PERMANENT INKSTAIN FOR BOB DALTON

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
1449 Let's have a get-together Begin with a real name; append to it a word, name or expression so that they overlap; and finally define or "quote" the resulting phrase or name. H
1132 You and what army? Military fictoids Give us some comically bogus trivia about the military, past or present, ours or theirs. H
924 Doomed to repeat it Create "Unreal Facts" about history. H
901 Dead Letters Write a humorous poem about someone who died in 2010. H
898 Pre-current events Predict some humorous news event that would happen in 2011. H
876 Oilies but goodies Write lyrics somehow related to the oil spill, set to an existing tune. 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. H
850 Dead letters Write a humorous poem about someone who died in 2009. H
849 Homonymphomania Create a new homonym (or homophone) for any existing word and define it. H
768 The Events Described Herein Are Entirely Fictitious Come up with fictitious movie trivia. H
748 Dead Letters Write a humorous poem about a well-known personage who died in 2007. H
743 Picture This Write a caption for any of these Bob Staake cartoons. H
741 Well, What Do You Know? Tell us what Major Life Lessons can be derived from any of these venues or situations. H H 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. L
723 Name Your Poison Create a name and recipe for a cocktail and, if you like, describe when it might be served. H H
715 Your Mug Here Send us an idea for a slogan for the back of the new Loser T-shirt. H
710 Aw, Shoot Send us a funny, clever, entirely original photo featuring kitchen utensils and/or small household tools. H
707 What Would YOU Do? Use only the words appearing in "The Cat in the Hat" to create your own work of "literature" of no more than 75 words. H
702 Unreal Facts Come up with a comically false factoid. H H H H H
700 Stump Us Come up with someone's slogan for the 2008 presidential campaign. 1 3 H H
695 Dead Letters Write a poem about someone who died in 2006. H H
694 Hopelessly Ever After Offer up a gloomy interpretation of any ungloomy piece of writing. H
690 Funnies: How Time Flies Pull Billy of "The Family Circus" -- or any of his comic strip neighbors in The Washington Post -- out of his time warp to a different age, era or place, and provide a short storyline or dialogue or caption. H
689 Busted Play Come up with a more objectionable or stupid toy than a working fart-powered toy rocket. H
685 Thank it Over Tell us some things to be thankful for. H H
682 Punkin'd! Send us a funny, clever, entirely original photo featuring one or more pumpkins and/or other vegetables. H
681 Ticket to Write Write a jingle for a business (or its product), organization or government agency, set to a Beatles song. 2 H H
657 Nuts Fruit Send in funny (but printable) images of real pieces of fruit. H
643 The Post's Mortems Give us a rhyming poem about some notable who died in 2005. H
636 A Song From Tex Arcana Write a verse of a song about sea urchin sushi or any of the other provided ostensibly unlyrical topics. H
634 Mess With Our Heads Take any headline, verbatim, appearing anywhere in The Post or on washingtonpost.com from today through next Sunday, and change its meaning by adding either a "bank headline," or subtitle, or the first sentence of an article that might appear under it. H H
610 MASH Find two well-known movies, plays, or TV shows whose title have a significant word in common, combine their titles, and describe the hybrid. H
600 Top of the Inking Tell us some ways the District of Columbia will change now that we have the Nationals. H
596 Take Her Words for It Use the words of this week's Ask Amy advice column, as a pool from which to compose your own useful (or useless) thoughts. You may ignore or change capitalization or punctuation. H H W
594 History Loves Company Name an appropriate corporate sponsor for some historical event or for someone's life story. H H
592 We Got Gamy Offer us a concise idea for a Super Bowl commercial, or some innovative halftime entertainment, or some inappropriate sponsors, or some ideas for improving the game itself. H
591 Dead Letters Write rhyming poems about notable personages who have died in the past year. H H
580 United Nations Combine the names of any two countries in the world and describe the new hybrid country. H
558 Set Us Right Send us conservative-leaning humor in any of the provided genres. 3 H H H H
550 Spring Cleaning Suggest creative uses for things you've already used, or never will use, or other disposable household thingies, singly or in combination. H H H
546 A Nice Pair of Cities Choose any two or more real U.S. towns and come up with a joint endeavor they would undertake. H H
544 You Gotta Have Heart Write us some valentine sentiments from one particular person (real or fictional) to another. H
543 Read Our Leaps Fill any readers of The Washington Post on Sunday, Feb. 29, 2032, on: (a) the day's lead news story; (b) the highest-flying company and its business; (c) the best-selling self-help book; and/or (d) the day's winning Style Invitational entry. H H
