June 18, 2024


Art Shines Through

Style Invitational contest Week 1485: Switchcraft — transpose 2 letters to make a new word

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Switch the L and D in LEMONADE and you get DEMON ALE: What made Billy and Susie’s curbside stand sell out in 20 minutes.

BETTY GARBLE: Famed pin-up model with great legs, not so great a voice.

ACT OF DOG: Does your homeowner’s policy cover shredded furniture?

This week’s contest was suggested by 21-time Loser Jeff Rackow, who reminded the Empress of her goof in February when she announced the Week 1474 contest as “Week 1744,” and suggested that she at least get a contest out of it. This week: Switch the positions of two letters within a word, name, title or phrase, then describe the result, as in Jeff’s “Lemonade/demon ale” example and the others above. (Oh, I guess you could transpose numbers as well. What the heck.) As with all our neologism contests, feel free to include a funny sentence showing how your term could be used, since other Losers might think of the same word, and because we want readers to laugh, you know?

Submit up to 25 entries at wapo.st/enter-invite1485 (no capitals in the Web address). Deadline is Monday, May 2; results appear May 22 in print, May 19 online. See this week’s entry form or Style Conversational column for how to format your entry.

Winner gets the Clowning Achievement, our Style Invitational trophy. Second place receives a pair of adorable Racing Nuns: Rev up the wheels on the bottom, toy-car-style, and send the mini-sisters sweeping gracefully down the hallway. They even have cute freckles beneath their wimples. Donated by Loser Charlie Hummel, whose family had “given up Nun Racing for Lent.”

Other runners-up win their choice of our “For Best Results, Pour Into Top End” Loser Mug or our “Whole Fools” Grossery Bag. Honorable mentions get one of our lusted-after Loser magnets, “A Small Jester of Appreciation” or “Close, but Ceci N’est Pas un Cigare.” First Offenders receive only a smelly tree-shaped air “freshener” (FirStink for their first ink). See general contest rules and guidelines at wapo.st/inviteFAQ. The headline “Head Fakes” was submitted by Jesse Frankovich, Chris Doyle and Tom Witte; Dave Prevar wrote the honorable-mentions subhead. 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 ; and follow @StyleInvite on Twitter.

The Style Conversational: The Empress’s weekly online column discusses each new contest and set of results. See this week’s, published late Thursday, April 21, at wapo.st/conv1485.

Head fakes: Plays on headlines from Week 1481

Week 1481 was our perennial Mess With Our Heads contest, in which readers chose a headline from any publication and reinterpreted it by adding a bank head, or subtitle. Among the more than 1,400 submissions, the Post head “Trump Probably Broke Law, Judge Finds” brought many bank heads like “Pope Probably Catholic,” “Sun Probably Rose in East Today.”

Post headline: At age 101, he finally got his high school diploma

Bank head: Plans gap year; parents skeptical (Milo Sauer, Fairfax, Va.)

‘My goal, ultimately, is to get eyeballs’: Our exclusive interview with Mr. Potato Head (Barbara Turner, Takoma Park, Md.)

2nd place and the dancing Hillary Clinton doll:

Catholic University names president: ‘Biden, duh’ (Sam Mertens, Silver Spring, Md.)

And the winner of the Clowning Achievement:

Surveillance Video Captures Man Throwing Rock Through Two Windows: Slapped comedian just keeps getting assaulted (Bill Dorner, Indianapolis)

Lightheaded: Honorable mentions

Date Lab: It wasn’t what she expected: Lots more panting and barking, for one thing (Duncan Stevens, Vienna, Va.)

At age 101, he finally got his high school diploma: Postal service apologizes for delay (Ryan Martinez, Takoma Park, Md.)

How to get a husband to stop and listen: Taser unveils new marketing slogan (Allen Haywood, Washington)

Looking at trees isn’t the only way to mark the National Cherry Blossom Festival: But keep your zipper up anyway (Kevin Dopart, Washington)

‘For God’s sake, this man cannot remain in power’: ‘I’m doing my best,’ sputters Kroger bagger after Shopper Karen outburst (Michael Cohen, Greenbelt, Md.)

10 women who have made history so far in 2022: Squeezing them all into one article gives us space for real news (Hannah Seidel, Alexandria, Va.)

97% had visibly reduced lines in one week [face cream ad]: Ga. reports great success in shrinking turnout at polls (Beverley Sharp, Montgomery, Ala.)

Are we ready for another wave? Queen says she will venture out again next week. (Mark Raffman, Reston, Va.)

Art Briles steps down as Grambling’s offensive coordinator days after being hired: ‘I don’t get it – I thought I was being REALLY offensive’ (John Hutchins, Silver Spring, Md.)

