Do you ever just look at the periodic table and realize that you’re completely frothing at the mouth? I do, literally every day. Elements are just so diverse and it is so unbelievable that they make up so much stuff. Like, even this computer that I’m typing on is probably made of elements! Anyways, here is my top 5 list of elements that consistently make me cuckoo bonkers.
5. Curium, hello! As a feminist, I fully stan this element discovered by Marie Curie. A true shero and maker of chemical her-story, I used to want to be her when I was younger. She actually carried radioactive test tubes around in her coat pockets every day, which inspired me to try and contract aplastic anemia by standing next to the microwave for hours at a time until my parents yelled at me.
4. Caesium, because I just think it’s super cool that some totally random Roman dictator was woke enough to discover a really crucial element AND make my favorite type of salad. I used to really hate this guy, Wennis, in seventh grade, but all I ever did was put a lot (like a LOT) of salad dressing in his locker. It really makes you wonder what else Julius could have accomplished if his friends had just been a little more passive-aggressive.
3. Carbon, of course. Did you know it can form up to 10 million different compounds?! Not only that, but one time I heard that if you apply pressure to coal, it turns into diamonds, and then I got grounded for, like, a month when I ruined my dad’s home office by crushing a bunch of charcoal briquettes on his desk. As if I wasn’t making money.
2. Technitium (duh!). It’s this really nifty manmade element, and I like this one because it is so bonkers-out-there that we can just make whatever element we want, whenever. One time, we were out of tin foil, so I tried to make my own aluminum by melting a bunch of jewelry I found in the house, but my mom yelled at me so I just used Saran Wrap.
1. Hydrogen & Helium. These ones drive me literally completely off-the-wall, so they are tied because together they make up most of what stars are. How kooky is that? I used to think that if you lit a balloon on fire you would make a star, but it turns out that helium is an inert gas so it just pops.
Thanks so much for coming on this journey with me, but just thinking about the periodic table is unironically making me so unstable and crazy right now. Signing off for today, but make sure to leave what elements make you go full-on lunatic in the comments below!