In Writing

Perhaps my favorite story of the last week was that of the discovery that 7 to 50% of the water on Earth predates our sun and came from outer space. Click here for the full story.

Scientists explain that the importance of this is that it makes extraterrestrial life more likely. I’ve been waiting for ET since I was about 6 years old, so this excited me no end. But that’s not even why I love this story. Like many writers, I am a totally impractical romantic. I love water, love the sound of it as it falls from the sky or trickles by me in a stream, and my affection for it is enhanced by thinking that some of its molecules have been around for billions of years.

When I was a kid, every time I drank a glass of water I thought, “One of the water molecules in this glass might have touched the hull of Columbus’ ship.” (Yes, I was a strange kid). Now, in addition to that thought (which still delights me) I can also imagine that my refreshment was once the frozen tail of a comet or the water floating in the cloud that eventually became the sun.

I mean, did you know you were drinking stardust? Magic.

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