By DAVE WISCHNOWSKY
(CBS) — Curious about the way that people in different parts of the country stereotype one another, venture capitalist and blogger Renee DiResta recently conducted an informal survey using Google’s quirky autocomplete function.
State by state, DiResta started typing, “Why is [state] so,” into her Google search bar, and let the engine’s algorithm guess the rest of the question. For example, when DiResta typed, “Why is Illinois so,” Google wondered if she was going to ask, “Why is Illinois so corrupt?”
For West Virginia, the top result was “poor.” Indiana and Maine produced “boring.” Georgia was “hot,” “racist” and “boring.” And Oregon, “liberal,” “weird,” “rainy” and, again, “boring.” Ohio, meanwhile, was also “boring,” but “important in the primaries.”
Not all the results were negative, however, as Colorado generated “healthy” and Delaware “business friendly.”
After reading about DiResta’s little experiment, it got me wondering what Google autocomplete might have to say about Chicago’s sports teams – and some of their rivals. So this week, I conducted my own “Why is” test, and the following are the questions what Google autocompleted for me.
In italics are my own answers, which you can take seriously in some instances, or with a heavy does of sarcasm in others. If you can’t figure out which is which, well, then I have a suggestion for you.
Google asks, “WHY ARE THE BEARS …”
Why are the Bears called the Monsters of the Midway?
Oddly enough, the Bears actually stole that moniker from the old-timey University of Chicago football teams coached by Amos Alonzo Stagg. “Midway” actually refers to Midway Plaisance, a long, green swath of boulevard space bordering the southern end of the U. of C. campus and running from Washington Park to Jackson Park on Chicago’s South Side.
Also, George Halas probably didn’t like Misers of the Midway.
Why are the Bears in England?
Here, Google, take this 2012 Bears pocket schedule. You can toss that 2011 one now.
Why are the Chicago Bears called the Bears?
Because we like to dream that the Cubs will one day grow up.
Google asks, “WHY ARE THE CUBS … “
Why are the Cubs so bad?
Have you seen Chris Volstad pitch?
Why are the Cubs so popular?
Right now? Well, I’d say location, location, location. Oh, and beer.
Why are the Cubs trading Dempster?
Because he was denying Chris Volstad starts.
Why are the Cubs cursed?
Goats really like to milk it.
Google asks, “WHY ARE THE WHITE SOX …”
Why are the White Sox wearing red?
The reason is that they’ve been doing that every Sunday as a throwback honoring the ’70s when they wore red for absolutely no reason at all.
Why are the White Sox wearing red uniforms?
OK, like I just said, it’s a throwback thing.
Why are the White Sox uniforms red?
Dude, I think you spent too much time doing something else during the ’70s.
Why are the White Sox called White Sox?
Because they wear red.
Google asks, “WHY ARE THE BULLS …”
Why are the Bulls called the Bulls?
That whole Mrs. O’Leary thing ruined the cow’s nickname opportunities in Chicago.
Why are the Bulls wearing pink?
Because they washed their lights with their darks?
Why are the Bulls called Chicago Bulls?
What else would we call them, the Los Angeles Bulls?
Why are the Bulls playing in pink?
Oh, you mean the South African Rugby Team, the Vodacom Blue Bulls, who unfortunately wore these.
Google asks, “WHY ARE THE BLACKHAWKS …”
Why are the Chicago Blackhawks called the Blackhawks?
That’s the only question Google had for the Hawks. Boring. Perhaps, we should have instead asked, “Why is Patrick Kane …”
Google asks, “WHY ARE THE PACKERS …”
Why are the Packers called the Packers?
Because the NFL wouldn’t let them be called ?#@*&%!
Why are the Packers so good?
Perhaps because they haven’t played the Bears yet.
Why are the Packers called Cheeseheads?
That’s actually what they call their ?#@*&%! fans.
Why are the Packers better than the Vikings?
The word “better” would imply that one of them is considered favorable.
Google asks, “WHY ARE THE BREWERS …”
Why are the Brewers wearing green today?
Maybe it’s St. Patrick’s Day.
Why are the Brewers wearing green?
Did you read what I just wrote?
Why are the Brewers wearing green uniforms?
C’mon, man. You’re wearing me out.
Why are the Brewers wearing Bears uniforms?
Wait … what?
Google asks, “WHY ARE THE VIKINGS …”
Why are the Vikings purple?
Because it’s the color of royalty. You know like, the Vikings are a royal pain in the …
Why are the Vikings purple t-shirt?
Don’t they teach grammar in Minnesota?
Why are the Vikings important?
Maybe Favre knows.
Why are the Vikings called the Vikings?
The NFL wouldn’t let them be called ?#@*&%!, either.