Style Invitational contest Week 1106: Resolutions for Jan. 1, 2115

Plus the winning ideas for niche radio stations, and more


(Bob Staake for The Washington Post )
January 8

(Click here to skip down to the results of our contest for humorous niche radio stations)

I’m going to be more considerate to my clone and return his parts after I’ve borrowed them. (Ron Charles)

I resolve to defeat the union’s demand to reduce the 80-hour week to 75. (K.C. Angus)


The Empress models the cha-pew! that is this week’s second prize. (Groaner pun by Doug Norwood — The Washington Post) (Photo by Pie Snelson)

I resolve that I will visit my doctor on a regular basis to have my oil changed. (Charles Crockford)

Given that we’re already into the second week of 2015, I assume we’ve already given up on our New Year’s resolutions. So let’s think ahead — and look back: 148-time Loser John O’Byrne was rooting through his files of the Globe Challenge, an Invitish contest that used to run in the Toronto-based Globe and Mail newspaper (its editor, Warren Clements, has gotten some Invite ink himself), and he shared the results of a January 2000 contest. So let’s give it a new lease on life (i.e., shamelessly rip it off) 15 years later: Suggest a New Year’s resolution that someone might make 100 years or more in the future, as in the Ontarians’ examples above (that’s not The Post’s Ron Charles). You might attribute the resolution to a particular person, perhaps a descendant of someone currently inhabiting the planet.

Winner gets the Inkin’ Memorial , the Lincoln statue bobblehead that is the official Style Invitational trophy. Second place receives the glorious piece of headwear pictured at left atop the Empress’s poodlish (but actually passably sweet-smelling) mop. The E will have a hard time choosing between this and her tiara to wear at this weekend’s Loser Post-Holiday Party. Donated by Marsha Alter, wife of 110-time Loser Bruce Alter.

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 Tuesday, Jan. 20; results published Feb. 8 (online Feb. 5). You may submit up to 25 entries per contest. Include “Week 1106” 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 is by Tom Witte; the honorable-mentions subhead is by Beverley Sharp. Join the lively Style Invitational Devotees group on Facebook at on.fb.me/invdev. “Like” the Style Invitational Ink of the Day on Facebook 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 . . .

ADDLED CONTEMPORARY:
THE WEEK 1102 ‘NICHE RADIO’ CONTEST

In Week 1102, the Empress presented what everyone thought was a pretty typical Invite challenge: Come up with a niche radio station, a la the very specific ones on satellite and Internet stations such as Sirius, such as one for Wiccans or one playing music from Disney theme parks, and to describe it, list some songs it might play, etc. But for some reason, the Loser Community didn’t tend to find the right wavelength. The results weren’t a disaster — it wasn’t like the time the Czar asked people to write irreverent things about what God looks like — but we did end up with room to share a few more of the superior entries from Week 1101, in which readers could enter any of the past year’s contests. (Not to mention room to show the skunk hat.)

4th place:

Back Tracking: Find secret meanings in rock classics played in reverse, including Led Zeppelin’s “Neveah Ot Yawraits,” the Beatles’ “Retleks Retleh” and Black Sabbath’s “Nam Nori.” It’s actually unlistenable, of course, but it’ll freak your parents out. (Lawrence McGuire, Waldorf, Md.; Jeff Contompasis, Ashburn, Va.)

3rd place:

365 Nights of Hanukkah: Enjoy all two well-known Hanukkah songs all year round! (Heather Spence, New York)

2nd place and the “Dull Men of Great Britain” calendar:

The Putin Comedy Channel: You. Laugh now. Okay. No more laugh. (Warren Tanabe, Annapolis, Md.)

And the winner of the Inkin Memorial:

Small-Talk Radio: No issues are discussed; the host merely fields call after call from “longtime listener, first-time callers” gushing about how much they love the show and where they’re listening from — with a long pause to figure out how to turn their radios down. (Pam Sweeney, Burlington, Mass.)

Megahurts: honorable mentions

All-Jazz Era: Middle Eastern swing and bebop classics, like “Abu Dhabi Honeymoon” by Sunni Rollins, “All the Things U.A.R.” by Artie Shah, and “Mahmood Indigo” by Ahmad Jamal. (Chris Doyle, Ponder, Tex.)

It’s a Small World Earworm Radio: Listen for just a moment and it will last you all day. Now: “Let It Go” on the hour! (David Koronet, Mount Airy, Md.; Carol Passar, Reston, Va.)

