what a wonderful world

Remember that old song lyric, “And I said to myself / what a wonderful world?” (Thiele and Weiss, 1967)

Yep. The world is wonderful.

I don’t mean politics. Or sports. Or politics.

Or crime. Or global warming.

Or politics.

I mean the physical world. Our one and only Earth. The blue marble that all seven billion of us ride on together as it revolves around the sun and rotates on its tilty axis. ‘Tis truly wonderful if you look closely.

On what other planet is the atmosphere oxygen-rich and perfect for animals like us and all of the animal friends that we share the Earth with (when we’re not trying to cause their extinction for our benefit)? On what other planet is there a complement of green plants that convert the carbon dioxide we exhale into sugars for us to eat and more oxygen for us to breathe (when we’re not clearing forests)? What a lovely cycle!

What other planet has abundant carbon, oxygen, nitrogen and hydrogen atoms from which we may be physically constructed?

What other planet has such an abundance of water molecules, upon which all life depends?

And while we’re honoring water, how about those hydrogen bonds? WTH are ‘hydrogen bonds’? you ask. They are the seemingly magical magnetic attractions between tiny water molecules which make water exist in the liquid form, instead of the vapor form which is expected for such a tiny molecule. Those same hydrogen bonds get the nod in DNA and protein structures. Without hydrogen bonding, there’d be none of this thing we call life. No way, Jose. Nada. Nil.

Yep. What a wonderful world.


9 thoughts on “what a wonderful world

  1. Laura… and this is a compliment… you sound a lot like my mom. ; ) She loves the whole science of the world and the complicated bonds created that keep us alive. You give us a nice reminder of how fortunate we are.

  2. This is not what I was expecting you to be excited about… 😉

    Did you ever find that H-bond switch you told us about back in high school? Better guard that sucker with your life.

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