Weekly Word: May 15th, 2012

Hey there Shmooponauts,

We know the middle of May is a tough time for a lot of you, what with being stuck inside studying for your last AP exams with nothing but Pizza Rolls and Mountain Dew for sustenance and all.

However, we hope you took a few hours on Sunday to celebrate Mother’s Day with the Mom-type people in your lives. Moms are awesome! Literature agrees…well, sometimes. Looks like some authors were forced to eat too much broccoli as children.

Check out our list of Awesome Moms and Not-So-Awesome Moms:

Top 5 Awesome Moms on Shmoop:

  1. Momma, in I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
  2. Pi’s Mother, in The Life of Pi
  3. Mrs. Bennet, in Pride and Prejudice
  4. Marmee, in Little Women
  5. Molly Weasley, in the Harry Potter series

Top 5 Less-Than-Awesome Moms on Shmoop:

  1. Lorraine’s Mother, in The Pigman
  2. Gertrude, in Hamlet
  3. Moll Flanders, in Moll Flanders
  4. The Grandmother, in A Good Man Is Hard to Find
  5. The Other Mother, in Coraline

Shmoop Shout Out: $3,000 Zinch Scholarship

So you’re almost done with the AP nightmare and out for the summer. Just a couple more weeks! However, before senioritis kicks into full gear (at which point no one can save you*), you might as well take five minutes and apply for the $3,000  Zinch Scholarship.

If you snag the prize money, it would probably be pretty easy to negotiate a higher weekly allowance for the summer before you ship off. Apply for the three grand Zinch Scholarship or forward along this email to any interested party.

Shmoop Shout Out 2.0: High Flyers: Charles Lindbergh & Amelia Earhart, May 20

For centuries, people have been captivated by stories of flight. From Icarus to the Wright brothers to Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger, we can’t get enough of people who attach balloons to their houses, soar into the heavens, and discover talking dogs and long-lost species. Wait, that was Carl from Up.

Still, the point stands. Aviators like Charles Lindbergh, who was the first person to fly solo non-stop across the Atlantic (1927), and Amelia Earhart, who became the first woman to do the same (1932), appeal to the bird brains in all of us. Happy anniversaries of your transatlantic flights, Charlie and Amelia!

Birthday: Pete Townsend Born May 19, 1945

Have you ever played an electric guitar? Okay, we’ll widen the net a little bit. Have you ever played air guitar? If the answer is a resounding yes, then you’ve probably used a few of Pete Townsend’s classic moves, whether you knew it or not. Don’t believe us? Take a gander at these:

  1. The Windmill
  2. The Roll Around Transition to Windmill
  3. And, finally, the Smash Your Guitar and Throw It Into the Audience

We at Shmoop HQ use all of these maneuvers on a consistent basis, especially on Fridays. Learn more about The Who and one of the legendiest of legendary rock stars with a few Shmoop guides to their songs:

Shmoop Shout Out 3.0: Janitor Graduates from Columbia

It’s AP/finals time again, which means there are probably tons of students thinking that running away to join the circus is a viable alternative to four more years of classes and college-level exams. However, when you hear a story like Gac Filipaj’s, you can’t help but “awww.” (Or, alternatively, “whoa.”)

Mr. Filipaj fled war-torn Yugoslavia and took a job as a janitor at Columbia University because he heard it was the best school in New York. Then, he took classes and pulled all-nighters while working full-time. Now, after twelve years, he’s finally earned his bachelor’s degree. Congrats, grad!

To Moms!
The Kids at Shmoop**

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