Style Invitational Week 1472: Phony money
Tell us fake trivia about the financial system. Plus Part 2 of our 2021 do-over contest.
By Pat Myers
January 20, 2022 at 9:49 a.m. EST
Click here to skip down to our Week 1468 retrospective winners.
Bob Staake for The Washington Post
▲ Contrary to popular myth, John D. Rockefeller did not give a dime to every person he met; however, he did offer each of them a spoonful of his tapioca pudding.
— In 2015, several PriceWatercloset executives were forced to resign after the revelations of wild nights of triple-entry bookkeeping.
— In seven different congressional sessions, various NRA-supported senators have sponsored legislation to replace the 13 arrows on the $1 bill with 13 assault rifles.
Once again, The Style Invitational does its best to get taken down by Facebook for spreading misinformation. By the Empress’s count, it’s our 23rd contest for fake “facts” about various aspects of our world; last year it was the law and judicial system. This week: Tell us some fake trivia about money or the financial system, as in the examples above, the first by Our Own Bob Staake and the others by Loser Extraordinaire Duncan Stevens, who still, at least until the results run, works for a federal financial agency.
Submit up to 25 entries at wapo.st/enter-invite-1472 (no capitals in the Web address). Deadline is Monday, Jan. 31; results appear Feb. 20 in print, Feb. 17 online.
Winner gets the Clowning Achievement, our Style Invitational trophy. Second place receives, given our contest’s theme, $130,000. Oops, wait, you don’t have anything on us. Second place actually receives this adorable weird glitter globe featuring tourist landmarks of Tokyo, including its version of the Eiffel Tower and a dazed-looking woman who is presumably drowning. From the collection of globe-trotting Loser Cheryl Davis, who deaccessioned several similar gewgaws on the E. This one doesn’t leak.
If you have a yen for a knickknack from Tokyo, just place second in our money-fictoid contest. (TWP)
Other runners-up win their choice of our “For Best Results, Pour Into Top End” Loser Mug or our “Whole Fools” Grossery Bag. Honorable mentions get one of our lusted-after Loser magnets, “A Small Jester of Appreciation” or “Close, but Ceci N’est Pas un Cigare.” First Offenders receive only a smelly tree-shaped air “freshener” (FirStink for their first ink). See general contest rules and guidelines at wapo.st/inviteFAQ. The headline “Wince and Repeat” is by Craig Dykstra; Both Chris Doyle and Jesse Frankovich submitted the honorable-mentions subhead. 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; and follow @StyleInvite on Twitter.
The Style Conversational: The Empress’s weekly online column discusses each new contest and set of results. See this week’s, published late Thursday, Jan. 20, and featuring classic Invite fictoids, at wapo.st/conv1472.
And from The Style Invititational four weeks ago ...
Wince and repeat: Part 2 of our 2021 do-over
In Week 1468, the second half of our 2021 Kook’s Tour, we gave the Loser Community another chance to enter any of 24 contests that ran from last June to November.
Week 1453, change the meaning of a book title by adding a subtitle: No Bad Dogs: Living With Corns, Calluses and Bunions (Jennifer Martin Broadway, Marquette, Mich.)
Week 1450, how future anthropologists would interpret our society: In the early 21st century it became popular to have one’s nostrils professionally cleaned. People would queue up, sometimes for hours, to obtain this service. (John Klayman, Fairfax, Va.)
2nd place and the Really Bad Art board game:
Week 1451, bad first drafts: “Yesterday, December 7, 1941: A crappy day we’ll never forget, amirite?” (Hildy Zampella, Alexandria, Va.)
And the winner of the Clowning Achievement:
Week 1449, first-person songs: Norman Bates (to “Wouldn’t It Be Loverly”)
All I want is a motel where
No-good dames on the lam I’ll snare,
One lonely rural lair,
Oh, wouldn’t it be Motherly?
Mom folds towels and she makes the bed,
Shows the guests where to rest their head—
Yes, fine, they end up dead,
But still, it’s very Motherly.
Oh, so Motherly when there’s lots of lovely blood to spill,
Someday we might have a guest that Mother won’t want to kill,
Someone’s head resting on my knee,
Where’s the rest of her? Don’t ask me,
One more maternal spree!
