The Strange Things Each State Is Googling Right Now

If the owner of this computer is from Arkansas, they're about to Google "Little Debbie cakes."
If the owner of this computer is from Arkansas, they're about to Google "Little Debbie cakes."
Caio, Pexels

Career resources company Zippia recently mined Google Trends data from April 2020 to August 2020 in an attempt to discover what offbeat topics are ruling people’s search bars in different states. The results are in, and the map below is a rather eclectic portrait of a nation in quarantine.

The most consistent theme throughout the country seems to be alcohol, though there’s a total lack of consensus when it comes to what kind. Mississippi and South Carolina have beaten the heat with frosty treats—vodka pops and frosé, a portmanteau of frozen rosé, respectively—and Minnesota has kept it classy with boxed wine. New Mexico has taken up day drinking, while their neighbors to the north in Colorado are asking Google “how to stop drinking” altogether.

Virginia is for lovers of grilled cheese.Zippia

States have various ways of coping with the absence of dine-in restaurants, too. Rhode Island is getting lots of Chinese takeout, but Alaska favors pizza delivery. Residents of Washington state, on the other hand, are learning “how to roll sushi.” And although Nevada is experiencing an influx of people “going vegan,” plenty of other Americans are really leaning into meat: “hot wings,” “BBQ,” “Chick-fil-A,” “chicken nuggets,” and “McDonald’s value menu,” are all on the map.

Other states are keeping busy in the kitchen. Hawaiians are baking banana bread, Vermontians are tending to sourdough starters, and Michiganders are figuring out how to turn cannabis into spreadable “cannabutter.”

People in Missouri are apparently searching for meth recipes, which we’re assuming just means that Breaking Bad binge-watchers are curious about the science behind the show. And if you see someone snoozing on the job in Florida, don’t be surprised—Floridians are picking up tips on “how to sleep at work.”

See Zippia’s full breakdown here.

Thursday’s Best Amazon Deals Include Guitar Kits, Memory-Foam Pillows, and Smartwatches

Amazon
Amazon
As a recurring feature, our team combs the web and shares some amazing Amazon deals we’ve turned up. Here’s what caught our eye today, December 3. Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers, including Amazon, and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we only get commission on items you buy and don’t return, so we’re only happy if you’re happy. Good luck deal hunting!

The World’s Favorite Christmas Movies, Mapped

Will Ferrell in Elf (2003).
Will Ferrell in Elf (2003).
Warner Bros.

The start of the holiday season means it’s time to recommence the annual debate over which Christmas movies are the best. If you’re discussing the matter with a friend from France or Brazil, they might be arguing hard for Gremlins, the 1984 cult classic that may or may not actually be a Christmas movie. India, on the other hand, is home to many fans of 2000’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas.

Those trends come from a new study by broadband experts at UK-based online comparison site money.co.uk. Basically, they analyzed Google search data for 30 Christmas movies across 18 countries to see how holiday viewership differs from nation to nation. All the films included in the study are relatively mainstream, so you won’t find Rankin/Bass’s Nestor, The Long-Eared Christmas Donkey (1977) anywhere on the map.

What you will find is Elf, the 2003 comedy starring Will Ferrell as an overlarge Santa’s helper navigating Manhattan. Considering that the film is the apparent favorite of viewers in Scotland, Wales, Ireland, Canada, and South Africa, it seems that Ferrell’s absurdist humor isn’t just funny to U.S. residents. Love Actually (2003) also ranked first in five countries, including England, Spain, and Norway. But neither Love Actually nor Elf clinched the top spot in the U.S. The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993) did, with an average monthly search volume of nearly 3.7 million.

The search data used in the study is from October through December of last year, which might explain why Last Christmas landed in first place in Germany. The romantic comedy, starring Emilia Clarke and Henry Golding, premiered in 2019 to generally poor reviews, so it’s possible that Germans won’t be Googling it quite so often this year.

See the map below, and learn more about the survey here.

money.co.uk