Preparei uma atividade para lecionar amanhã na aula de Advanced English. Há dois dias Tiririca deu uma entrevista para o Financial Times e fiquei positivamente impressionada com relação ao mesmo.
Para quem quiser treinar em casa e tiver inglês intermediário/avançado ou algum professor que tiver interesse, pode usar o material. Se precisar da resposta só me pedir aqui.
Brazil’s clown politician loses his smile
By Joe Leahy in São Paulo
February 26, 2013, 4:39 pm
Arriving outside the Brasília office of Tiririca, Brazil’s celebrity clown turned congressman, you have to navigate a crowd of people to reach the door. Holed up inside, Francisco Everardo Oliveira Silva (Tiririca is his stage name), explains that every day up to 150 fans ____________ (to enter) the national Congress building simply to take photos with him. “There are days when we have to call the security to help us leave the office,” he says, dressed in suit and tie. Behind him are pictures from happier, less complicated times dressed as a clown ____________ (to wear) multicolored wigs.
As Brazil kicks off its 2014 presidential election cycle, with the ruling Workers’ party, the PT, last week endorsing the incumbent, President Dilma Rousseff, for a second term, the brief career of one of Brazil’s stranger lawmakers ____________ (to say) much about the dysfunctionality of the country’s politics. Tiririca was swept to power on a similar wave of anti-establishment anger to the one that has brought the comedian-blogger Beppe Grillo to the brink of power in Italy. And his story is a cautionary tale to those who, like Mr Grillo, ____________ (to seem) to promise change in politics.
Elected in 2010 with a record number of votes, Tiririca was seen as a joke by Brazil’s political elite when he arrived in Brasília. He is one of a ____________ (to grow) number of celebrity politicians in the house, from Romário, the footballer, to boxer Acelino “Popó” Freitas. But since then he has been voted one of the most diligent politicians, at least in terms of attendance, and has turned the joke on Congress, criticizing it for its ineffectiveness. “You pass whole days here ____________ (to do) nothing, just waiting to vote on something while people argue and argue,” he says.
____________ (to drop out) of school aged nine to join the circus (he barely passed a reading test for elected office), Tiririca hails from Itapipoca, Ceará state, in Brazil’s poor northeast. After his circus was destroyed in a fire, he struck gold with a CD, Florentina, that proved a national hit. From there, he started in television as a humorist.
He said he was initially taken aback when the head of the minority Republic party, Waldemar Costa Neto, asked him to stand for Congress. He said he had no idea about politics. But the party’s marketing experts promised him he could stand as a clown, at least in terms of his election campaign pitch if not in presentation (he confides that in Congress he has had to get used to the dress rules – “you can never go without a jacket and tie and you cannot use flip flops”).
His campaign slogans deliberately satirized Congress. “I don’t know what a federal congressman does, but vote for me and I will find out.” Or “Vote for me and I promise ____________ (to help) those most in need, including my own family” in a jab at the house’s reputation for corruption. The campaign struck a chord and he won a record 1.39m votes.
Yet his enjoyment of recounting his campaign gives way to weariness, almost melancholy, as he describes life in Brasília. “When I was outside I had the notion that I would arrive here and explode into action, do tons of things, but that’s not how it works,” he says. The party honchos urged him ____________ (to support) the government, with which the PR is aligned, but he says he votes “for the people”. On the forestry code legislation last year governing Brazil’s environment, he voted against the government because he believed the law would hurt small landowners.
He claims no one has tried to bribe him but that corruption is a reality of the institution, in spite of last year’s mensalão case, in which senior PT politicians were condemned to prison for vote-buying. “Those who do the wrong thing . . . won’t stop, because this world functions that way, but they will exercise more caution,” he says.
As for himself, his biggest achievement has been to champion the rights of circus performers in a bill on popular culture. He has also won respect as one of only nine congressmen out of 513 to have never missed a vote. He complains that in Congress, no one turns up to sessions, ____________ (to leave) the Speaker holding forth to an empty chamber. “The minimum you can do is fulfill your obligations and not miss the votes,” he says, ____________ (to shake) his head at the insanity of the system. Later, Tiririca confides quietly that he plans not to seek re-election. It appears he has learnt the answer to his campaign question about what a congressman ____________ (to do) and has had enough. “What does a congressman do? He works a lot and produces little. That’s the reality.”
1) Fill in the gaps with the gerund or infinitive form of the verbs in parenthesis.
2) Match the vocabulary with the correct definition:
- To navigate
- To hole up (phrasal verb)
- Kick off (phrasal verb)
- To sweep to power
- Brink of
- To drop out (phrasal verb)
- To strike gold
- To be taken aback (phrasal verb)
- Flip flops
- Strike a chord
- Holding forth (phrasal verb)
( ) a situation when you are almost in a new situation, usually a bad one
( ) someone who works hard and is careful and thorough
( ) to start
( ) the group in a country or organization that controls it
( ) to understand or deal with something complicated
( ) to hide somewhere for a period of time
( ) to win an election easily and in an impressive way
( ) A man who is a member of a congress, especially the US House of Representatives
( ) to leave a school or university before your course has finished
( ) open summer shoes, usually made of rubber, with a V-shaped band across the front to hold your feet (havaianas)
( ) the things someone says to persuade people to buy something, do something, or accept an idea
( ) something you say to criticize someone or something else
( ) to do something that makes you a lot of money
( ) to be very surprised about something
( ) to do or say something that people feel is familiar or true
( ) an important person who controls something, especially a business (boss)
( ) not feeling excited about anything any more
( ) to give your opinion on a subject, especially for a long time
( ) a large room in a public building used for important meetings
3) Discuss the following questions with your partner:
. What did you think of Tiririca’s slogan during the campaign?
. Why do you think so many people voted for him?
. What do you think of him as a politician?
. What do you think of him as a comedian?
. Do you agree with what he says about the congress and how it works?
. Do you think he should run for re-election? Why?
. Do you think people should have a minimum degree to be a politician in Brazil? Why?
. In your opinion, what is the solution for the problem Tiririca mentioned?
4) When talking about comedy and humorous things, there are some vocabularies related to this. Read the words below and the definitions and give one example for each.
- PUN: an amusing use of a word or phrase that has two meanings, or of words that have the same sound but different meanings (play on words)
- JOKE: something that you say or do to make people laugh, especially a funny story
- TRICK: something you do in order to deceive someone and make others laugh
- PRANK: a joke, especially one which is played on someone to make them look silly
RIDDLE: a question that is deliberately very confusing and has a humorous or clever answer (puzzle)