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50 States in Five Minutes

I tried to name all 50 states in five minutes today. I got 12 in the first minute, 22 by the second, 30 by the third, 34 by the fourth, and 40 at five minutes.

Go ahead and try the exercise yourself. Write them down in a text editor and put an extra carriage return when you hit a minute. When five minutes are up, go back and recalculate to remove duplicates.

Post your results in the comments… (and don't read below before you do so). How many states can you name in five minutes?

The states I missed in the five minutes were Alabama, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, and Wyoming. Given an additional five more minutes, I'm fairly confident I could have gotten to 45 easily and likely 48 or so, at which point you spend much more time thinking "no, I already got that one" than you do actually thinking of new states.

13 Responses to "50 States in Five Minutes"

  1. 21 in the first minute,
    18 in the 2nd minute,
    9 more in the 3rd minute.
    Scratched my head for the first 50 seconds of the 4th minute, forgot Alaska + Hawaii!
    spent the 5th minute trying to name the other territories, like puerto rico.
    What can I say, i'm an overachiever.

  2. 44 in the first minute
    ...scratched my head for two minutes
    2 in the fourth minute (AK and HI)
    ...scratched my head until I ran out of time

    The ones I missed:


  3. I named 18 by the first minute mark, 27 by the second, 39 by the third, 42 by the fourth and 43 by the fifth.

    I missed Arizona, Maryland, Minnesota, Utah, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

  4. I typed out 48 in a row with no pauses (by going in geographical order, basically west to east)

    left out two. Pennsylvania and Arkansas

    It only took another 30-40 seconds or so to figure out that I had left out Pennsylvania, but it took well over a minute to figure out Arkansas. (I kept checking for all the little states in the northeast, thinking that was where I was most likely to have left one out..)

  5. 17 in the first minute,
    13 in the second,
    14 in the third,
    2 in the fourth,
    and 1 in the fifth

    for a total of 47.

    Left out Nebraska, New Jersey, and Colorado.

  6. You forgot New Jersey 🙁

  7. 13 in the first minute.
    21 in the second minute.
    11 in the third minute.
    5 in the fourth minute.

    for a total of 50 in four minutes.

  8. 50 states? The hell I ever recognize Missoura as a state.

  9. I got all 50 in 1:33.

    In addition to being a Mac/Tech nerd, I am a geogrpahy nerd. I toolk so long to make sure I got them all.

    I started with Maine, did the Northeast, the old Northwest, the middle south, the the eastern south and the deep south, up the MIssissippi state column, up the plains state column, then the western pairs (AZ/NM, CO/WY, MT/ID, UT/NV, then the 5 Pac states.

    Also, it helps that my daughters (10 & 12) sing this goofy alphabetical state song. Aaaaal-aaaaaaaa-bama, Alaska... 🙂

  10. [quote comment="39817"]I got all 50 in 1:33.

    Also, it helps that my daughters (10 & 12) sing this goofy alphabetical state song. Aaaaal-aaaaaaaa-bama, Alaska... :-)[/quote]

    My wife memorized a song (perhaps the same one) in third grade. I never had to do that (we must have been the "cool" classroom 😉 ). Consequently, she can name 'em all in a little less time than it takes to sing the song. Me, I just have to go off actual memory, and the only real "contact" I have with naming states these days is sending the occasional piece of mail. I don't send much mail to Montana. 😛

  11. 16 by the first minute;
    26 by the second;
    29 by the third;
    33 by the fourth;
    38 by the fifth.

    Missing Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire and Tennessee.

    Not bad for a Swiss 🙂 I feel bad missing Delaware, though, since I leraned the U.S. states after watching the Friends episode where Ross has to name them and where he knocks on the boys' door in the middle of the night to end his list with Delaware.

  12. 33 in the first minute
    43 in the second minute
    47 in the third minute
    48 in the fourth minute
    48 final

    I worked it similarly to Fred going through the states in geographic order. Somehow I managed to miss both Maryland and Arizona. I spent most of my time counting the states, wondering where I missed the states, finally remembering Arkansas, and then just thinking in the wrong direction. 😕

  13. I feel like I am cheating because I also know the 'song' that includes all the states. It takes me about 0:25 to recite the song.