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Copyright The Washington Post Company Mar 27, 2005

Genesis 24: Blessed by good speed, the pitcher drew unto him not a walk, and came forth, made haste, and put down at least ten.

Genesis 1 and 2: Good God -- the grass! the herb! It was pleasant. It caused a deep sleep. Man!

This week's contest: On this Easter Sunday it's about time you got the base corruption out of your brain and settled down for a little enriching Bible study. So go ye forth and take one or two of the 50 chapters of the Book of Genesis and draw thou from them, using words in the order in which they appear in the original, your own passage, as in the examples above from the story of Rebecca at the well, and from the Creation. For consistency, everyone must use the good old King James Version, availableth online in a million places (search "KJV") and quite possibly on paper somewhere. Note: The Empress has no desire to incur anyone's wrath here, divine or otherwise. This is NOT the week for brazen ribaldry and "cometh" jokes. Be sure to cite the chapters of Genesis that you used. If you use two, they must be consecutive.

The winner receives the Inker, the official Style Invitational trophy. First runner-up gets, courtesy of erstwhile Loser Jan Verrey of Alexandria, "The Art of the Bonsai Potato," a kit containing a little display altar with Japanese characters, and little tweezers, and little bitty scissors (but not the potato). The point is that you can get your inner peace achieved with a bonsai potato a heckuva lot faster than you can with some bonsai pine tree.

Other runners-up win a coveted Style Invitational Loser T-shirt. Honorable mentions get one of the lusted-after Style Invitational Magnets. One prize per entrant per week. Send your entries by e- mail to losers@washpost.com or, if you really have to, by fax to 202- 334-4312. Deadline is Monday, April 4. Put the week number in the subject line of your e-mail, or it risks 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 property of The Washington Post. Entries may be edited for taste or content. Results will be published April 24 (during Passover!). No purchase required for entry. Employees of The Washington Post, and their immediate relatives, are not eligible for prizes. Pseudonymous entries will be disqualified. This week's contest has almost no relation to an otherwise useless idea suggested by Russell Beland of Springfield. The revised title for next week's contest is by Tom Witte of Montgomery Village.

Report from Week 599, in which we asked you to tell us what news Bob Staake, our cartoonist, was attempting to convey: If it occurred to you that the man in the chair was "thinking outside the box," or that the guy throwing an oil can was, um, pitcher Oil Can Boyd, at least you can stop feeling so alone in the world. By the way, the cartoons labeled C and D here were reversed four weeks ago on Washingtonpost.com; it was the first time the Empress knew for sure which Losers read this column in the paper, and which on the Web.

{diam}Third runner-up: (Cartoon C) Though he enjoyed getting as enthusiastic a reception as Condoleezza Rice did, Donald Rumsfeld pondered whether he really needed to wear the same stiletto boots. (Peter Metrinko, Chantilly)

{diam} Second runner-up: (Cartoon B) In a tribute to the Senators, the Nationals' opening day was celebrated with the throwing of the first pork barrel. (Mark Cogen, Bethesda)

{diam}First runner-up, winner of the orange belt emblazoned with misspelled titles of Rolling Stones songs: (Cartoon A) John Kerry kicks off his 2008 campaign by wearing a fez and eating a pizza while riding in a German automobile through a Hispanic neighborhood on a Jewish holiday. (Elden Carnahan, Laurel)

{diam}And the winner of the Inker: (Cartoon D) Post music critic Tim Page was unimpressed with a recent NSO performance of Box Mass in B Minor. (Brendan Beary, Great Mills)

{diam}Honorable Mentions:

CARTOON A

During his victory parade, Viktor Yushchenko suddenly reveals that his "skin lesions" were just a sympathy-grabbing slice of pizza glued onto his face. (Steve Fahey, Kensington)

With a picture of his beloved Camilla clipped to his polo stick strap, Prince Charles embarks on a goodwill tour through Iraq. (Michelle Stupak, Ellicott City)

Fearing lawsuits charging it with causing customers' obesity, Pizza Hut institutes its new portion-control delivery. (James Noble, Lexington Park)

Gene Frenkle, grand marshal of the Cherry Blossom Festival parade, adds more cowbell as he leads the crowd in "Don't Fear the Reaper." (Roy Ashley, Washington)

Influenced by Joseph Romm's book "The Hype About Hydrogen," GM executives are rethinking their strategy for alternative-fuel cars, and have partnered with Domino's to develop a car that runs on methane. (Brendan Beary)

CARTOON B

The International Olympic Committee this week entertained a request to include Women's Heavyweight Yo-Yo at the 2008 Games. (Jeff Brechlin, Eagan, Minn.)

Barbara Bush tosses out the first oil barrel at the Texas Rangers season opener. (Gary Patishnock, Laurel; Russell Beland, Springfield)

Nationals third-base coach Dave Huppert faces a suspension and fine after yesterday's game, in which he made a crude gesture to the fans. (Brendan Beary)

In his latest drug test, Jason Giambi not only supplied a urine specimen -- he threw in a stool sample as well. (Judith Cottrill, New York)

Septuagenarian Ruth Olson, a Naval Reserve officer whose tour of duty has been extended 23 years, tosses a depth charge at a Syrian submarine. (Jeff Brechlin)

CARTOON C

The fashion crowd gave rave reviews to the new tuxedo line by Giorgio Footmani. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge; Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

To avoid the red-carpet interview, the Olsen Twins sneak into the awards show disguised as their manager's right arm. (Russell Beland)

Clipper the Fly, attending his first Oscar ceremony, vows that next time he will hire a less flamboyant bodyguard. (Tom Kreitzberg, Silver Spring)

The media mobbed the captain of the victorious Chernobyl Water Polo Team (Chuck Smith).

Curt Schilling receives a red-carpet welcome as he arrives in Boston for Opening Day. (Curiously, the carpet was white when he arrived.) (Jon Reiser, Hilton, N.Y.)

CARTOON D

When the president doesn't behave, Karl Rove sometimes makes him sit at the "yucky" desk. (Art Grinath, Takoma Park)

Redskins owner Daniel Snyder admires the workmanship of a humidor made from trees he had cut down on national parkland along the Potomac River. (Tom Witte, Montgomery Village)

President Bush sat down for a meeting with major coalition partners today. (James Noble)

The NASA cafeteria manager realized too late that he forgot to convert to metric when he ordered the toothpicks. (Elden Carnahan)

Hours after resigning to Kasparov at Linares, Spain, Kasimdzhanov is still mulling over Rxg1Kf7. (Dave Prevar, Annapolis)

In medical news, John Smythe of London ponders the wisdom of having had the first-ever groin-nose transplant (Joseph Romm, Washington)

Ever the hands-on dad, Art thought he was helping his daughter's lemonade stand, but outsourcing the production to Belize and laying off his sales staff detracted from the fun. (Brendan Beary)

CARTOONS D and B:

In the early years, Ira was the public face -- doing the PR promos at local events -- while Ed stayed in the shop fussing over production details. But somehow they made a go of it, so that today, Crate & Barrel celebrates its 25th anniversary! (Brendan Beary; Mary Ann Henningsen, Washington)


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