The Washington Post Sunday

Week 1047: Bank shots


Big jump for D.C. kids on national test

(The Washington Post, Nov. 8)

School board hires Evel Knievel to coach 8th-graders

NYC age to buy tobacco highered

(The University Daily Kansan, Nov. 5)

Will student editor be fighered?

It’s our perennial contest that we used to call “Mess With Our Heads.” But this year we’d add: “Or Anyone Else’s.” Now that most out-of-town Invite buffs aren’t able to surf all over washington­post. com without a paid subscripti­on just to be able to give us free jokes, the Empress has decided to broaden the pool: This week: Quote a headline appearing in The Washington Post, washington­ or another publicatio­n, print or online, dated Nov. 14 to Nov. 25, and supply a humorous “bank” headline that either misinterpr­ets it, as in the example at left, or comments wryly on it, as in the one above. For a non-Post headline, you’ll have to include a link to a Web address where I can verify it, or, if it’s in print, a scanned copy. For a head in the print Post, include the date and page number. You may omit the beginning or end of the head if that doesn’t change its point substantia­lly. What we’re counting as a headline: (a) the main heading above the text of an article or ad; (b) the bank head under a headline; (c) a “jump” head on the second page of an article; (d) a subhead within an article; (e) a headlinest­yle link from a home page to an article (you’re on the honor system for those, because there’s no link to give). Don’t capitalize a word that’s lowercase in the headline to turn it into a name.

Winner gets the Inkin’ Memorial, the Lincoln statue bobblehead that is the official Style Invitation­al trophy. Second place receives something very cool: an old edition of the 1830 English novel “Paul Clifford,” which nobody knows but whose opening line everyone knows: “It was a dark and stormy night.” Its author, Edward Bulwer-Lytton, has achieved immortalit­y with the annual namesake contest for bad openings to a novel. Donated by intermitte­nt Loser Larry Pryluck.

Other runners-up win their choice of a yearned-for Loser Mug or the ardently desired Grossery Bag. Honorable mentions get a lusted-after Loser magnet. First Offenders receive a smelly treeshaped air “freshener” ( FirStink for their first ink). E-mail entries to or fax to 202-334-4312. Deadline is Monday, Nov. 25; results published Dec. 15 (online Dec. 12). No more than 25 entries per entrant per week. Include “Week 1047” 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 at­s. The subhead for this week’s honorable mentions is by Beverley Sharp. Join the lively Style Invitation­al Devotees group on Facebook at, and click “like” on Style Invitation­al Ink of the Day at The “fighered” joke was made in a comment by Ed Byers on Jim Romenesko’s Facebook page.


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