Style Invitational Week 1489: Let’s movie things around
Rearrange the words in a film title to make a new one. Plus neologism winners with another switch.
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By Pat Myers
May 19, 2022 at 9:22 a.m. EDT

(Bob Staake for The Washington Post )

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Click here to skip down to the winning neologisms with transposed letters

Talk, Pillow!: A lonely woman wishes her most intimate partner would just love her back. (Kathye Hamilton, Week 1008, 2013)

Wonderful? It’s a Life: Grandpa Irving pooh-poohs being in the Greatest Generation. (Ellen Ryan, Week 1008)

Left? My Foot! The Democratic presidential candidates squabble over who’s the most liberal. (Brendan Beary, Week 524, 2003)

This week’s results are from a contest to transpose two letters within a word, phrase or name; now, in Week 1489 — a contest that we ran to great success in 2003 and again in 2013 — we’re pulling another switcheroo: Rearrange the words of a movie title to create a new movie, then describe it, as in the inking entries above from those contests. You may change the punctuation as well. This contest doesn’t work so well with obscure titles, since most readers wouldn’t know what movie you were rearranging. Fortunately we last did this contest nine years ago, so there should be a bit of fresh material out there. See this week’s Style Conversational column to see the earlier contests’ results so you don’t send us the same jokes.

Submit up to 25 entries at (no capitals in the Web address). Deadline is Monday, May 30; results appear June 19 in print, June 16 online.

Winner gets the Clowning Achievement, our Style Invitational trophy. Second place receives — in celebration of, for many of us, the Return to the Office: a pair of Pez dispensers featuring Michael and Dwight of “The Office.” Plus six packs of Pez, the most disgusting candy on Earth after Peeps, candy corn and Circus Peanuts. Wait, I forgot Pop Rocks ... Donated by Loser Kathleen Delano.

The height of Office decor: This week's second prize. (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 The headline “Switch Witters” was submitted by both Tom Witte and Jesse Frankovich; Mark Raffman wrote the honorable-mentions subhead. Join the lively Style Invitational Devotees group on Facebook at; “like” the Style Invitational Ink of the Day on Facebook at; 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 at

And from The Style Invitational four weeks ago ...

Switch witters: Transposing letters
In Week 1485 we asked you to switch the positions of two letters within a word, phrase, name or title, then describe the result. My goodness, people had a variety of ideas of how to TAP MYERS.

4th place:
FEDEX FIELD > DEFEX FIELD: A stadium full of flaws that hosts a team full of flaws. (Duncan Stevens, Vienna, Va.)

3rd place:
CRITICAL RACE THEORY > CRITICAL CARE THEORY: A concept banned in Florida medical schools because it makes insurance companies feel bad. (Kevin Dopart, Washington)

2nd place
and the rev-up Racing Nuns:

UMBILICAL CORD > UMBILICAL DORC: A 40-year-old guy who still lives with his mom. (Tom Witte, Montgomery Village, Md.)

And the winner of the Clowning Achievement:
TODAY > TOADY: It’s always at the top of Kevin McCarthy’s desk calendar. (Frank Osen, Pasadena, Calif.)

Fun ’nuf: Honorable mentions
BEEFCAKE > FEEBCAKE: “Muscular guys do nothing for me. Gimme some of that feebcake from the engineering dorm!” (Milo Sauer, Fairfax, Va.)

AULD LANG SYNE > AULD LANG NYSE: What stockbrokers sing to usher in the New Year. (Chris Doyle, Denton, Tex.)

FAUCI > FAICU: A 17-syllable health warning.

Science helps us put
The win in Darwinian
Get vaccinated
(Craig Dykstra, Centreville, Va.)

INSTAGRAM > ISNTAGRAM: Offline media-sharing platform. “Aunt Betty is the queen of Isntagram: She loves to mail me photos she clipped from the paper.” (Jon Gearhart, Des Moines)

PONCE DE LEON > PENCE DE LOON: Alas, he thought he’d found the Fountain of Truth in the Florida waters of Mar-a-Lago. (Chris Doyle)

A FAREWELL TO ARMS > A FAREWELL TO RAMS: The Story of Abraham and Isaac. (Duncan Stevens, Vienna, Va.)

AMBER HEARD > A BM’ER HEARD: Johnny Depp’s ex and party pooper. (Pia Palamidessi, Cumberland, Md.)

BACTERIA > CABTERIA: What an Uber Eats car smells like at the end of the shift. (Scott Richards, Hollywood, Md.)

BADASS > SADABS: A body that doesn’t match the attitude. (Drew Bennett, Rogers, Ark.)

BOSTON > SOBTON: Home of the Red Sox during the “Curse of the Bambino” years. (Jonathan Jensen, Baltimore)

CALIFORNIA ROLL > CALIFORNIA R? LOL: Commentary on the GOP’s chances to unseat Sen. Alex Padilla. (David Peckarsky, Tucson)

COMPUTER > ROMPUTEC: Device that connects only to dating apps. “ I get much better results with my new Romputec – no distracting news. emails or work assignments!” (Marli Melton, Carmel Valley, Calif.)

DEMITASSE > MEDITASSE: A small cup of coffee just large enough to brood into. (Lawrence McGuire, Waldorf, Md.)

