Winning ‘celebrity verb’ stops ’em dead

The verb-appreciating MinnPost public has rendered its infallible collective judgment. The winner of the competition to give us a new verb based on a proper noun in evidence in 2007 is Ervin Stembol, for his entry:

To dumbledore: To out someone as gay who is not in a position to comment. “How is Abraham Lincoln like Batman? They both have been dumbledored.”

Stembol will soon be swanning about in an unbelievably genuine MinnPost T-shirt. You might win one too, if you come in on top in the new Verse or Worse competition:

This week’s challenge involves Minnesota’s enchantingly lovable character, Garrison Keillor.

Last month, Keillor and his wife filed an enchantingly lovable lawsuit to stop their next-door neighbor in St. Paul’s Ramsey Hill historic district from adding a two-story garage and studio to the back of her house. The suit claimed that the addition would “obstruct the access of light and air to the [Keillor] property” and “impair or destroy protected historical resources.” It also said the addition would obstruct their view “of open space and beyond” and possibly hurt property value. The suit was subsequently settled with the help of a mediator, but the terms, including what the neighbor might now add to the back of her house, were not disclosed.

Your challenge: If this story were turned into a Broadway musical, give us the name of the show, or the title of one of the songs and a line from that song.

For a not-very-inspired sample:

The song, “English-Majorin’ Man;” the lyric, “Before I’d let a garage block my air, I’d die with a lawsuit in my hand, Lord, Lord!’

It’s possible that, by deadline time for this challenge, there might be further developments in the story: Terms of the settlement might reach the press, the neighbor’s new plans might be revealed, or the rights might have been purchased by Ken Burns. So what? As was no doubt observed by the author of “Dewey Defeats Truman” in 1948, you go with what you’ve got.

As always, the judge’s selection of the best five entries will be entirely frivolous and based largely on whether his friends laugh at them.

Email your entry to asicherman [at] minnpost [dot] com by 5 p.m. on Thursday Jan. 31. At 5:01 p.m., I will enter the MinnPost nuclear reactor’s cooling tower and begin to sort through the most luminous entries.

On Monday, Feb. 4, I will be wheeled out, holding before me in a set of tongs what I judge to be the top five, which I will post as soon as my fingers stop glowing. You’ll then have until Thursday, Feb. 7, to vote for the best one, which will win that somewhat spectacular MinnPost T-shirt.

The winning name will be posted on Monday, Feb. 11, along with a new challenge.

OK. Keyboards ready? Let’s have a musical! (I’ll get my father’s barn.)

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