PERMANENT INKSTAIN FOR JOHN KAMMER

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
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 H
1170 Derby or not Derby "Breed" any two of the provided racehorses nominated for this year's Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont; and name the foal to reflect both names. H H
1127 From the creators of … Think up a spinoff of a real TV series, past or present, and furnish a description or bit of dialogue. H H
1114 Awww together now Write us a humorous headline -- from the past, present, or future -- that puts an optimistic perspective on some otherwise not-so-promising news. H H
1109 Fictoids of Columbia Tell us some humorously untrue “facts” about Washington, D.C., and the surrounding area. H H
1087 The core ridiculum Come up with a comical class (any type of school) and provide a course catalog description. H H
1083 Everybody get appy Offer up an idea for either a humorously useful app or a humorously counterproductive one. 2 2 H 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 H
1072 The Tile Invitational Come up with a 5-, 6-, or 7-letter term by scrambling any of the provided seven-letter ScrabbleGram sets, and define it. 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 H H H
457 Letter Rip Give us the beginning of a letter to the editor that is certain never to see print. H H H H
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
444 Advice Squad Take any letter from today's advice columns and answer it in the voice of someone famous, living or dead. H H
440 Picture This What is going on in these cartoons? H H
428 No Rest for the Query Answer any of the provided supposedly unanswerable questions in the voice of any famous person, living or dead. H H
423 Roling With Laughter Take a character from one movie, use him or her to replace a character in a second movie, and then explain how this change would affect the second movie. H H
418 Xtreme Invitational Come up with signs you are overdoing it any in any of the provided categories. H H
406 Bum Steerage Offer some spectacularly bad advice to any of the provided people. H H
403 Cry, Uncle! Write the beginnings of an obituary that will provide the details of what happened to the Style Invitational Uncle. H H
396 April Foals 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 H H H
391 Spinning Out of Control Take a headline in today's Washington Post and create a subhead that spins the story in an opposite or unexpected direction. H H H H H H
388 Pitches in the Dirt Come up with a sales pitch to get any surplus product off the shelves. H H
378 Bill Us Now Come up with a bill sponsored by any of the newly elected U.S. senators and representatives, and explain the purpose of the bill. U U
373 An Extra Large Challenge What should we put on the back of the new Style Invitational T-shirt? 3 3
366 Just Fulghum Come up with a list of at least three Major Life Lessons one can learn from any of the venues provided. H H
350 Employing Irony Propose bad career choices. 3 3
345 Picture This What is going on in these cartoons? H H H H
344 What Kind of Foal Am I? Envision the mating of any two of the 387 horses qualifying for this year's Triple Crown, and propose a name for their foal. The foal's name must be contained in 18 or fewer letters and spaces. H H
340 ASK BACKWARDS 12 You are on "Jeopardy!" Here are the answers. What are the questions? H H
336 THE "STY"LE INVITATIONAL Choose any word and emphasize a single part of it, as though you were saying the word out loud with "air quotes" around the key part. Then redefine the word. You cannot alter the spelling of the word. H H
335 A LOVER'S SPAT Enter the contest that is run by the editor of your choice. H H
334 The New Style Invitational: Six Choices for Czar Vote for one of six possible editors of the Style Invitation, from among the current Czar and five worthy competitors. H H
325 THE BURMA ROAD Propose welcoming doggerel for states or cities patterned after Burma Shave signs. H 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 H
311 A JERRY-BUILT CONTEST Find cleverly disguised threats to public morality or hallowed American values that may be secretly lurking out there in our culture. H H
310 IT'S LIKE THIS Come up with really lame analogies. 4 4
307 IF YOU BOYCOTT THIS TASK / YOU WON'T WIN THE FLASK Come up with rhyming couplets to warn us about the perils of modern life. H H
302 UNSTATED TRUTHS Come up with lines that you'll never hear the provided people say. H 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 H L L
297 FREE FOR OIL Take any article in today's paper, and write an outraged letter to the editor about it that totally misses the point, either by misreading a word or misunderstanding the topic. H H H H H H H H
