You know, I figured a biomechanics class (which is, after all, all about the realistic physicality of biology as opposed to magic cartoon enzymes that always work) would feature more realistic estimates of a bacterium's size.
Figure 2: I also figured it would feature less fleeing and primal terror. [Source]
Of course, the answer is that E. coli are measured in μm (micrometers), not meters, and that the micro sign simply failed to render due to some strange failure of MS Word. The lesson is clear: Mistakes in character encodings will kill us all. Go forth boldly, my friends, and godspeed.