539 Dead Letters Pay tribute in verse to someone who died in 2003. H H W
538 Try, Try Again Enter any previous Invitational. Your entry must be substantially different from the original winners. H
537 The New York Post Liven up any article appearing in The Washington Post or its Web site over the next eight days by giving it an irresponsibly sensationalistic headline. H
504 Life Is Snort Write a schmaltzy last line of a "Life Is Short." 5
490 Eyes on Reprise Submit any good entries you might have thought of, for any previous contest, after the deadline passed. H H H
486 A Word From Our Co-Sponsors Come up with bills the new members of Congress might sponsor. Each bill must have at least two sponsors. H
478 Do You Mindset? Anticipate items for the Mindset List for the freshman class of the year 2020. 3
477 A Load of Bulwer Give us the beginning of incompetently written novel. W
452 Russellmania! (1) Design one or more steps for a 12-step program for the recovering Invitationalaholic; (2) Propose a devious method by which we might lure Russell Beland back. H H H
450 Blues It or Lose It Write the first verse of a blues song expressing some Washington area woe. H W
444 Advice Squad Take any letter from today's advice columns and answer it in the voice of someone famous, living or dead. H
442 Titletales Take any real book or movie, change one word slightly, and describe the resulting new product. H
439 No Can Do Write signs of incompetence. H H
437 The Telegraph Poll Tell us the beginning of a joke that badly telegraphs the punch line. H
403 Cry, Uncle! Write the beginnings of an obituary that will provide the details of what happened to the Style Invitational Uncle. H
364 Low Marks Come up with a new punctuation mark. Tell us what it looks like, and what it is used for, and use it in a sentence. W
362 Something Missing Tell us what is missing in each of the provided cartoons. H
345 Picture This What is going on in these cartoons? H H
343 Eastwood Ho. Create a Good-Bad-Ugly progression. H
340 ASK BACKWARDS 12 You are on "Jeopardy!" Here are the answers. What are the questions? H
327 ASK BACKWARDS You are on "Jeopardy!" These are the answers. What are the questions? H H
323 THE CONGRESSIONAL RECORD INVITATIONAL Come up with not-quite-ready inventions, past or present. H
321 INTERPRET THIS Take any of the provided cartoons and come up with a matched pair of interpretations for what is happening. H
320 WHAT KIND OF FOAL AM I? Mate any two of the horses qualifying for the Triple Crown races and come up with appropriate names for their foals. Maximum 18 letters and spaces. H
316 CALLING THE TOON What are these things? H
306 YOUNGIAN THERAPY Suggest ways in which the Style Invitational or any other Washington area institution can become more relevant to younger people. H
298 THE RIGHT STUFF Write a sentence, or phrase, or entire passage, using only your right hand on the keyboard. This means you may use no keys to the left of N, H, Y and 7. H
287 BEFORE AND AFTERMATH Begin with a real name, append to it a word, name or expression that completes the bridge, and finally define the resulting phrase. H
265 A SPORK OF GENIUS Come up with new products like the spork: combinations of two existing products that work together in some special way. Name the device and explain its function. H
264 ASK BACKWARDS You are on "Jeopardy!" Here are the answers. What are the questions? H
262 CAMPAIGN FOR ONE Design a line for Niels Hoven to deliver in his campaign for a student government office that will wake up a snoozing audience. H H
252 MAKE YOUR MOVIE Propose people who were the secret inspiration for famous movies. H H H
249 BAD NEWS, GOOD NEWS Supply a silver lining for any scourge or social ill facing America or the world. H H
245 LIKE FUN Complete any of the provided "A is like B because" sentences. H H
244 HYPHEN THE TERRIBLE Coin new words, and provide a definition, by combining the first half of a hyphenated word for any story in today's Post with the second half of another hyphenated word in the same story. H H H
240 ADDING INSULT Come up with elegant insults directed at any famous person, living or dead, such as the real encomiums above. H H H
239 NAME THAT TOON Send us the captions for cartoons not provided. H
237 ASK BACKWARD You are on "Jeopardy!" These are the answers. What are the questions? H H H W
234 THE JOKE'S ON YOU Complete any of the provided jokes as it would be told by someone famous, living or dead. H H
220 RSVP Provide an answer to any of the dumb questions from Week 217. H
218 CALLING THE TOON Who are these people? What are they doing? H
217 NO QUESTION ABOUT IT Come up with truly stupid questions. H
211 GIVE US THE BACKS OFF YOUR SHIRTS Design the back of the fourth Style Invitational T-shirt, with anything that captures the transcendent indignity of this contest. 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 ...]