Style Invitational Week 906: Your mug here - design a mug for the runner-up Losers

By Pat Myers
Sunday, February 6, 2011;

As devotees of the Invitational Fine Print know, the third- and fourth-place Losers of each contest "win" their choice of a coveted Loser T-shirt or yearned-for Loser Mug. We've had only one model of mug, pictured here, since we started giving it out almost four years ago, and our supply is running low. So: Give us a new design for the Loser Mug - it can be just a slogan or it can be an idea for artwork (you can just describe it rather than draw it). A very intricate design, or one with several colors, won't work well.

Winner gets the Inker, the official Style Invitational trophy - plus the new mug. Second, third and fourth place also get the new mug - which of course will have someone else's idea on it. Loser.

Honorable mentions a lusted-after Loser magnet. First Offenders get a smelly, tree-shaped air "freshener" (Fir Stink for their First Ink). E-mail entries to or fax to 202-334-4312. Deadline is Monday, Feb. 14; results to be published March 6 (March 4 online). Put "Week 906" in the subject line of your e-mail, or it may be ignored as spam. Include your real name, postal address and phone number with your entry. See more rules here. The revised title for next week's results is by Tom Witte; the honorable-mentions subhead is by Beverley Sharp.

Report from Week 902

in which we asked you to find a line in one of that week's Washington Posts and reword it in a more upbeat way:

The winner of the Inker

Original: Maine's governor told critics Friday to "kiss my butt" over his decision not to attend the state NAACP's annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebrations.
Spun: Maine's governor found it in his heart to turn the other cheek . . . (Dixon Wragg, Santa Rosa, Calif.)

2 Winner of the FBI-NYPD Joint Terrorist Task Force mug: Original: Tom DeLay, former U.S. House leader, sentenced to 3 years in prison
Spun: DeLay will be following in the footsteps of Mandela, Gandhi and King . . . (Howard Walderman, Columbia)

3 O: Virginia school officials have seen 120 cases of sexual misconduct over the past decade, most of them discovered and reported after a teacher was arrested or prosecuted.
S: Many Virginia teachers have reached out to their students beyond the classroom. (Jeff Brechlin, Eagan, Minn.)

4 O: Dominican Republic resumes deportations of Haitian migrants
S: A year after earthquake, many Haitians are returning home (Ward Kay, Vienna)

The upbeat goes on: Honorable mentions

O: Tom DeLay, former U.S. House leader, sentenced to 3 years in prison
S: Government again calls DeLay to serve (Roy Ashley, Washington)

O: Winter weather gripped parts of the South on Sunday . . . causing hundreds of flight cancellations.
S: The number of complaints about security pat-downs at the Atlanta airport dropped enormously on Sunday. (Marty McCullen, Gettysburg, Pa.)

O: Longtime Truro Church minister fired for accessing online pornography at work
S: Today we bid farewell to Reverend Brown. For some time now he's been looking at missionary positions. (Gary Crockett, Chevy Chase)

O: Haitians see little rebuilding, few new jobs
S: Haitians get a taste of American lifestyle. (Joe Godles, Bethesda)

O: Incendiary mail goes off in D.C.
S: Innovation in packaging sparks interest from postal officials (Sam Wheeler, Alexandria, a First Offender)

O: School board in N.C. . . . abolishes integration policy
S: School board in N.C. takes a step closer to America's roots (Matt Monitto, Elon, N.C., a First Offender)

O: Griffith cut up and tried to store the body [of his girlfriend] in containers filled with concrete.
S: After his girlfriend departed, Griffith kept mementos of their relationship. (Nan Reiner, Alexandria)

O: The number of homeless families increased at an even greater rate, according to a report.
S: Despite the tough economy, many families are able to save on rent, mortgage payments and home repairs. (Ira Allen, Bethesda)

O: Pennies stolen from collection at Md. church
S: Strangers find 'pennies from Heaven' (Dave Prevar, Annapolis; Rick Haynes, Potomac)

O: Major delays from N.Y. Ave. bridge work
: Commuters linger after work in D.C. neighborhoods (Pam Sweeney, St. Paul, Minn.)

O: Arlington lawyer gets year in prison
S: Local attorney plans extended reunion with former clients (Nan Reiner)

O: Officials also presented the results "in ways that are incorrect and potentially misleading."
S: Incredible results! (Kevin Dopart, Washington)

O: Deputy Prime Minister Clegg appears to be losing Britain's love
Clegg's Popularity Closely Tracking Winston Churchill's (Mike Gips, Bethesda)

O: To government workers: "You will find the pressures greater than the pay. You may endure more public attacks than support."
S: "You will have the unequaled satisfaction of knowing that your character and talent are contributing to the direction and success of this free society." - John F. Kennedy, 1963 (Jeff Hazle, Woodbridge)

Next week: Bill us now, or Enacting up

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