Week 1132: You and what army? Military fictoids
The U.S. Navy’s bluish camouflage is designed so that sailors who fall overboard will blend in. (Jeff Contompasis, 2015)
Gen. Ambrose Burnside was aided greatly in Civil War planning by his largely forgotten assistant, Col. Wendell Soulpatch. (Malcolm Fleschner, 2011) During World War II, a secret U.S. Army survey identified 4,389 atheists in foxholes. (Bob Dalton, 2007)
It’s time once again to bring forth a new set of lies for our readers (why should campaign coverage have all the fun?). We’ve had “unreal facts” contests about politicians, history, movies, medicine, sports, cars and just whatever. Now here’s another lane on the Disinformation Superhighway, courtesy of suggester Jeff Contompasis: This week: Give us some comically bogus trivia about the military, past or present, ours or theirs, as in the examples above; the second and third are from previous Invite fictoid contests, one all-purpose and the other for history.
Winner gets the Inkin’ Memorial, the bobblehead of the statue of Commander in Chief Lincoln that is the official Style Invitational trophy. Second place receives, courtesy of Not Even a Loser Mary M. Hanlon, a cuddly pair of foamy-soft toy Pee and Poo toys, designed in Sweden; the former is bright yellow and teardrop (uh-huh)-shaped; the latter is brown and vaguely conical. Both have eyes with sort of hangdog expressions. (Wouldn’t you?)
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 firstname.lastname@example.org or, if you were born in the 19th century, fax to 202-334-4312. Deadline is Monday night, July 20; results published Aug. 9 (online Aug. 6). You may submit up to 25 entries per contest. Include “Week 1132” 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 Tom Witte; the honorable-mentions subhead is by Jeff Contompasis. 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 the new contest and results. This week: Losers collaborate on an imprmptu parody of “Hallelujah” about peas in guacamole. Check it out at wapo.st/styleconv.