The Time All the Time: Every three seconds. (Edmund Conti, Raleigh, N.C.)

The Yule Log Station: The warm, homey sounds of a crackling Yule log. Just like having a fire in your dashboard without all the trouble. (Art Grinath, Takoma Park, Md.)

Sad Songs Say So Much: Only the most depressing tunes, including “Cat’s in the Cradle,” “The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald” and “Hail to the Redskins.” (Todd DeLap, Fairfax, Va.)

Think, Think a Song: Where every track played poses a question — “Who Let the Dogs Out?” “Why Don’t We Do It in the Road?” — and each is followed by an in-depth discussion. One year, the hours of debate following “What’s New Pussycat?” ultimately became the subject of PhD dissertations. (Rick Haynes, Boynton Beach, Fla.)

Don’t Touch That Dill: Round-the-clock exhortations on the wickedness of self-abuse. (Mike Gips, Bethesda, Md.)

Ballet Play-by-Play: “Whoa, Nellie, this looks like a real Cinderella story, folks! The Prince just picked up five yards with that last jete, and now he’s running out the clock with entrechats. Over to you, Leslie.” (Frank Osen, Pasadena, Calif.)

The Scrub Channel: Music to wash dishes by. The playlist includes “Soap Gets in Your Eyes,” “How Can You Mend a Broken Plate?” and, of course, “Ragtime.” (Beverley Sharp, Montgomery, Ala.)

Golf Radio: Clicks followed by bleeps. (Gary Crockett, Chevy Chase, Md.)

Parent’s Fantasy: Every five seconds it plays “Are we there yet?” or “Billy’s on my half” but can then be blissfully turned off. (Jeff Shirley, Richmond, Va.)

True Confessions: The best from our secret microphones in church confessionals around the nation! And try our sister station KREEP — the best talk from Schenectady ladies’ rooms. (Warren Tanabe; Barbara Turner, Takoma Park, Md.)

No-Hit Wonders: The worst bands you’ve never heard of 24-7. (Jon Gearhart, Des Moines)

Wrong Generation Radio: ’90s rock for angsty preteen YouTube commenters who wish they were around 20 years ago, “before music started to suck.” (Kristen Rahman, Silver Spring, Md.)

Second second chances: More from Week 1101

When reentering earlier contests, entrants could refer to more recent events.

Week 1051, create an anagram about something in the news:
Take all the letters in this text . . . “Senate report on CIA’s torture noted physically disabling results.”

. . . and rearrange all the letters to make: “Useless intelligence: solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and protracted.” (Kevin Dopart, Washington)

Original: “Coach: ‘I’m done with #@&-ing Griffin.’ Brass: ‘We are not sure.’ ”
Anagrams to: “Fan/critic begs: ‘Rid us of the #&@-ing owner man! Ha, I swore!’ ” (Mark Raffman, Reston, Va.)

Week 1053, Questionable Journalism: Find a sentence from The Post and write a question it might answer:

A. Go figure.
Q. With the ban on guns now strictly enforced, what did the Math Olympiad official yell to start the competition? (Kevin Dopart)

A. To both gentlemen, I pose a question: WTF? [from Dana Milbank’s column]
Q: What was the moderator thinking in every presidential debate ever? (Todd DeLap)

Week 1084, limericks featuring words beginning with fi- to fo-:
I had dozens of bites on my bod
On a Christmas I spent cursing God
In a discount hotel
In Cancun – a noel
I refer to as “Fleas Navidad.” (Chris Doyle, Ponder, Tex.)

Week 1074, describe a stage or movie musical with a parody of a song from another musical:
“The Producers” to
“Food, Glorious Food!” from “Oliver!”:

Crude, glorious crude! Milk, manna and honey.
When our show’s booed, we’ll keep all the money.
Years slaving on proper shows; my bankroll got littler.
So, what if instead I chose A— dolf— Hitler?
Crude, glorious crude! Our ticket to riches.
They’ll be in the mood, those horny old witches.
Just picture this perfect plan! How could we get screwed? With . . .
Crude – tasteless and rude –
Childishly lewd –
manners eschewed –
Glorious crude! (Nan Reiner, Alexandria, Va.)

Still running — deadline Monday night: Our contest for poems about people who died in 2014. See bit.ly/invite1105.

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