Week 1130: Yux Redux: Play on a foreign phrase
Cogito ergo bum: Sudden realization of graduating philosophy majors. (Greg Deye) Avant-garden: The flowers are lovely, but I’m not sure about the urinal in the middle of the rhododendrons. (Laurie Brink)
Ode de toilette: Bathroom stall poetry. (Tony Arancibia)
This week we present an encore of a contest we did back in 2011 to enormous success — perhaps because it’s the epitome of the Invitational’s trademark highbrow/lowbrow humor: “Putting the Rude in Erudition,” as an earlier-model Loser Magnet put it (since “Putting the Rud in Erudition” didn’t have the same ring to it). Uber-Loser Chris Doyle recently suggested we do this contest, accompanying his pitch with several clever examples; the thing was that Chris had totally forgotten Week 936 — even though he’d gotten ink in it himself (as usual): “Mardi Gas: Fart Tuesday.” Which convinces the Empress that there’s a world of new ways out there to insult other
languages. This week: Make a wordplay on a foreign phrase or term (or English phrase using foreign words) and
describe it, as in the examples above from Week 936 (see the rest of the results at bit.ly/invite940; you can play on the same terms, but you can’t make the same joke, duh). Using the term in a funny sentence is always welcome; using the term in a boring sentence is not.
Winner gets the Inkin’ Memorial, the Lincoln statue bobblehead that is the official Style Invitational trophy. Second place receives, apropos of this week’s contest, a donation from foreign climes: a deck of playing cards from Australia. On the back of the cards is a cartoon of an “Aussie Sheila” and a guide to what her various expressions mean (e.g., “Grouse lippy”: “What a nice shade of lipstick”); we’d show a picture but some of the terms are unprintable. Donated ages ago by Brad Alexander, who enters the Invitational every week from Wanneroo, Western Australia. The Empress met Brad and his wife a couple of years ago when they were visiting Washington, and she didn’t think Brad’s lippy was grouse at all.
Other runners-up win their choice of a yearned-for Loser Mug or the ardently desired “Whole Fools” Grossery Bag. Honorable mentions get a lusted-after Loser magnet designed by Bob Staake: either “The Wit Hit the Fan” or “Hardly HarHar.” First Offenders receive a smelly tree-shaped air “freshener” (FirStink for their first ink). E-mail entries to email@example.com or, if you were born in the 19th century, fax to 202-334-4312. Deadline is Monday night, July 6; results published July 26 (online July 23). You may submit up to 25 entries per contest. Include “Week 1130” 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 wapo.st/InvRules. The headline for this week’s results is by Mark Raffman; the honorable-mentions subhead is by Beverley Sharp. 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.
3THE STYLE CONVERSATIONAL The Empress’s weekly online column discusses each new contest and set of results. Especially if you plan to enter, check it out at wapo.st/styleconv.