296 BILL US LATER Choose among the names of any of the newly elected U.S. senators or representatives and propose a bill they might sponsor. 3 3
294 PRODUCT LIARBILITY Take the name of any commercial product and redefine it. H H
291 HYPHEN THE TERRIBLE Take any story in today's paper, find a word that breaks with a hyphen at the end of a line, and combine it with the second half of different hyphenated word in the same story. Then supply a definition for the new hybrid word. H H H H
286 CLINTOONS Make your own Clintoon, a comic strip consisting of any or all of the provided drawings. H H
285 ELEVENIS, ANYTWO? Take a common phrase containing a specific number, add or subtract one, and explain the revised phrase. 3 3
284 ASK BACKWARDS MCLXVII You are on "Jeopardy!" These are the answers. What are the questions? H H
282 TAKING SNIDES Take any story anywhere in today's Post and append to it a single snide observation, concerning either the headline or the text of the story. 2 2 H H
281 CALCULATE THE ODDS Tell us which of the two provided items does not belong with the other two, and why. H H H H
274 THE DROLL OF A LIFETIME Be the New Yorker comics editor, and explain to readers of The Washington Post why the provided jokes are charmingly witty. 2 2 H H H H H H
273 UNSEENS WE'D LIKE TO SEE Provide examples of any of the provided categories of things that will never happen. H H
268 WHAT KIND OF FOAL AM I? Take the names of this year's Triple Crown nominees, mate any two of them, a propose a name for the foal. The foal's name must be contained in 18 characters, including spaces. 3 3 H H H H
263 THE GAME OF THE NAME Propose a bad name for the provided categories. 3 3 H H H H H H H H H 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 L L
260 IT'S A SNAP Come up with replacements for the two hackneyed answers: "Is the Pope Catholic?" and "When Hell freezes over." H H H H H H H H P P
258 IT'S A BIRD. IT'S A PAIN. Choose one or more of the provided super powers and tell us what you would do with it. H H
250 OH, GREAT Complete the sentence "Wouldn't it be great if …" E E
248 STICKER SCHLOCK Come up with a message for our new, mildly sought-after Style Invitational bumper sticker, something that summarizes the grandeur and dignity of this stupid contest. H H
246 OUR OWN DEVICES What do these contraptions do? Tell us in 50 words or fewer. 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
243 VERSE THAN EVER Write a rhyming poem of two to eight lines as a tribute to someone famous who died in 1997, the more awful the better. We will particularly value rhymes that thud, and extremes of emotion and sentiment. E E
242 SACRED COW PIES Take cheap shots at sacred institutions only, places and things that are so noble and wholesome they are beyond reproach, from among the items provided. E E
238 CHALK IT UP TO STUPIDITY Propose apologies for yourself in the style of Bart Simpson writing on his blackboard. H H
231 GIVING QUARTER Suggest a motto for the "tails" side of any of the state-themed quarters. H H H H H H
224 DRAWING CONCLUSIONS What is wrong with these pictures? H H
222 TRIP DEUCES Take the two subject listings at the top of any page of the Yellow Pages and create a dictionary definition for the compound word they form. H H
217 NO QUESTION ABOUT IT Come up with truly stupid questions. 2 2 H H H H
216 WHAT KIND OF FOAL AM I? Pair up any two of the 400-plus horses who have qualified for this year's Triple Crown races, and name their foal, in a maximum of 18 characters, including spaces. H H
213 A SIN OF THE TIMES Submit campaign or other political practices that would be illegal and/or unethical. E E
212 DUMB AS THE POST Come up with even stupider crimes than those committed by Montgomery County's "gentleman burglars." 1 1
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. 2 2 E E H H
208 SEND IN THE CLONES Suggest questions a commission to investigate the moral, legal and practical question raised by cloning might consider. H H
202 THE ELEMENTS OF SMILE Interpret any of the provided computer emoticons, or "smileys." 2 2 H H
200 CAPTION CRUNCH IV Supply a new caption to any photograph appearing anywhere in today's Post, to make it funnier. H H
199 WHAT'S THE DIFFERENCE? Tell us the difference between any two of the provided items. 2 2
194 ADVICE SQUAD Answer any of the provided questions unwisely. H H
191 GOING THROUGH A PHRASE Come up with phrase for an American English phrasebook that would provide no practical help whatsoever to a foreigner trying to get along in the United States. H H H H H H
190 OFFICE YOU CAN'T REFUSE Come up with a Principle for the Workplace. H H H H H H H H W W
187 RACE TO THE FINISH LINE In 75 words or fewer, continue in a productive fashion the story line of the provided real first lines of famous literary works. H H H H
