June 1, 2002: Exactly three months have elapsed since Vince McMahon announced XIQ to the wide-open world of sports. Working 24-7, crews of architects, draftsmen, laborers, tradesmen in every imaginable trade-in dare we say, a "Herculean" performance have erected and now unveil the world's largest and most impressive all-weather sporting arena, THE COGNOSEUM. We turn now, live to our event-casters, legendary sports color-man Joel Gargoyliola and Hari (Hairy) Kari.

HAIRY: Holy Cow!! This is some kind of stadium Joel, what do you think it measures?

JOEL: It's big, Hairy. It's real big! Wow, it's big!

HAIRY: Er....Joel, could you be a bit more precise, you know, for our listening audience?

JOEL: Right Hairy! It's very, exceptionally, extremely, big!!

Joel, just read off the goddam hand-out they gave us....

Okay. Let's see here. The COGNOSEUM design is modeled after the original Flavian Amphitheater, better known to us as the Colosseum. Like the Colosseum, the Cognoseum is an elliptical amphitheater constructed mainly of (steel-reinforced) concrete and brick. Arches, and columns-Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian--serve to provide the critical load-bearing function. Located near the thriving metropolis of Truthshout, Hinterlands, the Cognoseum comfortably seats approximately 17,500 spectators, and measures roughly 300x250 feet at the base and is 80 feet tall-about half the size of the originalColosseum.

Beneath the Cognoseum lies an elaborate web-work of tunnels and chambers. The chamber-rooms may be mechanically raised to "arena-level" to reveal their surprise contents. At arena-level, a polyurethane-based turf called "The Elysium Field" is home to two concentric moats, an inner and an outer, ringing the mechanically-adjustable-to-varying-altitudes-main contest stage-"The Alter of Agony and Ecstasy". The Field itself is hatched with a maze-work of trenches known as the Labyrinth. And, five smaller water channels or conduits connect the outer and inner moats with the central Alter, in a spoke-like pattern.

The roof of the Cognoseum automatically opens for sunshine, and closes for rain. The roof is known as the "Al-Battani Sky", and is equipped with all manner of sporting features-not the least of which is the "Deus Ex Machina". For increased visual access, closed-circuit land and marine cameras televise close-up Alter action (or, Alter-Cations), action in the trenches, action in the moats, and display live picture on seven enormous video screens, strategically positioned to maximize visio-opportunity. "The video-screens cut down on our available seating, but we make up for it on the ticket price X-Public is now willing to pay," says impresario extraordinaire, and creator of the "B&C" enterprise valuation model, Vince McMahon. "We're especially proud of our AI innovations-the "I-GATOR" and the "MINOSMART". We've taken the latest in military robotics and AI to the next level in the creation our human-heat-seeking "intelligent" alligators, I-GATORS, that swim constantly in both moats. Additionally, a robotic AI Minotaur that we call the MINOSMART roams the Labyrinth".

HAIRY: Thank you, Joel. Now, sports fans, there's a lot to learn about how these contests play-out, isn't that right Joel?

JOEL: That's right, Hairy.

Do you think you could explain how it's all going to work, Joel?


Just read the script, Joel.

Oh. Oh yeah. It say here, FOR ONE-ON-ONE CONTESTS: Rule #1. Combat continues until one of the contestants is rendered unable to continue. Rule #2. Combatants obtain weapons only when providing the correct answer to a question posed by the referee. Rule #3. Questions only may be answered officially AFTER DEPRESSING the RED BUTTON, located in center of the Alter. Rule #4. If no victory is obtained after a maximum of thirty minutes of engagement, the "Deus Ex Machina" may descend to decide the match. Rule #5. Any rule may be changed, and new rules may be added at any time by the referee, or by majority vote of the audience.



So, what comes next Joel....just read the script.

Right. It says here that the first match is between a fellow called ZENO, and another guy-EPICURUS.

Joel, I think I seem them coming out now. LET THE GAMES BEGIN!!!