Welcome to Fun Facts About the 50 States, where – week by week – I’ll be taking you on a tour around this great nation of ours, providing you with interesting, yet completely useless and probably untrue, information about each of the 50 states.
This week, it’s time to buy grossly overpriced lobster-shaped souvenirs, because we’re headed up to Maine, so let’s get started…
* Maine became the 23rd state on March 15th, 1820 and also became the only state with a one-syllable name after they shortening it from “Mainingtonia”.
* The state bird of Maine is the chickadee, and NOT the much more common Cracker-Barrel Buzzard or Bald Coot.
* Maine is one of America’s largest producers of leather products, most of which are exported to San Francisco during Gay Pride Week.
* The state flower of Maine is the pine cone. Although most people wouldn’t be dumb enough to confuse a pine cone with a flower, keep in mind that some people actually considered Dan Rather to be a journalist, too.
* The state motto of Maine is, “Fleecing tourists is fun!”
* 90% of America’s toothpick supply is produced in Maine, and I’ll bet those idiots probably think THOSE are flowers, too.
* The state song of Maine is “Rock Lobster”, by the B52’s.
* The state tree of Maine is the white pine… which obviously means they’re racist.
* The top prize in Maine’s state lottery is having Stephen King personally bury your dismembered corpse in his back yard.
* Eastport, Maine, is the easternmost city in the US, and therefore the best place from which to launch a nuclear strike against France.
* Not that… you know… America is actually PLANNING anything like that…
* Hey… I’m just saying we should keep our options OPEN, people!
* Maine is the only state in the US that shares a border with only one other state. It’s nothing personal, it’s just that a LOT of dead lobsters wash up on the beach, and no one wants to be next to a state that smells like Roseanne Barr’s underwear.
* Every year, 4 million lobsters are caught off the coast of Maine – most of them on their way to Canada to buy cheap prescription drugs.
* Maine produces 99% of America’s blueberries, which is why most blueberries can’t pronounce the word “car” correctly.
* Maine was originally settled by Canadians who were searching for the religious freedom to worship their pagan moose-god, Bullwinkle.
* Freeport, Maine, is home to the LL Bean Company, purveyors of fine outdoor clothing. This may explain why Maine’s license plates are made out of plaid flannel.
* Although Maine has many old lighthouses, they are rarely lit these days except by brave Hobbits attempting to signal the armies of Rohan.
* The first naval battle of the Revolutionary War was fought off the coast of Maine in 1775. It was technically a draw, since both the American and British crews were devoured by giant radioactive lobsters.
* The state insect of Maine is the honeybee, and most farmers who raise them still milk them by hand while sitting on a tiny stool.
* Most small towns in Maine still govern themselves through the use of “Town Hall Meetings”, which consist of a series of boring speeches, followed by a picnic and ritual cannibalism on the Town Commons.
* All new mothers in Maine face the difficult choice of whether to bottle feed their babies or give them their clam chowder straight from the breast.
* A great deal of Maine consists of marshy swampland. Sorta like Florida, except that in Maine, all the gators were eaten by giant radioactive lobsters.
* If you go to a bar in Maine, you’ll be tempted to try the “Moose Meat Margarita”. Resist.
Well, that wraps up the Maine edition of Fun Facts About the 50 States. Next week we’ll be stopping by the birthplace of the world’s violentest national anthem – and the rest of the world better not forget that if they know what’s good for ‘em – as we visit Maryland.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go out and milk the honeybees.
[The complete e-book version of "Fun Facts About the 50 States" is now available at Amazon.com. If you don't have a Kindle, you can download free Kindle apps for your web browser, smartphone, computer, or tablet from Amazon.com]