My invitation to provide a caption for the strangely compelling photo of the aftermath of the Woodley Park Metro pileup prompted entries from hundreds of readers.
Most of the entries fell along the same lines, emphasizing either the reproductory nature of the photo or its inherent "Ozness."
I've included some of my favorites. If I didn't print yours, it's probably because another person had the same idea sooner or phrased it in a slightly more pleasing way. Here they are, in no particular order:
Metro riders enjoy a sneak preview of the new Frank Gehry-designed rail cars.
-- Bill Baker, Washington
"I think Christo went a little far this time."
-- Dave Rabinowitz, Corvallis, Ore.
Salvador Dali's "Soft Woodley."
-- Judith Duval, Arlington
"You know, I've never really understood installation art. . . ."
-- Anna Kaplan, Washington
The opening of the new Pac-Man Museum draws a large crowd.
-- Mick Newman, Fairfax
"Pay no attention to the crash behind the curtain." -- Peter Buryk, Bethesda
"Floor opening! Please stand clear the floor!"
-- Paul Pollard, Albany, N.Y.
The John Kerry presidential victory train on its way to Washington.
-- Gregory Lewis, Vienna
Republicans got an early start on the 2008 election by filming a commercial entitled, "If you vote for Hillary. . . ."
-- Shawn Dunning, Fairfax
In an effort to create a greater bipartisan spirit in Washington, Metro officials have decided to run Red Line and Blue Line trains on the same track. Officials acknowledge that some fine-tuning will be required.
-- Brenda Bates, Silver Spring
The "crash course" for Metro conductors has not been a success.
-- Judy Hansmann, Vienna
And people think parking at West Falls Church is bad.
-- Tom McCammon, Reston
"Now do you see why you aren't supposed to eat french fries on the Metro?"
-- Chris Kleponis, Washington
" . . . but the toilet discipline on our flight into Reagan National wasn't the most stressful part of our trip."
-- Doug Ellice, Bethesda
"Uh, on second thought, I think I'll go to Glenmont today."
-- Mary Binseel, Clarksville
"This brings a new meaning to the word 'Metrosexual.' "
-- Marvin Vargas, Arlington
Still safer than driving on the Beltway.
-- Dan Malouf, Arlington
The real reason Metro doesn't have enough trains: The cars have been eating each other.
-- Marcia Tiersky, Alexandria
The annual Molting of the Metro Cars is starting to become as popular as the Cherry Blossom Festival.
-- Jim Senft, Silver Spring
"Okay, you dragged me down to this scratch-and- dent sale. Now tell me again why we need a Metro car?"
-- Donovan Kelly, Hamilton
"On the bright side, we do get to pocket another 70 cents from the fare reduction."
-- Eric Martin, Laurel
"Uh-oh. Better call Maaco!"
-- Carrick Herbert, Alexandria
Drumroll Please (Then Eggroll)
And now for the lunch-winning entry. I chose the entry from Peter Lagiovane of Chambersburg, Pa., because it was so dissimilar from the other entries. And in its way it paid homage to a native Washingtonian. Peter's caption:
Metro riders line up to view Duke Ellington's famous "A-ieeee! Train."
Women and Children Second
When she heard that Metro had redesigned its Web site, www.wmata.com, Adrienne Flave thought she'd take a look. But in the section "How to Travel," she found an example of blatant favoritism. Under the heading "Riding Metro" is this instruction: "Stand clear the train car doors and let writers get off before you board." When she pointed this out to me, Adrienne wrote: "You're lucky that your profession is singled out for courtesy by Metro. I, a government analyst, will have to fight my way through the throngs to disembark!"
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