A Biblical Allusion Illustrated
In Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice, Shylock the moneylender explains to his nemesis Antonio that entrepreneurship dates back to Biblical times and he uses Jacob's successful business ploy as an example; in short, Jacob and his uncle Laban were shepherds, and the deal they made with each other was that after the rams and ewes bred, all the "streaked" lambs would go to Jacob and all the white ones would go to Laban-- which would seem to ensure a fairly equal split of the brood-- but Jacob secretly put striped wands in front of the ewes while they were engaged in the act of copulation, and, according to Biblical biology, if you look at something striped while you are engaged in the dirty-dirty, then your offspring will be striped, and (in the Biblical story) that is exactly what happened, they were all "pied," and so Jacob was rewarded for his business acumen . . . this is a tough section of text, but apparently if you draw it, as I did above, the kids really understand and appreciate what Shylock has to say (they liked my graphic so much that they took photos of it with their cell-phones, so perhaps I should make a t-shirt).