Final Word from Tuesday, April 2, 2013



When the U.S. announced in Feb. that it would open talks with the EU on a transatlantic free-trade agreement, Karel Schwarzenberg called it one of the best pieces of news in years. It won't be easy to reach a final deal, he said, but it will bring Europe and America closer together. A first step, we say, should be to unify daylight savings time. As almost anyone who does business across the pond knows, the U.S. went on summer time in early March and was off-kilter with Europe for three weeks, until Europeans finally sprang ahead by an hour two days ago. It will happen again this fall, which means there's confusion for a month each year in terms of making transatlantic phone calls, booking airline reservations and watching satellite TV. Perhaps this is an issue for Václav Klaus. He could even bring Russia into the fold; it really confused the DST issue in 2011 by opting to remain permanently on summer time.[Czech Republic European Union United States of American]

Glossary of difficult words

Summer time, and the livin' is confusin' - an allusion to the Gershwin lyrics, "Summertime, and the livin' is easy";

the pond - the Atlantic Ocean;

off-kilter - not aligned or balanced;

to spring ahead - the mnemonic device "spring ahead, fall behind" is commonly used to remember when to change the time (ahead in the spring, behind the fall or autumn);

(to bring into) the fold - to bring into a community or group;

DST - daylight savings time.

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