One category that, regrettably, won't be discussed during next Sunday's Academy Awards ceremony: best on-line button puzzle.
I don't know about you, but in my book that would be ScuttleButton.
ScuttleButton, of course, is that once-a-week waste of time exercise in which each Monday or Tuesday I put up a vertical display of buttons on this site. Your job is to simply take one word (or concept) per button, add 'em up, and, hopefully, you will arrive at a famous name or a familiar expression. (And seriously, by familiar, I mean it's something that more than one person on Earth would recognize.)
For years, a correct answer chosen at random would get his or her name posted in this column, an incredible honor in itself. Now the stakes are even higher. Thanks to the efforts of the folks at Talk of the Nation, that person also hears their name mentioned on the Wednesday show (by me) and receives a Political Junkie t-shirt in the bargain. Is this a great country or what?
You can't use the comments box at the bottom of the page for your answer. Send submission (plus your name and city/state — you won't win without that) to firstname.lastname@example.org.
(Why do people keep forgetting to include their name and city/state?)
And, by adding your name to the Political Junkie mailing list, you will be among the first on your block to receive notice about the column and the puzzle. Sign up at email@example.com. Or you can make sure to get an automatic RSS feed whenever a new Junkie post goes up by clicking here.
By the way, I always announce the winner on Wednesday's Junkie segment on TOTN. But with it now less than a week until the next show, your window for getting your answer in is smaller.
Here are the buttons used and the answer to last week's puzzle:
I'm for Will Wilson — In 1961 Wilson, a Texas Democrat, sought the Senate seat that Lyndon Johnson vacated when he became vice president.
Re-elect Hugh Carey to Congress — Carey, a Brooklyn Democrat, first came to the House in 1961; this button is probably from his '68 race. He was later elected governor of New York in 1974 and '78.
New York City Italians Love Abe Beame — Perhaps, but it didn't help him win his bid for a second term as mayor of New York City in the 1977 Democratic primary.
Scrabble Crossword Game/I've Got the Word — Probably from the early '70s.
Re-elect George Allen U.S. Senate — Allen, a Virginia Republican, was defeated in his bid for a second term in 2006 by Democrat Jim Webb.
It's Miller Time! — Jim Miller, the former OMB director, unsuccessfully challenged Sen. John Warner in the 1996 Virginia GOP Senate primary.
So, when you combine Will + Hugh + Beame + I've + Allen + Time, you may just very well end up with ...
Will You Be My Valentine? I thought you'd never ask.
The winner, chosen completely at random, is ... Stephen Hammontree of Traverse City, Mich. Stephen gets not only the coveted Political Junkie t-shirt — but the Official No Prize Button as well!
And don't forget to check out this week's Political Junkie column, which focuses on the retirements of Sens. Mike Johanns (R-Neb.) and Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), the upcoming special election in Illinois' 2nd District, and more on the ideological battle going on in the GOP. Click here to read the column.