PERMANENT INKSTAIN FOR DAVE ZARROW

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
1283 Put it in Bee-verse Write a humorous poem of eight lines or fewer that includes one of the provided words, all from the 2018 National Spelling Bee. H
1282 Picture This Write a caption for one or more of the provided pictures. H
1278 Colt following: The 'grandfoals' "Breed" any two of the 68 foal names that got ink this week, and name the offspring to reflect both parents' names, in the style of today's inking entries. H
1277 Come into Beeing with neologisms From any of the 15 provided Spelling Bee letter sets, coin a new term of one or two words and define it humorously. You may also supply an especially clever or funny definition of a real term. H
1245 Call us reprehensible … Complain in a humorously missing-the-point way about something that has appeared in The Washington Post (in print or online) recently, or in another publication. H
1238 D-E-F Comedy Jam (or E-D-F, etc.)  Coin a three­word phrase (you may add an insignificant word or two)  whose words begin with D, E and F — in any order — and describe it. H
1235 The Sound of Science Write humorous lyrics on the subject of science or technology, set to a well-known tune. H
1233 Not The Loser Community  gets a week off (actually  two) from writing contest  entries and will have to  find something else to do  during staff meetings,  sermons, romantic  breakups, etc. H
1224 We beg you to differ Explain how any two (or more) items in the provided list are the same or different, or otherwise connected. H
1184 Plan C -- a third candidate? Explain why some novel person (or thing) should be president; you could also suggest a president-veep ticket. H
1174 Colt following -- It's time for the grandfoals "Breed" any two of the 57 foal names that got ink this week and name the offspring to reflect both parents' names. H
1158 What have we here? Tell us what one or more of these objects really are. H
1156 Dead letters Write a humorous poem of no longer than eight line about someone who died in 2015. H
1122 Colt Following: 'Grandfoals' "Breed" any two of the 65 foal names that got ink this week and name the offspring to reflect the parents' names. H
1072 The Tile Invitational Come up with a 5-, 6-, or 7-letter term by scrambling any of the given seven-letter ScrabbleGram sets, and define it. 4
1047 Bank shots Quote a headline appearing in The Washington Post, washingtonpost.com or another publication, print or online, dated Nov. 14 to Nov. 25, and supply a humorous "bank" headline that either misinterprets it or comments wryly on it. H
1039 Shookespeare Combine any of the words in Hamlet's "To be, or not to be" soliloquy, in any order, to create a humorous sentence or longer passage. H
1033 LimeriXicon Supply a humorous limerick significantly featuring any English word, name or term beginning with "fa-". H
1025 In so many words Create an original backronym for a name or other term, especially one that's been in the news lately. H
1021 'Gram theft Come up with a term by scrambling any of the letters sets in the provided list, and define it. H H H H H
1013 Har monikers Write a riddle that uses a pun of a person's name in the answer. H
1005 Send us the bill Name a piece of legislation "cosponsored" by two or more of the 98 new House and Senate members provided. L
966 Inkremental change Start with any word or name, and create a series of words that change by one letter at a time, until you come up with a related word or name. W
965 Foaling around Breed any two of the horses in this year's Triple Crown races and name their foal. H
955 Twits' twist Create a phrase by combining a word or phrase with an anagram of that word or phrase, and define or describe it. 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
935 The 400 blows Write a humorous poem--choose your form--about the Virginia earthquake, Hurricane Irene or another well-known natural event. H
931 Limerixicon 8 Supply a humorous limerick significantly featuring any English word, name or term beginning with the letters ea- through -el. H
929 Now sit right back ... Write a funny song introducing a TV show, past or present. H
903 Bill us now Combine the names of two or more members of Congress as co-sponsors of a bill. H H
887 Plus-Fours Write a limerick whose third or fourth line is one of those listed above. 2
870 Let's play Nopardy Describe any of the above phrases in the form of a question. H
863 It's Post time Breed any two of 100 of the almost 400 horses eligible for this year's Triple Crown races, and name the foal. 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
