The Flush: Putting the seat back down across the nation!
IroningMan: When he’s steamed up, he lays waste to those diabolical wrinkles under the shirt sleeves!
As noted in a recent NPR story, Pixar artist Everett Downing resolved last year to create a new superhero every day. He’s giving himself a few more months to reach his goal of 365, but he’s already come up with more than 300 on his blog 365 Supers, including Jack B. Nimble, the married duo of Ball and Chain, and Emoticon, “a man more villain than superhero who leaves a trail of destruction and a winking smiley face.” Let’s do our own. This week: Create a new superhero (or duo) and describe the superpower, or not-very-super-power.
Winner gets the Inkin’ Memorial, the bobblehead that is the official Style Invitational trophy. Second place receives an action figure called Tiny Kung Fu Master: “Clap your hands and watch him fight!” while the strains of “Kung Fu Fighting” emanate from said master. The Empress has had this lying around for at least three years, so you might not get many “kicks of doom.”
Other runners-up win their choice of a yearned-for Loser Mug or the ardently desired Grossery Bag. Honorable mentions get a lusted-after Loser magnet. First Offenders receive a smelly, tree-shaped air “freshener” (FirStink for their first ink). E-mail entries to firstname.lastname@example.org or fax to 202-334-4312. Deadline is Monday, Jan. 28; results published Feb. 17 (online Feb. 14). No more than 25 entries per entrant per week. Include “Week 1006” in your e-mail subject line or it might be ignored as spam. Include your real name, postal address and phone number with your entry. See contest rules and guidelines at wapo.st/inviterules. The subhead for this week’s honorable mentions is by Tom Witte, as is the alternative headline in the “next week’s results” line. Join the lively Style Invitational Devotees group on Facebook at on.fb.me/invdev.
in which we asked you to supply totally bogus definitions to a series of obscure words found in the Oxford English Dictionary (without telling you the real ones):
Hinderyeap: To pinch a friend in the rear to keep him from saying something stupid: “Hey, Mrs. Smith, when are you due? I didn’t even know you were– yeap!” (Frank Osen, Pasadena, Calif.) [Real definition: an adjective meaning cunning or deceitful]
2. Winner of the gag-gift “Potenz Pillen”: Housty: The smell of someone who doesn’t get out much. “He spent so much time working on Invite entries that he developed a housty odor.” (Dixon Wragg, Santa Rosa, Calif.) [n., a sore throat]
3. INTI: Texting retort to “run that errand yourself” — I’m Not the Intern. (Ann Martin, Bracknell, England) [n., a former Peruvian unit of currency]
4. Hispidulous: Tending to spew saliva on others when speaking. “The hispidulous preacher’s congregation got used to being rebaptized every Sunday.” (Danielle Nowlin, Woodbridge, Va.) [adj., slightly bristly]
Higgle: The disconcerting motion of man-boobs. “Only the Secret Service knew that Bill Clinton jogged with a sports bra for higgle control.” (Jeff Brechlin, Eagan, Minn.) [n., the adjusting of prices so that demand equals supply]
Himple, n.: The pathetic result when a boy desperately uses a smear of Mom’s makeup before a date. (Tim Beach, Edgewater, Md. a First Offender) [v., to limp or hobble]
Himple, v.: To masculinize a product in an effort to attract male consumers. “Men wouldn’t touch these appletinis until we himpled them into ‘snot-shots.’” (Frank Osen)
Himple, adj.: Possessing a type of stupidity associated with the Y-chromosome. “I knew he was himple when he didn’t know the difference between the stove and the oven.” (Dixon Wragg)
Hinderyeap: Hair on the buttocks. “He’s got so much hinderyeap he had to let out his pants.” (Neal Starkman, Seattle)
Hornito: A leg-friendly Chihuahua. (Lawrence McGuire, Waldorf, Md.) [n., a low mound of volcanic origin]
Hirrie-harrie: Ritual suicide after failing to get sorted into Gryffindor. (Matt Monitto, Elon, N.C.)[“an utterance expressive of rapid and tumultuous movement”]
Huff-duff: What the Three Little Pigs told the Big Bad Wolf to blow it out of. (Dave Komornik, Danville, Va.) [n., a device for determining the direction of radio signals]
Humdudgeon: A fit of pique that you control by making a low, continuous growl. (Roy Ashley, Washington) [n., an imaginary illness]
Idiopt, n.: In a multiple-choice question, an answer that is obviously wrong and included for laughs. (Fred Dawson, Beltsville, Md.) [n., a colorblind person]
Idiopt, v.: To knowingly make a stupid choice: “I guarantee Ben will idiopt to hit on the bouncer’s girlfriend.” (Mike Gips, Bethesda, Md.)
