Spell “skrod” backward — i.e., in the right direction — and you get this
species of weakfish. (Bob Staake for The Washington Post )
By Pat Myers February 18

*SKROD: Fish that are always swimming upstream. * /(Tom Witte, winner of
Week 545, 2004)/

*ATNAS: The man who bears the weight of the entire American economy on
his shoulders.* /(Tom Witte, winner of Week 684, 2006)/

It’s one of our simplest, most elegant neologism contests ever — and we
haven’t done it in almost a decade. And only twice in all. *This week:
Spell a word, name or phrase backward and define the result in a way
that relates to the original, *as in the examples above. The Empress
doesn’t plan to give ink to entries that repeat the ones she ran in 2004
and 2006; you can check those results at bit.ly/invite549
and bit.ly/invite688
. (You can use the same word that’s been used,
but the definition must be significantly different.) And yes, Tom Witte
still enters the Invite almost every week, as he has since Week 7 in
1993. The man’s a 24/7 neologism factory, which is the primary reason he
has almost 1,400 blots of Invite ink. But just like you, he can submit
only 25 entries this week — and I promise to run more than 25 entries in
the results.

Winner gets the Inkin’ Memorial
the Lincoln statue bobblehead that is the official Style Invitational
trophy. Second place receives a lovely brand-new barbecue apron
the use of spice rubs on large cuts of meat; it bears the slogan “Wanna
Rub My Butt?” It’s of generous length and no doubt effective in keeping
your clothes clean, but the Empress reports that trying it on produced
no takers. Donated by Loser Jon Gearhart.

Another in our series of Prize Garments You Probably Shouldn’t Wear to
Religious Services, this barbecue apron. (Mark Holt)

*Other runners-up* win their choice of a yearned-for Loser Mug,
the older-model
“This Is Your Brain on Mugs” mug,

a vintage Loser T-shirt, or something from the Mystery Box. Honorable
mentions get one of lusted-after Loser magnets, “Magnet Dum Laude”

or “Falling Jest Short.”

First Offenders receive a smelly tree-shaped air “freshener” (FirStink

for their first ink). Email entries to /losers@washpost.com
/ or, if you were born in the 19th century,
fax to 202-334-4312. Deadline is Monday night, Feb. 29 (how often can we
say that?); results published March 20 (online March 17). You may submit
up to 25 entries per contest. Include “Week 1163” in your email 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 wapo.st/InvRules . The headline
for this week’s results is by Tom Witte; the honorable-mentions subhead
was suggested by both Beverley Sharp and Kevin Dopart. Join the lively
Style Invitational Devotees group on Facebook at /on.fb.me/invdev
./ “Like” the Style Invitational Ink of the Day
on Facebook at /bit.ly/inkofday; / follow @StyleInvite
on Twitter.

*The Style Conversational: *The Empress’s weekly online column,
published late Thursday, discusses each new contest and set of results.
Especially if you plan to enter, check it out at wapo.st/styleconv

*THE GAME OF LAUGH: REPORT FROM WEEK 1159: Week 1159 we asked you to suggest ideas for novel board or parlor games that would be even more noteworthy than a
real game called Eww, Who Tooted?,

in which players make artificial farts with little tooters.

political games involved playing — or being stuck with — the Trump card.
  Loser Drew Bennett wrote in about another real game, one that seems to
delight his granddaughter. It’s called Gooey Louie;

the package exhorts tykes to “Put Your Finger Up His Nose and Try To
Pick a Winner!” If the kid extracts the wrong gooey booger, poor Louie’s
head pops open and his brain flies out.
  This outgrosses the best grossout efforts of Lilly Welsh (the Acne
game to pop giant artificial zits) but does fall one step short of Roy
Ashley’s Taste My Booger (you don’t want to know the details).

4th place:

*Name That Snowstorm:* Pass the time when nature buries you alive by
coming up with names that are just as clever as “Snowmaggedon” et al.
Just pick two or more word cards and combine the results: Blizzard +
Disaster? Blizzaster! Or Disastard! Snow + Apocalypse + Doomsday?
Snowpocaloomsday! Blizzard + Armageddon + Apocalypse? Blizzmagelypse!
Seconds of fun for the entire family. (Jon Gearhart, Des Moines)

3rd place:

*The Game of Loaf: *Unionists, welfare mothers, ex-hippies and liberal
professors loop around a game board, growing fat on Washington handouts
and avoiding gainful employment, while hardworking Americans from the
heartland suffer confiscatory taxation by the federal government. — T.
Cruz, American heartland (Mike Gips, Bethesda, Md.)

