The human body is amazing. That’s a fatuous thing to say, and I imagine it’s been wheezed out by every sweaty high school teacher ever to lead a group of giggling, weiner-pointing students through the Bodies exhibit. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t true, and it’s a small, fierce – not a lightbulb so much as an LED light – revelation that I’ve had time and again since starting med school.
But it’s more than just a vague sense of “the human body is a work of art,” or “look at how beautifully complex we are!’ What most people don’t seem to realize is that the human body is completely, utterly badass. Some of the adaptations and mutations we’ve developed are so over the top that they can only reasonably be described as “Pancho Villa screaming bloody revenge as he jumps a motorcycle off a giant ramp so that he can fly through the air and cut a dragon in half (lengthwise) with his chainsaw.” Yeah, it makes that little sense. And yes, of course I’ve included examples below. Continue reading