Style Invitational Week 1047: Bank Shots, and the most novel of
celebrity reality shows

By Pat Myers
Thursday, November 14, 2:05 PM

*Big jump for D.C. kids on national test* // //(The Washington Post,
Nov. 8)/ /
/*School board hires Evel Knievel to coach 8th-graders* /

*NYC age to buy tobacco highered* /(The University Daily Kansan, Nov. 5)/
W/*ill student editor be fighered? * /


It’s our perennial contest that we used to call “Mess With Our Heads.”
But this year we’d add: “Or Anyone Else’s.” Now that most out-of-town
Invite buffs aren’t able to surf all over washingtonpost. com without a
paid subscription just to be able to give us free jokes, the Empress has
decided to broaden the pool: *This week: Quote a headline appearing in
The Washington Post, or another publication, print or
online, dated Nov. 14 to Nov. 25, and supply a humorous “bank” headline
that either misinterprets it, as in the first example above, or comments
wryly on it, as in the second one. * For a non-Post headline, you’ll
have to include a link to a Web address where I can verify it, or, if
it’s in print, a scanned copy. For a head in the print Post, include the
date and page number. You may omit the beginning or end of the head if
that doesn’t change its point substantially. What we’re counting as a
headline: (a) the main heading above the text of an article or ad; (b)
the bank head under a headline; (c) a “jump” head on the second page of
an article; (d) a subhead within an article; (e) a headline-style link
from a home page to an article (you’re on the honor system for those,
because there’s no link to give). Don’t capitalize a word that’s
lowercase in the headline to turn it into a name.

Winner gets the Inkin’ Memorial
the Lincoln statue bobblehead that is the official Style Invitational
trophy. Second place receives something very cool: an old edition of the
1830 English novel “Paul Clifford,” which nobody knows but whose opening
line everyone knows: “It was a dark and stormy night.” Its author,
Edward Bulwer-Lytton, has achieved immortality with the annual namesake
contest for bad openings to a novel. Donated by intermittent Loser Larry

*Other runners-up *win their choice of a yearned-for Loser Mug

or the ardently desired Grossery Bag
Honorable mentions get a lusted-after Loser magnet
First Offenders receive a smelly tree-shaped air “freshener” (FirStink

for their first ink). E-mail entries to /
/ or fax to 202-334-4312. Deadline is
Monday, Nov. 25; results published Dec. 15 (online Dec. 12). No more
than 25 entries per entrant per week. Include “Week 1047” in your e-mail
subject line or it might be ignored as spam. Include your real name,
postal address and phone number with your entry. See contest rules and
guidelines at . The
subhead for this week’s honorable mentions is by Beverley Sharp; the
alternative headline in the “next week’s results” line is by Chris
Doyle. Join the lively Style Invitational Devotees group on Facebook at
/ ,/ and click “like” on Style
Invitational Ink of the Day at /
/. The “fighered” joke was made in a comment by Ed Byers on Jim
Romenesko’s Facebook page.

*Report from Week 1043, in which we asked for ideas for celebrity-focused reality shows that
would be even nuttier than the actual “Vanilla Ice Goes Amish”:

*The winner of the Inkin’ Memorial: *

*“This Old House,” with new host John Boehner:* John shows a wealthy
family in a decaying mansion how to save money and increase efficiency
by doing no renovations and refusing to pay old debts. Co-host Norm
Abrams disagrees. Next week: repeat episode. /(Tim Livengood, Columbia,

*2.* /Winner of the More Cowbell cowbell:
/ *“Turnabout
for Ted”:* Sen. Ted Cruz visits a preschool and surprise — he’s the
teacher today! Ted’s challenge is to persuade all the tykes to cooperate
— even the little boy who screams all day and isn’t interested in
anything the other kids want to do — so they can complete their class
project before recess. /(Laurie Tompkins, Rockville, Md.)/

*3.* *Miley Cyrus on “Toddlers and Tiaras”:* Ms. Cyrus counsels the
young pageant contestants on the dangers of being typecast as cute
children and demonstrates her technique for earning respect as a serious
artist. /(Gary Crockett, Chevy Chase, Md.) /

*4.* *“Angela Merkel, Up Close and Personal”:* The NSA begins recycling
its old cellphone recordings with some classics from the archives. This
week the German chancellor shares a few choice comments after her
unauthorized back rub from George W. Bush in 2006./(Frank Osen,
Pasadena, Calif.) /

