New con­test for Week 1227: Cel­e­brate or­tho-diver­sity!

The Washington Post Sunday - - DIVERSIONS -

Pe­tuna: A flower that’s a bit too fra­grant. (Jeff Shirley)

Iguano: The zookeeper’s least fa­vorite rep­tile cage. (Jeff Shirley)

Wo­mant: A crea­ture who can lift many times her own weight but won’t tell you what that weight is. (Seth Brown, from a 2004 In­vite con­test to com­bine two an­i­mals)

It’s been a cou­ple of months since our last ne­ol­o­gism con­test, caus­ing the English lan­guage to lan­guish des­per­ately un­til we saw fit to in­ject a cou­ple of dozen new words into it. Our lat­est twist on the genre comes from Loser Jeff Shirley, who sug­gested this week’s con­test: Name and de­scribe a new life form — and no let­ter in the term may be used

twice, as in the ex­am­ples above. “Life form” is pretty vague on pur­pose; the E al­ways ap­pre­ci­ates cre­ativ­ity, and of course The Funny.

Sub­mit en­tries at this web­site:­ter­in­vite-1227 (all low­er­case).

Win­ner gets the Inkin’ Me­mo­rial, the Lin­coln statue bob­ble­head that is the of­fi­cial Style In­vi­ta­tional tro­phy. Se­cond place re­ceives a fas­ci­nat­ing vol­ume called “Amer­i­can Sex Machines: The Hid­den His­tory of Sex at the

U.S. Patent Of­fice”; it’s a look at hun­dreds of var­i­ous de­vices re­flect­ing “our na­tional quest for sex­ual in­no­va­tion,” from ev­ery­thing from whale­bone corsets to con­doms im­planted with com­puter chips, and in­clud­ing some down­right scary elec­tri­cal gad­gets. Do­nated by Loser John Hutchins, who swears that his Twit­ter han­dle is not @Amer­i­canSexMa­chine.

Other run­ners-up win our new “You Gotta Play to Lose” Loser Mug or our Grossery Bag, “I Got a B in Pun­man­ship.” Hon­or­able men­tions get one of our new lusted­af­ter Loser mag­nets, “No Child­ish­ness Left Be­hind” or “Mag­num Do­pus.” First Of­fend­ers re­ceive only a smelly tree­shaped air “fresh­ener” (FirStink for their first ink). Dead­line is Mon­day night, May 22; re­sults pub­lished June 11 (on­line June 8). See gen­eral con­test rules and guide­lines at In­vRules. The head­line for this week’s re­sults is by Chris Doyle; the hon­or­able­men­tions sub­head is by Jesse Frankovich. Join the Style In­vi­ta­tional Devo­tees group on Face­book at­vdev. “Like” Style In­vi­ta­tional Ink of the Day on Face­book at­day.

THE 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 at­conv.

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