Tales From The Ridge

Monday, March 06, 2006

Genesis v8.29

1. In the beginning there was a big bang.
2. And the universe was without form, and void.
3. And then, though no-one actually said "let there be quarks", there were quarks.
4. And the quarks were good (well, as good as a fundamental particle can be). And the quarks combined to form baryons, and the baryons were divided into protons and neutrons and electrons.
5. As the universe cooled, matter gradually stopped moving relativistically and its rest mass energy density came to gravitationally dominate that of radiation, and protons and electrons came together and hydrogen was formed. And, yes, it was good.
6. Over time, the slightly denser regions of matter gravitationally attracted other nearby matter and thus grew even denser, eventually forming gas clouds, stars, galaxies and the planet that would later come to be known as Earth.
7. And the molten surface of the Earth cooled to form the solid outer crust, and volcanic activity produced the atmosphere.
8. And condensing water vapour, added to by ice from comets, formed the oceans.
9. And in these oceans, highly energetic chemistry gave rise to self-replicating molecules that were not created in anyone's image, that eventually gave rise to primordial life. Well, you've got to start somewhere.
10. And primitive cyanobacteria developed that photosynthesised the atmosphere, creating oxygen. One of them may have been called Adam.

11. And eventually these primitive organisms developed sexual reproduction, for lo, though they were primitive they knew a good thing when they saw it.
12. And it was good, though it was even better once they got to know each other and were less embarrassed.
13. And evolution brought forth more complex plant types. These could have been called "grass", and "herb yielding seed after his kind", and "the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind", but such a description would be simplistic at best.
14. Then there were sponges, and jellyfish, and flatworms, and if they were formed in someone's image then he was one ugly sucker.

15. Then, to cut slightly shorter a very long story involving backbones and gills, the land and the sea were colonised by animals (but not by whales; they came later). There were certainly creeping things, but probably no cattle.
16. Then there were dinosaurs, and they were good, until a meteorite struck the earth, which was not good. Not for the dinosaurs, anyway. The fish probably didn't mind so much.
17. And then there was a kind of ape thing who decided that perhaps it would be fun to balance on these two back legs of hers, and she was called Lucy. Sorry, I mean Eve.
18. And then there was Man, who had dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth, except the bigger ones with sharper teeth and claws that had a disconcerting habit of eating Man.
19. And Man evolved bigger brains and opposable thumbs and developed tools that gave man the opportunity to learn that the creeping things that crepteth over the earth and ate him were actually rather delicious when caught and killed and cooked over an open fire.
20. And man was fruitful, and multiplied, and replenished the earth, and subdued it, though in hindsight there was probably more subduing than replenishing going on.
21. And then there was Ikea, and the French, and tennis, and the concept of celebrity, and New Kids On The Block and electric toasters and patterned toilet paper.
22. And the evening and the morning were the 5 trillionth day (give or take 73 billion days).
23. And the Earth was good.

24. But it could probably have been better when you consider how long it had had to practise.

Please keep this book up-to-date! ALWAYS up-issue and redistribute following all major scientific discoveries.