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Copyright The Washington Post Company Jul 17, 2005

A sleepwalking grande dame who lived right off Park

Would often roam 'round in her penthouse so dark.

Her odd cause of death (this required no probe):

She hung from a ledge in a plus-sized,* humorous,* tangled* robe.*

This week's contest takes you back to the Internet, to an intriguing Web site called WordCount.org. This site, shown to the Empress by Art Chimes of Arlington, lists -- horizontally in one lonnnnng line -- 86,800 English words, from "the" to "conquistador," including names, in order of the frequency in which they appear in a collection called the British National Corpus (which would explain why "London" pops up at No. 242, while "Washington" festers down at 2,932). Our contest: Write a poem of no more than four lines containing four or more consecutive words on the WordCount list. They must occur in the sentence in the order they appear on the list, but they may be interspersed with other words of your choice -- even though the example above (by our own Bob Staake) extra-cleverly uses Nos. 12184-12187 adjacently. Warning: You won't be looking at all 86,800 words. Not even if you are, say, Invitationally Obsessed Chris Doyle of Forsyth, Mo. Because the site permits you to scroll up and down the list one word at a time. So what you'll do is search for a word that occurs to you, or a certain rank, and you'll be shown that and the ones around it.

The winner receives the Inker, the official Style Invitational trophy. First runner-up wins a Porky Pooper!{T}{M}, a little plastic pig that "trots out tasty treats," namely little brown jelly beans, discourtesy of Elden Carnahan of Laurel.

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, July 25. Put "Images/circlei3.gif" border=0>Washington Post. Entries may be edited for taste or content. Results will be published Aug. 14. 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 Brendan Beary of Great Mills.

Report from Week 615, in which we asked for some material that could be used by comic Dave George, who's paid by Independence Air to tell jokes at Dulles.

{diam}Third runner-up: Would the owner of a red and tan Boeing 737 please report to the tarmac? Your lights are on.

(Eric Murphy, Chicago; Russell Beland, Springfield)

{diam}Second runner-up: Pan American Airways Flight 213 to Idlewild Airport is now ready for boarding. We apologize for the delay.

(Noah M. Bartlett, Washington)

{diam}First runner-up, winner of the welder's mask: Ladies and gentlemen, we'd like to recognize some special groups we have on the flight today: The "Fat and Proud of It" Club of Burke; the panel of judges returning home from the Fourth Annual

Cooking With Garlic Competition; the Society of Pauly Shore Impersonators; and the National Association of Families With Colic- Prone Twins. Welcome aboard!

(Russell Beland)

{diam}And the winner of the Inker: Attention, passengers: We've just been informed that a butterfly has flapped its wings in Brazil. So be prepared for flight delays.

(Stephen Dudzik, Olney)

{diam}Honorable Mentions:

At this time, we'd like all passengers who paid full price for their ticket to stand up so you can be mocked. (Seth Brown, North Adams, Mass.)

In order to speed our departure, we would like to skip the explanation of how a seat belt works. So for anyone who has not been in a car since 1968, please step forward for a private lesson.

(Bob Sorensen, Herndon)

Attention, please, could everyone please just stop where they are and just shut up for one teeny little moment? I really like this song. (Robin D. Grove, Woodbridge)

Wow! According to this schedule, I should have bragged about our airline's punctuality almost 15 minutes ago!

(Brian Broadus, Charlottesville)

Although Virginia is for lovers, a simple handshake is adequate for our flight

attendants. (Stephen Dudzik)

Passengers waiting for the flight to

Denver, I regret to report there will be an additional delay of . . . hmm, have you considered just driving to Denver?

(Russell Beland)

Your captain for this flight will be 6-year-old Tyler Corcoran, who won our

Pilot for a Day poster contest. Say hi to Tyler, everyone! (Mike Cisneros, Centreville)

Attention, please, any passengers

traveling with small children, now is the time to completely rethink that decision. For the love of Pete. (Bob Sorensen)

We are continuing to experience delays from the flying pigs caused by

Washington finally having a first-place baseball team. Flights may need to be

diverted to BWI, where they do not

appear to be experiencing this problem. (Elizabeth Molye, Fairfax)

Please be aware that, in order to overcome a sudden case of stage fright, the air hostess will be envisioning you naked during the safety demonstration. (Brian Jones, Lilburn, Ga.)

Attention: If a stranger has put

something in your bag without your knowledge, please report it to us

immediately. (Michelle Stupak, Ellicott City)

Would the buxom blond owner of the tight red sweater please report to the courtesy desk? Your headlights are on. (Rob Poole, Ellicott City)

During today's flight we'll be playing The Quiet Game. I have such a headache. (Jean Sorensen, Herndon)

Your attention, please: As a cost-cutting measure, this flight will be remotely

piloted from India. (Tom Witte, Montgomery Village)

Please do not make any purchases from anyone selling tickets to ride the luggage carousel, unless the person is a certified Dulles Luggage Carousel Ticket Vendor. (Art Grinath, Takoma Park)

Attention, passengers: Many family members look alike. Please be sure you are leaving the airport with your own family. (Elliott Schiff, Allentown, Pa.)

We would like to welcome Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt to our flight today. . . . We said we would like to. I mean, wouldn't you? (Tom Witte)

Ladies and gentlemen, we apologize for the delay in takeoff, but has anyone seen the pilot's blankie? (Tom Witte)

Ladies and gentlemen, I regret to inform you that, due to an error by our baggage handling department, your luggage has accidentally been loaded aboard the same aircraft that you will be traveling on. We apologize for the convenience. (Greg Pearson, Arlington)

Would the person identifying herself as Mommy please contact security to

retrieve her child? (Kevin D'Eustachio,

Linwood, N.J.)

Arriving passengers on Flight 64 from Las Vegas: You know that saying, "What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas"? Well, it seems your baggage handlers misunderstood. (Brendan Beary)

We'll be on our way soon, after some scheduled maintenance on our bagel-hardening machine. (Martin Bancroft, Ann Arbor, Mich.)

As a cost-saving measure we have

eliminated the in-flight movie. Please ask the passenger next to you to read you a story. (Rick Haynes, Potomac)

Look! It's a bird! No, it's a plane! No, it's . . . no wait, of course it's a plane. This is an airport. Duh. (Russell Beland)

We also have a unisex bathroom on board, for those of you who are

unisexual. (Chuck Smith, Woodbridge)

We will begin boarding Flight 1576 in 10 minutes. The in-flight movie today will be "Groundhog Day." [10 minutes later] We will begin boarding Flight 1576 in 10

minutes. The in-flight movie today will be "Groundhog Day." (Rob Poole)

Flight 625 now departing for Buffalo.

Passengers should set their watches back 25 years. (Marty McCullen,

Gettysburg, Pa.)

All flights today will depart 15 minutes early. And I'm King of the Gypsies.

(Edward Nykwest, Stanley, Va.)

Let's have a little fun with the crew. When your plane lands, and your

attendant says, "Welcome to San Jose, the local time is 1:30," I want you all to say, "San Jose? We were supposed to go to San Diego!" This'll only work if you all stick together. (Brendan Beary)


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