Ah, yes, that’s very Motherly. (Duncan Stevens, Vienna, Va.)
Redoofuses: Honorable mentions
Week 1440, song parodies about the news: Retrospective on the Trump Administration (to “Be Our Guest)
What a mess! What a mess! Left that once-revered address
In a shambles; now he rambles, blames antifa and the press.
Shattered norms, petty graft; science, ethics got the shaft,
While his obvious ineptitude just heightened people’s skeptitude.
And then, in defeat, clownish, crude attempts to cheat
Fell apart as we watched Rudy deliquesce;
Just hope he finds it humbling that he went out bumbling,
Ugly: yes! We assess: what a mess! (Duncan Stevens)
Week 1441, summarize a song as a limerick:
For Simba, “Hakuna Matata”
Was advice to not do what he oughta:
The theme of this show
Is not “let it go,”
But “always avenge your dead fadduh.” (Coleman Glenn, Huntingdon Valley, Pa.)
Three Blind Mice
The trio of mice appears glum;
Their actions were really quite dumb.
See, they might still have tails –
If they hadn't run “after” but “from.” (Beverley Sharp, Montgomery, Ala.)
Week 1443, legislation with contrived acronyms: The LAUNDRY Act: (Launch All Unwashed, Nauseating, Disgusting Raiment Yonder): A bill allocating three extra hampers to every house under quarantine with teenagers. (Sarah Walsh, Rockville, Md.)
— The Commend Our Unbelievable Patriots Act to capture the hearts and minds of true Americans. (Kevin Dopart, Washington)
Week 1444, Name a new sport: Mixed marital arts: Couples juggle in-law visits when Christmas and Hanukkah overlap. (Bob Kruger, Rockville, Md.)
— The poll vault: The bar for voting in Texas just got a lot higher. (Lee Graham, Rockville, Md.)
— The modern spintathon: Sitting for consecutive Sunday morning interviews on ABC, CBS, CNN, NBC and Fox News. (Chris Doyle, Denton, Tex.)
Week 1446, words and clues from a partially filled in crossword grid: YesNo: How a distracted spouse answers the question “Do I sound like my mother?” (John Hutchins, Silver Spring, Md.)
Week 1447, translate a quote into “plain English”: George F. Will: “But the incorrigibly non-revolutionary proletariat has disappointed History-worshipers’ expectations of a climactic class struggle.” Plain English: Plebeians will be plebeians! (Steve Leifer, Potomac, Md.)
Week 1449, overlapping names: Rand Paul of Tarsus: “Love one another. Except Fauci — everyone hate on him.” (Mark Raffman, Reston, Va.)
Week 1450, how space aliens or future scientists would interpret our society: Records are fragmentary, but it appears there was once a divine being who walked the earth, performed miracles and was called Chuck Norris. (Jeff Contompasis, Ashburn, Va.)
You can lament all you want about Earthlings destroying their planet, but if they hadn’t had to move here, Mars wouldn’t have Taco Bell. (Steve Leifer)
Week 1451, bad first drafts: “You know what’s hot and moist? A summer’s day!” — Shakespeare (Mark Raffman)
—“ Hey! You! Stay six feet away from my cloud!” (Mary J. Kelly, Great Falls, Va., a First Offender)
— “ … never send to know for whom the bell tolls. It’s for thee obvi.” (Jeff Contompasis)
— “It’s hard to believe it’s been 80-some years ago …” (Dottie Gray, Alexandria, Va.)
— “You and the Force have a nice day!” (Neal Starkman, Seattle)
— “Bond. Jimbo Bond.” (Selma Ellis, Rolling Meadows, Ill.)
— “Play it, Sam. Play ‘Future Sex Love Sounds’ by Justin Timberlake.” (Jesse Rifkin, Arlington, Va.)
— “Ich bin ein Frankfurter.” (John Klayman)
Week 1452, neologisms “discovered” in a word search puzzle: Exit trap: That internet prompt that asks if you really want to leave a website, and both options seem like a trick. (Pam Shermeyer, Lathrup Village, Mich.)
