The Weekly Word: July 10th, 2012

Hey there Shmadawans,

When the days are long and the sidewalk is hot enough to fry a jellyfish (…some of us were apparently never cut out to be marine biologists), thoughts at Shmoop HQ turn to the one event to rule them all:


What, you were expecting a pool party?

We’re still trying to figure out how to watch the Indiana Jones trilogy, the Star Wars trilogy, and the Lord of the Ringstrilogy back-to-back-to-back without bathroom breaks, but we have all summer to get it right. In the meantime, why not check out some of our favorite sci fi?

Ender’s Game
Brave New World

Nerd Shout-Out: Zinch Scholarships

For the Shmoopers who are in the pantheon of geekdom and would like to earn mad scholarship money this summer, we direct you to our partners in nerd: Zinch.

If you’re one of the chosen ones who can fill out scholarship apps, go tubing, eat ice cream, and write your name in the air with a sparkler—all at the same time—then Zinch is the site for you. They are offering weekly scholarships all through the summer, so check them out here to earn some cold hard cash for college.

Shmoop Week in History: Burr Slays Hamilton July 11, 1804

Political intrigue. A long family history of whipping out the guns*—literally—when things weren’t going their way.  At the end of the day, all most of us really know about the famous Burr-Hamilton duel is that the third Vice President of the United States (that would be Burr) and the first Secretary of the Treasury (Hamilton over there) went a-duelin’ one July morning.

Historians still don’t understand exactly what went down on July 11, 1804,** but let’s get one thing straight: if you’re looking for mature conflict resolution, we suggest avoiding a duel. Burr was charged with murder and Hamilton died, so let’s all take this as a lesson learned from our Founding Fathers.

Shmoop Birthdays: Patrick Stewart Born July 13, 1940; Harrison Ford Born July 13, 1942

Considering that both these geek gods were born on July 13, we’re lobbying for the day to be set aside as a national geek holiday. We’re planning on celebrating with a Star Trek: The Next Generation refresher to kickstart our marathon. Cap it all off with a little of that Indy/Han action, and we’ll be in nerdvana. The happiest of happy birthdays to P. Stew and H. Ford!

Shmoop Shout-Out: Body Part Bog People

What do you get when you cross the Creature from the Black Lagoon with Frankenstein’s monster? We aren’t quite sure, but we’re guessing it would get you electrocuted.

Either way, the discovery of some cobbled-together bog bodies is probably the closest we’ll ever get IRL. Nobody is sure why exactly people 3,000 years ago decided that rebuilding dead folks was a good idea,*** but you have to admit, it’s pretty cool. Read more here.

Shmoop Shout-Out: Space Video

Fact: 100% of people wanted to be an astronaut at some point during their formative years.**** However, most of us don’t have the income to foot the $25 million for a ticket to space. We’ll let NASA do the work with their rockets and cameras and live vicariously instead: check out this awesome video of the world from above the atmosphere.

Want to know how this rocket got up there? Head on over to our AP Physics guide and learn how to make rocketships. (No guarantees that you’ll be able to build anything that will actually go to space, though.)


We heart nerds,

Lords of Shmeekdom




*Han shot first!

**Did Hamilton really intend to shoot into the air because he thought dueling was morally wrong, or was he just unfamiliar with the special dueling pistols he’d acquired for the occasion?

***The Iron Age’s version of The Six Million Dollar Man?

****This is not a fact but a very good estimate.

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