855 The news could be verse Sum up an article (or even an ad!) in any Washington Post print or online edition from Feb. 6 through Feb. 15 in verse. 4
850 Dead letters Write a humorous poem about someone who died in 2009. H
844 Healthy choice Enter any Style Invitational from Week 790 through Week 840, except for Week 793 and Week 798. H
841 Food for naught Alter the name of a food or dish slightly and describe the result. W
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
838 Picture This Provide a caption for any of these pictures. 3
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. T
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
828 Inhuman Puns Make a pun on the name of a familiar group, organization or company, and describe it or provide a quote from it. H H H
827 Caller Idiot Name a real product or company and supply a stupid question or complaint for the consumer hotline person. H
826 The Inside Word Take any word -- this may include the name of a person or place -- put a portion of it in quotation marks, and redefine the word. H H
825 Disinstrumentals Write some words to music that has no words. H
823 Wryku Compose a humorous (or at least wry or clever) haiku. H L W
816 Googillions Come up with an original phrase that generates at least 1 million listings on a Google search. 3 L
814 There Will Be Bloodline Breed any two of the winning "offspring" included in this week's results, and name their foal. H
810 What Kind of Foal Am I? Breed any two of the more than 400 horses eligible for this year's Triple Crown races and provide an appropriate name for their foal. H
806 DQ Very Much Give us a phrase or sentence that would nip a potential relationship in the bud (or elsewhere). H
803 The Pepys Show Write a humorous diary or journal entry for someone, famous or not, for any point in history. H
801 Ask Backwards You are on "Jeopardy!" Here are the answers. You supply one or more of the questions. H
799 Send Us the Bill Come up with legislation that, given their names, two or more freshman senators or representatives might sponsor together. 3
798 Dead Letters Write a humorous poem commemorating someone who died in 2008. H H 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. 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
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. M
748 Dead Letters Write a humorous poem about a well-known personage who died in 2007. H
744 You OED Us One Make up a humorous and false definition for any of the words listed below. H
743 Picture This Write a caption for any of these Bob Staake cartoons. 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
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. 3
695 Dead Letters Write a poem about someone who died in 2006. 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. 2 P
633 Your Secret Here! Send us some original secrets (they don't have to be true). H
632 Live On, Sweet, Earnest Reader (Inc.) Give us an original backronym for a company or product. A backronym is a fake etymology that often gets in a little dig at the subject. H
603 Sui Genesis Take one of two of the 50 chapters of the KJV Book of Genesis and draw thou from them, using words in the order in which they appear in the original, your own passage. T
591 Dead Letters Write rhyming poems about notable personages who have died in the past year. H
590 Send Us the Bill Come up with a bill sponsored by any combination of the newly elected members of Congress and explain the purpose of the bill. H H
589 Hyphen the Terrible (New Edition!) Combine the beginning of any multi-syllabic word in this week's Invitational with the end of any other multi-syllabic word in this column (or in this week's Web supplement) to coin a new word, and then define it. H
583 Mess With Our Heads Take any headline, verbatim, from the Washington Post or its Web site from today through next Sunday, and reinterpret it by writing either a "bank headline"--or subtitle--or the first sentence of an article that changes the original meaning entirely. 2 H
582 Perversery Rhymes Update a nursery rhyme or children's song with an edgier text. H
579 Another Brilliant Contest! Do Enter! Write us a sentence or phrase consisting of words beginning with consecutive letters, in the A-to-Z direction. L
577 Teledubbies Slightly change the title of a TV show, past or present, and describe it. H
572 The Limerixicon Supply a limerick based on any word in the dictionary (except proper nouns) beginning with ai- through ar-. 1 H H
