The Seven Hidden American States

June 10, 2015

A lot of patriotic holidays coming up. Well, two. Flag Day and Independence Day. And you’ll likely be hearing a lot from the mainstream media about how the 50 stars on the flag represent the 50 states. That would be convenient if there were only 50 states. Not so. Public broadcasting is not afraid to blow the roof off that tired old belief and reveal the truth.

PENNSYLTUCKY – This is a corridor about three miles wide and three hundred miles long connecting Pittsburgh to Grayson, Kentucky. Carved out by Franklin Pierce, its existence is denied by most residents. Still: it’s there.

SPREADIANA – It’s easy to overlook the 419 10-mile unconnected circles that make up Spreadiana. Most of the circles are in Wyoming, two are in China. Still, they could have two U.S. Senators if they ever got their act together.


SUCKY ALASKA – Alaska is our biggest state. It’s bigger than China and Russia put together. But about 20 years ago, officials decided they didn’t want the real sucky parts of the state to even be part of Alaska. Those parts were spun off into Sucky Alaska. No one told Sucky Alaskans that they were a new state, didn’t want to hurt their feelings. Sucky Alaskans still vote in elections but their votes are burned and laughed at.

NEWER JERSEY – A vast section of the Garden State seceded in order to try again on the whole New Jersey concept and make it nicer and cleaner. This was just upgraded from protectorate to full statehood last Christmas and you didn’t notice because you were busy.

DALE FERGUSON OF MISSOULA, MONTANA – A roaming state, it goes wherever Dale is. Usually Missoula but sometimes he goes camping and the state goes with him. He refuses to believe he is a state, which makes the tourism industry so exciting.

LAKE MICHIGAN – Aquatic? Yes. And also home to a secret race of “Troutmen” who live on the bottom of the lake. Recently elected first member of the House of Representatives.

So enjoy your summer holidays! And maybe imagine an extra seven stars on that flag.


Friends of Wits Doing Stuff

If you were wondering, and you were, the following Wits performers all appear in the box office smash, Pitch Perfect 2: Anna Kendrick (@annakendrick47), Keegan-Michael Key (@KeeganMKey), David Cross, John Hodgman (@hodgman), and Reggie Watts (@reggiewatts). The Green Bay Packers, who appear in the movie, have never appeared on Wits, but Clay Matthews does have an invite.

Aimee Mann (@aimeemann) and The Mountain Goats (@mountain_goats) played a show together in Pioneertown, California. If you went to this show, we are highly envious of you.

Yo La Tengo (@TheRealYLT) are releasing a covers album 25 years after their last covers album, the very excellent Fakebook. It’s called Stuff Like That There, and you can read about it at their website.

Andy Richter (@andyrichter), between his stints as Conan O’Brien’s second-in-command and all-around great living American, starred in the little-seen, critically adored Andy Barker, P.I. The AV Club offered an appreciation.

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