Questions we were asking ourselves this week:
Does anyone really care about Hank Williams Jr.'s redneck political views? Is Chris Christie too fat to ever be president? How soon until Amanda Knox appears on "Dancing With the Stars"? How many shopping days until Christmas?
Weighty issues all, and ones this column chooses to ignore, at least for now.
Instead, we offer a little humor courtesy of the Washington Post, a paper not usually known for levity. After all, the federal government is its neighborhood beat and it's hard to laugh through clenched teeth.
It seems the Post has an ongoing feature called the Style Invitational. It all started in 1993, when editors asked readers to come up with a less offensive name for the Washington Redskins. The winner suggested Baltimore Redskins.
The Invitational recently included a contest in which readers were invited to take any word from the dictionary, alter it by adding, subtracting or changing one letter and supply a new definition.
The results are both clever in their execution and descriptively accurate. Consider:
Cashtration: The act of buying a house, which renders the subject financially impotent for an indefinite period of time.
Intaxicaton: Euphoria at getting a tax refund, which lasts until you realize it was your money to start with.
Reintarnation: Coming back to life as a hillbilly.
Foreploy: Any misrepresentation about yourself for the purpose of getting laid.
Sarchasm : The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn't get it.
Osteopornosis: A degenerate disease.
Decafalon: The grueling event of getting through the day consuming only things that are good for you.
Glibido: All talk and no action.
Caterpallor: The color you turn after finding half a worm in the fruit you're eating.
But wait, there's more.
Coffee: The person upon whom one coughs.
Flabbergasted: Appalled by discovering how much weight one has gained.
Esplanade: To attempt an explanation while drunk.
Negligent: Absentmindedly answering the door when wearing only a nightgown.
Rectitude: The formal, dignified bearing adopted by proctologists.
Pokemon: A Rastafarian proctologist.
Oyster: A person who sprinkles his conversation with Yiddishisms.
Circumvent: An opening in the front of boxer shorts worn by Jewish men.
Another contest asked readers to make up a word that has three consecutive letters in alphabetical order.
Among the entries:
Coughin: A small enclosure designed especially for smokers.
Mno: The kind of response that makes you want to ask her again.
Noplow: Washington, D.C.'s, snow emergency plan.
In other forms of humor, a contest challenged readers to add novel similes to the "men are like...," "women are like..." genre.
The top winners:
Women are like flashlights: Ones with two D's aren't always the brightest, but they'll do when the lights go out.
Men are like Swiss army knives: No matter how useful they appear, they mostly just pick teeth and open beer bottles.
Teenagers are like a freshly bottled wine: They might be palatable seven years from now.
Men are like the TV yule log: They're easy to turn on, but you're not going to get much warmth out of them.
Who knew there was such humor in Washington?