— Q-rated: Unsuitable for all audiences. (David Peckarsky, Tucson)
Week 1453, change the meaning of a book title by adding a subtitle: Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy: Career Options for a Gig Economy (Diane Lucitt, Ellicott City, Md.)
Killing Lincoln: The Case for Doing Away With Pennies (Donald Norum, Charlottesville, Va.)
The Green Mile: Delaware and New Jersey’s Twin Toll Bridges (Jeff Contompasis)
The Tipping Point: Dining Out for Dummies, Part III (George Thompson, Springfield, Va.)
Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee: A Recent History of Washington Quarterbacks (Mike Gips, Bethesda, Md.)
Week 1454, haiku with a pun:
Joe Biden’s scion
Like Trump Jr. before him:
Terrible hunter (Jon Ketzner, Cumberland, Md.)
Week 1455, good idea/bad idea: Good idea: Post videos of your cat. Bad idea: Post videos of your catheter. (Mark Raffman)
Good: Getting shots and returning to the workplace. Bad: Doing shots and returning to the workplace. (Milo Sauer, Fairfax)
Good: The wedding bed on your honeymoon. Bad: Wetting the bed on your honeymoon. (Craig Dykstra, Centreville)
Good: Marry for love. Bad: Marry four loves. (Hildy Zampella)
Good: End your day with a cold beer. Bad: End your day on a cold bier. (Brett Dimaio, Cumberland, Md.)
Good: Showing a smile to everyone you meet. Bad: Smiling and showing everyone your meat. (Jesse Frankovich, Lansing, Mich.)
Good: Be kind to mean people. Bad: Be kind of mean to people. (Hildy Zampella)
Good: Gravlax on toast. Bad: Gravel on toast. (John Klayman)
Week 1456, snarky questions: Did you get an even bigger SUV, or did the Ever Given just dock in your driveway? (Frank Osen, Pasadena, Calif.)
Week 1458, use the letters in a TV show name to make a new one: Iron Chef > Oh No! Rice Fire!: The paella segment goes awry. (Frank Mann, Washington)
Seinfeld > Life in Endless Idleness. Jerry and his friends hang out and talk in his apartment. Later they go to the diner and talk. (Jonathan Jensen, Baltimore)
Dragnet > Red Agent: It’s revealed that Sgt. Joe Friday is a commie. (Roy Ashley, Washington)
Week 1464, caption a Bob Staake cartoon:
Storefront with big R on front; man and woman passing: "Um, no, Ernest, I don't think you can buy a wrench here." [ed., 1-23-22]
Caption by John Hutchins, Silver Spring, Md.
Week 1459, first-person songs: Sung by Vice President Harris (to “I Feel Pretty”)
I feel petty, oh so petty,
But so ready to be a VP!
Biden said he
Would surely give a decent job to me.
I’m neglected, and rejected,
But expected to do something grand
I hope this year
My portfolio will soon expand.
See the trashy news in the papers here,
Claiming that my office is a zoo
Such a petty press, such a petty mess, but I must confess everything is true!
I feel streamlined, if not sidelined,
But in my mind the next big event:
’25 – when I’ll be the president! (Arnie Rosenthal, Silver Spring, Md., a First Offender)
Sung by President Biden (to “One” from “A Chorus Line”)
One cause of consternation: Every little step Xi takes;
One chilling confiscation: Every move that Xi makes.
One hypersonic assault, and I swear, we're through!
(You know we'll never be chummy with you-know-who...)
One hack into our systems, And you can forget the rest,
For we will be second best — To none, son!
Ooh! Sigh! Who's the source of tension?
Do I really have to mention
Xi's the one! (Beverley Sharp)
Week 1465, predictions for 2022: Ted Cruz, desperate for acclaim, renames himself “Brandon.” (Duncan Stevens)
And Last: Good idea: Sending a joke by which the Empress is pleased. Bad idea: Sending a joke to which the Empress says “Puh-leeze!” (Jesse Frankovich)
Still running — deadline Monday night, Jan. 27: Coin a word or phrase including the letter block BIDE in any order. See wapo.st/invite1471.
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