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Good question; I seem to recall reading an explanation somewhere and will try to dig it up. Maybe I'll call it "da Calculus." And add a "YO!" for good measure.

I learned to "heart" calculus because I had an amazing calculus professor at community college, Mr. Philley. Before CC, I had never taken math beyond basic algebra and geometry. Calculus clicked for me because my teacher presented it as something normal (i.e. he didn't say things like "this might be hard" or "most students find this part difficult", etc.) and always used real world applications, like finding the velocity of car then finding its acceleration. Or a baseball or whatever.

Calculus really clicked for me when I had to use it outside of a math course. As an ecology student we studied population dynamics over time and space. I ended up really enjoying math so I took the "hard" calculus series, the one for physicists and engineers, while nearly all my classmates took the dumbed down version for requirements. Needless to say, this near high-school flunkout was able to derive and integrate to my hearts content around in circles around many of my classmates!

But, having tutored basic math to calculus I for students with special needs or learning disabilities for 2 years, it is no easy chore to present this stuff! I will always try to teach like Mr. Philley though.

Maybe it's kind of like "The Batman" vs "Batman".

Or maybe it's a Brit/American difference, you know, like where the Brits say someone the was "taken to hospital" and the Americans say "taken to the hospital".

Well, here's one guy's theory:
http://www.newton.dep.anl.gov/askasci/math99/math99181.htm

"Calculus" is the Latin word for the noun "pebble" and the verb "calculare" means "to count", so one might
suppose that in the traditions of the 1600's where Latin was taught far more generally than
today that "THE calculus" meant "THE way to compute".

Have you had a look at Donald Cohen's "Calculus by and for Young People (Ages 7, Yes 7 and Up)" (http://www.amazon.com/Calculus-Young-People-Ages-Yes/dp/096216741X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1219910096&sr=8-1)

I haven't read it, but it looks intriguing (the title is not a joke!)

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    Physics Cocktails

    • Heavy G
      The perfect pick-me-up when gravity gets you down.
      2 oz Tequila
      2 oz Triple sec
      2 oz Rose's sweetened lime juice
      7-Up or Sprite
      Mix tequila, triple sec and lime juice in a shaker and pour into a margarita glass. (Salted rim and ice are optional.) Top off with 7-Up/Sprite and let the weight of the world lift off your shoulders.
    • Listening to the Drums of Feynman
      The perfect nightcap after a long day struggling with QED equations.
      1 oz dark rum
      1/2 oz light rum
      1 oz Tia Maria
      2 oz light cream
      Crushed ice
      1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
      In a shaker half-filled with ice, combine the dark and light rum, Tia Maria, and cream. Shake well. Strain into an old fashioned glass almost filled with crushed ice. Dust with the nutmeg, and serve. Bongos optional.
    • Combustible Edison
      Electrify your friends with amazing pyrotechnics!
      2 oz brandy
      1 oz Campari
      1 oz fresh lemon juice
      Combine Campari and lemon juice in shaker filled with cracked ice. Shake and strain into chilled cocktail glass. Heat brandy in chafing dish, then ignite and pour into glass. Cocktail Go BOOM! Plus, Fire = Pretty!
    • Hiroshima Bomber
      Dr. Strangelove's drink of choice.
      3/4 Triple sec
      1/4 oz Bailey's Irish Cream
      2-3 drops Grenadine
      Fill shot glass 3/4 with Triple Sec. Layer Bailey's on top. Drop Grenadine in center of shot; it should billow up like a mushroom cloud. Remember to "duck and cover."
    • Mad Scientist
      Any mad scientist will tell you that flames make drinking more fun. What good is science if no one gets hurt?
      1 oz Midori melon liqueur
      1-1/2 oz sour mix
      1 splash soda water
      151 proof rum
      Mix melon liqueur, sour mix and soda water with ice in shaker. Shake and strain into martini glass. Top with rum and ignite. Try to take over the world.
    • Laser Beam
      Warning: may result in amplified stimulated emission.
      1 oz Southern Comfort
      1/2 oz Amaretto
      1/2 oz sloe gin
      1/2 oz vodka
      1/2 oz Triple sec
      7 oz orange juice
      Combine all liquor in a full glass of ice. Shake well. Garnish with orange and cherry. Serve to attractive target of choice.
    • Quantum Theory
      Guaranteed to collapse your wave function:
      3/4 oz Rum
      1/2 oz Strega
      1/4 oz Grand Marnier
      2 oz Pineapple juice
      Fill with Sweet and sour
      Pour rum, strega and Grand Marnier into a collins glass. Add pineapple and fill with sweet and sour. Sip until all the day's super-positioned states disappear.
    • The Black Hole
      So called because after one of these, you have already passed the event horizon of inebriation.
      1 oz. Kahlua
      1 oz. vodka
      .5 oz. Cointreau or Triple Sec
      .5 oz. dark rum
      .5 oz. Amaretto
      Pour into an old-fashioned glass over (scant) ice. Stir gently. Watch time slow.