DIMWIT > MIDWIT: Someone who’s not quite as dumb as you thought. (Beverley Sharp, Montgomery, Ala.)

DUMBO > BUM DO: A haircut that makes your ears look big. (Jonathan Jensen)

FRAT PARTY > FART PARTY: A frat party. (Tom Witte)

HIGH NOON > HIGH NO-NO: The FAA vows to crack down on the Mile High Club. (John McCooey, Rehoboth Beach, Del.)

L.A. CONFIDENTIAL to A.L. CONFIDENTIAL: Pssst – the Orioles are not going to win the division this year. (Roy Ashley, Washington)

LEGO > GELO: These make it much safer to go barefoot in your kid’s room. (Barrett Swink, Gainesville, Va.)

LIGHT SNACK > NIGHT SLACK: The downfall of many a diet. “I was doing really well, but then night slack hit and I ate 17 Oreos.” (Kate Sammons, Ashburn, Va.)

MONSTER > NOMSTER: A creature that will eat you out of house and home. (Joanne Free, Clifton, Va.)

PELOSI > LEPOSI: A disease caused by staying in one position for too long. (Craig Dykstra)

PICTURE> PICTRUE: Selfie where you have giant nose pores, bedhead and that 10 pounds “the camera added.” (Karen Lambert, Chevy Chase, Md.)

RUBBISH > BURBISH: The faintest possible praise for a housing development. (Donald Norum, Charlottesville, Va.)

SALEM, MASS. > MALES, MASS.: More than 300 years after its witch trials, one town still can’t persuade women to move back. (Melissa Balmain, Rochester, N.Y.)

SIMPLIFICATION > MISPLIFICATION: A point completely lacking in nuance. “Telling a depressed person to “just cheer up” is a bit of a misplification, don’t you think?” (Danielle Nowlin, Fairfax Station, Va.)

SURREAL > RUSREAL: “What we’re doing in Ukraine isn’t war; it’s just a special military operation.” (Steve Honley, Washington)

THE ODD COUPLE > THE DoD COUPLE: Recently retired Donald Rumsfeld moves in with Leon Panetta. (Chuck Helwig, Centreville, Va.)

WALL-E > WELL A: An inspiring movie about a plucky robot who makes the world safe to drill for oil again. Brought to you by ExxonMobil. (Duncan Stevens)

X Æ A-12 > X A Æ-12: What Elon Musk almost named his first child, but that would have been weird. (Jesse Frankovich, Lansing, Mich.)

IDIOT > IDIOT: I switched the I’s! Aren’t I clever? (Frank Mann, Washington)

MY BIG AFT GREEK WEDDING: Kim Kardashian takes her nuptials to Athens. (Gary Crockett)

AWFFLE: A breakfast item made with spoiled batter. (Jeff Contompasis, Ashburn, Va.)

CARBALOUNGER: "Nothing better than kicking back in the Carbalounger with Netflix and chips.” (Jonathan Jensen)

CHRIS CORK: Well, he should have put SOMETHING in his mouth. — W. Smith, Hollywood (Mark Raffman, Reston, Va.)

CORKY MOUNTAIN HIGH: Enjoying the Colorado winery tour. (Joy Sibley, Fairfax, Va.)

DENIAL CRAIG: “I’m still Bond! James Bond!” (Gary Crockett)

GRETA EXPECTATIONS: Zero carbon emissions by yesterday, dammit! (Jesse Frankovich)

HAIR-KIRI: To shear one’s head in shame after getting an especially bad haircut. (Jonathan Jensen)

LOLCATERAL DAMAGE: “Getting a video of Tenzig jumping onto my face was definitely worth the lolcateral damage.” (Don Norum)

LONE TSAR STATE: Gov. Greg Abbott’s latest pipe dream. (Chris Doyle)

NAPDEMIC: Communicable narcolepsy. “The napdemic started as just a single yawn in a Chinese market.” (Kevin Dopart)

NAPDEMONIUM: The havoc your little demons wreak while Mommy closes her eyes for five minutes. (Jon Gearhart)

PORTNOY’S COMPLIANT: A lust-ridden bachelor is finally persuaded by changing times and a restraining order to keep to himself. (Alex Steelsmith, Kailua, Hawaii; John McCooey)

REBEL WITHOUT A SAUCE: Defying his parents, Jimmy refuses to eat anything but plain pasta and dipless Doritos. (Gary Crockett)

SIDNEY WORLD: Theme park based on total fantasy, featuring a stinky little rat named Rudy. (Frank Mann)

TENFLIX: A severely downsized movie streaming service. (Chris Doyle)

WEATHER THE STROM: To wait out the retirement of an ancient politician. “The rising star coveted the Senate seat but knew he’d have to weather the strom till the incumbent keeled over." (Leif Picoult, Rockville, Md.)

WETS SIDE STORY: Two dogs from rival New York City families and the fire hydrant that brings them together. (Duncan Stevens)

WETS SIDE STORY: Long-forgotten tales of the men and women who fought to repeal Prohibition. (Dave Airozo, Silver Spring, Md.)

WHAT HATH DOG WROUGHT?: “That settles it, Scooby, you definitely need more fiber in your diet.” (Lee Graham, Rockville, Md.)

Still running — deadline Monday, May 23: Our contest for funny ways to use the surplus products listed on the RepurposedMaterials website. See

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