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Me, myself and I

It's just not that simple.

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I don’t know whether this is actually something Americans do but I’ve been watching a lot of Friends lately (yeah, I know, *this* is something Americans do) and there was this Thanksgiving ep (7-08 – TOW Chandler doesn’t like dogs*) in which they played a game of writing down all the states of the USA by heart.

Since I’m a chronically bored nerd I thought it would be fun to play it with my friend and, well, so we did (because, as sad as this is going to sound, I got nothing better to do on Easter Sunday)

After 10 minutes and me having 32 states, I gave up and we looked it up at Wikipedia.
And the result was a bit surprising: In my USA, there is no Colorado (as in: I had no idea that this was actually a state) or West Virginia (I heard it mentioned in a show and thought it was just a stupid joke that there is Virginia *and* West Virginia). Oh, and Dallas is a state, too – in case you didn’t know that ;)
While feeling not so bad about forgetting Rhode Island, I have no idea how I could miss Florida.

Alaska, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Dallas (um, well...), Delaware, Georgia, Hawaii, Indiana, Lousiana (sic...), Kansas (hehe), Maine, Massachusets (sic! um... embarrassing), Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington D.C. (and someday I might learn about what exactly that D.C. thing means and how it compares to the “regular” states), Wyoming, “that other state where they have a river, too” (I meant Mississippi but I was told it didn’t count ;))

The only thing that comforted me a bit is that on my friend’s list Ontario was among the 13 states that came to his mind... ;)

*This ep is really a gem: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gT9kqrNjUi4
I would have loved to upload a longer clip (especially Ross giving up at the end) but for some reasons all my usual programms refuse to work properly.

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I love that episode! I'm not sure anymore what was up with Ross, so I shall have to indulge myself into some Friends watching soon. So yes, I remember the game. Never played it with any friends of mine, since I seriously doubt they'd get beyond ten states in an hour...

But the thing about Washington: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Washington,_D.C. Basically, the state is Washington, and the *city* is Washington DC, with DC standing for District of Columbia. So technically, you got one wrong. ;)

I also remember there being this meme sort of thing, where you had to type in as many of the US states you knew/could remember. That was fun to do. I came pretty far, but I always end up forgetting some.

BTW, LOL! @ your icon!

Hehe, thanks for the D.C. information :)

Yeah, you definitely should watch the ep - it's insanely funny because Ross is so arrogant at the beginning and gets so desperate later on but tries to keep up his stupid pride ;)

when I did it -- after watching that episode, too -- I came up with 46 states. I couldn't remember the other four. Connecticut and New Hampshire are among the ones I'd forgotten, I'm not sure what the other 2 were..

Well, as you can see, I forgot New Hampshire, too - and if someone had told me that this wasn't a state at all, I'd probably have believed it, too.

And Connecticut only crossed my mind because towards the end when I had no idea what states I missed, I went through all my favourite TV shows... and the Gilmore Girls' home town is supposed to be close to Hartford, CT ;)

I love Friends! I've been working my way through the series for about two years. I just finished season six.

Hey, you did pretty darn good for someone who isn't from here! I couldn't even to name the states/provinces/whatever of Germany, so I'm impressed. When I played the game myself, I got probably forty of the states. I forget those mid-western ones every time.

I see that Saskia already addressed the D.C. thing, but regarding the Virginia/West Virginia thing - they were one state until 1861, but when Virginia seceeded from the Union to join the Confederacy, the delegates from the western portion said "Oh HELL no", seceeded from Virginia and re-joined the Union. Which is probably more than you really cared to know! *is a history dork* :-)

No, it's not something that I've ever done, though I know there are some who do it for fun and as a self-test. Kind of like a spelling bee.

And I'm not sure that I could name all 50 myself. (And, even if I could, I doubt I could place them properly on a map.) I've always seen that as a problem for the US. Learning all 50 seems like a daunting task, and the difficulty in learning our vast local geography makes it that much more of a challenge to look beyond our borders and learn global geography.

As for Washington... there are two of them.

Washington state is in the northwest corner of the continental US. It's where Seattle is, among other things.

Washington, D.C. is the District of Colombia. It's not actually a state or part of any state. It's a diamond-shaped zone of neutral territory located on the east coast, in the middle of the original 13 colonies (which became the first states). That way, the federal government (which presides over all states) can be independent of local influence.

Oh, and when my best friend told me in 3rd grade or so that he'd gone on a family trip to Wyoming, I honestly thought he was making the name up.

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