This article originally appeared on VICE US in September 2018
Consider all the decisions—conscious and unconscious—made by hundreds of millions of organisms and the chaotic entropy of trillions and trillions of atoms across space and time that led to this moment, in which a TMZ paparazzo asks astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson what would happen if one were to smonk a marijuana in space.
The Big Bang, stars and galaxies form, explode. Earth forms and is pelted by space detritus. The formation of carbon and The Great Oxygen event. The Cambrian explosion 500 million years ago, five great extinction events. The rise and fall of dinosaurs. The rise and fall of various hominid species. Early tool use. Agriculture. What is weed, anyway? New Amsterdam. The Revolutionary War. Celebrity culture. A young South African man emigrates to the United States with nothing but a dream to put plants on Mars, but gets sidetracked with conspiracy theories about hero divers. Twitter. Carl Sagan. Craigslist's domination of online classifieds leading to the downfall of traditional print media. Harvey Levin. The attention economy. The intellectual dark web. What beautiful chaos. What beautiful cosmos.