PERMANENT INKSTAIN FOR IRA ALLEN

This is what you've done, each Week. I arrange the rows in reverse chronological order, because there are some Losers, and they know who they are, who check up on my points-awarding every Week.

But I would just like to reiterate that such checking up is not a problem for me. I have said many times that each Loser's enlightened self-interest is my best QA.

If you wish to see what your ink was, refer to the Master Contest List or search All Invitational Text. Remember that Types I, P, some H, and sometimes A are seen "above the Report" -- that is, if they are listed here for Week 7777, for example, they will be found in text files or images of Week 7777. Everything else will be found in a "Report" section of a file two, three, or four weeks later; 7781 in this Example.

If you see any error, please let me know, elden.carnahan@gmail.com.

Key to Ink Types:

WKTITLESYNOPSISINK TYPES
1273 Restocking the Cabinet Explain why a particular person -- or thing -- ought to fill a Cabinet post or other U.S. government position. 3
1271 Yodel Doyle's praises with a D-O-Y-L-E neologism Coin a new word or phrase that contains the letters D, O, Y, L and E. H
1267 Jingle bungle Suggest an ill-advised spokesman (dead or alive, or fictional), along with a humorously noooo slogan or jingle. H
1263 Playing the short game Using the three-letter Olympic national abbreviations and/or the abbreviation for any college, tell what would happen if one abbreviated team played another. 4
1261 Post mortems -- our annual obit poem contest Write a humorous poem of no longer than eight lines about someone who died in 2017. H
1249 Ask Backwards 36 Choose any of the 15 provided items and follow it with a question that it could humorously answer. H
1227 Celebrate ortho-diversity! Name and describe a new life form -- and no letter in the term may be used twice. H
1225 The Ideas of March Suggest a march for some group or field, along with one or more slogans. (You might also, or instead, comment on the march with some pertinent wordplay.) 2
1221 Who's kidding whom? Take two people from history, past or present, and tell what their child would be like H
1218 Mess with our -- or anyone else's -- heads Reinterpret (or comment wryly on) a headline appearing in the Post (print or online or another publication dated March 9-20) by writing a bankhead, or subtitle. H H
1215 A so-so contest (How so-so is it?) Write a humorous exaggeration in the form "x is so y that …" H
1210 Send us the bill: Our 'joint legislation' game Combine two or more names from the provided list of members of Congress to “co-sponsor” a bill based on their combined last names, and state its purpose. H
1208 A RIP-roaring year: Obit poems Write a humorous poem of no longer than eight lines about someone who died in 2016. H
1171 What's my (next) line? Take a line from any song and pair it with your own second line to make a humorous rhyming couplet; the second line should match the rhythm of the first, rather than the second line of the song itself. H
1161 Give us four Pinocchios Tell us some false "facts" about politicians, present or past. H
1115 Our type o' headline Change a headline in an article or ad in the Washington Post and then add a "bank head" or subtitle. H
1073 Bank shots: Mess with (y)our heads Quote a headline appearing in the Washington Post, washington.com or another publication, print or headline, dated May 22 to June 1, and supply a bank" headline that either misinterprets it, as in the examples above, or comments wryly on it. H
1056 Weather or nuts Coin a term relating to the weather, climate, etc. -- either literal or figurative -- and define it. H H
1053 Questionable journalism Quote an actual sentence, from The Washington Post, washingtonpost.com, or another print or online publication dated between Dec. 26 and Jan. 6, and follow it with a question that the sentence might answer. H H
1048 Ask Backwards You supply the questions to as many of the provided answers as you like. H
1045 Songs for the asking Take a sentence, phrase or title forms a song and provide a funny question it might answer. H
1028 Joint Legiflation Combine the names of two or more of the First Congress senators and/or representatives to create "joint legislation". H
990 Indecent relations Pair two people, real or fictional, who have the same last name; say how they're alike or different, or something they might do (even in fantasy), as a pair. H
987 Bank shots Take any headline, verbatim, appearing anywhere in The Washington Post or on washingtonpost.com from Sept. 6 through Sept. 17 and reinterpret it by adding a "bank head," or subtitle. H H
962 Questionable journalism Take any sentence (or a major part of it) that appears in the Post or in an article on washingtonpost.com anytime from now through March 19 and supply a question it could answer. H
957 Fearful Symmetry Write a clever passage who successive words are on letter longer until the middle of the passage, and then become one letter shorter. H
941 They don't say! Give us a quote that a particular person, present or past, real or fictional, sooo wouldn't have said. H
938 Free and Lear Write a limerick using the first two lines of any of Edward Lear's 115 limericks plus your own remaining three lines. H
936 Hoho contendere Slightly alter a well-known foreign-language term and define it. H
934 Same difference Explain how any two items in the provided list are similar or different. H H
923 Chemical Wordfare Create a new chemical element or other chemical term. H H H
