Democracy Dies in Darkness is the earnest and timely new motto of the Washington Post. Peeps, apparently, die in the bright light.
On Sunday, the Post is set to announce the end of its popular Peeps Diorama contest's 10-year run. According to the Deputy Editor of the Washington Post Magazine, David Rowell, "Hard journalism this was not, but for us the contest offered its own sweet rewards. As fewer submissions began to come in, though, echoing the decline in readership of this feature, we knew that it was time to let bunnies be free again, and we have ended the Peeps contest run."
As staunch supporters of Peeps, and of the contest (several of us having submitted losing entries in years past), we can't stand idly by while Peep sculpture is denigrated as less than serious journalistic enterprise. Nor can we let this rite of Spring simply disappear.
We're not the only ones, apparently. The Washington City Paper quickly tweeted their intent to pick up the Post's sword and fight on, as will local blog Popville (I don't know them any more than they know us). And we're cool with that, because a) our idea transcends Peeps, and b) more importantly, we've always been kind of an NIT-level thing, and so our aspirations are fairly modest.
The Teej and I were in the midst of discussing logistics for G:TB taking over the Peeps Diorama contest when we realized we'd actually started seven years ago. Dave, who's known for a lot of things, but generally not for his prescience, actually prepared us for this moment when he inaugurated the first G:TB Circus Peanut Diorama Contest in April 2010. Here's a copy of the rules:
The rules for G:TB First Annual Circus Peanut Diorama Contest are as follows: 1) while making the diorama, you must be under the influence of at least ONE circus peanut. I ate two. 2) No Peeps allowed.
So we've got a framework, but we're going to make a few changes. We'll announce the complete rules on Monday, which will likely expand the candy palate to the entire Easter ouevre (yeah, that's right, you can use Cadbury Creme Eggs and those crappy thin-shelled chocolate eggs, if you'd like, and Peeps will be allowed). But fret not, Post Peeps peeps, we're here for you. Get to work.