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March 5th, 2007

50 States in 10 Minutes

Can you name 50 states in 10 minutes?

I thought it sounded easy. And when I breezed through the first 35 in under three minutes, I figured, “No problem.”

But by the time ten minutes was up, there were four that I missed. Granted, I don’t consider myself very good at geography, but I thought I’d be able to manage this. After just typing in all the ones that popped into my head, I tried several other methods of remembering. First, I tried picturing states. Then I tried remembering states I had driven through on trips. Then I started to think of football teams and politicans and where they were from. All those methods helped, until it came down to those final four.

I didn’t miss any super-obvious ones like California, but when I saw the ones I missed, I was still disappointed in myself. Highlight here to see the ones I missed: Minnesota, Mississippi, New Hampshire, and Oklahoma.

Without thinking ahead of time, just go ahead and try it out. Let us know how you do in the comments.

Posted in Miscellaneous

Paul March 5, 2007, 6:00 am

Got them all with 3:40 left. It took me about 3 minutes to get the last one.

Maria March 5, 2007, 6:01 am

You never learned the Fifty Nifty United States (http://www.teridanielsbooks.com/fiftyniftysong.htm) song in elementary school? Between that and learning to spell “pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis” in 5th grade, those are my favorite things I learned in elementary school.

Greg March 5, 2007, 3:49 pm

Got them all with just under 2 minutes left. I wasn’t worried about naming all the state. I was worried that I needed correct spelling. 30 years old and I still can’t spell Pennselvania, Massachucets or Conneticut. (Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Connecticut)

Ryan March 5, 2007, 4:01 pm

Well you all are just smarter than stupid ol’ me!

And, no, Maria — never learned that song. Oddly, I don’t remember ever having to learn capitals, either.

Jeani March 5, 2007, 11:15 pm

Damn it, I missed two! But they’re states I’d probably be willing to live without. 😉

Terry M. March 6, 2007, 12:52 am

After you have correctly rattled off the 50 states, then for extra bonus boints you can take on the following challenge:

*Which 2 states which border each other are the most different?*

The correct answer is Nevada & Utah, but Florida & Alabama will also be accepted (sorry, I don’t know how to do the fancy invisible text).

jk March 6, 2007, 3:56 am

I did it with 3 minutes to spare…it helped to draw a map of the US. The pressure of being timed threw me off a bit! My final 5 were WS, KY, MT, MO, and (don’t laugh) NY.

I did not know where to find all 50 states on an unlabeled map until I was about 28 and working on the Chesapeake Bay. I ate in a diner that had US map placemats; this prompted me to get with the times! I truly do not know that capitals though. I wonder which teacher in my public school education was supposed to devote a chapter to this?

Aanen March 6, 2007, 3:50 pm

I missed 4.

I remember learning states and capitals, but we used flash cards instead.

Adam March 7, 2007, 12:58 am

Been watching FRIENDS reruns, huh? Wasn’t Maryland the one Ross couldn’t remember?

I tried this when I saw that episode and have tried again a few more times. I always end up one or two short. I also do the sports teams thing, but that doesn’t work when you forget West Virginia (the one I just forgot when I tried it again).

Joe Revees March 7, 2007, 7:25 pm

For more mayhem, and certainly you aren’t going to get all of these, it’s the

192 Countries in 10 Minutes quiz:

http://andys.org.uk/countryquiz/

I haven’t tried yet, but I thought I’d pass it along.

Merle March 8, 2007, 4:04 pm

Going through them in some sort of order helps a lot.. otherwise it’s easy to simply miss one. The northeast confuses me a lot, though — all those itty bitty states, and freakish things like “West” Virginia which seems more like North Virginia.

I used to be able to do the capitals as well. But that was back in high school when my brain had some space left for useless trivia. I do not believe I have ever actually *needed* to know the capital of South Dakota.

Merle March 9, 2007, 12:49 pm

Sigh. Even using my pattern, I missed two. Vermont? Massachusetts? Those are *states*? Faugh.

Everything except for the northeast was easy for me, since I was working off of a mental image of the map. But the tiny states up in the corner really got to me.

(I almost missed those two states that aren’t contiguous, but remembered before the time ran out)

Illinois Dude March 24, 2007, 3:36 pm

I got them all with 6:40 to spare, and I guessed California last.

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