a weblog of wordplay by Eric Harshbarger
State The ReasonHere is a pretty simple puzzle I thought of last night while looking at a partial U.S. Map (during a game of 1870). Can you determine the reasoning behind the grouping of the United States in the following way?
ALABAMA ALASKA ARKANSAS KANSAS MARYLAND MISSISSIPPI NEW JERSEY TENNESSEE COLORADO DELAWARE HAWAII ILLINOIS INDIANA KENTUCKY MICHIGAN MONTANA NEBRASKA NEVADA NEW YORK NORTH DAKOTA OHIO OKLAHOMA OREGON TEXAS UTAH VERMONT VIRGINIA WISCONSIN WYOIMING ARIZONA CALIFORNIA FLORIDA IDAHO IOWA MAINE MASSACHUSETTS MISSOURI NEW HAMPSHIRE NEW MEXICO NORTH CAROLINA PENNSYLVANIA SOUTH DAKOTA WASHINGTON WEST VIRGINIA CONNECTICUT GEORGIA LOUISIANA MINNESOTA RHODE ISLAND SOUTH CAROLINA
Like I said, it's not too difficult. What surprises me is that the first group has such lengthy-named states in it. Once you see the pattern, you'll also note that theoretically there could be a fifth group in the list as well, but no state meets the criterion.
If you still don't see the justification for the grouping, here's a hint: instead of thinking, "Why is the reason a state is where it is?", you should probably be thinking "'Why' (Y) is not the reason a state is where it is."
[31 March 2006]
Comments about this article:Group 1: 1 vowel
Group 2: 2 vowels
Group 3: 3 vowels
Group 4: 4 vowels
cool. I see what you mean about the 1st group - long names to have only 1 vowel!
Posted by: Carolyn
Posted by: Eric Harshbarger
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