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Tuesday, November 20, 2012

City wildlife

 My friend Don has this game he plays while we run.  He tallies points for animals he sees during the run.  We mainly see squirrels so for he and I it is 50 points per squirrel, but there is no real point to the game.  I tell Don that the point of the game is to be able to know if we saw more or less wildlife on our runs so a day we get 500 points, then another day we get 300 points we know there was less wildlife the later date.  Still no point to the game and I guess running makes you crazy and come up with squirrel games like this.
The last run we were on coming down the home stretch I yelled at Don to stop, and he came to me wonder what was wrong.  Maybe low bg's, tore my medulla oblengada, or just needed a walk brake but he came back to me real quick to see what was up.  I then pointed out the baby nutria in the creek and wanted him to see them.  We both took out our phones and snapped up some pictures and I asked him how many points nutria should be.  Don said 40 points so for that day it was a 580 score.  Not too bad.

I always tell people that getting outdoors doesn't have to be a 1,000 mile drive to nowhere with a 50 mile hike and a week off of work to be an adventure.  You can have an outdoor wildlife adventure in any city at any time, you just have to be there to see it.  With diabetes the best way to prepare for anything is to do sample tests like getting your gear together and going out on a city trail with buddies and testing your meter, snacks, diabetes bag, or whatever to see how it holds up.  Then when you get back home make the adjustments and try it again.  So the next time you are flying, driving across the country or playing the squirrel game with your running buddy you can feel comfortable that you and your gear will make it through to see the baby nutria at the end of the creek.


  1. Dude! Baby nutria HAVE to be worth more points than the common squirrel, right? Or maybe squirrels are more common where I am? :-)

  2. Scott,

    One of the silly rules of the game is that nothing can have a higher base score than a squirrel (because I like squirrels!). Bunnies get 30 points. But nutria get a "rarity bonus," as do coyotes, bobcats, tarantulas, and so on, all of which I've seen either at Chisholm Trail Park or Arbor Hills Nature Preserve in Plano. So in practice, the more rare animals can score higher than a squirrel without violating the rule. What's funny about it is, like Dave says, if you make a game of it, it kind of opens your eyes to what's been around you all the time. And it makes for a great run!

  3. My highest scoring day was at Bob Woodruff park in Plano. That was 3000 points.

  4. I also had one day that was 600 points just from butterflies, which are 5 points each.