565 Anthem Is as Anthem Does Give us a verse for an alternative U.S. national anthem, set to any well-known tune. H
556 So Zoo Us Combine any two kinds of animals, give its name and describe it. H
554 Love the Tiny Tail Stain Write an anagram based on a name or event that's been in the news recently. H
553 Picture This Tell us what's going on in on or more of the provided cartoons. H
552 What Kind of Foal Am I? Breed any two of the horses on a list of those qualifying for this year's Triple Crown races, and tell us a good name for their foal. Maximum 18 characters, including spaces. H
547 Give Us a Bad Name Take an existing product or business name and pair it with an incompatible one. H
545 Put It in Reverse Spell a word backward and define it, with the definition relating in some way to the original word. H
539 Dead Letters Pay tribute in verse to someone who died in 2003. 1 H
536 And the Horse He Rodin On Come up with some words we can stick in the back of The Inker. H W
528 Ask Backwards You are on "Jeopardy!" These are the answers. What are the questions? 3
527 Rite of First Defusal Come up with witty or bizarre things to say to defuse the tension in awkward moments. H
521 Hyphen the Terrible Take the first half of any hyphenated word in today's Washington Post (or Tuesday's USA Today) and combine it with the second half of any other hyphenated word in the same story, and define the new word it produces. 3 H H H
512 Live On, Sweet, Earnest Reader Take the name of any person--living, dead, fictional--and use the letters of his name, in succession. To form the first letters of an expression appropriate to that person. H H H
511 It All Impends Tell us what is something unusual about to happen in the provided cartoons. H
506 The Battle of All Mottoes Provide a slogan for any federal department agency, department, office, etc. H
499 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. H
498 Unamazing But True! Submit a true fact that is of absolutely no use, but interesting in a weirdly Invitationalist way. 3 H
496 The Style Invitational: The First Dreckade Submit new entries to any of the old contest listed, and try to beat The Very Best of the Past 10 Years. 1
494 Quote-idian Take any extremely banal piece of familiar writing and rewrite it in the style of a famous writer, poet or lyricist. H
493 A Major Offensive Find something anywhere in today's Washington Post and complain about it with absurd oversensitivity. 1
489 Combo, First Blood Combine two people whose names contain a common element, as in the examples above. Then describe the person, or provide a quote he or she might have uttered. 1 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. 5 H H H H H
485 Asterisky Business Write a joke with a punch line depending on knowledge so esoteric that it requires an asterisked explanation. H
482 Inspect Our Gadgets What are these gadgets? What do they do? H
481 Homonymphomania Create a new homonym of any existing word, and define. The new word must be spelled in such a way that is obviously pronounced identically to the original word. H H
476 Portmanteautapping Make a new word by squishing together two existing words. The constituent words must share at least two letters. H
474 Alphabettering Create a sentence that uses each letter the alphabet at least once but that would never be heard on the politically correct, genteel, rarified air of NPR. H
465 Hyphen the Terrible Take the first half of any word or word combination in today's Post that is broken by a hyphen at the end of a line, and combine it with the second half of any other hyphenated word from the same story, and define the new word that is formed. H H H
461 Punch Us Again Take any comic from the daily Washington Post during the next week and make it better by changing the contents of the final word balloon. 1 H H
459 Stock Humor Look at any of the abbreviated company names in the Nasdaq or New York Stock Exchange listings in any newspaper's business section and suggest what business the companies might be in. H
456 A Bad-Ask Contest You are still on Jeopardy!, and you still have to supply questions to the provided answers, but the winners will be the least funny answers. H
450 Blues It or Lose It Write the first verse of a blues song expressing some Washington area woe. H
449 Cut and Pastiche Create a new, funny headline from the words of any headlines appearing anywhere in today's Post. You cannot subdivide words. H W
448 What Kind of Foal Am I? Mate any two of the horses qualifying for the Triple Crown races this year and propose a name for their foal. No name may exceed 18 characters, including spaces. H
