||Just Drop It, Okay?
||Drop the first letter from an actual word or term to make a new word or term, and define it.
||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.
||Doody and Muldoon
||Write poetry that out-Muldoons Paul Muldoon, the Princeton professor who won this year's Pulitzer Prize in poetry. Your poem must be a single quatrain, containing at least one rhyme and references to at least two body parts and one geographic name.
||What Kind of Foal Am I?
||Mate any two of the horses qualifying for this year's Triple Crown and tell us the name of their foal. Maximum 18 characters, including spaces.
||Hyphen the Terrible
||Take the first half of any hyphenated word from any story in today's newspaper and combine it with the second half of any other hyphenated word in the same story, and propose a definition of the new word you've created.
||Sins of Omission
||Omit a letter or letters from a real-life sign to create a name for a new business, comically different from the original. Describe the new business or include a slogan that explains it.
||2 H |
||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 |
||Life in the Blurbs
||Come up with a blurb used to sell a real or imagined book or movie that would be likely to have the opposite of the intended effect.
||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 |
||Pitches in the Dirt
||Come up with a sales pitch to get any surplus product off the shelves.
||2 H H |
||Take any well-known statement, expression, slogan, etc., and rewrite it the way Dubya might have said it.
||Take an expression, or a lyric for a song, or any recognizable line of prose, and make it the punchline of an awful pun.
||What is going on in these cartoons?
||Come up with signs that a presidential campaign might be in trouble.
||DEGREES OF DIFFICULTY
||Take a quality you wish to quantify and devise the perfect icon to measure it. Then give us an example of the extremes.
||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 |
||A LOVER'S SPAT
||Enter the contest that is run by the editor of your choice.
||THE BURMA ROAD
||Propose welcoming doggerel for states or cities patterned after Burma Shave signs.
||A PREQUEL OPPORTUNITY OFFERING
||Come up with a "prequel" to some classic film or work of literature. You must produce a title and a brief plot summary, which of course must take place prior to the main action of the original work.
||THE CONGRESSIONAL RECORD INVITATIONAL
||Come up with not-quite-ready inventions, past or present.
||GIVE US NO MO
||Write an updated version of those old children's selecting rhymes. Your rhyme must (1) rhyme and (2) conform, at least loosely, to a point-and-shoot cadence that permits the elimination of one item from a group.
||Suggest ways in which the Style Invitational or any other Washington area institution can become more relevant to younger people.
||H H |
||TIME OF THE SIGNS
||Come up with appropriate signage to appear outside any business or retail establishment in the Washington area, including government offices.
||Come up with lines that you'll never hear the provided people say.
||ANOTHER LEFTIST RAG
||Write the day's tabloid headlines with your left hand only. (This means you can use no keys to the right of 6, T, G and B.)
||Come up with "uh-oh" lines, statements that occur in the middle of a seemingly benign speech or conversation, suddenly alerting the listener that he is about to hear some bad news.
||H H |
||EXPRESSING IT NICELY
||Come up with colorful expressions for any of the six provided activities, to make them sound a little less tawdry.
||H H |
||Come up with new Yogi-isms, which seem to make sense, but collapse like a soufflé when you poke it a little
||SIGNS, AND THE TIMES
||Come up with new, helpful signage for downtown streets. You must state the problem, and propose the sign to rectify it.
||H H |
||Take any word from the dictionary and redefine it.
||THE GAME OF THE NAME
||Propose a bad name for the provided categories.
||H H H |
||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.
||IT'S A SNAP
||Come up with replacements for the two hackneyed answers: "Is the Pope Catholic?" and "When Hell freezes over."
||SPARE EXCHANGE, BUDDY?
||Take any phone number of any business or government office in the Washington area, translate the first two digits into their constituent letters and propose any appropriate one-word exchange.
||2 E H H H |
||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.
||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 |
||Propose a question that might be asked by a living celebrity to a famous dead person. You must name the living person, name the dead person, and tell us the question.
||LICENSE TO CARRY A PUN
||Come up with original jokes like those provided.
||Come up with very, very bad advice for first-time visitors to Washington.
||HYPHEN THE TERRIBLE
||Create new word by combining the first half of a hyphenated word with the second half of a hyphenated word. Both words must appear in the same story anywhere in today's Washington Post. Each entry must provide a definition for the newly created word.