"Consider again that label. That's here. That's the jar. That's the chemicals. In it every chemical you love, every chemical you know, every chemical you ever heard of, every chemical that ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident hypotheses, theories and paradigms, every alchemist and wizard, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every Nobel Prize winner and high school chemistry drop out, every young coupling reaction in progress, every petrochemical and bio-based feedstock, hopeful product, inventor and explorer, every teacher of chemistry, every corrupt researcher, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our science is reflected there – on a mote of paper adhered to a bottle."You may well recognize that this is a awful corruption of Carl Sagan's "Pale Blue Dot" quote:
"From this distant vantage point, the Earth might not seem of any particular interest. But for us, it's different. Consider again that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there – on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam."
Sagan's quote has always resonate with me, in large part because he spoke it to me before it became widely known to the public. Did I say me? What I should have said was me and 18,000 other people and further more, that he spoke it in future tense. He was the graduation speaker at the University of Illinois in May of 1990 when I was receiving my doctorate. The actual Pale Blue Dot photo was only being taken at that time and would not be sent to earth until later.
Somehow I doubt my saying would come across as wonderfully as Sagan's did, but gosh it might be fun to try it one month.
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