184 ED ANGUISH Create an argument on some social issue, in 75 words or fewer, taking an extreme liberal view. W W
177 SOUNDS LIKE TROUBLE Tell us what any of the provided sounds are. 4 4
175 FOSSIL FOOLS What would aliens mistakenly conclude about us from any of the provided items? 3 3 H H
171 ON SECOND THOUGHT Ideas that never got off the drawing board, for good reason. 2 2
167 CRAPSEY Resurrect the "cinquain," a long-deceased poetic form, poems so ickily precocious and pretentious they make haiku look like Kipling. There are five lines, the first containing two syllables, the second containing four syllables, the third six, the fourth eight and the last, with grave finality and thunderous drama, only two. Your subject matter must be suitable for the 1990s. H H
164 MEAN MEANINGS Translate things politicians say into what they really mean. H H H H
163 WHAT KIND OF FOAL AM I? Take the list of all 1996 Triple Crown nominees, couple up any two of them, and propose an appropriate name for their hypothetical foal. The foal's name must fit in no more than 18 characters, including spaces. H H
162 MAY WE HAVE YOUR PRETENSION, PLEASE? Come up with the most pretentious original sentence possible. H H
157 WARNING SIGNS Complete any of these "you might be about to" warning sentences. H H H H H H H H H H
155 COMPARISON SHOPPING Explain the difference between any two of the above items. 3 3
153 STUMP US Complete this sentence, "I should be elected President of the United States because…" and launch your campaign. H H
152 WE ARE CURIOUS (YELLOW) Take any headline in today's Washington Post and rewrite it in tabloid fashion so the story seems a lot more scandalous and/or lurid than it is. 1 1
151 STRIP MINING Come up with a concept for a new, controversial strip to replace an existing one in The Post. H H
150 TRIAL BALLOONS What are the people saying? H H R R
140 WHAT IF YOU GIVE IT A TRY? Come up with "What-If" scenarios and logical outcomes. 2 2
137 VELVIS LIVES Come up with a title and/or art gallery blurb for this velvet Elvis painting. H H
136 NEW END IN SIGHT Come up with new endings to make literary classics more suitable for Hollywood in the 1990s. H H H H
130 NICELY STATED Create a fictional city to be humorously paired with a real state abbreviation. 2 2 H H H H
129 REMAKE US HAPPY Come up with alternative story lines to movie titles, new or old. E E
127 GADGET IF YOU CAN Choose one or more of these devices and describe their use. H H
121 IT'S NO USE Come up with useless products. E E
120 SIMILE OUTRAGEOUS Come up with inept analogies, rotten comparisons as a literary device. H H
118 WEAK 118 Take any photo caption or headline appearing anywhere in today's Post and alter its meaning by adding, deleting, or changing one letter. H H H H
117 GIVE 'EM HELOISE Come up with a tribute to Heloise, that queen of inanely creative recycling. H H
111 ASK BACKWARDS V Here are the answers. What are the questions? H H
110 DO NOT INHALE THIS PAGE Come up with absurd warning labels that might be found on common products. H H
109 SEND US YOUR MAIL PARTS We're looking for funny examples of pidgin English that try to say one thing, but actually say something quite different. H H
107 CLUSTERS' LAST STAND Take an actual star cluster, redraw the lines into a different image, and give it a new name. L L
106 DRAWING CONCLUSIONS Who are these people, and what are they doing? 2 2 H H
103 SEND HELP. Come up with ways to raise some badly needed cash for the District of Columbia. H H
100 THE JOKE'S ON YOU Retell any of these jokes as they would be told by some celebrity, living or dead. H H H H H H
99 WHAT'S WRONG WITH THESE PICTURES? What's wrong with these pictures? L L
95 HOW'S THAT AGAIN? Take any headline appearing anywhere in The Post this week and completely rewrite the first lines of the story to put a different, unintended spin on it. H H
81 HEADS, YOU LOSE Take any two or more headlines anywhere in today's Washington Post, and combine them to make a funnier headline. H H
80 NICK KNACKS Come up with a great nickname for any contemporary celebrity. H H
79 TERROR-DACTYL Send us a double dactyl. The first line must be a nonsense phrase of five to seven syllables containing exactly two downbeats. The second line must be a name, in five to seven syllables but only two downbeats. The remaining six lines must contain four to seven syllables and two downbeats each, with Lines 4 and 8 rhyming. Somewhere in the poem, one line must consist of only one word. 2 2
77 THE RORSCHACH OF THE CROWD II What do these ink blots mean? H H
71 CAPTION CRUNCH III Come up with a new, funnier caption for any picture or illustration anywhere in today's newspaper. H 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 ...]