446 Poems Where the Heart Is Take any recent news event and summarize it in a rhyming poem of eight lines or fewer. H
443 Sick Humor Come up with modern diseases of Washington life. H
442 Titletales Take any real book or movie, change one word slightly, and describe the resulting new product. H H H
440 Picture This What is going on in these cartoons? H H
438 What's the Pun Line? Ask a question and answer it, somewhere incorporating the name of a least one famous person. 3
430 OMB Directive No. 2 Revisit any contest The Style Invitational has ever run, and rewrite out tawdry past by proposing a new first-prize winner serious and/or decorous enough to please the Ombudsman. 3
428 No Rest for the Query Answer any of the provided supposedly unanswerable questions in the voice of any famous person, living or dead. 2
425 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. H H
421 Picture This These objects are not what they seem to be, at first glance. They are something else entirely. What are they? H
417 Initially Mistaken Take any name of person or thing, and construct an appropriate message using its letters, in order, as the first letters of the words of your message. 2
415 Sentence Us to Death Take any sentence appearing anywhere in today's Washington Post, and invent a question that it answers. H
413 Bland Ambition Come up with one or more items from an underachiever's list of midlife resolutions. H I
411 X's and Oaths Take any oath, pledge, declaration or slogan and update it. H
410 Ask Backwards You are on "Jeopardy!" These are the answers. What are the questions? H
409 Nice Job, if You Get It Take anything that might need its image enhanced and rename it in a way the keeps its essential identity, but makes it seem nicer. H H H
403 Cry, Uncle! Write the beginnings of an obituary that will provide the details of what happened to the Style Invitational Uncle. 1
397 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. H H 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
393 Things Could Be Verse Take any story in today's Washington Post and rewrite it into a rhyming poem of no more than eight lines. H
391 Spinning Out of Control Take an 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
381 Idiom Savant Take any well-known idiom, or expression, and invent an interesting derivation for it. H
380 The New-Name Offense Propose changes for the names of places and things that need it, either because there is something wrong with their name, or because another name would be so much more descriptive. H U
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. H H W
373 An Extra Large Challenge What should we put on the back of the new Style Invitational T-shirt? 1
369 Punch Us Complete any of the provided jokes. H
368 Hyphen the Terrible Combine the first half of any hyphenated word in a story in today's paper with the second part of a different hyphenated word from the same story, and provide a new definition. 4 H H H
366 Just Fulghum Come up with a list of at least three Major Life Lessons one can learn from any of the venues provided. P
365 Terse Verse Ask a question and then answer it with a rhyme. Your answer can be as many words as you wish, but all must have the same rhyme. H
360 No Competition Create a list of 25 names, each linked in some way to the name before, and you must begin and end with Mary Ann Madden. H
359 It's No Party Come up with a new political party and its main political tenet. H
353 Patently Silly What do these devices do? H
352 A Laff Riot Take the name of a company and/or its commercial product and provide it a new definition. H
345 Picture This What is going on in these cartoons? 3
341 What's In a Name? Write something about any famous person that uses only the letters in his or her name. H
338 WHO WANTS TO WIN A TOILET? Propose even greater depths of shameless, tasteless sleaze to which Fox TV is likely to sink after the noisome debacle of "Who Wants to Marry and Multi-Millionaire?" H
329 THE STYLE INVITATIONAL: HELL Take the name of a person or institution. Find within it a hidden message. You may add spacing and punctuation, but you may not move letters around. 5 H
324 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 or course must take place prior to the main action of the original work. H
322 YOU NAME IT Take a well known pair or group of names, extend one of them in some manner, and explain how the group dynamic changes. 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. E H
319 REVERSE PSYCHOLOGY Create an original chiasmus, an ancient literary form in which meaning is derived by pairing two words or phrases, and then reversing their order. H
