10 Things From Around the World With the Names of U.S. States


U.S. state names are hardly original. Americans, after all, took most of them from indigenous tribes, European languages, and British royals. But ever since the 50 states dubbed themselves, their names have cropped up in bizarre ways around the globe. From an Argentine pizza chain named after Kentucky to a Bulgarian quiz show called Nevada, the names of American states have popped up in some wacky places. Here are 10 of them.


In Germany, Hawaii was the name given to a Cold War era attempt at exotic cuisine: a slice of toast topped with ham, canned pineapple, processed cheese, and, in some iterations, a maraschino cherry. Originally, Toast Hawaii was a take on the American grilled spamwich, which U.S. soldiers ate while stationed in Germany. During the 1950s, TV chef Clemens Wilmenrod made the dish live on West German TV, cementing its place in the national cuisine for generations. Today, according to German bloggers, Toast Hawaii is considered “a modern classic that has just about nothing to do with the typical German cuisine, but is still inseparably connected to it.”


In Argentina, Kentucky is the name of the country’s biggest pizza chain. In 1942, a group of former soccer players in Buenos Aires had a lucky day at the horse track. They used their winnings to open a pizza place, and named it Kentucky, after the Kentucky Derby. Since then, they’ve opened nearly 50 additional locations, fed Diego Maradona, and confused countless American tourists.


Lava via Flickr

In the Philippines, Alaska is the name of a corporate dairy empire with a mission to “raise milk consumption levels in the country” and “bring health to every child in every Filipino home.” The company also owns the Alaska Aces, the second winningest team in Philippine Basketball Association history, with 14 championship titles since they joined the league in 1986. As it turns out, the Alaska brand took its name not from the U.S. state but from a contraction of the Tagalog words alas and ka, meaning "You're an ace!"


In Northern Ireland, Maine is a soft drink company known for its fleet of distinctive blue-green trucks that have delivered soda to families door-to-door for six decades. Their classic flavors include Sarsaparilla, Scottish Kola, and Pineappleade. Not as popular? “Smak," which anti-drug activists protested in Scotland in 1998, arguing that it trivialized heroin addiction at a time when roughly 350,000 UK residents were using the drug.


In the former Yugoslavia, Florida was the name of a five-door hatchback produced by automaker Zastava from 1987 until 2008. The model was "the most advanced and independently engineered automobile" the Serbian manufacturer produced before refocusing on arms sales [PDF], and was named "Florida" to celebrate the success of the Yugo in the U.S. In a history of the Yugo, author Jason Vulc says that the Florida was born when Zastava engineers bought a Hyundai Excel, took it apart to study its design, then lost some of the parts and couldn't put it back together again. "To their credit, the Yugoslavs did succeed in building a second car," Vulc wrote, "not a good car, mind you, but a viable car nonetheless." The squat, sensible family car saw the fall of the Soviet Union and the dissolution of the Yugoslav State, but sadly did not outlast the Great Recession. The Florida lives on, however, and is still popular with vintage car lovers for being “very functional, universally and highly applicable” and for its “lower medium class” price point, according to one fan page.


Supershow Nevada, the first major Bulgarian TV quiz show, aired in the ‘90s, before being renamed and eventually canceled in 2001. Since the show was co-sponsored by Moto-Pfohe, the Bulgarian representative of the Ford Motor Company, the grand prize was a Ford car. In the final round, contestants spun a giant wheel in the hope of getting a chance to win the car. Even at the time, the game show was described as “little more than an extended advert for car dealer Moto-Pfohe.”


In Denmark, Louisiana is the name of an internationally renowned art museum. Formerly a seaside villa built by a Dane named Alexander Brun, it was converted to a museum that houses works from Pablo Picasso, Jean Dubuffet, and Louise Bourgeois among others. Perhaps unsurprisingly, it isn’t named after the state of Louisiana, but in honor of Brun’s three wives—each of whom was named Louise.


In Norway, Texas is slang for crazy. For example, one Norwegian soccer manager described the atmosphere at a rivalry match between the Blackburn Rovers and the Burnley Clarets as “totally Texas.” The idiom comes from Texas’s association with the Wild West and cowboys that were featured in Norwegian films and literature.


“Maryland” is one of the UK’s best-selling cookie brands. According to the company’s website, the British Maryland nabbed its cookie recipe from the U.S. in 1956, and has been selling whimsically named Big and Chunky snack packs, Gooeys, and Snapjacks ever since. They claim that if you took every Maryland cookie baked in a year and laid them end to end, the cookies would wrap around the equator 1.5 times.


In addition to being a U.S. state, Virginia is also the name of a suburb of Monrovia, Liberia’s capital city. The Liberian Virginia was originally a settlement colonized largely by freed slaves and freeborn Black settlers from the U.S. state of Virginia. It was the birthplace of Angie Brooks, the first female African president of the UN General Assembly.

