It gets weirder. People in Moscow, Idaho become irritated if you pronounce their city like the one in Russia "mahs-cow." That's because Idahoans pronounce their city "mahs-go." Moscow, Idaho ends in "go" not "cow."
I long thought that maybe this was a result of Americans trying to distance themselves from unpopular regimes in the old world. But now I'm not so sure. After all, Cairo, Illinois is pronounced "KAY-row." And Egypt's never had a dictator bent on world domination... well, as far as we know. So chime in readers on your famous-city-names-pronounced-differently. Is Tripoli, Iowa really pronounced "Trip-OH-luh"? Is Palestine, Texas really "Pal-ess-TEEN." Chime in!
in some quarters. In fact, the only reason Mexico and Cuba aren't a part of the US right now is because the U.S. Congress of the 19th century didn't want more people of color added to the electorate. So maybe President Obama should right this wrong! Does military action in Mexico fit the Obama Doctrine? I'm not sure—even John Stewart can't figure out the Obama Doctrine. The map above shows what an expanded USA would look like.
The point here is that they built the first reactor far from civilization—so that if anything went wrong, the loss of life would be minimized. And sure enough, something went wrong. On November 29, 1955, the reactor melted down. But, thanks to its location, the effect on non-hermit human life was minimal. Actually, the local story is that there remains a weird ant species out there—which was genetically altered by the meltdown. It's the joke they tell on the visitor tour... at least I hope it's a joke.
Story continues... read on to see the nuclear-powered plane experiment...
Read more here.
we looked at Thomas Jefferson's invasion of Libya (then called Tripoli). Sick and tired of pirate attacks on U.S. merchants, Jefferson (unlike Washington or Adams) decided to use force against the north Africans. Unfortunately, Jefferson put the wrong guy in charge of the fight. The U.S. warships that sailed in 1802 were lead by the woefully incompetent Capt. Richard Morris. Morris treated the war like a vacation, taking along his wife and young son for the ride. Before reaching the nations of North Africa (then called "The Barbary States"), Morris dropped anchor for leisurely visits at nearly every vacation port in the Mediterranean. Once he arrived in Tunis, he was instantly kidnapped by the enemy. When he was finally ransomed, Morris thought the US should continue to pay the extortion money, rather than fight the north Africans. Jefferson was furious.
The president summarily fired Morris and sent another group of ships. This time, one of the US ships ran aground in the Tripoli harbor, and 300 more Americans surrendered and were enslaved. Jefferson sighed—and sent still another squadron of ships. By now—1804—half the U.S. fleet had been deployed to punish North Africa, and slowly the tide began to turn.
The president was George Washington. With Congress’ consent, he paid an enormous bribe to secure the release of Americans held in captivity. What’s more, this wasn’t an isolated incident. In America’s first decades, Washington and John Adams consistently paid out as much 25 percent of U.S. government revenues to extortionist countries in north Africa. Collectively, these nations were called the Barbary States: Morocco, Algiers, Tunis, and Tripoli—probably the most successful organized crime operation in history. Their scheme was actually very simple: If a nation didn’t pay the required extortion money, the Barbaries would pirate the nation’s merchant ships—and sell the crew into slavery. Countries that paid were left alone, but states that refused faced constant piracy and the enslavement of its citizens. And slavery in the Barbary states was unimaginably horrific....
launched a web site today for their group "Start Our State"—to rally support for the creation of the 51st state from portions of southern Arizona. The idea springs from the reality that Southern Arizona leans Democrat... while the more-populous Phoenix area leans Republican. So if you can't get your way in the state legislature, you create a new state! The U.S. Constitution offers a roadmap to make this happen. But I think the protesters in Arizona are thinking too small. Why not hook up with the Democratic-leaning counties in New Mexico and Texas? The map above does just that, creating a Democratic stronghold that would make any professional gerrymanderer proud. Since it covers three states, the oft-proposed name of Baja Arizona won't do. Why not mashup the three state names to create "Texmexona"? A more detailed map here.
Wall Street Journal article. But the bottom line is this: if you can't change a state's rules, then redraw the state borders—to put your town in a different state. My proposed solution to ALL of Idaho's problems is the map above. Larger image here
irresponsible map, MIT called them on it. The map makes it seem like America is getting slammed with radiation from the Fukushima reactors, when, in truth, the radiation reaching the U.S. is "barely detectible" and no threat to anyone's health. But you wouldn't know that from the map. The first time I saw it, I wanted to run to my fallout shelter and batten down the hatches. Then I realized, I don't know what "batten down the hatches" even means. Anyway, the text in the New York Times article does clear things up, but that doesn't excuse a really deceptive map. Just ask MIT—their full assessment here.