902 What's the good news? Take any sentence, or substantive part of a sentence, or a headline from an article or ad in The Washington Post or washingtonpost.com from Jan. 7 to Jan. 18 and make it sound upbeat (or not so bad). H
900 Dear us! Submit a "Dear Blank" letter to us instead. H
898 Pre-current events Predict some humorous news event that would happen in 2011. H
894 Look Back in Inker Enter any Style Invitational from Week 841 through Week 890 (except for Week 844). H H
890 Double-teaming Combine the names of any two pro sports teams -- even from different sports -- and describe the result. 4 H
889 Tour de Fours VII Coin and define a humorous word that includes -- with no other letters between them, but in any order -- the letters P, O, L and E. H
886 Look both ways Give us a new term that's a palindrome and define it. H
885 Mess with our heads Take any headline, verbatim, appearing anywhere in The Post or on washingtonpost.com from Sept. 10 through Sept. 20 and reinterpret it by adding a "bank head." H H
871 Remarquees Change a movie title by one letter (or number, if the title includes a number) and describe the new film. H
870 Let's play Nopardy Describe any of the above phrases in the form of a question. H
858 Same OED Make up a false definition for any of the words listed below. H
857 All FED Up Create a brand-new word of phrase that contains a block of three successive letters in the alphabet -- but the series must go backward through the alphabet. H H
856 Titled Puerility Here are some untitled book covers. For any of them, tell us a title and synopsis of a book that will never by published. H
851 Going to the shrink Downsize the title of a book, movie or play to make it smaller or less momentous and describe it. 2
842 Ask backwards Here are your 12 possible answers. Tell us your joke in the form of a question, please. H
840 Frittering away the neurons Give us some more colorfully useful phrases; they don't have to be in the X'ing-the-Y form. 3
839 Overlap Dance Overlap two words that share two or more consecutive letters -- anywhere in the word, not just at the beginning or end -- into a single longer word, and define it. AND your portmanteau word must begin with a letter from A through D. H
835 Tour de Fours VI Coin and define a humorous word that includes -- with no other letters between them, but in any order -- the letters T, H, R, and E. H H
832 Clue Us In You supply one or more clues for the words in a filled-in grid. 3 H H
831 A Big To-Do Name a "bucket list" item for a well-known real or fictional character. H
830 Mess With Our Heads Take any headline, verbatim, appearing anywhere in The Post or on washingtonpost.com from Aug. 14 through Aug. 24 and reinterpret it by adding a "bank head," or subtitle. H
823 Wryku Compose a humorous (or at least wry or clever) haiku. H
809 Unkindest Cutlines Supply cutlines, or captions, for any of these newspaper photos. H
801 Ask Backwards You are on "Jeopardy!" Here are the answers. You supply one or more of the questions. H H
799 Send Us the Bill Come up with legislation that, given their names, two or more freshman senators or representatives might sponsor together. H
798 Dead Letters Write a humorous poem commemorating someone who died in 2008. H
797 Be Resolute Make a humorous resolution for some particular person or institution to accomplish next year. H
792 Clue Us In Compile a set of funny alternative clues to a crossword penned by Ace Constructor Paula Gamache. H
787 Tour de Fours V Coin and define a humorous word that includes -- with no other letters between them, but in any order -- the letters M, N and E. 4
773 Always Looking for Sects Coin a religion or belief system and tell us its basic tenet or distinguishing characteristic. H
768 The Events Described Herein Are Entirely Fictitious Come up with fictitious movie trivia. H
765 It's Doo-Dah Day Write humorous lyrics commemorating any of the 50 states of the District, set to any of these Stephen Foster songs. H
763 Another Time Around the Track Breed any two of the winning "offspring" included in this week's results, and name THEIR foal. H
762 Look This Up in Your Funk & Wagnalls Supply the pair of terms listed at the top of a page of any print dictionary to indicate the first and last listings on the page, and define that hyphenated term. H
760 Whacksy Buildup Describe any of these Googlewhacks in the form of a question, "Jeopardy"-style. H
759 What Kind of Foal Am I? Breed any two of the 100 horses eligible for this year's Triple Crown and provide an appropriate name for their foal. H
756 Mess With Our Heads Take any headline, verbatim, appearing anywhere in The Post or on washingtonpost.com from March 15 through 24 and reinterpret it by adding a "bank head," or subtitle. H H H
754 Canny Similarities Cite a humorous "uncanny similarity" between any two of the very different people listed above. H H
752 The Might-Mates Right Fill out any of these five "you just might" joke-templates. H H
751 Strike Gold Slightly change the name of an existing or former TV show to create a program that can scab the writers' strike. H
749 Opus 266, No. 3 Take any common word or two-word term beginning with any letter from A through H and give it a new definition. H
748 Dead Letters Write a humorous poem about a well-known personage who died in 2007. 2
746 We Err The World Give us a motto or short slogan for any country in the world. H H
742 Clue Us In Give us a whole new set of clues to a crossword puzzle penned by Ace Constructor Paula Gamache. H
739 Lies, All Lies Give us some humorous fictional revelation about a current or past political figure. H