318 HYPHEN THE TERRIBLE Combine the first half of any hyphenated word in a story in today's paper with the second part of a different hyphenated word from the same story, and provide a new definition. H H H H H H L
316 CALLING THE TOON What are these things? H
315 FERMENTING TROUBLE Write a rhyming poem, eight lines maximum, on the subject of cheese or any of the provided items. 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
309 A STINKING PILE OF THESES Write an all-purpose first line or paragraph for any doctoral dissertation, design to impress the heck out of academics. L
305 ASK BACKWARDS CMXVI2 You are on "Jeopardy!" These are the answers. What are the questions? H
302 UNSTATED TRUTHS Come up with lines that you'll never hear the provided people say. H
298 THE RIGHT STUFF Write a sentence, or phrase, or entire passage, using only your right hand on the keyboard. This means who may use no keys to the left of N, H, Y and 7. 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. 2 H H
294 PRODUCT LIARBILITY Take the name of any commercial product and redefine it. P
293 THE VERSE OF AMERICA Take any story in today's Washington Post and create a poem or song by stringing together various phrases from that story. Each phrase must be a least two words long. 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 H H
289 PLAY IT AGAIN, SHAM Submit entries to any previous contest, ideas you might have thought of after the contest deadline had passed. 2 H 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 L
286 CLINTOONS Make your own Clintoon, a comic strip consisting of any or all of the provided drawings. 1
285 ELEVENIS, ANYTWO? Take a common phrase containing a specific number, add or subtract one, and explain the revised phrase. H H H H
284 ASK BACKWARDS MCLXVII You are on "Jeopardy!" These are the answers. What are the questions? 5 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. H H
281 CALCULATE THE ODDS Tell us which of the two provided items does not belong with the other two, and why. H
278 THE STALE INVITATIONAL Begin with a word. Add, subtract or change a single letter only, and then provide a new definition. H H L
277 LIFE IN THE BLURBS Come up a simple plot summary to help attract the modern audience to any classic work of fiction. It must be literally true and defensible. H
275 THERE ONCE WAS CONTEST FROM NANTUCKET … Write a limerick in which the first line is about someone who comes from some place in the Washington area. 1 H H
272 PICTURE THIS What is happening in these cartoons? H
271 YOGI BEARER Come up with new Yogi-isms, which seem to make sense, but collapse like a soufflé when you poke it a little 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. H H
267 THE CONCEPT CONCEPT Come up with a situation for a "People Unclear on the Concept" cartoon. Describe the situation and supply any necessary dialogue. L
264 ASK BACKWARDS You are on "Jeopardy!" Here are the answers. What are the questions? H
263 THE GAME OF THE NAME Propose a bad name for the provided categories. H
254 DOUBLE JEOPARDY! Take any sentence appearing anywhere in today's Washington Post, and make up a question to which it could be a plausible answer. H
251 QUOTH THE MAVEN Take any famous line, change it by one letter only (add, subtract or change a single letter), and reattribute it. H
246 OUR OWN DEVICES What do these contraptions do? Tell us in 50 words or fewer. 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. 1 H H H
241 CAN YOU BEAT THIS? Come up with headlines describing the defeat of one pro team by another. H
237 ASK BACKWARD You are on "Jeopardy!" These are the answers. What are the questions? H
233 SEEKING PARODY Take any paragraph appearing on Page A1 of today's Washington Post, and rewrite it in the style of any famous writer. H
230 TALES FROM THE CRYPTOGRAM Take any proper noun--a person, a book, a movie, whatever--and create for it an appropriate cryptogram. 3 H
223 ATTEMPTING REENTRY Submit entries to any past contest, so long as you never submitted them before. 1
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
221 SONG SUNG BROWN Pick any song, pick a well-known line, and give us the discarded first draft. If it is part of a rhyme, you must maintain the rhyme. 2 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
214 ASK BACKWARDS IX You are on "Jeopardy!" These are your answers. What are the 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
207 TIED TO BE FIT Each of the eight provided items is related, in some fashion, to one or more of the provided individuals. You make the connections. H
