We got a lot of Bible thrown at us in those dorm days. It wasn’t just the double dose on Sundays, the mid-week chapels, “Bible” was also a subject taught in school—mandatory. There’s a lot of ways you could teach that subject, do it justice, it's not exactly a boring book like it gets good and gruesome in parts. There’s plenty in that book for any modestly competent teacher to work with. If not, Bible Baseball. It’s a trivia card game. You can go for a single, double, triple or home run. The complexity of the questions increases accordingly. We got a lot of Bible Baseball.
If there’s a more effective way of making the Bible boring I’ve never met it. An hour of Bible Baseball was the slowest and longest part of every day. The inanity of it reached intensity levels that stopped the passage of time dead. I was thinking about Bible Baseball the other day and I was wondering if maybe it wasn’t The Bible so much that bothered me, but the idea of turning a super-important book into a fucking baseball card game. Using existing Bible Baseball questions as my template, I have sketched out a few rudimentary and preliminary sample questions for Foucault Fastball, in order to test this hypothesis.
Question: When the LORD sent out a great wind into the sea, so that the ship was about to be broken, Jonah was found...
a) In Tarshish
b) Eating a meal
c) Assisting on deck
d) Fast asleep
Question: After the condemned French prisoner DAMIENS had his flesh torn away with red-hot pincers, and had his wounds covered in molten lead and boiling oil, what happened next?
a) Benedictine Monks granted him a reprieve.
b) Drawn and Quartered, successfully: Four strong horses—a half hour. Damiens’ body comes apart easily.
c) Drawn and Quartered, unsuccessfully: Six strong horses break all the bones in Damiens’ body, but his limbs remain attached. Damiens dies intact.
d) Drawn and Quartered, brutally: Six strong horses, aided by several choice hand-selected pre-cuts from the executioner’s knife (to help the severing along), and finally Damiens pops. But, even after all severed limbs have been successfully pulled clean off the body, Damien’s torso still breathes and speaks until it is thrown onto the fire, where the rest of his limbs are already burning.
Question: Hundreds of years after the death of King David, God said that he would raise up David to reign over the seed of Jacob. This promised `David` actually refers to whom?
d) Jesus Christ
Question: Michel Foucault argues that, in a society that claims to value liberty above all else, the prison is the most effective and egalitarian punishment in that deprivation of community is not just punishment felt across all classes, it is, equally, opportunity to retrain prisoners so that they are able to comprehend what liberty truly means, what it means to all of the other free and hard-working at-liberty people who are living their lives freely and to the fullest: free to work, in the futile occupation of your choice, for the rest of your life—or end up in prison. Foucault’s thinking about prisons was formed by the writings of:
a) Brigham Young
b) Ron Jeremy
c) Lester B. Pearson
d) Jeremy Bentham
Question: What does `Boanerges` mean?
a) Sons of laughter
b) Sons of thunder
c) Children of Boaz
d) House of light
Question: What does “Romulus” mean?
a) Roman Holiday
b) Enemy of Spock
c) To build big and strong
d) Name of preferred bathhouse
Question: What epistle closes with the words, `Greet the friends by name`?
a) 2 John
b) 3 John
Question: Which influential 20th century television show is set in an actual Panopticon?
a) The King of Kensington
b) Welcome Back, Kotter
c) Danger Bay