TSoA: Chapter 8: All the Different Things
Will you listen to this creek, John? I’ve never noticed what a beautiful melody a creek makes. Never taken the damn time. And look at these mountains and these trees. Hell, look at these green trees. Come here—I don’t even know the names—we’re going to learn the names of these green trees.
-Roy O’Bannon, Shanghai Noon
Talking about Noah’s ark makes Murphy think about “the incredible diversity of God’s creation—everything that Noah had saved from the Flood.”
Um, that’s nice, I guess, but then he sits by a pond and ruminates on the pretty flowers he sees, and I don’t think there’s anything in the Bible about Noah collecting two of every plant.
So, the first part of Chapter 8 is basically Michael Murphy listening to that great old Motown hit, “Look at All the Different…Things.”
After many minutes of reverie, Murphy is interrupted by the annoyance of his students. Gah!
It was sometimes frustrating when he wanted to just sit and think, but he couldn’t complain if his students were interested enough in his subject to track him down with burning questions. That was what being a teacher was all about.
Notice how Murphy says “his subject,” which is Noah’s ark, and not “the course,” because what Murphy wants to show his students has nothing to do with getting a degree in archeology.
The small group of students have a good question: How did all the animals in the world fit on the ark?
Murph JUST HAPPENS TO HAVE IN HIS BRIEFCASE a list of all animals ever, grouped like so:
[etcetra, etcetera, and so forth]
Most of the other arnimals listed are “Worms, etc” and marine invertebrates and things like that, which Murphy correctly points out would be better off in the water than in the ark, although what about the fact that some animals live in salt water and some in fresh…I dunno.
Anyway, he goes on with this long formula comparing the ark to a bunch of train boxcars stacked on top of each other, which I can’t imagine is the best analogy in the world for a bunch of 21st-century kids. But Murphy kinda has to use it, because it appears that this is the Standard Creationist Ark Math. (Being Standard Creationist Ark Math is a lot like being Standard Harry Potter Physics.)
For more information, Google a few Standard Ark Math pages, which use EXACTLY the same analogy of train cars.
And most of the animals that did need to live on the ark were small, like mice, cats, birds, and sheep. If you look at the larger animals like the elephants and giraffes and hippos, they are the exception.
Uh huh. Murphy got all his biology info from pictures like this, didn’t he?
(Picture from Alcoholics Conspicuous)
“So, we need a duckie family and a froggie family and giraffes and lions and elephants and…that’s it, right? That’s all the animals we need.”
Oh, but you are forgetting something very important, Professor Murphy:
WHAT ABOUT THE DINOSAURS???
That’s right, Murphy has forgotten that DINOSAURS needed to be housed on the ark, where they could swing their gigantic tails around and destroy everything, or devour Noah and his kids, unless provided with enough SEA TURTLES TO EAT.
I just…am I alone here, people? They are talking about housing dinosaurs with human beings on a giant floating train and fishing for sea turtles to feed them. And this is Murphy’s science. This is what he is teaching his students instead of how to map out a dig site.
So then some student asks where they would get drinking water on the ark.
[Murphy answers] “You’ve got to remember that most of the Flood consisted of rain water. With water covering the highest mountains, the salt water of the oceans could have been diluted enough to drink.”
Noah: Don’t worry about the millions of bodies floating in the water, son! I’m sure it’s probably fine!”
“They could also have collected rainwater from the roof and stored it in cisterns on the ark.”
Okay, I really hope they went with Option 2.
But to hell with stupid fakey science! The students also want to know more about Murphy’s mention of Jesus and Noah and Sodom!
Of course they do.
Murphy was glad he’d been given an opening to talk to them about spiritual things.
He was glad that he had tossed out huge sections of his own syllabus so that he could force a discussion of spiritual things.
“When Jesus said, As in the days of Noah, He was referring to the fact that when He comes again in judgment, it will be to a world that is filled with people who do not care about the things of God. Just like the people didn’t care in Noah’s, or Lot’s days.”
Some of the students seemed a little stunned by what he was saying.
Jesus? Who’s that???
Ah-HA! Soon I shall have several more conversion notches on my belt! Also, talking about widespread death and destruction always makes me smile!
This leads to one of the first (though BY NO MEANS the last) times in the latter three novels of this series that Murphy starts in on one of the things he hates mostest in world: Tolerance.
A student says that most people today think we should accept viewpoints other than our own.
“…tolerance has been twisted today to mean that everyone must accept the other person’s viewpoints without question because truth is relative.”
Really? I think Michael Murphy would LOVE this blog!!
“That was exactly what was happening in the days of Noah and in the days of Lot. Everyone was doing what was right in their own eyes.”
“And it’s the same today. Society preaches tolerance of every viewpoint and everyone—with one big exception: those people who have a strong religious faith. That’s where their double-standard tolerance ends. Incredibly, people of faith are persecuted precisely because they do believe in absolute truth, in absolute moral values.”
Oh yeah, Murph, Christians in the States are soooo persecuted. I can see that you have it really rough, what with your churches on every corner and your getting God into the pledge and onto the money and YOUR ABILITY TO TOSS OUT YOUR SYLLABUS AND LECTURE TO YOUR STUDENTS ABOUT YOUR FAITH WHENEVER THE MOOD STRIKES YOU.
I’m sorry, were you talking about hypocrisy, you sanctimonious frakker? Were you talking about double standards, Mr. Guy Who Thinks Everyone Who Doesn’t Think Just Like You Is Going To Be Tortured Forever???
Ugh. What was I saying once about Murphy not being quite as bad as Paul Stepola?