Presented by Cornell University’s Skimm’bassador Erica Baevsky

 

SPORTS (2/3)

WHAT TO SAY WHEN YOU HEAR THE SUPER BOWL RATINGS WERE THE HIGHEST EVER…
The NFL’s feeling good, but Johnny Football not so much. On Monday, it was announced that Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel is going to rehab. Manziel aka “Johnny Football” really, really likes to party. Ever since he got a lot of flack from his team for oversleeping late last year, he’s had a lot of ‘splainin to do. The Heisman Trophy winner is now headed to rehab in the off-season to “figure out his value system.” Clear eyes, value systems, can’t lose.

 

NATIONAL (2/4)

WHAT PEOPLE ARE TALKING ABOUT…
ISIS. Earlier this week, the terrorist group released a video that appeared to show the execution of a Jordanian pilot. In revenge, Jordan executed two al-Qaeda prisoners. The brutality of the video, plus the appearance of an execution of an Arab man, struck a chord in the Middle East. Arab countries, especially those involved in the US-led coalition, responded with outrage. Jordan’s King Abdullah said the fight against ISIS has become about fighting for “Islam and its pure values.”  The UAE’s foreign minister called the execution a “defining moment,” as it shows that the coalition against ISIS is really, really necessary right now. Truth.

 

CELEBRITIES (2/2)

WHAT PEOPLE ARE WORRIED ABOUT…
Whitney Houston’s daughter. On Saturday, 21-year-old Bobbi Kristina Brown was found unresponsive in a bathtub at her Atlanta-area home. She was rushed to the hospital and put into a medically induced coma. She’s reportedly in bad shape. Brown is the only daughter of Bobby Brown and Whitney Houston, who died almost three years ago after a long battle with drug abuse. Houston was also found in a bathtub.

 

CULTURE (2/3)

WHAT TO SAY TO YOUR FRIEND WHO WAS AN ART HISTORY MAJOR…
Now’s your time. A British museum named the Fitzwilliam is about to show off two bronze sculptures that are believed to be works by Michelangelo. BFD, since these would be the only known surviving bronzes made by the man who brought us the Sistine Chapel. Over the years, the statues have been attributed to different artists. But in 2013, a Cambridge art history professor noticed they looked very similar to a drawing by one of Michelangelo’s apprentices. The professor then got together a research team who dug into whether the statues were made by the man, the myth, the Michelangelo. All signs point to Si.

 

TRANSPORTATION (2/4)

WHAT PEOPLE ARE SADDENED BY…
plane crash in Taiwan. On Wednesday, at least 12 people were killed after a TransAsia Airways plane crashed into a river shortly after taking off from Taiwan’s capital. A rescue mission is underway. Just before the crash, the pilot reportedly indicated there was an engine problem. This is the second crash in just over six months for the airline.

Seven people were killed and 12 seriously injured in suburban New York Tuesday night after a commuter train hit a Jeep SUV on the tracks. The Metro-North train was carrying at least 400 rush-hour passengers at the time. This was the deadliest crash ever for the railroad, which brings hundreds of thousands of people in CT and NY to work each day. US officials are investigating how this happened.

 

SCIENCE (2/4)

WHAT TO SAY WHEN YOUR LITTLE COUSIN ASKS WHERE BABIES COME FROM…
Sometimes, when three people decide to mix their DNA…This week, the UK’s lower house approved a bill that would let scientists make babies from the DNA of three parents. The technology is aimed at keeping people with serious genetic diseases from passing them on to their kids. This is how it could work: a tiny fraction of the mom’s DNA is swapped with that of an anonymous female donor, either before or after it’s mixed with the dad’s DNA. So even though the baby’s DNA would be almost entirely from two parents, there would be a liiiitle bit from a third person. In other words, babies come from threesomes. Supporters say this gives parents the chance to have kids without feeling worried about possibly passing on a devastating genetic disease. Critics say this crosses a major ethical boundary that could one day lead to “designer babies” – aka picking and choosing your child’s genes. Not to mention leading to an extra mother-in-law. The bill just needs to be approved by the UK’s upper house before the country becomes the first in the world to allow this technology.

 

RETAIL (2/4)

WHAT TO SAY WHEN YOU RUN OUT OF TURQUOISE STICKY NOTES…
Your re-stocking options just got easier. On Tuesday, Staples agreed to buy Office Depot for $6.3 billion. This move has been a long time coming for the two largest office retailers in the US. It’s been pushed by an activist investor, who threatened to change up Staples’s management if it didn’t agree to cozy up to Office Depot. Now, regulators are saying ‘not so fast.’ They’re readying the highlighters to make sure this deal is kosher and doesn’t violate any antitrust laws.

 

MEDICINE (2/3)

THE STORY

The CDC announced that a measles outbreak that began late last year is getting worse.

WHAT DO I NEED TO KNOW?

The outbreak started at Disneyland, and more than 100 people in at least 14 US states have been infected. Refresher: measles is a contagious disease that the US thought it got rid of 15 years ago thanks to an effective vaccination program. But in recent years, a small but growing number of US families have chosen not to give their kids the measles vaccine, among others. This outbreak has now put a bigger spotlight on the debate about vaccines in the US.

 

CULTURE (2/4)

WHAT TO SAY WHEN YOUR FRIEND SAYS SHE WANTS TO RE-READ THE CLASSICS…
Start with “To Kill a Mockingbird.” This week, it was announced that Harper Lee – the 88-year-old Pulitzer Prize-winning author who brought us Scout, Atticus, and Boo Radley – will soon publish her second book. It’s called “Go Set a Watchman,” and is a sort-of sequel to “Mockingbird.” While millions of Lee’s fans are pumped that they’re getting their favorite characters back after more than 50 years, a few are raising an eyebrow. Lee’s sister, who was also her lawyer and a big protector of her work, passed away late last year. Lee wrote “Watchman” decades ago, and everyone thought it had been lost until last year when her lawyer found it. Now, there are questions of whether Lee, who is reportedly not in the best health, approved of the book’s release in sound mind.
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