Amazon's Under-the-Radar Coupon Page Features Deals on Home Goods, Electronics, and Groceries

Stock Catalog, Flickr // CC BY 2.0
Stock Catalog, Flickr // CC BY 2.0

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Now that Prime Day is over, and with Black Friday and Cyber Monday still a few weeks away, online deals may seem harder to come by. And while it can be a hassle to scour the internet for promo codes, buy-one-get-one deals, and flash sales, Amazon actually has an extensive coupon page you might not know about that features deals to look through every day.

As pointed out by People, the coupon page breaks deals down by categories, like electronics, home & kitchen, and groceries (the coupons even work with SNAP benefits). Since most of the deals revolve around the essentials, it's easy to stock up on items like Cottonelle toilet paper, Tide Pods, Cascade dishwasher detergent, and a 50 pack of surgical masks whenever you're running low.

But the low prices don't just stop at necessities. If you’re looking for the best deal on headphones, all you have to do is go to the electronics coupon page and it will bring up a deal on these COWIN E7 PRO noise-canceling headphones, which are now $80, thanks to a $10 coupon you could have missed.

Alternatively, if you are looking for deals on specific brands, you can search for their coupons from the page. So if you've had your eye on the Homall S-Racer gaming chair, you’ll find there's currently a coupon that saves you 5 percent, thanks to a simple search.

To discover all the deals you have been missing out on, head over to the Amazon Coupons page.

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6 Too-Cool Facts About Henry Winkler for His 75th Birthday

Getty Images
Getty Images

Henry Winkler thumbs-upped his way into America’s hearts as the Fonz in Happy Days more than 40 years ago, and he hasn’t been out of the spotlight since—whether it’s playing himself in an Adam Sandler movie, a hospital administrator with a weird obsession with butterflies in Adult Swim’s Children’s Hospital, the world's worst lawyer in Arrested Development, a pantomiming Captain Hook on the London stage, or the world's most lovable acting coach to a contract killer in Barry

1. Henry Winkler made up a Shakespeare monologue to get into the Yale School of Drama.

After graduating from Emerson College, Winkler applied to Yale University’s drama program. In his audition, he had to do two scenes, a modern and a classic comedy. However, when he arrived at his audition, he forgot the Shakespeare monologue he had planned to recite. So he made something up on the spot. He was still selected for one of 25 spots in the program. 



In the fifth season of Happy Days, the Fonz grabbed a pair of water skis and jumped over a shark. The phrase “jumping the shark” would become pop culture shorthand for the desperate gimmicks employed by TV writers to keep viewers hooked into a show that’s running out of storylines. But Winkler’s water skiing adventure was partially inspired by his father, who begged his son to tell his co-workers about his past as a water ski instructor. When he did, the writers wrote his skills into the show. Winkler would later reference the moment in his role as lawyer Barry Zuckerkorn on Arrested Development, hopping over a dead shark lying on a pier.  

3. Henry Winkler is an advocate for dyslexia awareness. 

Winkler struggled throughout high school due to undiagnosed dyslexia. “I didn't read a book until I was 31 years old when I was diagnosed with dyslexia,” he told The Guardian in 2014. He has co-written several chapter books for kids featuring Hank Zipper, a character who has dyslexia. In 2015, a Hank Zipper book is printed in Dyslexie, a special font designed to be easier for kids with dyslexia to read. 

4. Henry Winkler didn't get to ride Fonzie's motorcycle.

On one of his first days on the set of Happy Days, producers told Winkler that he just had to ride the Fonz’s motorcycle a few feet. Because of his dyslexia, he couldn’t figure out the vehicle’s controls, he told an interviewer with the Archive of American Television. “I gunned it and rammed into the sound truck, nearly killed the director of photography, put the bike down, and slid under the truck,” he recalled. For the next 10 years, whenever he appeared on the motorcycle, the bike was actually sitting on top of a wheeled platform. 

5. Henry Winkler has performed with MGMT. 

In addition to his roles on BarryArrested Development, Royal Pains, Parks and Recreation, and more, Winkler has popped up in a few unexpected places in recent years. He appeared for a brief second in the music video for MGMT’s “Your Life Is a Lie” in 2013. He later showed up at a Los Angeles music festival to play the cowbell with the band, too.

6. Henry Winkler won his first Emmy at the age of 72.

The seventh time was a charm for Henry Winkler. In 2018, at the age of 72—though just shy of his 73rd birthday—Winkler won an Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series for his role as acting teacher Gene Cousineau on Barry. It was the seventh time Winkler had been nominated for an Emmy. His first nomination came in 1976 for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series for Happy Days (he earned an Emmy nod in the same category for Happy Days in 1977 and 1978 as well.

This story has been updated for 2020.