That's a long way of saying that I don't know if Freund is right or wrong—but I can say one thing: his special never actually revealed the street-level location of his purported Atlantis... the program carefully avoided that. But the crack team here at Lost States has used the latest techniques of TV forensics to piece together the precise location. We took the snippets of maps revealed in the National Geographic special and painstakingly fit them to satellite images to come up with the latitude and longitude of Freund's Atlantis. Story continues....
The map above tracks the deadly fallout from the most devastating of these detonations, code-named "Harry" (or, more accurately, "Dirty Harry"), a bomb that many believe killed movie star John Wayne.... and sent radiation over major population centers, including Chicago. So here's what happened...
here. And I can't help but mention that a person standing on your antipodal point would be exactly upside-down, relative to you.
Sanriku quake—pictured above—looks eerily similar to the devastation from last week. The full map shows all the major Pacific earthquakes prior to 1947...
So what term do you use for fizzy soft drinks? It depends on where you fall on the map. People in the northeast tend to call it "soda." People in mid-America typically call it "pop." And southerners use the term "coke" generically for any type of fizzy soft drink. But the geographic dividing lines between these terms are not always clear--and Wisconsin is one of the states that has a split personality on this topic. Last night I did a talk for the fine folks of Kiel, Wisconsin (big turnout! There are a lot of sharp folks in Kiel). The Wisconsin State Historical Society notes that Kiel was once home to a "soda pop" factory. I thought that was interesting—they didn't call it a "soda factory" or a "pop factory," it was described as a "soda pop" factory. That may be because eastern Wisconsin is a "soda" outpost surrounded by a "pop" region. Admittedly, the map above is simplified... but it does show the larger trends. Let us know what you call the fizzy stuff.... leave a comment below. (And thanks again, Kiel!)
read about Indiana's time zones on Wikipedia, but I'd advise against it unless you have a triple Phd in accounting, geographic information systems, and dairy farming.
Simpson's 5-state mystery. Today we offer thanks to the fine folks at "Pleated Jeans" who created the Simpson's mall map. Now we know exactly where to go to get our pants (Vast Waistband) or lunch (Kentucky Fried Panda). See the full map here.
View Democrat-Republican meeting spot in a larger map Those rogue Wisconsin Democrats want to meet Republican Scott Walker "on the border." But hey, it's cold outside! So somebody needed to find a building that straddles the border. That's the kind of service we provide here at loststates.com. The above building (with the green roof) is an H&R Block office in the Beloit area that (according to Google, at least) straddles the Wisconsin-Illinois border. A tax preparers office--how perfect. Maybe lawmakers on both sides of all the shenanigans will meet an actual taxpayer.... you know, the people who pay their salaries.
official map from the International Commercial Crime Services organization. Happy Boating!
View Wisconsin Senators Hideout Map in a larger map Much ado has been made about those wacky Wisconsin senators hiding out in Illinois. I am surprised that no one seems to have made a good map of their purported lairs. So I culled press reports and came up with the starter map above. (Click on each marker for details.) There's no particular political agenda here at "Lost States" ...we have fun with both sides. And you have to admit that enjoying the stale-bagel breakfast bar at every Comfort Inn in northern Illinois, is, well, funny. (If you have additional locations to plot, let me know and I will add them to the map.)
"Save our State" group founded by Paul Eckerstrom and Peter Hormel has received a lot of national press lately. So it's worth noting the history of this region... because Tucson almost didn't make it into the United States at all. Long a part of Mexico, the region south of the Gila River was the last major piece of the lower 48 to get added to the USA. Franklin Pierce sent James Gadsden down to buy up a big chunk of Mexico in 1853. The Mexicans weren't selling, but finally agreed to give up a small sliver—which is now southern Arizona (and New Mexico). Had Gadsden been more persuasive, all of Mexican Sonora, Chihuahua, and lower California would have been part of the US. That would have meant carving up the western states differently, and the Gila River would have been an excellent dividing line. Tucson likely would have been the capital of the new state of Sonora. Bottom line: Had Gadsden succeeded, Arizona's continuing north-south battle would have been solved long ago. (There's much more on this in the book Lost States. )
Peggy West might not know what country Juarez is in... but Rick Perry is the governor of Texas! And this isn't the first time he has made this mistake. So I figured we'd make a map of the addition to Texas that Governor Rick Perry seems to want. More on the gaffe here.
Labels: Map blunders