Style Invitational Week 1508: Tour de Fours XIX —Laughtime Achievement
Saluting Super-Loser Elden Carnahan with an ELDN neologism contest. Plus winners of our contest to write with all 100 Scrabble tiles.
By Pat Myers
September 29, 2022 at 9:42 a.m. EDT
here to skip down to the winners of our contest to write with all 100 Scrabble tiles
Wordle nerds: The ones who post their scores every day at 12:01 a.m. “I’ve conducted a heuristic analysis of whether I should have started with ‘adieu’ or ‘horse’ ...”
Lendacity: “Our financial services company just wants to help you get back on your feet with our short-term loans and our convenient payment system of Vinny here.”
Skindle: The best device for reading porn novels.
Waywayway back in 1993 — when The Style Invitational was infantile in both senses of the word — a federal worker named Elden Carnahan got ink in Week 22 for suggesting a contest for campaign slogans, then for placing second in the same contest (Dan Quayle: A Chicken in Every Garage). Soon afterward, he decided to open the phone book and invite some of the other inking entrants to breakfast.
That was the big-bang moment for what quickly expanded into the universe of the Losers, a social community that not only met for a monthly brunch (and then group vacations) but also began to compete energetically for the most Invite ink each year, a rivalry made possible by Elden’s compilation and dissemination — by mail! this was pre-internet — of elaborate standings and statistics. The stats, of course, soon moved online, and the Keeper of the Stats continued to compile them, week after week, along with a complete archive of every Style Invitational since Week 1. Every week for 29 years. (Oh, yeah, he also found time to score more than 500 blots of Invite ink.)
Now, after turning 70 this year, Elden has turned over the stats and a slew of other Loser Community roles to a whole committee. And so, as a Laughtime Achievement Award for Mr. C, the Empress turns to one of our recurring contests, the Tour de Fours: This week: Coin a word or phrase containing the letters E-L-D-N — consecutively but in any order — and describe it, as in the examples above by Jon Gearhart, who suggested an ELDN contest and also came up with “Laughtime Achievement.” You may add spaces or punctuation. Even with 24 possible arrangements of the letters, someone else might send in the same neologism that you do; in that case the ink would go to the wittiest description, especially if it shows how the neologism could be used in real life, or if it’s used in a funny sentence.
Submit up to 25 entries at wapo.st/enter-invite-1508 (no capitals in the Web address). Deadline is Monday night, Oct. 10; results appear Oct. 30 in print. Oct. 27 online.
Winner gets the Clowning Achievement, our Style Invitational trophy. Second place receives a never-worn Loser T-shirt from the 1990s, won and regifted by Elden himself; the runner-up prize, designed by Bob Staake, inspired the Invite’s regular contestants to call their community the Losers.
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 “Hundred Tiles = This Nerd Duel” is by Chris Doyle; Jesse Frankovich wrote the honorable-mentions subhead. Join the lively Style Invitational Devotees group on Facebook at on.fb.me/invdev; follow 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 discusses each new contest and set of results. See this week’s at wapo.st/conv1508.
And from The Style Invitational four weeks ago ...
‘Hundred tiles’ = ‘This nerd duel’: Winning writing with all 100 Scrabble tiles
In Week 1504, the Empress gave the Losers the daunting task of writing something with all 100 tiles in a U.S. Scrabble set; they could choose what letters to use for the two blank tiles. Not surprisingly, we didn’t get as many entries as usual, but also not surprisingly, the Loser Community — including several First Offenders — rose to the challenge. (Titles are part of the anagram unless they’re in brackets.)
A horse, a priest, a Jew, Dumbo, five aged humorist clones, eleven zebras, a lynx, a unicorn, and God walk into . . . Yipe! Forget it. I quit! (Dave Zarrow, Skokie, Ill.; the blank tiles were N and S)
Arizona: Cyber Ninja quacks update voting audit. (We’re fine.)
Texas: Violate women’s rights. (Boo!)
Epilogue — Florida: Hold my beer.
(Kevin Dopart, Washington; blanks are B and O)
and the Yoda head pail:
Her Exalted Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s suave final words: “I dub ignorant Andrew Viceroy of Goat Poop. King Charlie, I’m out!” (Marty Gold, Arlington, Va.; blanks are H and I)
And the winner of the Clowning Achievement:
Queue up! Every week idiots visiting Mar-a-Lago can find an awesome prez, bid on a really cool job, and exit thru the grift shop. (Chris Doyle, Denton, Tex.; blanks are H and P)
Rank and tile: Honorable mentions
Blind Men and the Elephant
View I: “Kangaroo court. Quasi-crazy judge underfoot!”
View II: “Hoax! FBI plot! Merely a storage issue.”
(Joy Rains, Bethesda, Md., a First Offender)
[The Ten Commandments]
One God (I’m it!)
Swearage? No, pz.
Quiet day? A must.
Kill a foe? Bed his wife? No go!