Idiopt, v.: To sign up for “special marketing offers from our partners.” (Ben Aronin, Arlington, Va.; Art Grinath, Takoma Park, Md.)
Ikat: Siri prototype that would not interact with the user, required attention at strange hours, and would not accept the battery charger that worked fine yesterday. (Dave Hanlon, Woodbridge, Va.; Bill Smith, Reston, Va.) [n., an Asian fabric decoration technique]
Inti: Showing opposition to the in-group by its own members. The Democrats are anti-Boehner; the tea party is inti-Boehner. (Paul Burnham, Gainesville, Va.)
Jargogle, n.: The sticky mess on the rim of the jelly or ketchup container. (Ron Gove, Leesburg, Va., a First Offender) [v., to confuse, jumble]
Jaunder: To accidentally wash your brand-new neon yellow T- shirt with your whites. (Ken Noffke, Stephens City, Va., a First Offender) [n., idle talk]
Jeofail: To phrase your answer in the form of an answer. (Edmund Conti, Raleigh, N.C.) [n., a mistake in a legal proceeding]
Jerkinet: The comment section of a newspaper’s Web site. “Stick to the article and skip the nutcase commentary on the jerkinet.” (Michael Reinemer, Annandale, Va.) [n., a jacket worn by lower-class women]
Jerkinet: A chocolate-covered bit of dried meat, a new snack they’re serving at tough-guy movies. (Stephen Dudzik, Olney, Md.)
Jerque: Someone who can speak more languages than you. (Josh Feldblyum, Philadelphia)[v., to examine or search a cargo ship’s papers]
Jobble: A cushy position that a college concocts so it can pay a stipend to a prize athlete. “They gave Moose the jobble of controlling the thermostat for the showers.” (Howard Walderman, Columbia, Md.) [n., a small quantity or load of hay, straw, etc.]
Jobble: A small fluctuation in the unemployment rate. “In the run-up to the election, the media obsessed over every jobble.” (Chris Doyle, Ponder, Tex.)
Karzy: Willing to travel to Afghanistan as a tourist. (Mike Gips)[n., slang for toilet]
Keek: French unit for percentage of alcohol. (Barbara Turner, Takoma Park, Md.) [v., to sneak a peep]
Kerygma: Undescribable blandness: “Al Gore just exudes kerygma.” (Bird Waring, Larchmont, N.Y.) [the essence of Christian preaching]
Kreep: in the Klan hierarchy, the rank just below Kleagle and above Kretin. (David Garratt, Silver City, N.M.) [n., a substance found on the moon in glassy fragments]
Kurvey: To take a woman’s precise measurements. “The lucky fellow worked as a kurveyor for the Miss America pageant.” (Robert Schechter, Dix Hills, N.Y.) [v. intransitive, to carry goods about in an ox wagon in southern Africa]
Still running — deadline Tuesday night — our famous “joint legislation” contest. See bit.ly/invite1005.
Visit the online discussion group The Style Conversational, in which the Empress discusses today’s new contest and results along with news about the Loser Community — and you can vote for your favorite among the inking entries, since you no doubt figured the Empress chose the wrong winner. If you’d like an e-mail notification each week when the Invitational and Conversational are posted online, write to the Empress at email@example.com (note that in the subject line) and she’ll add you to the mailing list. And on Facebook, join the far more lively group Style Invitational Devotees and chime in.
Next week’s results: Just Do It, or Pitch Switch, our Week 1003 contest, in which we asked you to repurpose a well-known ad slogan for a different product or company.