ringing" when it is in fact beeping or

tweeting or playing "Ode to Joy."

(Art Grinath, Takoma Park)

Pre-cynicism: Optimism.

(Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Contra-dadaism: Mamaism.

(Mike Genz, La Plata)

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