June 21st, 2008

Whimsical Kevin

Well Timed

Yesterday was the official start of summer. Right on cue, yesterday was also the first day it got hot enough here to prompt me to turn on the air conditioning.

In the Heat of the Day

After a much-larger-than-usual late breakfast, I thought it important to get out and walk for a while. Having spent the relatively cool part of the morning on the computer, I had no choice but to get out in the heat. I put my boots on and walked over to Quarry Lakes park to check on the status of the killdeer nest I found last week.

You may have noticed that I used "it" as the pronoun to identify the birds in question when I wrote about them earlier. That's because I can't see any obvious differentiation between the male and female birds, and there are two of them around the nest at times. Today was one of those times, and they double-teamed me, both of them going off in different directions and doing the broken-wing act. One of them in particular was proving to be no fool. It was getting pretty warm out there in the parking lot, with the only shade being the small bit provided by the scrubby little trees planted in each traffic island. This bird would run ahead of me to that bit of shade and start displaying. When I followed, it would get up and run on to the next island of shade and begin again.

The four eggs are still safe and sound in their precarious-looking ground nest. Killdeer take about 4 weeks to incubate their eggs because the birds are ready to go (but not to fly) shortly after hatching, rather than having to be fed by their parents for a while.

After letting myself be led away from the nest again, I made my way back through the increasingly blast-furnace like heat in the middle of the park (no trees on the trails here, and besides, the sun was so close to directly overhead that there wouldn't have been shade anyway). Good think I brought a bottle of water, too.

Incidentally, my blood sugar an hour after eating was a nice healthy 90. Oddly enough, an hour after that, having had nothing more than water, it had drifted back up to 125. Go figure.

Even More Timesink

Now I find that the pizza place down the street has a working copy of the Spider-Man pinball machine, and it's even closer than the Chubby Burger. I have spent several hours now working on that machine. I can't say I've completely beaten it, but I'm the top scorer and have my name in the machine for most of the things you can get on it. There are still challenges that have evaded me. Closing time at the pizza parlor has been the main barrier so far. Still, it's relatively cheap entertainment. $2 for three 3-ball games isn't a great bargain, but if you end up winning an average of two free games per three paid games, as I was doing, you end up with between two and three hours entertainment for $6. And a bit of exercise, too, although not as much as playing, say, Dance Dance Revolution.
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