Birth of a Final Four: ‘No more kids!’ vows mother of quadruplets (Terry Lewis, Springfield, Va., a First Offender)

Bowser eyes bike and bus expansion: ‘With the size of today’s butts, we’ve gotta have bigger seats,’ D.C. mayor says (Craig Dykstra, Centreville)

Bowser plans $10 million effort to support Black homeownership in city: Hopes to expand program to cover 4 homes next year (Allen Haywood)

Brain implant allows fully paralyzed patient to communicate: First communication is with billing department (Paul Frantz, San Francisco, a First Offender)

Clarence Thomas has some good advice for his wife: Explains how self-destructing message apps work (Karen Golden, Prince Frederick, Md.)

Congressman Madison Cawthorn under fire over claims of DC drugs and orgies: ‘Why weren’t we invited?’ demand GOP leaders (Steve Benko, Southport, Conn.; Ken Bredemeier, Fairfax Station, Va., a First Offender)

D.C. plans spike in traffic cameras that issue fines: Speeders’ tires will be punished instantly by sharp-tipped projectile (Jeff Contompasis, Ashburn, Va.)

Examination shows how deeply Cruz was involved: Trump colonoscopy shows ‘clear nose print,’ physician says (Mark Raffman)

Getty exhibition features amazing depictions of human body from Renaissance era to today: They turned into bones! (Coleman Glenn, Huntingdon Valley, Pa.)

Giving a fresh listen to Grammy contenders: Picky parents hold second round of interviews for surrogate nana (Sarah Walsh, Rockville, Md.)

I-395 drivers do stupid things, and he has the tape: Man speeds after speeders while holding his camera out the window (Jon Gearhart, Des Moines)

If Biden Is Frustrated With Garland, It’s His Own Darn Fault: He could have taken down White House Christmas decorations himself, critics say (Jon Grantham, Fairfax, Va.)

Hunter admits to killing nearby family’s beloved dog: Bannon touts new Biden rumor (Frank Osen, Pasadena, Calif.)

It’s Pride Week in Austin schools. The Texas AG says that’s illegal: Envy, lust, gluttony remain lawful, AG assures supporters (Karen Lambert, Chevy Chase, Md.)

Jim Jordan prods GOP colleagues to consider impeaching Biden: Other R’s refuse because ‘Biden is not really president’ (Steve Leifer, Potomac, Md.)

LA County sheriff shoots his mouth off again: Will be assigned desk duty after second hospital stay (Jonathan Jensen, Baltimore)

Michigan squeaks past surprising South Dakota: Big tectonic shift in Midwest reported (Roy Ashley, Washington)

More houses of worship are reopening, but attendance is flat: Deacons fill empty pews with leftover cardboard cutouts (Jon Gearhart)

PM Update: Cool but generally pleasant this weekend: Boris Johnson subdued but amiable following difficult workweek (Jeff Shirley, Richmond, Va.)

Private jets multiply in the skies: Mile High Club no longer restricted to humans (Marli Melton, Carmel Valley, Calif.)

Racks can make things easier, until it’s time to clean: ‘When I’m scrubbin’ that floor, woo-ee, I tip right over!’ Dolly Parton says (Roxi Slemp, Bariloche, Argentina)

Russia accused of breaking promise: Duh. (Dave Prevar, Annapolis)

Russians possibly sick: ‘Ya think?’ says head of cancer ward at Mariupol Children’s Hospital (Don Norum, Charlottesville, Va.)

Schools nationwide are quietly removing books from their libraries: ‘Big deal that the censors followed our noise rules!’ says outraged librarian (Ryan Martinez)

She was a candidate to lead Levi’s. Then she started tweeting: When she built a nest on her desk, they pressed her to see professional help (Bird Waring, Larchmont, N.Y.)

Key Youngkin adviser is paid by political firms, not state: Fellow Republicans praise Va. governor’s efforts to control state spending (Jerry Birchmore, Springfield, Va.)

Sink or swim: Fla. Gov. DeSantis signs witch trial bill (Kevin Dopart)

Trump is losing his grip on the GOP: Little fingers blamed (Stephanie Smilay, Takoma Park, a First Offender)

Smith’s slap shows he’s not perfect: Analysts: he could have used more thumb, better follow-through (Duncan Stevens)

BTS member tests positive for COVID-19: ‘Having it swabbed was even worse than the nostril test,’ singer says (Bill Dorner)

A Deep Dive Into the Blue Period: ‘Avatar II: Female Biology’ reviewed (Steve Honley, Washington)

Paddle Your Own Canoe: And 101 Other Euphemisms for Masturbation (Tom Witte, Montgomery Village, Md.)

‘Cauliflower with curry makes a legit stand-in for the classic chicken salad’: Gene Weingarten signals that he’s being held hostage (Coleman Glenn)

Still running — deadline Monday night, April 25 — tell us a sentence you can use in two given places, like the gym and the hairstylist’s. See wapo.st/invite1484.

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