The universe is in its infancy.
Everything started - including life - with the alleged "Big Bang", and if you think about the number of zeroes you could stick on the end of time itself, that was only yesterday. The rubble is still flying out from the explosion.
Today's universe is not the end-product. It's the starter kit, barely out of its box. It's not as though the Big Bangk was then and this is now. Life has hardly moved from its starting point - yet.
We know that microscopic "tardigrades" and other tiny wriggly things can survive - and reproduce - in space. Scientists took tardigrades to the International Space Station a few years back, and watched them. There are photographs. And measurements. Those were healthy tardigrades, after as well as before.
Now. We know that if you ask a space agency, they'll tell you that the cleanliness of their spaceships is among their highest priorities. We also know that in today-speak, that's pretty much the same as saying: yeah, the cleaners may miss a bit occasionally, but they've told us it won't happen again.
I'd bet that there are at least a few tardigrade couples now heading off to a new life on Mars or beyond, courtesy of the various Rovers and Exployers and Voyagers that we've sent out lately, and I'd also bet that if we came back to this whole alien-life question in a few millennia, some evolved form of tardigrade would pick up the phone.
What you said then would depend on how well you spoke cockroach, I guess, but never mind - you've made the connection. [In next week's episode, gravity finally starts to work on the universe, and after a brief slack tide, the rubble all starts flying in again. What a Bang that'll make.]
We're three days out from the dawning of the age of the post-Brexit deal. My phone tells me that three days from now, a group of Senators will make a last-ditch attempt to invalidate the US election.
The UK government has decreed that second doses of the Covid vaccine won't be given on schedule. Daily infection rates in the UK are above 50,000.
I think to myself: this can't be the pinnacle of human civilisation. Surely?
Then I think to myself: let's hope we have time to launch some really dirty spaceships before the end.