2nd place

/and the metal “Hello Loser” sign
/ *
GOP SlapDaesh:* A sophisticated game of military strategy. Players
compete to destroy ISIS by drawing cards marked “Carpet-bomb them
“Make the sand glow in the dark
,” “Kill
every one of the bastards

and “Bomb the s--- out of them
Release date November 2016; revised version expected by February 2017.
(Chris Doyle, Denton, Tex.)

And the winner of the Inkin’ Memorial:

*Klu:* Mr. Black did it. Game over. (Dion Black, Washington)

No dice: honorable mentions

*One-AARPsmanship:* Players move pieces around a board whose squares are
marked with parts of the anatomy. They score points for recounting in
painstaking detail the diseases, operations, medications and just plain
aches and pains they’ve had with that body part. The winner is the last
one to fall asleep. (Chris Doyle)

*The Game of No-Life:* Land on “Saturday Night” and the card reads:
“Watch reruns of ‘Love Boat’ while you do your nails that no one will
see.” On “Birthday” it says, “Break out that frozen Georgetown Cupcake
you’ve been saving all year.” Winner? It’s solitaire, of course. (Frank
Mann, Washington)

*The Game of Life — and Death: *And you thought your spouse took a long
time coming up with moves in Scrabble! (Danielle Nowlin, Fairfax
Station, Va.)

*Reconnect for . . . ? :* In this game you go through your Facebook
friends list and try to figure out why you accepted a request from that
person who was a jerk to you in high school. (Dion Black)

*So You Think You Can Lance:* In this specialty version of Operation,
precisely cut and drain gel-pack abscesses and boils without
contaminating or damaging other body parts. Losers have to fill out the
Medicare CMS-1500 claims form. (Kevin Dopart, Washington)

*HardScrabble:* Just like ordinary Scrabble, but before you take a turn,
you have to solve a calculus problem, drop and give 10, then juggle
three of your tiles. (Barbara Turner, Takoma Park, Md.)

*Crab:* Like Scrabble, but it’s all four-letter words. (Warren Tanabe,
Annapolis, Md.)

*Doin’ Time:* When you land on “Go to Jail” in Monopoly, you Do Time on
this supplemental board: you can become pruno king, join a gang, even
get conjugal visits. Try to avoid being shanked or becoming someone’s
prag. When you land on “Overcrowding — Early Release,” it’s back to real
estate dealings. (Bird Waring, Larchmont, N.Y.)

*M.C. Escher’s Chutes and Ladders:* Roll the dice and find yourself
either exactly where you started or lost in another dimension. An
eternity of fun! (Frank Mann)

*Existential Pursuit:* The game board is nothing but blank squares.
Choose any square to start from. Roll the dice. Move your game piece any
number of squares, in any direction — what’s the difference? Roll again.
Repeat forever. (Tom Witte, Montgomery Village, Md.; Frank Osen,
Pasadena, Calif.)

*North Korean Checkers:* Unanimously considered by far the greatest game
of all time! Invented, manufactured and distributed by the Champion of
the World and Still Undefeated Supreme Leader! (Jesse Frankovich,
Lansing, Mich.)

*Futile Pursuit:* A version of Risk reduced to the Middle East, although
any country can play. Contestants fight each other randomly until
something bad happens, at which point they continue fighting until
something really bad happens. Nobody wins, but another game starts right
up. (Michael Rolfe, Cape Town, South Africa)

*Whac-a-Pol: *Try to be the quickest at making America great again by
knocking all the pols back into their dark, dank state-holes. Always a
bipartisan party favorite. (Kevin Dopart)

*Benyahtzi:* Roll the dice and hope for the best. (Mark Raffman, Reston,

*Call of Doody: *Suspenseful action game in which “parents” race to get
toddlers onto potties before time, among other things, runs out.
(Richard Friedman, Indianapolis)

*Still running — deadline Monday night, Feb. 22: our contest for
Onion-type headlines. See bit.ly/invite1162 . *