What Would You Rename the UK?
The tourist board of Iceland – that nation of spacey musicians, putrescent shark meat and volcanoes that intentionally fuck up everyone's travel plans – have decided that ice is lame now (maybe they've been behind global warming all along?) and want to change the country's name to something a bit glitzier. Something that doesn't make people immediately think of a freezing-cold, barren wasteland. I can't see why.
Most of the suggestions so far have been hilariously dumb – Rockland, Niceland and OMGWTFland have been suggested on the tourism naming page – but it got us thinking: maybe we're not in a place to ridicule, maybe The United Kingdom sounds totally outdated and everyone from around the world is secretly laughing at us?
So we went out to get some suggestions on how to spruce up our international image. London, what would you rename the UK?
Jason, 43: Europesville. There’s not many English people here now. They’re all European – all the English have gone abroad – so we might as well already call it Europesville, in my opinion.
VICE: I can't see that catching on. What’s the worst thing someone could call it?
United Shitnam. There used to be that hymn – [singing] "And did those feet in ancient times, walk upon England’s mountains green.... In England’s green and pleasant land."
Well, it’s still England and it’s still green, but it’s really not that pleasant anymore.
Don’t you like England?
I live here. I’m from Lancashire and I’ve settled in Essex in a nice, old-worldish town. I’ve just been down Brick Lane with some old drinking buddies, but I’m going back to Essex now. I'm known as the Meat Cleaving Menace of Woking, because I am.
Wow, OK. I'll stay away from you.
Mahesh, 23 (left) and Adam 23.
Adam: Bad-Man-Ville, because there’s a lot of bad men in London.
No, no. I’m not a bad man. I’m a pretty, little rich boy.
Mahesh: His Facebook says 'Adam Bad Man'.
Adam: No it doesn’t. My Facebook name is actually Lethal Biddle, because my last name is Biddle and I like Lethal Bizzle. I’d call it The-Place-Where-No-One-Wants-to-Live-But-Does-Live.
Don’t you like it here?
I love it here. You can achieve your dreams no matter what. Great Britain’s a great place to live; it doesn’t matter if your mum’s never had a dad.
Mahesh: That’s a true fact.
What? I'm confused. What would you call it?
Nothing. I’d merge it with Tesco.
Sorry? We’re talking about the country, not the super market. Have you been listening?
Oh! No, not at all. I’d call it Mini Asia because there’s too many of us here.
Adam: He’s right. And I’m from Sweden; that’s where I get my good looks from. I’d switch Great Britain around and call it Britain’s Great.
Daniel, 22: I would name it Land of the Shits.
Do you think that’s appropriate?
I don’t know, man. Maybe, Land of the Shit Weather ‘cause we get summer for like, two weeks a year.
Are there any other characteristics that you think are totally British and should be reflected in our new name?
We don’t really have much of a culture, so it’s a bit hard to say. But London is exciting, and I'd say that is reflected on the rest of the UK. Everyone wants to come to London, because it’s the place where you find the most amount of clubs.
Okay. Still, naming your country Land of the Shits isn’t very patriotic.
Maybe Land of the Cold Weather or Land of the Grey Skies.
Tony, 24: I’d call it Super England. I still think it’s a unique country. It’s one of the best in the world. There's so much history here.
Don’t you think people would take us less seriously?
They would probably think we’re a bit headed, like we are. But we did call it Great Britain, so I think it would be ok.
How do you think Scotland and Wales would feel about Super England?
Britain is still Great Britain.
Vaness, 29: I’d keep it UK. But I’d pronounce it like ‘yuck’ without the Y.
Would it be like ‘You ‘Kay?’
It would be like, ‘Are You Okay?’ Or maybe Mad Land. Or Joy Land. Oh no, not that. I’ll just go with R U K.
And then it could be like, Our UK.
Yeah! It would have a double meaning. And it could show the death of the English language, like text talk.