The gameshow of the next generation (and it's not too far off)
IT'S THE FINAL COUNTDOWN...
“Hi there, ladies and gentlemen, and welcome back to everybody’s favorite game show, The Final Countdown! Before we went to the commercial you saw Carol Vargas make the most important decision of her life, and God bless her soul, she was so close. Just another five yards and she would’ve made it across that mine field. But that’s part of the game, folks, and not everybody can be a winner.
“Today we have brand new game called ‘Hang ‘Em High’. It’s pretty simple, really, and it’s not nearly as messy as poor Carol’s game. Over here to the left you see two gallows, and both are in perfect working order. The only difference is that when our lovely hostess, Vanna, pulls the lever, one of the platforms that our contestant will be standing on will fall. The other one won’t. Now before we went on the air we randomly selected which of our final three contestants would be playing this game, and Thomas, you were that lucky one. So which gallows would you like?”
“I’m going to go with gallows number two, Bob.”
“You’re sure about that, Thomas? It’s a life or death decision, you know.”
“I know, Bob. But my wife is telling me to take number two, and she’s usually right.”
“There you go. Always listen to the missus. Well, just walk up those stairs and put your head in the noose, and Vanna will tighten it around your neck.
“So, Thomas, on the off chance that you might have picked the wrong gallows, is there anything you’d like to say before Vanna pulls that lever?”
“Yes, Bob. I’d just like to say that I’ve had a really good twenty-nine years, and I’m lucky to have had the greatest wife any man could ask for. I love you, Sheri!”
“I love you, too, Thomas!”
“Alright, then. Now with the help of our studio audience, let’s begin…the final countdown!”
“Owch. I heard his neck snap from all the way over here! I’m so sorry for your loss, Sheri.”
“Well, we’re down to our last two contestants now, so in just a few minutes one of them will win one hundred million dollars, and the other one...won’t. Let’s meet them, shall we? Larry Peterson and Natasha Skinski, COME ON DOWN!”
“We’re right here, Bob.”
“Oh. So you are. Well, let’s get to this final game. Here on this table is a revolver. Five of the chambers are loaded with blanks. Guess what’s in that last chamber?”
“Um…a real bullet?”
“How right you are, Natasha! Now, like our previous 98 contestants, you pulled a number out of a hat. The one who is closest to the number I'm thinking of will go first. What was your number?”
“Hey. I got nine, too!”
“Wait. Maybe it’s a six.”
“That’s what I got, too!
THE SCREEN SUDDENLY GOES BLANK
AND ONE SECOND LATER A GUNSHOT
IS HEARD IN THE BACKGROUND.
SO WHO WON?