(Click here to skip down to the results of Week 1089, our word-search neologism contest)
$1 “deplaning fee,” payable just after landing, to defray the cost of bringing the jetway to the airplane and opening the door.
Anti-spam software that sends you a text to let you know each time it blocks an unwanted e-mail, so you’ll appreciate how effective it is.
Did you see that Marriott was fined $600,000 last week by the FCC for jamming guests’ personal WiFi hotspots so they’d have to pay its hotels’ exorbitant connection fees: $15 a day per device and sometimes as much as $1,000? Mark Raffman did, and being a Style Invitational Loser (not to mention a lawyer), he immediately thought: What are some more really bad ideas for various businesses to make a few more bucks? As in Mark’s examples above. Outrageous real-world examples are also welcome; just make that clear.
Winner gets the Inkin’ Memorial, the Lincoln statue bobblehead that is the official Style Invitational trophy. Second place receives a delightful set of four crocheted coasters in the shape of a cat’s behind, each complete with a little curved tail and a little star-shaped pink dot in the center. Created by Shanna Compton of the Etsy shop Hooks and Balls, and donated to the Invite by Diane Wah.
Other runners-up win their choice of a yearned-for Loser Mug or the ardently desired “Whole Fools” Grossery Bag. Honorable mentions get a lusted-after Loser magnet, either the Po’ Wit Laureate or Puns of Steel. First Offenders receive a smelly tree-shaped air “freshener” (FirStink for their first ink). E-mail entries to email@example.com or, if you were born in the 19th century, fax to 202-334-4312. Deadline is Monday, Oct. 20; results published Nov. 9 (online Nov. 6). No more than 25 entries per entrant per contest. Include “Week 1093” in your e-mail subject line or it might be ignored as spam. Include your real name, postal address and phone number with your entry. See contest rules and guidelines at wapo.st/InvRules. This week’s honorable-mentions subhead was submitted by both Beverley Sharp and Tom Witte. Join the lively Style Invitational Devotees group on Facebook at on.fb.me/invdev, and click “like” on Style Invitational Ink of the Day at bit.ly/inkofday.
The Style Conversational The Empress’s weekly online column discusses each new contest and set of results. Especially if you plan to enter, check it out at wapo.st/styleconv.
In Week 1089, the Empress posted the word-search grid pictured below (or here) and asked you to “discover” new words by snaking a path through the grid. (The squiggles pictured showed that week’s examples, “crudelet” and “chatox”.) Not surprisingly, you found plenty of neologisms — there were well over 1,000 entries — especially the ones that included the letter series S-E-X. The coordinates below refer to the position of the first letter.
F-12: CRIMEA VISIT: Term for guests who overstay their welcome, and then announce they own your house. (Mark Raffman, Reston, Va,)
D-11: NOTIGAN: The sweater your aunt knits for you, every birthday, every year. (Frank Osen, Pasadena, Calif.)
F-12: CLINTONHOLE: A term conservatives use in front of their children while talking about someone they don’t like. (Rob Wolf, Gaithersburg, Md.)
J-8: DANGRY: Only mad enough to use pseudo-curse-words. (Pam Sweeney, Burlington, Mass.)
A-6: BUNSEC: The maximum time a guy can ogle before getting caught. (Keith Waites, Frederick, Md.)
A-11: OH-NOTION: An astonishingly bad idea. “Abercrombie’s kiddie thong [a real thing!] was an obvious oh-notion to everyone but the marketing team.” (Kevin Dopart, Washington)
B-6: SUNNY SAM: A cheerful serial killer. (Dawn Kral, La Plata, Md.)
B-8: EYEJACK: To steal a glimpse. (Jeff Contompasis, Ashburn, Va.)
B-9: DINGHO: Australian term for an ugly hooker. (Jon Gearhart, Des Moines)
C-4: I AM BUNGHOLE: Amazingly honest working title of Donald Trump’s autobiography. (William C. Kennard, Arlington, Va.)
C-4: iSECRETS: Internet secrets; i.e., not secrets. (Frank Osen)
C-6: SECULAY: The opposite of ChristianMingle. (Matt Monitto, Bristol, Conn.)
C-11: SNIRI: Smartphone assistant who replies in a mocking tone. “You don’t know the capital of Australia!?” (Edmund Conti, Raleigh)
D-8: JESTATE: To have a pun in the oven. (Jeff Contompasis)
E-6: DUMACIN: Pending FDA approval, the first drug to treat chronic stupidity. (Frank Mann, Washington)
E-10: BANKULA: A financial institution whose existence depends upon its ability to suck your blood, er, money. (Kim Adam, Glen Allen, Va., a First Offender)
F2: RUDE-CAFE: Where Gordon Ramsay got his start. (Pie Snelson, Silver Spring, Md.)
F-10: FINNY: Ichthysterical. “Dory was so finny that the other fish almost dried themselves laughing.” (Kevin Dopart)
F11: RIMUET: The little dance a basketball does around the hoop before it goes in . . . or not. (Beverley Sharp, Montgomery, Ala.)
F-14: MAXIWAD: The half-pound of emergency toilet paper every teenage girl has at one time used to make it through the school day. (Danielle Nowlin, Fairfax Station, Va.)
G-10: TRUEL: Way more honest than you need to be. (Lawrence McGuire, Waldorf, Md.)
I-10: SEXTS ED: One class where teaching the abstinence-only method actually makes sense. (Danielle Nowlin)
I-12: FUTIME: The last day at that job you hate. (John Folse, Bryans Road, Md.)
J-3: CULTURD: An overbearing, snotty critic. (Jeff Loren, Manassas, Va.)
K-12: DEDATED: Broke up with. (Jeff Loren)
M-12: BAD SPORT: The kind I &*%$ lose at. (Danielle Nowlin)
N-3: LORDE CULT: Fanatical anti-royalists. (Chris Doyle, Ponder, Tex.)
N-13: EUROPIUM: An element that seems stable when bonded with bureaucratium, but eventually comes unglued. (Jeff Hazle, Woodbridge, Va.)
O-3: FLEECOLI: Intestinal bug that causes one to make a quick exit. (Pam Sweeney)
O-13: REBAY: Getting rid of junk you bought online. “I can’t believe Mom didn’t like this taxidermy squirrel. I guess I’ll have to rebay it.” (Jacob Aldridge, Brisbane, Australia)
P-4: COEN RINSE: A splatter of blood from, say, a wood chipper. (Ward Kay, Vienna, Va.)
P-5: BLEEPLY: How every character talks in “The Wolf of Wall Street.” (Jeff Loren)
P-13: PRE-BEST: New, encouraging report card category, to replace “needs improvement” or, heaven forbid, “failing.” (Sally Stokes, Silver Spring, Md.)
Q-3: SELF-BORE: What you wish boring people would do. (William Kennard)
Q-3: SLUBBY THE HUN: Attila’s useless brother. (Ward Kay)
R-7: PUNX: Tricks someone into planning for six more weeks of winter. (Matt Monitto)
And Last: C-10: TOILIT: Bathroom reading. “I always leave the week’s Invitational in the bathroom as toilit for our guests.” (Curtis Morrison, Chesapeake, Va., a First Offender)
And Even Laster: R-7: PUNTUB: The Empress’s rejection vat. (Jeff Loren)
Still running — deadline Monday night: Our contest for comical fundraising challenges a la the Ice Bucket. See bit.ly/invite1092.
Next week’s results: Talk Undirty to Us, or Fauxcabulary, our contest to write a poem using one of the rude-sounding but actually wholesome words we supplied. See bit.ly/invite1090. (Alternative title by Beverley Sharp)