737 No River, No Woods Send us a funny parody of a well-known song, with lyrics that commemorate an occasion other than Christmas or Hanukkah. H H
735 Look Back in Inker Enter any Style Invitational contest from Week 680 through Week 731. H H
733 Just Drop It, Okay? Drop the first letter from an actual word or term to make a new word or term, and define it. 4
729 Otherwordly Visions Take any sentence in an article or ad in The Washington Post or on washingtonpost.com from Sept. 1 through Sept. 10 and translate it into "plain English." H
720 The Course of Humor Events Sum up a historical event in a two-line rhyme or other clever and pithy epigram. H
716 The Hard Spell Write a humorous poem featuring one of the 75 words we've selected from this year's National Spelling Bee. H
712 Another Time Around the Track Breed any two of the winning "offspring" included in the results of Week 708, and name THEIR foal. H
711 Join Now! Hyphenate the beginning and end of any two multi-syllabic words appearing anywhere in the April 29 or May 6 Style or Sunday Arts section, and then define the compound. 1
706 Questionable Journalism Take any sentence that appears in The Post or in an article on washingtonpost.com from March 24 through April 2 and come up with a question it could answer. H
705 Simile Outrageous Come up with funny analogies, perhaps with some 21st-century references. H H
700 Stump Us Come up with someone's slogan for the 2008 presidential campaign. H H H H H W
699 Our Greatest Hit Take a word, term or name that begins with E, F, G or H; either add one letter, subtract one letter, replace one letter, or transpose two letters; and define the new word. H
696 Send Us the Bill Come up legislation the newly-elected members of Congress might sponsor together. H H
695 Dead Letters Write a poem about someone who died in 2006. 2
693 Everything Being Sequel Give a brief scenario for the sequel to a well-known movie. H
691 Haven't Got a Clue Make all the clues in the provided crossword ooh-clever or at least ah-that's-funny, even the little words. H H
684 Backtricking Spell a word backward and define the result, somehow relating the definition to the original word. H
679 Ask Backwards Here are the answers. You supply the questions to as many as you dare. H H
676 Tour de Fours III Coin and define a word containing -- with no other letters between them, but in any order you like -- the letters L, E, A and F. H
673 Mess With Our Heads Take any headline, verbatim, appearing anywhere in The Washington Post or on Washingtonpost.com from July 30 through Aug. 7 and reinterpret it by adding either a "bank headline," or subtitle, or the first sentence of an article that might appear under it. H
670 A Test of Character Change a word or phrase by only one letter -- substitute one letter for another, add a letter or transpose two letters -- and explain how they are different or similar. H H
669 Huddled Messes Suggest some bad advice for new arrivals to this country (legal or illegal). H
663 Worth at Least a Dozen Words Interpret any of the provided cartoons as you see fit in a caption. 3 H
662 How Low Will You Go? Humiliate yourself for ink, and a stupid prize. H
661 Name Any Good Movies Lately? Give us a funny new title for an existing movie. H
659 Tell Us a Fib Compose a six-line poem with the following number of syllables per line: 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8. It must be about a person or topic currently in the news, and two successive lines must rhyme. 1
658 Not in the Cards Send us ideas for cards that would likely be ruled "FBN" (Funny, But No) by Hallmark but F&YYY by the Empress. 3
653 It's the Eponymy, Stupid Coin a word or expression based on the name of a well-known person, define it, and perhaps use it in a sentence H
652 Ask Backward You are on "Jeopardy!" Above are the answers. You supply the questions. H H
643 The Post's Mortems Give us a rhyming poem about some notable who died in 2005. H
640 Whassa Motto Wid You? Give us a slogan or motto for any of the states, the District or the U.S. Territories. H
618 Of D.C. I Sing Give us a song about Washington, set to a recognizable tune. H H
585 It's Parody Time Offer, in the holiday spirit of goodwill, some advice--as constructive and unifying as Loserly suggestions always are--to our nation's leaders (or the loyal opposition) as we prepare for the next four years. This advice will be set to the tune of some winter holiday song, either religious or secular. H

MOST OF YOUR INK

Here is, I hope, most of your ink to be found in the All Invitational Text list. I have to find these with what are called regular expressions, which is a method used in a lot of programming languages to find and modify certain text strings in larger corpora. Basically I look for something like this:

"Report From Week 758"

or

"And from The Style Invitational four weeks ago . . ."

and then some text, your name, and your town, arranged in this familiar way:

"GlaxoSmithKline: I have six kids named Chesterfield, Winston, Lark, BensonHedges, Doral and Kool. If I name my new baby Nicorette, can I get a free coupon for your products? (Jennifer Hart, Arlington)"

I don't catch everything, but I believe I find 90%.

Unlike in the table to the left, I've arranged these in chronological order, so you can see how your humor matured, like a forgotten cheese deep in the walls of an old house. You started out, perhaps in Year 1, sending in riddles you sort of remembered from grade school, and now look at ya, ain't you Dorothy Parker.





[still working on this ...]