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Week 544 : You Gotta Have Heart


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Copyright The Washington Post Company Feb 8, 2004

Okay, okay, we screwed it up,

We've caused eternal pain.

But hey, today it's Valentine's --

So let's go raise some Cain.

This week's contest: The approach of Valentine's Day can make even The Empress -- that bastion of icy, tut-tut unsentimentality -- just a teensy bit goopy. Not that she would ever send a valentine herself, so help her indulge vicariously: Write us some valentine sentiments from one particular person (real or fictional) to another, as in the example above. They don't have to be in verse.

First-prize winner receives the Inker, the official Style Invitational Trophy. First runner-up wins an amazing Valentine's garment: a remarkable thong teddy from Frederick's of Hollywood in a tuxedo motif, if your idea of a tuxedo includes spaghetti straps, frilly lace trim and two little black tails to hang over your bare backside. Other runners-up win the coveted Style Invitational Loser T-shirt in Ultra Valentine Red. Honorable mentions get one of the lusted-after new Style Invitational Magnets. One prize per entrant per week. Send your entries via fax to 202-334-4312 or by e-mail to losers@washpost.com. U.S. mail entries are not accepted. Deadline is Monday, Feb. 16. Put the week number in the subject line of your e- mail, or you risk being ignored as spam. Include your name, postal address and phone number with your entry. Contests are 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 Tom Witte of Montgomery Village.

Report from Week 540, in which we asked for news or historical events to be presented in the "Rocky and Bullwinkle" "A, or B" format of groaner puns or other halfwitticisms. This assignment was attacked with great fervor by a few people who bombarded The Empress with entries all week long, including a couple who must have majored in Obscure European History at Wassamatta U. (the 1566 Compromise of Breda?).

{diam}Third runner-up: 1975 -- Metric Conversion Act passed by Congress: Take Us to Your Liter, or Tens Anyone? (Russell Beland, Springfield)

{diam}Second runner-up: 2001 -- Bush's tax cuts: Deficit Attention Disorder, or No Rothschild Left Behind (Andrew Elby, Arlington)

{diam}First runner-up, the winner of the plain old boring BobStaake.com coffee mug: 1066 -- The Norman Conquest: Saxon Violence, or Let Me Run This Bayeux (Brendan Beary, Great Mills)

{diam}And the winner of the Inker: 1854 -- The Charge of the Light Brigade: Fools Speed Ahead, or Is That Your Final Lance, Sir? (Chris Doyle, Forsyth, Mo.)

{diam}A timeline of Honorable Mentions:

65 million years ago: Extinction of the dinosaurs: Sic Semper Tyrannosaurus, or You're Looking Awfully Paleo (Danny Bravman, Potomac)

c. 1250 B.C.: The Exodus: A Parting Wave, or I Just Dropped a Couple Tablets (Russell Beland, Springfield)

c. 1200 B.C. : Trojan War: The Last Time I Saw Paris, or Beware of Gifts Bearing Greeks (Chris Doyle, Forsyth, Mo.)

c. 900 B.C. : The judgment of Solomon: Split Decision, or Halving My Baby

(Russell Beland, Springfield)

431-404 B.C.: Peloponnesian Wars: A Tale of Thucydides, or Hellas- a-Poppin' (Chris Doyle, Forsyth, Mo.)

31 B.C.: Octavian at the Battle of Actium: Surrender Unto Caesar, or Let's Win One for Agrippa! (Chris Doyle,

Forsyth, Mo.)

1773: The Boston Tea Party: Of Tea I Fling, or Hurl Grey (Tom Witte,

Montgomery Village)

1779 : France comes to the aid of America against Britain: Lafayette You, Not With You, or Burgoyne to Be Sorry (Brendan Beary, Great Mills)

1814: Napoleon is exiled to Elba: Corporal Punishment, or All This for a Lousy Palindrome? (Russell Beland, Springfield)

1836: The Alamo: Mission Impossible, or Texas Toast (Tom Witte, Montgomery Village)

1846: The Donner Party disaster: Family Dinner, or Meat: The Parents (Bird Waring, New York)

1846-48: The Mexican-American War: Juarez Hell, or Tijuana Make Something of It? (Brendan Beary, Great Mills)

late 1800s: Liberia adopts slavery of native tribes: On the American Plan, or It Takes One to Own One (Russell Beland, Springfield)

1907-14: The digging of the Panama Canal: Sedimental Journey, or The Wicked Ditch of the West (Miles Townes, St. Andrews, Scotland)

1920-28 : Paavo Nurmi wins Olympic gold: Lapps the Field, or Nice Finnish Guys Last (Chris Doyle, Forsyth, Mo.)

1929-39: The Great Depression: American Idle, or Stock in First Gear (Tom Witte, Montgomery Village)

1933 : Roosevelt declares a Bank Holiday: A Cure for the Runs, or Do Not Collect $200 (Russell Beland, Springfield)

1935: Release of the game Monopoly: Now Boarding, or Playing the Race Car (Russell Beland, Springfield)

1937: The Hindenburg explosion: Dead Zeppelin, or Light My Flier (Dave Ferry, Purvis, Miss.; Russell Beland, Springfield)

1944 : The D-Day invasion: Strife's a Beach, or Did Juno We Were Coming? (Michael Denyszyn, New York)

1957: Introduction of the Edsel: Building a Car Bomb, or The Lemon Doesn't Fall Far From the Tree

(Russell Beland, Springfield)

1962: The Cuban Missile Crisis: Them Ain't Cigars, or Armageddon Nervous (Jeff Brechlin, Potomac Falls)

1968: The Soviets invade Czechoslovakia: Croaking Prague, or Dubcek's Bounced (Gordon Labow,

Glenelg)

1969: The moon landing: One Giant Schlep, or Neil Before Me (Buzz Aldrin, Los Angeles) (Cliff Cummins, Hyattsville)

1971: Admission of People's Republic of China to the United Nations: Peking Into the Naked City, or A China in the Bull Shop (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

1996: The Clinton-Lewinsky scandal: Secret Service, or Insert Bill Here (David Iscoe, Washington)

1996: Clinton explains the situation: Her and Her Big Mouth, or I'm Incurably Semantic (Russell Beland, Springfield)

1999: Bob Dole pitches Viagra: Where There's a Pill, There's a Way, or I'm as Horny as Kansas in August (Chris Doyle, Forsyth, Mo.)

2001: The Enron scandal: Piling It Up Fastow and Fastow, or A Man Is Known By the Company He Keeps Looting

(Roy Ashley, Washington)

2003: Richard Grasso resigns: The Bucks Stop Here, or NYSE Seein' Ya

(Chris Doyle, Forsyth, Mo.)

2003: U.S. handling of postwar Iraq: Peace-Poor Planning, or Throwing the Baby Out With the Baath Water

(Chris Doyle, Forsyth, Mo.)

2003: Michael Jackson arrested: Goodbye, Mr. Chimps, or The King of Perp (Mary Ann Henningsen, Hayward, Calif.)

2004: Style Invitational succession: Czar He Goes, or Beyond the Call of Doody (Sue Lin Chong, Washington; Greg Krakower, New York)

Join The Empress online Tuesday at noon on washingtonpost.com.


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