To the Human Body

Thursday night, the City Council is voting on a new measure that would prohibit breathing as an involuntary muscular action.

Historically the Human Body has been able to control breathing without the brain needing to consciously activate the diaphragm.

Under the new rule, all residents would be required to make the physical choice of whether or not – and when – to breathe.

Fear not Springwood Toastmasters, this is the Council of a fictitious town from the podcast Welcome to Night Vale. If you have not yet tuned in, your imagination has not lived.

Tonight’s toast, however, is not to Night Vale but rather to the complex mystery that was mentioned: the Human Body .

Have you ever wondered exactly how many functions your body is carrying out without your express permission?

We are all blinking, breathing, swallowing, digesting, salivating, producing new cells, processing information, pumping blood and yet- did we actively make the choice to do any of these things?

A fortnight ago, after jarring my pelvis, my body reacted swiftly to protect the disturbed region. A left tilt that could rival the Leaning Tower of Pisa and some acute pain, was actually my body’s way of protecting me and allowing the area to heal in its own time – all I had to do was let it.

Did you know the human body produces approximately 25 million new cells every minute?

Our bones are about 4 times stronger than concrete  – although I’m glad we aren’t building with human bones as a first measure.

Our livers have over 500 different functions and is the only organ that can completely regenerate itself – just as well if you like a drop or three.

A magnificent mystery, our bodies, a highly evolved and often misunderstood machine.