- From her chapter on Chemistry: "Some chemical reactions occur easily and spontaneously while others won't bother unless you light a fire under their orbutts, or bury their starter parts underground and forget about them for half a billion years. If you combine sodium and chlorine, poof, they'll react instantaneously, heatedly: Sodom meets Gomorrah, and we're left with a pillar of salt."
- Molecular Biology: "You can't sterilize your mouth, or your hands or face, no matter how many bottles of Purell sanitizing gel you go through in a week. You are covered with bacteria. Maybe a half a billion blanket your skin, like a drifting tulle ... a teeming microtropolis of several thousand different strains. Billions more happily fill the moist orifices of your body...When you breathe, you breathe the happenstance vortices of airborne bacteria...When you walk, you walk through and upon a Christo confabulation in Central Park but less saffrony...We galumph through all this life heedlessly, like giants in a Gary Larson cartoon, attending to it only when we seek to kill it--kill the plaque. the strep, the bearers of your tuba-toned bronchitis."