New contest forWeek 1144: Someone else’s business
Goo Goo Cluster is a good name for a candy and an even better one for a baby play group. (Bird Waring, Larchmont, N.Y.) Dish Network is an okay name for a satellite TV system, but it’s a better one for an escort service. (Stephen Gold, Glasgow,
Scotland) Invisible Fence is a descriptive name for a electronic pet barrier, but it would be a great name for an Internet pawnshop. (Todd DeLap, Fairfax) Within hours after I posted the Week 1140 contest four weeks ago — the contest whose results run today — people started writing in: You’ve just asked us to think of some brand name, and say what product, organization, etc., that name would be
bad for. Can we also send names that would be better for something else?
Wait four weeks, I advised. Some Losers didn’t, but anyway: This week: Name a real brand, along with something else it would be a better name for, as in the examples above, which the Empress pulled out of the Week 1140s.
Winner gets the Inkin’ Memorial, the Lincoln statue bobblehead that is the official Style Invitational trophy. Second place receives a hand-size rubber chicken that “lays an egg” when you squeeze it. Actually, it extrudes a bubble filled with something that kind of looks like raw egg white, plus a yellow ball “yolk”; when you unsqueeze the chicken, it unlays the egg and the bubble goes back in. Hmm, a seller on Amazon describes these things as “educational toys that help children learn.” Learn what — that the chicken came first, then the egg, and then the egg changed its mind? Donated eons ago by Loser Marleen May.
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 Har-Har.” 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, Oct. 19; results published Nov. 8 (online Nov. 5). You may submit up to 25 entries per contest. Include “Week 1144” 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 Kevin Dopart; the honorable-mentions subhead is by Jeff Shirley. 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.
If you lose this week’s contest by thissss much, you can take your frustrations out on this 2nd-place prize.