The Richest Caveman Chapter 7

The Drinking Game (So Far):

1. I agree with something Doug says

2. Doug tells an outrageous story that sounds incredibly unrealistic

3. When the timeline jumps around in ways that don’t make sense

4. Doug runs away from home

5. Doug gets dragged back or comes back of his own accord

6. Doug (thinks he’s) messing with the occult.

7. Doug shoehorns in paragraphs of theological stuff


Chapter 7

Shipped Out!


Get it? Because he’s been sent to school on a ship? Ha… ha…. ahem. Anyway.

Doug sizes up the other students and quickly figures out that most of them are delinquent children of rich parents who are sent away because they are an embarrassment to their families. Sort of like Doug. The first day someone asks him if he brought any drugs.

I don’t know if they’d actually trust him with that kind of question so quickly, but I could believe it was asked at some point.

Actually, we were prisoners, in a sense. We could not fraternize with the girls, and naturally we weren’t allowed to drink, smoke, or use drugs. They took away our passports when we went ashore. In a country like Italy, they would lock you up and throw away they key if they caught you without a passport, so we didn’t dare do  anything that would attract attention. I never did any…water sports the entire time I was there.

At first I thought it was awful that they had their passports taken, but then my cousin told me that that is pretty normal on school trips to other countries. I’m not sure if the school’s motivation for doing this was to keep the passports safe (kids are terrible at losing things) or to keep them in line. My guess is that it was a little of both.

The school’s science program centered around evolutionary theory, and those who believed in creation were ridiculed as idiots. The films shown portrayed Darwin as a hero.

Purse eh coo shun! Of Christians! Right here! It happens! See!

Excuse me as I roll my eyes. Ok, I’m back.

I don’t know what Doug expected; of course the curriculum for a science class was based on evolution. What else would a secular school be basing it on? Seventh Day Adventists believe in separation of church and state, so I don’t know why Adult!Doug is criticizing this. Does he seriously want creationism taught in schools?

I am also quite sure that the level of pro Darwin propaganda was exaggerated. No one on Planet Real World believes Darwin is a hero. Brilliant, yes. Hero, no.

All the students came from affluent homes, but you’d never know it from the food they fed us. Desserts were so rare that snickers bars ….. became currency.

So, the food was terrible because they didn’t feed you dessert? This sounds entitled to me.

I also smell a rat, because that this is the only description of the terrible food. The food at Academy, in the latter years, was bad. Super greasy egg rolls, downright weird casseroles full of messy glop and noodles, overcooked fake meat that was tough and chewy. This was ten years ago.  Ten years ago and to this day, I still remember it.  If the food at Doug’s boat school was that bad, he would remember and be able to describe it. You remember being hungry.

So, I’m calling bullshit. (Drink!)

Or maybe Doug is trying to do that thing where he talks about something totally different from what he was talking about a sentence earlier. This could just be an example of bad writing instead of an example of whiny sissy rich boy who can’t live without his snickers bars.

Ew, Snickers. What were those guys thinking? American Carmel is gross.

Anyway, one of the boys there is craving LSD. Doug doesn’t have any, but then starts to think.

LSD is called “windowpane” because it comes in small clear squares about an 8th of an inch on each side. I took a plastic picture holder from my wallet and snipped out two tiny plastic squares. The finished product looked just like two hits of LSD Windowpane.

Because nobody’s thought to try this before! Seriously, if it’s that easy, all the students should constantly be on high alert for fake plastic Windowpane.

Also, this clinches it. If Doug were a Hogwarts student, he’d be in Slytherin. He shows himself, as a child, to be cunning and ambitious. Adult!Doug is clearly ambitious as well. Just look at where he is today. He did not get there by accident.

By the way, you have to swallow it,” I cautioned him. This kind doesn’t melt in your mouth.”

Ummmm wouldn’t that potentially give the poor kid stomach problems, swallowing a piece of plastic?

Doug wolfs down his Snickers bars, feeling a sense of dread about what will happen to him the next day. Will he get beat up? However, when Doug next sees his buddy….

…he didn’t look angry. In fact, he smiled. “You know that windowpane?” he said, “well, at first nothing happened and I just went to sleep, but then I woke up during the night and man, what a trip! I was tripping and hallucinating all night!”

Doug learned a very important lesson that day about the placebo effect, But of course this is Doug’s cue to shoehorn in a Bible verse (drink!). “God hath dealt to every man a measure of faith.” Eric sure had faith in that piece of plastic!

Because that Bible verse doesn’t mean that there are no atheists, because God says so. The Bible, in this passage, is talking about the Placebo Effect.

I had heard that there are no atheists in foxholes. I saw firsthand that there are no atheists in storms at sea, either.

There’s a story that I don’t understand about how Doug saved the day by “riding the saddle,” whatever that means. Doug doesn’t really explain it very well, and I don’t know anything about sailing. We’re largely gonna skip over this part. Sorry guys. In any case, there’s something about Doug being stuck and having to jump from the saddle, whatever that is, to the webbing and climb his way down. The captain asks Doug if he wants to try again. Doug, not feeling particularly suicidal at the moment, declines.

In any case, the boat school makes it through the storm, and everyone’s prayers were forgotten.

I learned that day why God doesn’t discipline with fear. When the danger is past, people usually go back to their old ways.

Oh Doug, you have obviously never read the Old Testament.

In any case, it doesn’t take long before Doug starts misbehaving. He stops going to class and quits doing chores. Eventually, the captain comes and asks him what the deal is.

….”I hate this place. I didn’t ask to come here, and I’m not going to be a slave for anybody.”

You may not have asked to come here, but you did agree to go, and I’m willing to bet your dad gave you way more say in it than any of these other students.

I had a gold medal in wrestling and was used to fighting. I had never lost a match.


The captain tells Doug that if he doesn’t work, he doesn’t eat.

This, by the way, is a terrible idea. When you have gotten into a battle of wills like this, you’ve already lost. Kids can last forever on hunger strikes. Especially if, like Doug, they are charismatic enough to get people to smuggle them food.

Eventually, all the other students start to complain. If Doug doesn’t have to work, then neither do they.

Finally, the captain tells Doug that if he cooperates for a while, the captain will tell Doug’s dad his behavior is great, and let him go home for Christmas.

Doug left for Christmas break, and both he and the captain knew he’d never be back. Doug’s father is so pleased with the report the Captain gave him that Doug can’t bear to tell him the truth. So when school starts up again, Doug runs away (drink!)

I have to confess to you guys, this book is ten times more interesting than Project Sunlight. Not because Doug is necessarily a better writer (if he’s even the one doing the writing at this point; Tooker’s name is on the cover), but because his content is more interesting.

We’re almost at the halfway point of the book. Chapter 8 is going to be really short, and in Chapter 9 Doug’s religious journey begins. It’s not necessarily going to be better than the first half of the book, but at least we will finally be out of the Doug runs away from home/gets dragged back/runs away again cycle we’ve been stuck in for a good 7 chapters.

Stay tuned, because after his conversion, Doug only gets worse.












One thought on “The Richest Caveman Chapter 7

  1. I am wondering if Batchelor’s description of the evolution teaching is accurate. Did they really ridicule creationists as idiots? Or is that a skewed interpretation of what they said?

    I wonder if the teacher really did say “There is no God . . . You have to make your own. If you have to step on somebody to reach your goal, do it. If you don’t, somebody else will” ?

    Batchelor’s narrative implies that this is part and parcel of “evolutionary theory”, which of course it is not. It is a caricature of *social darwinism*, that has nothing to do with Charles Darwin’s thought.

    But I guess it is asking a little much of Batchelor to be take up a brief for evolution.

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