People all around the world carve their initials into trees as a symbol of eternal love. But those carvings are about 1 million times larger than the paintings that were made in living cells by Y.-W. Wu, L. Dehmelt, and co-workers in their Communication on page 5916 ff. Although these cell paintings were not made for eternity, they lasted for several hours––a very long time in the dynamic environment of a living cell. The paintings were made not just for fun, but were used to manipulate cell function to reach a better understanding of complex disease processes such as cancer metastasis.
De Botton has described his relationship with his father as difficult, stating: "When I sold my first bestseller (and a million dollars was peanuts for my father) he was not impressed and wondered what I was going to do with myself."  When his father died, his family was left a large trust fund ,  although de Botton says his income is derived solely from his own activities (book sales, speaking engagements, business consulting, The School of Life).    Alain's stepmother Janet de Botton is a prominent patron of the arts and competition bridge player.  De Botton lives in London with his wife, Charlotte, and their two children.