*Channel suff’ring: honorable mentions*

*“The Ex Factor”:* In this mashup of “The Bachelor” and “Beat the
Clock,” Larry King is surrounded by a bevy of lovely women, and must
persuade one of them to marry him. He and his bride must then attempt to
stay married for the remainder of the 30-minute show. /(Brendan Beary,
Great Mills, Md.)/

*“George Zimmerman, Kindergarten Cop”* follows the dauntless Floridian
in his new job as kindergarten teacher and incognito school security
guard. Will anyone wear a hoodie to class? Will the kids talk back to
the teacher? Watch a community at ease under the protection of a “good
guy with a gun.”/(Dan Ramish, Washington) /

*“The Amazing Racist”: *Paula Deen, Marge Schott, Jimmy the Greek and Al
Campanis travel around the world vying to insult as many different
nationalities, ethnic groups and religions as they can. /(Michael Levy,
Silver Spring, Md.)/

*“What Not to Wear, Sochi Edition”:* Host Vladimir Putin (formerly of
“Black Eyes for Queer Guys”) tours the Olympics venues, rounding up
suspects and sending them to fashion re-education camp. This week: how
to accent a rainbow T-shirt with tar and feathers./(Frank Osen)/

*“What Knot to Wear”: *A behind-the-scenes look at Lady Gaga’s bondage
fashion videos. /(Chris Doyle, Ponder, Tex.)/

Chuck Norris was on *“Flip That House,”* but he got bored after a while.
/(Barbara Turner, Takoma Park, Md.) /

*“Burnt Citrus Is the New Black”:* Martha Stewart pays a nostalgic visit
back to the pen./(Dan Ramish)/

*Michael Richards at the Apollo:* To show solidarity with his audience,
the comic plans to perform in blackface./(Joel R. Malkin, Arlington,
Va., a First Offender)/

// *“Celebrity Retox”:* Lindsay Lohan and Charlie Sheen counsel
recovering recoverers through the process of dehab./(Frank Osen)/

William “Refrigerator” Perry returns to Chicago to guide his old NFL
team in a high-carb nutrition regimen in ESPN’s *“Build-a-Bear
Workshop.” * /(Craig Dykstra, Centreville, Va.) /

*“Casting Calls”:* Nicolas Cage calls every producer in the Los Angeles
phone directory in the hopes of being cast in a movie that doesn’t suck.
Tonight: A through C. /(Neal Starkman, Seattle) /

** *Juice the Bogey Hunter:* After his release from prison, O.J.
continues his relentless pursuit of the Real Killer and par./(John
Folse, Bryans Road, Md.)/

*The Clog Whisperer:* Joe “The Plumber” Wurzelbacher finally gets his
contractor’s license. /(Jeff Contompasis, Ashburn, Va.)/

*Bear Grylls in “Surviving the Kardashians”:* Armed with a hunting knife
and a roll of duct tape, the survivalist wades into a den of
superficiality to face a week of shopping, partying, scandal-mongering
and applying eyeliner. /(Jeff Brechlin, Eagan, Minn.) /

*“America’s Got Talons:”* Who will be able to outsnark Joan Rivers?
/(Craig Dykstra)/

*“Where’d It Go?”:* Each week John Boehner leads a crew around the world
— through the Amazon rain forest, across the Gobi desert, beneath the
Indian Ocean — in search of his spine. Tonight: Could it be in an
abandoned Kentucky mine? /(Neal Starkman, whose entry actually had the
House speaker searching for a pair of more intimate body parts)/

*Still running — deadline Monday night: Our contest for bogus
explanations of the origins of common expressions: See

/See the Empress’s online column The Style Conversational
(published late
Thursday), in which she discusses today’s new contest and results along
with news about the Loser Community — and you can vote for your favorite
among the inking entries, since you no doubt figured the Empress chose
the wrong winner. If you’d like an e-mail notification each week when
the Invitational and Conversational are posted online, sign up here
or write to the Empress at (note that in the
subject line) and she’ll add you to the mailing list. And on Facebook,
join the far more lively group Style Invitational Devotees
and chime in there. /

*Next week’s results: Playing It Safe, * or
*Joking Hazards, * our Week 1044 contest to come up with comical safety

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