Ladies and gentlemen—a view of Canobie Lake in Southern New Hampshire, if it were filled with blood instead of water:
|I tinted the clouds red because I figured they'd reflect the lake a bit, |
not because I was trying to make the scene even more sinister. :P (original image)
I was listening to the song "3rd Planet" by Modest Mouse the other day, when I was inspired to take one of the lines far too literally. Dozens of browser tabs, piles of conversions, and way more hours than I'd planned later, and we get the image above and this post.
The line goes, "When it occurred to me that the animals are swimming around in the water in the oceans in our bodies; and another had been found, another ocean on the planet, given that our blood is just like the Atlantic."
It's lovely imagery, but it got me wondering: how does the volume of blood inside all living human beings compare to the volume of large bodies of water like the Atlantic Ocean?
I did some quick Googling to try to figure out how much blood is in the average human body. The links I clicked seemed to suggest 6 or 7 quarts of blood, leaning a bit toward six. The CIA World Factbook informed me that most living human beings are adults, with about a quarter of the population being under 14 years. Thus, I deigned to reduce the value of volume of blood per body to 5.5 quarts, in a blatantly arbitrary attempt to account for the smaller contributions of the world's children. 5.5 quarts comes out to about 5.2 liters, which I then multiplied by the Factbook's estimated world population of 6,928,198,253. That got me 38,105,090,391.5 L.
38 billion liters (about 10 billion gallons) is certainly an impressive amount, but then there's the matter of the volume of the Atlantic Ocean. Wikipedia informed me that it is 354,700,000 cubic kilometers. 1 L is 0.001 m³, and 1.0 × 10-12 km³. Thus, the total volume of human blood on Earth is about 0.0381 km³, compared to the 350 million km³ of the Atlantic. So ya, barely a drop (about 0.00000001%).
|Turns out oceans are pretty big. (image source)|
What about Lake Winnipesaukee, the largest lake in my home state of New Hampshire? That's 625 billion gallons, which comes out to 2.37 km³. That means TVHB is 1.61% the volume of Lake Winnipesaukee. At least our percentage values are greater than one now, which is somewhat more impressive, I suppose.
|Lake Winnipesaukee (photo source)|
|Lovely, eh? (original image)|
Now all of this math was done in the middle of the night through bleary eyes, so it's entirely possible that something is off somewhere. But in my sleep-deprived wisdom, I'm going to go ahead and say, "nah, probably not," because I spent a lot of time doing all this that should have been spent sleeping, and I'd hate for it all to be a waste.
I wish I could conclude this post with some sort of profound point but sadly the numbers of mild interest are pretty much all the content I have for you, aside from the song that got this all started: