400 Lightbulbs

Charles “Choo Choo” Justice built Ohio’s only electric chair at the turn of the last century, a bright machine of seasoned hickory, stiff leather and the gunmetal smell of fear. Unlucky thirteen years later he was executed in the same chair. Here lies Chuck Justice, killed by irony. The best way to perform a humane execution during the twentieth century was no longer something with such an honorable pedigree as being hanged by the neck until dead; technology improves everything, and someone had a bright idea. What if, and try to stay with me here… What if you strap a felon into a chair, secure his arms, head and legs with broad straps, place an electrode on his temple and another on his leg and then send 400 lightbulbs in one ear and out the other? We can zap him again and cook him up to one hundred and thirty eight degrees Fahrenheit, just to make sure. Now that’s progress, and as easy as flipping on a lightswitch. So easy, in fact, that a record seven men in Kentucky rode the lightning one evening before the stock market crashed. That seventh son, sat in a chair still steaming from the sixth and smelled what seemed to be fried chicken of all things. Some last meal. The effects of electrocution are negligible. Some burned, oozing skin, a puddle of urine on the floor, shitfilled pants. Just after World War Two, Willie Francis was electrocuted,and survived. Although lawyers argued that Francis had already been executed, he returned to the hot seat a year later and did his job right this time. Contrary to popular belief, the electric chair was not invented by Thomas Alva Edison, but by one of his assistants. Louie the Lightning Bug says: “Remember gang, you’ve got to play it safe around electricity.