Style Invitational Week 1101: The year in redo — enter one of the past year’s contests

Plus the winning horoscope ‘clarifications’


Support Our Congress Challenge: Each legislator asks constituents to dump a bucket of money over his head. The winner of Week 1092, just one of dozens of contests you can try this week. (Illustration by Bob Staake for The Washington Post)
December 4 at 11:58 AM

(Click here to skip down to the results of our contest to “clarify” a horoscope from The Post.)

Fundraising challenge for the Support Our Congress Trust: Each legislator asks constituents to dump a bucket of money over his head.

(Frank Osen, winner of Week 1092)

If at first you can’t even succeed in losing . . .

Whether you didn’t get around to entering a favorite Style Invitational contest from the past year, or you’re new to the Invite, or you have a better idea for a contest you did enter, or you think the Empress flat-out robbed you and you think she’ll think the same entry is funnier this time — well, carpe this diem. This week: Enter any Style Invitational contest from Week 1047 through Week 1097, except for Week 1050, last year’s do-over week. Use as few or many contests as you like, up to 25 entries total. You may refer to events that have occurred since the contest was published (except for the Week 1054 obit poems, which should still be about people who died in 2013); for contests that ask you to use that week’s paper, use this week’s. Where to find all these previous contests? There’s a link to each one at washingtonpost.com/styleinvitational (click on “More News” at the bottom of the page to see the oldest few). If you’re not an online subscriber and will “hit the paywall” if you look at more than 20 Post articles in the month, don’t give up: You can also see all the contests on Loser Elden Carnahan’s Master Contest List at nrars.org, where he also keeps the unbelievably comprehensive Loser Stats. After you read the instructions of a contest you want to enter, be sure to check the results as well (four weeks later), to make sure your idea didn’t already get ink.

Winner gets the Inkin’ Memorial, the Lincoln statue bobblehead that is the official Style Invitational trophy. Second place receives, appropriately, a do-over prize: a fabulous little set of ceramic salt-and-pepper shakers depicting a Martha Stewart-looking woman (or little girl) and a little spotted dog; and there are tiny magnets on (a) the dog’s nose and (b) the back of Martha’s skirt. This prize was declined by the second-place finisher of Week 1079, the renowned Mae Scanlan, perhaps because she’s also won 22 other first-place and runner-up prizes, not to mention more than 100 magnets and bumper stickers. (Surely it couldn’t be because she wouldn’t want it on her Thanksgiving table . . .)

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 designed by Bob Staake: either “The Wit Hit the Fan” or “Hardly Har-Har.” First Offenders receive a smelly tree-shaped air “freshener” (FirStink for their first ink). E-mail entries to losers@washpost.com or, if you were born in the 19th century, fax to 202-334-4312. Deadline is Monday, Dec. 15; results published Jan. 4 (online Dec. 31). Include “Week 1101” 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. The headline for this week’s results was submitted by both Beverley Sharp and Tom Witte, the honorable-mentions subhead by Mae Scanlan. 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.

And from The Style Invitational four weeks ago . . .

WIT’S YOUR SIGN: THE RESULTS OF WEEK 1097

In Week 1097 we invited you to “clarify” a horoscope from that week’s print Post or the more expansive ones on washingtonpost.com:

The winner of the Inkin’ Memorial:

Cancer: “Sprint as quickly as you can across the Field of Ambition, and then rest a while under the Tree of Contentment.”
But avoid the Port-a-Potty of Bad Metaphor. (Frank Osen, Pasadena, Calif.)

2nd place and the euro-motif erasers and the $100-bill tissues:

Virgo: “It’s a good time to push for romance, too, if you feel the urge.”
No, not you, Mr. Cosby. Hey, are you even a Virgo? (Danielle Nowlin, Fairfax Station, Va.)

3rd place:

Aquarius: “You are sure to score some points for pulling off this achievement.”
Your scab is destined for the Guinness Book of Records. (Chris Doyle, Ponder, Tex.)

4th place:

Capricorn: “You might seem strange to some people.”
The rest aren’t very perceptive. (Kevin Dopart, Washington)

Duncing with the stars: honorable mentions

Pisces: “Everyone around you is in an absolutely foul mood.”
Shouldn’t that tell you something, you jerk? (Jon Gearhart, Des Moines)

Cancer: “It’s the small stuff that counts the most today, so do your best to keep you eyes squinted and focused.”
I know that’s a lot harder for you these days, Ms. Zellweger. (Danielle Nowlin)

Taurus: “Being as clever as you are, you’ll probably manage to do both at the same time!”
So put on those shoes, pop that gum into your mouth, and give it a go! (Larry Gray, Union Bridge, Md.)