Hijack? BS? Crave? Nix! Never!
(Mark Raffman, Reston, Va.)
A quiz: Top-secret dox. A lame ivory gewgaw. A library book. Select the one an FBI agent could never find in D.J. Trump’s house. A: III. (Steve Smith, Potomac, Md.)
We’ve MAGA loonies up on Twitter urging us to take hydroxychloroquine: “Be afraid, please! A Pfizer covid jab eliminates DNA!” (Chris Doyle)
Avid, vigilant, flush coyote laid a trap for quiet, gutsy roadrunner. BOOM! Smoke clears, then – zowie! – “Be-beep!” Jinxed again, Wile. (Diane Lucitt, Ellicott City, Md.)
Me the People, in order to nix all U.S. amity, vanquish Justice, raze knowledge, grab affairs, I wave goodbye, dear Constitution. (Kevin Dopart)
Up ... up ... Dorothy arrived. “Am I in Kansas? Or is it the Land of Oz ici?” A big Fetterman waxed ebullient: “New Jersey! Google ‘quack’! Vote!” (David Smith, Stockton, Calif.)
Vote fraud! Fishy! Protest! Strike! Trump solidly won Arizona,, Georgia, New Mexico, Quebec, Djibouti, Valhalla, Narnia, Eden. Gee! (Duncan Stevens, Vienna, Va.)
[Nerd’s Pickup Line, 2022] Can you be a viable mate in a speedy market today? I will just extend a civilizing query: “Rings of Power” or “House of the Dragon”? (Dan Stock, Medina, Ohio, a First Offender)
[I Love Lucy] A kooky, petite, jocular red-haired wife desiring stardom outfoxes a Cuban. He’s vowing to prevent equal billing. A zany time! (Karen Lambert, Chevy Chase, Md.)
A quick, ever so foolish red-brown fox, Di, jumps aeronautically over a lazy wiener dog and bites the peeing mutt’s genitalia. (Robert Jordan, Chiang Mai, Thailand, a First Offender)
Able was I ere I saw the quick brown European fox jump over the dim lazy foreign tourist vacationing at Eddy’s Lodge in Elba. (Jon Gearhart, Des Moines)
Ex-prez: “Not guilty! It was a joke! (Per Ginni, I won.) Garland is a turd. (HRC’s emails!) Q told me I have reasonable doubt (i.e., covfefe you!). (Mark Raffman)
[“The Sound of Music”] Inadequate novice (but excellent singer) Maria joins with Von Trapps, who, ruing faulty Nazi ideology, seek freedom abroad. (Karen Lambert)
[If the Frontier-Spirit discount airline merger had gone through] I did climb aft on a maiden “Frontier Spirit” jet, a Westworld up in a sky. Love turbulence, zero oxygen! Queasy, I gag, heave. A hoot! (Jeff Rackow, Bethesda, Md.)
“Commanders” football team? A chintzy, no-good appellation. I urge a jury review it. “River Snakeheads” would be f*ing exquisite! (Robert McArthur, Vienna, Va., a First Offender)
Better than “Commanders” … Quetzals? Ravioli? Ragweed? Onion Pie Puff? Sexy Bees? Jackdaws? Holy Ruin? Agate Violin? Oreo Id? Guilt? (Duncan Stevens)
Tubes’ exquisite vulgarization metaphor joke: it gets around FCC. “We foiled everyone!” “Baby’s arm holding an apple” -- ...radio win! (Kevin Dopart)
Mom Elizabeth bequeathed iconic jewelry to new king. Savvier antagonists lodge parody of ruler suited up in a foxy tiara. (Martin Ruddy, Russell, Ontario, a First Offender)
Sloth: I laze.
Gluttony: A fat man.
Envy: Jealous of.
Pride: Big opinion.
Lust: Desire waxed.
Greed: More bocci.
(Alison Thompson, Acton, Mass.)
O, We, a crazed vexed hero People, made a Just Tranquil Union of vigor, aegis, Welfare and Liberty by making this Constitution. (Jon Gearhart)
[And Last] Every week: one all-exalted, queenly autocrat judging ( “No bromides!”), offering victors sad two-bit mini-“prizes” (hah!). Aah, utopia! (Karen Lambert)
[And Even Laster] Woo-hoo! Our Style Invite text wizards have quickly rearranged 100 Scrabble tiles into a poem, a pun, an idea. I’m off judging. — The E (Chris Doyle)
[And Lastest of All] Style Invitational: Go build a cool anagram! Derive excrement joke, Send your quip to the Empress, win a bad prize. Oh, I guffaw! (Jesse Frankovich, Lansing, Mich.)
Still running — deadline Monday night, Oct. 3: Our contest for state slogans, with a twist. See wapo.st/invite1507.
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Idea:(Jon Gearhart; Elden Carnahan)
Examples:(Jon Gearhart; Jon Gearhart; Jon Gearhart)
Subhead: (Jesse Frankovich)