As Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu prepared to speak on Tuesday, viewers would be forgiven for assuming that they had a long slog in front of them. As BuzzFeed's Dorsey Shaw put it in a tweet:

We now know that concerns about how long the speech would be were unfounded (depending on your definition of "long"). Netanyahu spoke for about 40 minutes. So why the giant stack of paper? Allow this photograph to explain.

Netanyahu was reading off of sheets with -- what, 100-point? 140-point? type. (Update: Messing around in Microsoft Word suggests that it is probably about a 36-point Cambria.) On the sheet he's holding, there are 24 words. On other sheets, about the same. You can see below that he also allowed for very large breaks between paragraphs.

There are 23 words on that sheet -- but he added one in his actual speech. He was not humbled by the opportunity to speak, but deeply humbled.

Anyway, this allows us to estimate about how many sheets he had piled up on his lectern there in Shaw's first screenshot. There were 3,871 words in the entire speech, taking out the "(APPLAUSE)" markers. (Of which there were 43.) If you figure an average of 23 words per sheet of paper, that's 169 sheets of paper -- rounding up for that last sheet of paper with seven lonely words on it. (The last seven words in the speech? "Thank you, America. Thank you. Thank you." He may have adlibbed one or more of the "thank you"s.)

Or, to put that amount of paper into political terms: Let's assume he was using A4-sized paper. In most non-American countries, people don't use 8.5-by-11 sheets of paper. You know why? Right, the metric system. (Check out at the big brain on Brad!) A sheet of A4-sized paper (which we're assuming he brought with him) is 11.69 inches long. Meaning that if you stretched his printed speech out, end-to-end, it would stretch for 1,976 inches, or 164 feet.

If you started that at the floor underneath the Capitol Dome, it would stretch up to about 16 feet shy of the top. If Netanyahu's speech had been only 17 pages longer -- about 400 words, it would have reached all the way.

No matter your feelings about Netanyahu's speech, we can all agree that this was a missed opportunity.