Monday, April 7, 2008

Future Schtick


One of my favorite unintentional genres is the future as seen from the eyes of the past, such as old silent films like Metropolis and Trip to the Moon. It's fun to think about the future and fantasize about how things will be different. So, this week's assignment is to write a scene that takes place fifty years in the future.

To help you get started, make a list of ten of things you do every day. Stuff like: brush teeth, feed cats, make dinner, watch TV, ride the bus, etc. Then make a list of ten that supposes what those activities might be like in the year 2058. Stuff like: teeth replaced by small self-cleaning robots, cats are fed steroids and growth hormones in case you have to eat them, dinner (see cats), TV is beamed into my brain, there's no need, or desire, to ever leave my apartment/work cubicle, etc.

Generating these ideas should help lead you to a scene, even if it's a clash of context showing us what every day life will be like in the future.


Friday, I asked...

"Father Francesco Bazzoffi, a senior priest in Florence, Italy, is under investigation for fraud for doing what?"

50% said "lying about his celibacy"
- Safe bet, but not the right answer.

13% said "claiming to be resurrected"
- "I died and I came back. I got to heaven's gate and apparently there's now a toll and they want me to bring more pony up, everybody!"

No one went for "saying God speaks to him"

37% got it right with "staging fake exorcisms"

According to the Catholic News Agency, a priest in Florence is being investigated for fraud after allegedly earning millions by performing fake exorcisms. Prosecutors alleged that Father Francesco Saverio Bazzoffi would “stage shows” before crowds of more than 400 people at the House of the Sainted Archangels, an organization he founded. The priest’s associates would “pretend to be possessed by demons” and Father Bazzoffi would allegedly exorcise them using obscure rites. The priest would then offer to heal members of the audience who were sick and solicit donations to his organization.

They call it fraud. I call it showmanship. People don't just find religion. You've got to sell it! Father Bazzoffi shouldn't be prosecuted for fraud. He should be given a TV show.