Final Word from Wednesday, November 1, 2023

"Well, they're building a gallows outside my cell, and I've got 25 minutes to go," sings Johnny Cash at Folsom prison in 1968. "And the whole town's waitin' just to hear me yell, I got 24 minutes to go." The poor devil with his head in the noose of course meets his fate at the end of the song, but this doesn't stop the roomful of prisoners at the live performance from laughing and cheering Johnny Cash on. A former minister told us last year that the cabinet of Petr Fiala will be the first Czech government to hang, and that was even before it became clear to almost everyone that Fiala, Finance Min. Zbyněk Stanjura and Industry Min. Jozef Síkela can't open their mouths without making the false statements or empty promises of a man on death row. The percentage increase in energy rates next year will only be in the single digits, Fiala and Síkela vowed yesterday, but only two of 14 people polled by TV Nova believed it. Everybody else is just waitin' for the count on this government to finally be up. [ Czech Republic television concert execution waiting ]

Glossary of difficult words

gallows - a structure, typically of two uprights and a crosspiece, for the hanging of criminals;

noose - a circular loop at the end of a piece of rope or wire usually used to trap animals or hang people;

death row - a prison block or section for those sentenced to death;

count is up - time has run out.


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