States, ranked

All ranks are final

Writer’s note: I spent the past 4 months building a 714-point algorithmic equation based on factors as varied as quality of life, education, financial mobility, happiness, treatment of immigrants, local fast-food chains … and then I scrapped it and decided to rank it in reverse order of: “How much would I want to die if I had to spend a full day in the state?”

1. California

2. Washington

3. Hawaii

4. Colorado

5. Vermont

6. New York

7. Massachusetts

8. Minnesota

9. Maine

10. Montana

11. Alaska

12. Oregon

13. New Jersey

14. North Carolina

15. New Hampshire

16. Virginia

17. Michigan

18. New Mexico

19. Illinois

20. Connecticut

21. Georgia

22. Rhode Island

23. Delaware

24. Wisconsin

25. Wyoming

26. Pennsylvania

27. Maryland

28. Arizona

29. Nevada

30. Nebraska

31. Missouri

32. Louisiana

33. Kansas

34. Texas

35. Arkansas

36. South Dakota

37. North Dakota

38. Idaho

39. South Carolina

40. Iowa

41. Tennessee

42. Oklahoma

43. Ohio

44. Kentucky

45. Indiana

46. Alabama

47. Florida

48. Utah

49. Mississippi

50. Getting hit by a bus on a multistate tour.

51. Vegetative

52. West Virginia

About Clever Name Here dba "Black Rod" 97 Articles
Vell, Clever Name Here just zis guy, you know? Sometimes funny. Often annoyed. Once I saw a blimp.


  1. A good friend moved from Mass to Iowa a couple of years back, and we were very confused about why anyone would willingly do that. I had another friend move from Mass to Indiana, supposedly permanently, but she was back a year or two later. 

      • To be fair, both were job things, but both involved the husband in the couple having a good job opportunity, and the wife of the couple having to abandon their good job to support the husband’s opportunity. Between that and the clear downgrade of state, seemed solidly not worth it to me. (And the Indiana move being abandoned also involved a divorce.)

    • I had a friend who received a job opportunity that took her from Boston to San Diego, and she was back within 8 months. Some New Englanders balk at too much change, and the abundant loss of culture that comes with going West. 

      • By “loss of culture” do you mean less white people?  I haven’t been to Boston for a long time but know it is known for racism & although San Diego has some racists, mostly it is an awesome mix of Mexi-Cali culture with a mix of Asian & African culture emerging.  Balboa park  & the beer culture there puts it in my upper list of cities.

        • Ouch. I know Boston has a deserved reputation for racism, but I’m still not sold on it being actually that much worse than other cities. And there are plenty of non-white people, but the trouble is how segregated it all is by neighborhood. To this day, my husband is uncomfortable as a non-white person being in Southie. Meanwhile he happily lived in Roxbury without issues.
          There’s a lot of great stuff about Boston, but plenty to fix too.
          I just know I’d never move to California because I like winter. Nice to visit though. 

          • Lake Tahoe has winter w/ a vengeance!  Ask the Donner party.  Or if you listen to Mark Twain, “The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco.” 

            • Heh, fair enough. And San Francisco has no seasons at all. It’s like 60-70 year round. I don’t know why anyone likes that. We were there in the summer once and inadequately prepared for the chill. 

        • Hey @Loveshaq
          Thanks for asking. I see how that could be an interpretation of the phrase I used, but I’m more narrowly referring to the difference in the arts. [If anything, the less white your surroundings are, the more culturally rich they are.]
          If I’m looking at just theatre or performing arts, I just find the calibre to be so much higher when I’m at home in NE than on the West Coast. I understand that’s couched in quite a bit of bias that can also be associated with white gatekeeping and establishment gaze. But, in large part, as someone who grew up living either near Broadway or the West End, the presence of a much larger, high-stakes entity like that makes the East Coast (and the UK) so much better for theatre than the West Coast. 
          But this doesn’t mean all of New England gets swept up in the generalization. For example, Maine and New Hampshire can in no way compete with SoCal, imho. Maybe I’m just expressing a long-held defense of New York, Boston, Philly, and DC, the sort of thing that would have been a rant on Kinja. 

          • @meh-zuzah I hope u know I meant no offense.  I honestly don’t know what Boston culture means.  My Laker love makes me think of Boston as  a  terrible place but I haven’t been there in years & don’t know many people currently living  there.  I honestly just wanted to know what is Boston culture?

      • I’ve been through Texas more times than I care to remember.  Aside from Austin, there is no reason to go.

        Of all the states below Texas, the only one I have a reason to visit is Ohio, and that’s just because I have two friends there.  Otherwise, the hell with that.

        • Exactly right, the rest of Texas is beyond awful and worst drivers I have ever encountered.  I would rather drive in rush hour LA traffic than anytime on the Houston beltway stystem.

            • When I lived in Texas, I had a guy point a pistol at me for not driving fast enough (in the right lane).  He was driving one of those big ol’ Texas Edition F-150 pickups with the truck bed that has never carried thing one.  
              Most of the people in Texas are real nice, but there’s enough flaming assholes that they bring the average way down.  And there’s also the fact that it’s a geographically ugly state.  

        • I lived in Austin briefly, and while it gets sleepy quite quickly, it’s not all bad. I do love me a good breakfast taco and some 6th Street live music. 
          As for the rest of Texas, it can mostly go fuck itself, save for this little rest stop in West, Texas called the Little Czech Bakery. They have the best kolaches. 

  2. What about the state of denial? We can do this all day!
    Hard agree on #52. Drove through there once and ate at a diner with the unhappiest waitress on the planet. My companion ordered a disgusting concoction called ‘cream gravy’. Explained it all.
    Maine is a hell hole and should be way further down the list. Exhibit A, the coastal route is miles inland and lined with strip malls. NH is only saved by the White Mountains and the state liquor stores.

    • Maine is a mixed bag. Some lovely areas and decent people, but also a good amount of extremely shitty racist people. Most Mainers I know (people from there, not people that moved there) are awful. I had a friend from way up in the middle of nowhere Maine, and she told me about how much she has had to work on deprogramming from her very racist upbringing. 

      • My daughter claims that Nebraska is not a real place and will fight with anyone that states otherwise.  I had to tell her I knew people from there & how awful all their football fans are.  She’s still skeptical.

        • You know, I think she may be onto something…
          If we can just start initiating bluestate vs redstate individual brawls, the redstate folk are going to run out of willing brawlers far before the bluestate folk do.
          Fuck, I’ve been drinking, and I really like this idea… Hey! you redstate regressives that think you deserve those disproportionate senators and extra electoral votes, how badly do you think you deserve them?  to paraphrase the favored lawyer of your fucking idiot idol, let’s give trial by combat a try, why don’t we? 
          If only I could get an opportunity with one of your elected politicians, but I’ll settle for the dumbfucks that support them…

  3. As someone that has lived in all of the top 3 and have family still in all of the top 3, I would put WA and HI ahead of CA but as a tourist, could justify the way you have it.  

  4. Florida and Alabama are interchangeable but I have no issue with your placement. Just noting that the difference is too small to measure. 
    Texas is too high. The empty states like the Dakotas and Idaho and similar wastelands are preferable to Texas. Honestly, if those assholes would get their shit together enough to secede, I’d vote for that. Good riddance. 

  5. I went camping from Ontario to WV and back when I was a teenager.

    Sitting in the warm pool at a campground in WV with my gf and I was a small boy and his parents. The boy asked where we were from. After I replied “Canada” the boy asked if we lived in igloos. I looked at the parents and chuckled thinking they’d see the humour…until his MOTHER said, “yeah you must find it really hot down here?!”


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