Florida is what is known as a classic swing state. It goes either way or both ways at once. People in Florida vote wearing the fewest articles of clothing possible. Unless, of course, a woman shows up topless, which is deeply offensive on many levels. Still, polling places in Florida are the sexiest and most glamorous places in the country. After votes are cast, Floridians return to their jobs as crime-scene investigators. Though many people believe that electoral votes in Florida are decided by the Supreme Court, this is not entirely the case. Their votes are decided by just one member of the court, who is himself a swing voter. He casts his final decision based on whether or not his granddaughter was sufficiently dazzled during her recent trip to the world of Disney.


Another key swing state, though Ohioans prefer the term “battleground state.” It reminds them of their favorite game involving helmets, steroids, and paralysis from the neck down, which they choose to call “football.” For them, “soccer” is the word for Europe’s national pastime, but in Ohio this sport is only allowed to be played until the age of 13. A note about the Electoral College ballots here: They are done, as in most states, using a computer, a felt-tip pen, and Wite-Out. If the name on the electronic ballot is not legible, it falls to the polling-station cleanup crew to make the presidential selection. If they can’t make up their minds, the CIA intervenes and installs the guy currently running the war. Hence the term “battleground state.” One final word about Ohio: Homer Simpson lives here. His vote is monumental and highly coveted.


Texas is the biggest and is also No. 1. Because the Texas Electoral College vote is worth more than those of all the other states put together, the person Texans pick for president is automatically escorted directly to the White House, told where the pretzels are, and not bothered again for another eight years. It’s just how it goes. The biggest issue for most voters in the state of Texas is justice. The state offers citizens an assortment of death-penalty options—televised electrocution and being tied to the railroad tracks are two of the most popular. Texans will shout hello to you and, without fail, invite you to their ranches, where more shouting across vast expanses will be enjoyed. This explains why Texans seem so loud when you encounter them in, for instance, an airline cabin.

New York

New York, the state made up of five boroughs called Manhattan, Brooklyn, and three others, doesn’t do a whole lot of voting, to be honest. They’re too busy spending their time on Wall Street, blowing money given to them from EU nations, and, on weekends, playing the slow and complicated game that the New York Yankees play. The official state assault weapon of New York is the Uzi, and its maintenance and operation is taught in public schools in place of science. In all other ways, New York is completely unique. New Yorkers have a street-smart I.Q. in the genius range. They will get the joke before you do. They are also likely to rap at you when you greet them. It is simple courtesy to rap politely back. No matter how big a person you might be, a New Yorker could beat you up. New Yorkers like to shake down the hapless area known as New England and then pawn off the combined electoral votes.


This is a state that just recently decided to become a part of the country. No one really knows what goes on in Alaska, but it has everyone talking. It begs the following question: Where do you think the Russians will go first when they try to invade? Alaskans don’t have the answer, either.


Mississippians also vote. This is a state known for its hospitality and Big Macs and huts of pizza and buffalo wings and human growth hormones and side orders and coffee named after literary whaling heroes and pancakes, to which is added a type of berry that is blue. They’re into health care around these parts. They insist on paying their own whopping doctor’s bill up front and in cash before their monthly heart attack. But Mississippi is culturally rich. The only Americans who ever tried to produce literature came from Mississippi. Any other American who ever attempted to write something down did so in a Parisian café, blind drunk. The state gun of Mississippi is sawed off.


Californians are above and beyond voting. Their say in the Electoral College process is literally worth nothing. Because of this, during Election Day, each and every Californian drives up and down the coastline in his or her huge convertible that spews black exhaust and is designed to instantly raise the temperature of the globe one or two degrees with each gas-up. In the evening, there’s a beach party where Californians share their marijuana, cocaine, vitamin C, and extremely watered-down beer with Playboy centerfolds. In California, no matter which window you’re looking out, that’s where the sun is setting. Martians land here frequently, but people know better than to get in their faces and bother them. They’re regular folks just like everybody else.


It may come as a surprise to you that Maryland is actually a state. It comes as a surprise to most Americans. This illustrates how much uncharted territory still exists in the United States. Maryland has only a handful of electoral votes. However, if your name is Mary, your vote counts twice. Otherwise, Maryland is a state of pure enlightenment. In Maryland, you don’t have to put the extra line through the seven, you can cut your meat with a fork, and water is brought to your table whether you’ve requested it or not. Sometimes with ice cubes. I realize it’s unimaginable, but it’s true. All that being said, Maryland is definitely not worth returning to after you’ve spent time abroad. Gosh, no. Likewise, it’s not the kind of place for a young couple to try to raise a family. One really shouldn’t even consider it.