Pisces: “Think of this as a game of chess.”
No matter whether you’re a king, queen or pawn — you still end up in a box when it’s all over. (Frank Osen)

Scorpio: “After such a long, potent period of productivity, right now you would be wise to slow things down.”
Really, don’t you think 19 kids are enough, Mrs. Duggar? (Larry Neal, McLean, Va.; Tom Witte, Montgomery Village, Md.)

Aries: “So when and if something that’s not quite fit for the public emerges, there’s no reason for you to feel accountable.”
When you gotta go, you gotta go. (Chris Doyle)

Sagittarius: “Others will seek you out, perhaps to encourage you to change or adjust your plans.”
Ignore the ones who are shouting, “Jump! Jump!” (Gary Crockett, Chevy Chase, Md.)

Cancer: “For the next few days — and maybe quite a while thereafter — you’ve got quite an intense social schedule.”
Apparently, writing your name and number on the restroom wall still works. (Roger Dalrymple, Gettysburg, Pa.)

Leo: “There’s nothing wrong with being indecisive.”
Yes, there is. No, there’s not. Yes, there is . . . . (Nan Reiner, Alexandria, Va.)

Cancer: “A controlling loved one may be coaxed into releasing the reins for a brief time.”
But only if you remember the safe word. (Curtis Morrison, Chesapeake, Va.)

Aquarius: “A family member or loved one might wish that you would be a little more relaxed than you seem to be.”
Tell this person to **** ***. (Ed Flynn, Alexandria, Va., a First Offender; Barry Koch, Catlett, Va.)

Taurus: “You’re not sure what’s up, but it doesn’t feel like a good thing.”
As always, honesty is the best policy — tell the ER exactly how it got there. (Kevin Dopart)

Leo: “Take a hard look at your budget, as there is a possibility of an error.”
It does seem a little farfetched to plan on winning the Powerball jackpot twice in one year. (Ivars Kuskevics, Takoma Park, Md.)

Leo: “Investigate some investment options you were considering.”
There are 11 brand-new senators for sale! (Nan Reiner)

Gemini: “Throughout your life, your heart and mind take turns at the wheel.”
While your libido and your ego fight over the gas pedal. (Frank Osen)

Gemini: “Your charm attracts many people.”
So be prepared to explain why you wear a dead sparrow hanging from a chain around your neck. (Ken Schwartz, Burke, Va.)

Capricorn: “The good news is that your new grumpiness is not long term.”
The bad news is that you have two months to live. (Mae Scanlan, Washington)

Taurus: “It’s time to stretch your expectations of yourself.”
You CAN get out of bed! You CAN write that novel! You CAN jump out that window and fly! (Neal Starkman, Seattle)

Libra: “It’s also a great time to head outdoors with your friends, if that can be managed.”
The prison break is a go. (Howard Walderman, Columbia, Md.)

Leo: “Investigate some investment options you were considering in the back of your mind.”
Let’s face it, who else is going to invest in the back of your mind? (Andy Bassett, New Plymouth, New Zealand)

Aquarius: “You will feel the pressure of the full moon.”
You will sit next to an extremely hefty person on an airplane. (William Kennard, Arlington, Va.)

Leo: “You may be slow to get going, but once you do, you’ll be unstoppable.”
So it’s best to stay home during colonoscopy prep day. (Curtis Morrison)

Aries: “The trick will be to avoid a power play.”
If you happen to play for the Capitals, you’ve mastered this already. (Mike Gips, Bethesda, Md.)

Sagittarius: “Details are everything today — make sure that you’ve got them totally covered!”
But it’s better if you don’t keep checking your fly throughout the interview. (Brad Alexander, Wanneroo, Australia)

Taurus: “You might experience a need to make your home more “yours.”
Check with your cellmate, however, before hanging that Justin Bieber poster. (Jeff Shirley, Richmond, Va.)

Leo: “Your humor helps others relax.”
You can tell by their snoring. (Gary Crockett)

Capricorn: “Perhaps the reason has to do with them witnessing your adaptability.”
Not everyone can grow gills on demand. (Lawrence McGuire, Waldorf, Md.)

And Last: Gemini: “You may want to express yourself, but be careful — you don’t want to offend anyone.” Unless, of course, you might get a refrigerator magnet out of it. (Terri Berg Smith, Rockville, Md.)

Still running — deadline Monday night: Our contest for mini-stories that end in puns. See bit.ly/invite1100.

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