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Week 887: A new contest: We give you a line, you write the rest of the limerick

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By The Empress
Saturday, September 25, 2010

-- She said, "Never, you cad"
-- He snatched up a cleaver
-- But then it got tricky
-- And through each passing year
-- They came back in one piece
-- Displaying a broom

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People sure like limericks, it turns out: We received more than 1,000 entries for Week 882's contest, and many people seemed eager for another challenge. Here's one we've never done before. This week: Write a limerick whose third or fourth line is one of those listed above. Remember that, in the smallest nutshell into which we can oversimplify it, Lines 1, 2 and 5 of the limerick must each contain the meter "o-hickory-dickory-dock" and must rhyme with one another; and that Lines 3 and 4 must contain "o-dickory-dock" and rhyme with each other.

Winner gets the Inker, the official Style Invitational trophy. Second place wins a cheap plastic figurine of a grinning swami that was a promotion for the movie "The Love Guru," which went on to win Golden Raspberry Awards for Worst Movie, Worst Actor (Mike Myers) and Worst Screenplay. Donated by Style editor and Invitational fan Lynn Medford.

Other runners-up win their choice of a coveted Style Invitational Loser T-shirt or yearned-for Loser Mug. Honorable Mentions get one of the lusted-after Style Invitational Loser Magnets. First Offenders get a smelly, tree-shaped air "freshener" (Fir Stink for their First Ink). One prize per entrant per week. Send your entries by e-mail to losers@washpost.com or by fax to 202-334-4312. Deadline is Monday, Oct. 4. Put "Week 887" in the subject line of your e-mail, or it risks being ignored as spam. Include your name, postal address and phone number with your entry. Contests are judged on the basis of humor and originality. All entries become the property of The Washington Post. Entries may be edited for taste or content. Results to be published Oct. 23. No purchase required for entry. Employees of The Washington Post, and their immediate relatives, are not eligible for prizes. Pseudonymous entries will be disqualified. The revised title for next week's results is by Jeff Contompasis. The honorable-mention subheads are by Tom Witte (Week 880), Beverley Sharp and Craig Dykstra (Week 882).

'Q'uite a 'R'ation of 'S': More honorable mentions from Week 880

We had no new contest four weeks ago, so this week we offer some more detritus from previous contests. For Week 880, we asked you to take an existing word beginning with Q, R, or S, change it by one letter, and define the new word:

Skedaddie: A deadbeat father.
(Brad Alexander, Wanneroo, Australia)

Breverend: Everyone's favorite sermon-giver.
(Pam Sweeney, St. Paul, Minn.)

Qualifictation: A lie on one's résumé.
(Beverley Sharp, Washington)

Quirk-change artist: A psychiatrist.
(Bob Klahn, Wilmington, Del.)

Rehoarsal: Tom Waits's warmup.
(Stephen Gold, Glasgow, Scotland)

Rodeo Dive: A house in Beverly Hills worth less than a million bucks.
(Chris Doyle, Ponder, Tex.)

Rotundra: A vast, unfurnished foyer of a McMansion.
(Stephen Dudzik, Olney)


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