206 HYPHEN THE TERRIBLE II Create a new word by combining the first half of any hyphenated word in today's newspaper with the second half of any other hyphenated word elsewhere in the same story, and supply a definition. H H H
201 THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE Come up with a new element and its symbol, and provides a brief description of its chemical or physical properties. H
200 CAPTION CRUNCH IV Supply a new caption to any photograph appearing anywhere in today's Post, to make it funnier. 3 H
198 YOU MUST BE MAD II Come up with proposals designed to infuriate special interest groups. H
193 ASK BACKWARDS VIII You are on "Jeopardy!" Here are the answers. What are the questions? H
192 HILL'S BILLS Come up with bills any of the new members of Congress might jointly sponsor. 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. 7
188 BLANKETY BLANKS Complete any of the above sentences, substituting your own phrases for the well-known omitted words. 5
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
186 CALLING THE TOON Who are these people? What are they doing? 2 H
183 COCKNEY RHYMING SLANG II Create hawkers' rhymes for modern-day occupations like lobbyists, lawyers, talk show hosts, actuaries, etc., at a maximum of four lines. It must contain at least one rhyme. H
176 WRITE IN THE KISSER In the style of any famous author, write a description of any one of these people: Bill Clinton, Bob Dole, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Prince Charles or Sylvester Stallone. 1 H
171 ON SECOND THOUGHT Ideas that never got off the drawing board, for good reason. H
168 LICENSE TO CARRY A PUN Come up with original jokes like those provided. W
166 DOO WAH DOODY We are looking for really bad lyrics to real rock songs. Your lyrics must be from a reasonably popular song, and you must include the name of the singer or songwriter. 1
165 WHEEL OF TORTURE Complete any of the provided "Wheel of Fortune" phrases. 3
160 SEEKING WISE GUYS Come up with cool new bad-guy terms. H H
156 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. 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. 2
150 TRIAL BALLOONS What are the people saying? H
149 O, NO! Come up with a palindrome, a line that reads the same backward and forward, and then use it as a punchline to a joke. H
148 RORSCHACH OF THE CROWD IV Interpret these ink blots. H
136 NEW END IN SIGHT Come up with new endings to make literary classics more suitable for Hollywood in the 1990s. P
132 GIVE US THE BACKS OFF OUR SHIRTS. What should our loser's T-shirt say on the back? Your goal is to somehow capture the spirit of the contest. H H
129 REMAKE US HAPPY Come up with alternative story lines to movie titles, new or old. H
128 LIKE, DUH Come up with snappy answers to stupid questions. H
123 WHY IS POOP FUNNY? Come up with creative answers to any of the five questions above that might be asked by a 5-year-old. H
122 THE UNKINDEST CUTE OF ALL Come up with a new story line for "Peanuts", some plot development of new character that will put the strip back on the road to relevance. H
121 IT'S NO USE Come up with useless products. H H
114 THE JOKE'S ON YOU Come up with jokes to culminate in any of these six punch lines. H
113 WHAT KIND OF FOAL AM I? Take a list of horses nominated to the Triple Crown races this year, choose any two, and propose a name for their offspring. H
108 NEAR MISSES Come up with the first drafts of great lines in history, entertainment or literature. H H
106 DRAWING CONCLUSIONS Who are these people, and what are they doing? H H
105 WHAT'S THE BIG IDEA? Come up with Good Ideas and then convert them to Bad Ideas through slight changes in wording. 5
104 HERE, DOGGEREL Create poems so bad they thud. The first line must be a name. The second line can be as long or as short as you wish. The third line must sound the same as the first line, using the name as a verb or some other part of speech. 3 H H
101 [deliberately left blank] [deliberately left blank] H H
88 GIVE US SOME GOOD NEWS Come up with ways things are going to be different now that Republicans have ascended to power. 1 H
87 WEST EASY, ANN Come up with good things about West Virginia, in 50 words of fewer. W
81 HEADS, YOU LOSE Take any two or more headlines anywhere in today's Washington Post, and combine them to make a funnier headline. W
34 INSPECT A GADGET What do these machines do? H
30 THE RORSCHACH OF THE CROWD Interpret any of the provided ink blots. 5

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 ...]