In a world where there's a National Rat Breeding Council and an American Association of Witchcraft, it shouldn't surprise you that there's a National Society of Newspaper Columnists.
I've been a member of this august organization for the last five years or so. This has brought me two memorable moments. The first: When I accidentally paid my 1988 dues twice (oh, how they howled). The second: When I opened the May newsletter (this time, I did the howling).
The NSNC will hold its 1990 convention later this month in Nashville. I've been to Nashville. They call it Music City. They ought to call it Raucousville.
Never have I zzzzzzed so little and enjoyed myself so much. Las Vegas likes to think it parties hard. Nashville parties like a mixmaster. Not surprisingly, your head feels exactly like one for the first week you're back home.
Alas, I can't attend the NSNC convention (my budget fits like a straitjacket these days). But while reading up on what's in store, I discovered an idea that you readers might like, whether you're raucous or not.
Since the convention will be held in the country music capital of the world, the NSNC is going to hold a country music songwriting contest. The best country song written for the occasion will win an ugly paisley tie that belonged to an NSNC member until he left it behind at last year's convention in Connecticut.
Sorry, NSNC, but the contest sounds like a snore. If columnists could write country songs, we'd be raking in millions (and partying like mixmasters) rather than trying to write heartstopping prose on flickering computer screens at strange hours.
But deep in the conditions of contest, there lurked a pearl. The country-song contest will be free. But what if the NSNC charged an entry fee? Only the Yuppies among us would enter, the NSNC newsletter guessed. And Yuppie columnists would submit Yuppie-esque songs, of course.
What if there were such a thing as Yuppie-esque country music?
I figure you readers can help me imagine that awesome prospect -- and the sickening song titles that would follow. So let's have at it. Announcing (ta-da!) the Yuppie Country Song Title Contest.
To play, all you have to do is mail me your creation. Your prize is enduring fame (and perhaps an ugly tie -- I own lots).
To get you in the proper frame of mind, here are the examples of Yuppies-in-Nashville song titles published in the NSNC newsletter:
"I'm Gonna Fax You My Heart From Memphis When I Finish My Chablis."
"My 401-K Retirement Plan Done Done Me Wrong."
Here are a few that I thought up:
"You've Got My Call-Waiting Clicking Over You."
"Saabs in Our Driveway, Nothing in Our Hearts."
"Two Frequent Flyers, One Lasting Love."
"When Perrier Went Bad, So Did You, Babe."
"Milken Milked Me Dry, But At Least I've Got You."
"Johnnie Walker Black For a Boy Who's Feelin' Blue."
"You've Taught Me More About Love Than Any Harvard MBA Ever Knew."
"No Leather Briefcase Can Hold My Need for You."
"When You Zapped the VCR, You Zapped the Zip Outta My Heart."
"That Weekend in Majorca Won't Heal the Hurt."
"The Trump Shuttle Done Put Me in a Holding Pattern Over You."
And so on. Send your deathless entries to Bob Levey, The Washington Post, Washington, D.C., 20071.
SEND A KID TO CAMP
Our annual fund-raising campaign on behalf of the area's underprivileged children is off with a sputter, not a bang. We hope and plan to send more than 1,100 kids to camp this summer. But it won't happen without your help.
As the new month begins, and you sit down to pay your bills, please take a minute to contribute to our drive. Your money helps brighten the lives of kids who don't believe that strangers can care. But strangers have, throughout the 43 years of the Send a Kid to Camp campaign.
Let's care again. Please contribute today. You get a tax deduction -- and a stronger community.
TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE CAMPAIGN:
Make a check or money order payable to Send a Kid to Camp, and mail it to Bob Levey, The Washington Post, Washington, D.C., 20071.
In hand as of May 28: $29,948.60.
Our goal: $275,000.