Final Word from Friday, March 7, 2008

Conan O'Brien once joked that Czechoslovakia was split into two separate parts in 1993: Slovakia, and the good part. It's true that except for the occasional headline touting a Slovak economic miracle, the CR has received the better press since the two went their separate ways. Jan Telensky, a Czech-born U.K. property owner who estimates his real-estate holdings at £500m, struck back last week in the Financial Times. The Slovaks overtook the Czechs because of the Czech mentality, he said. "In Prague, they're always boasting, bullshitting and pretending, and they've always been like that," he said. "If a tree fell across the road, a car full of Czechs would turn around and take a long diversion, but a car full of Slovaks would get out and move the tree." He said he sold his Czech plastics business because he was tired of the Czech bullshit and baffle-brains. But of course he's just a complex-ridden émigré. [Czech Republic FT United Kingdom emigrant]

Glossary of difficult words

alleged - said to be the case, but for which no proof exists;

BS - a slightly more-polite way of saying "bullshit"; nonsense, stupid talk;

Conan O'Brien - U.S. talk-show host;

to tout - to attempt to persuade someone of the merits of something;

(good/bad) press - (positive or negative) coverage in the media;

to bullshit - (vulgar) to talk nonsense, typically for the purpose of being misleading or deceptive;

diversion - an alternate route, detour;

baffle-brains - (we had to look this one up too) something that baffles the brains, language that is incomprehensible or pretentious;

complex-ridden - to suffer from a complex, to show disproportionate concern or anxiety about something.


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