Q. Why is the game called Cow Running?
A. One of the list items to find is a cow running. As many players have discovered, this is easier said than done (cows are lazy!). It's a great example of what makes the game so challenging--and rewarding!
Q. Why are there 197 items per list? Why not a round number like 200?
A. Cow Running is the result of years of rigorous clinical testing by some of the world's leading psychologists to determine the optimal number of items and the ideal level of difficulty for the human mind. Each item is specially selected and placed in a specific list for a mix as perfect as a DNA strand. Each list offers an equal challenge, yet is completely unique. Adding (or removing) even one item from any list disturbs this delicate balance. Do not attempt to play with altered lists, as insanity soon follows.
Q. Couldn't I just make up my own lists?
A. Aside from the insanity thing above, if you believe that saving $6.95 by spending ten days thinking up and writing down 1,182 different items is a good investment of your time, you need a better paying job--and probably can't afford a vacation anyway!
- Any traveler old enough to read is a "player" with his or her own list. An illiterate child may be teamed with an adult to simulate participation. Teams of players may be created if there are more players than lists. Players who refuse to search for items on their lists are called "losers." Their participation is not required and does not affect play, except to the extent that it improves your odds of winning.
- Players should familiarize themselves with their lists before the game starts. Young players should ask the adults for explanations of items not understood.
- Determine the time or place for the end of the game before play begins.
- Start the game ten or more miles from home.
- Players look for items on their lists and check them off after receiving a witness confirmation. Another player must confirm a sighting. (Exception: all players must confirm a UFO sighting unless unusual skin lesions or evidence of probing can be demonstrated).
- Be accurate. If a player is supposed to spot four of something, three will not do. If a player is supposed to spot a child, a woman or a man will not do. If a player is supposed to spot a cannon, a toy cannon will not do. If a player is supposed to spot a cow running, an image of a cow running will not do.
- A player may not provide a sighting for another player. (Example: a player may not blow a kiss to another player.)
- A player may encourage a stranger to provide a sighting by making motions. (Example: blowing a kiss so that a kiss might be blown back. However, a player or passenger must not ask or pay a stranger to help in any way.
- If a sighting applies to two items (from either one list or more) both items may be checked off. (Example: if a clown with a dog on a leash is sighted, both clown and dog on a leash may be checked off.)
- Items on or in the players' car or on the players themselves may not be counted.
- Adult players must share driving time equally. This rule may be waived by agreement of all players.
- Always agree before taking time-outs from the game. (Example: rest stops, meals, stopping for the night, etc.) Looking during lunch breaks can be fun, but players must be together so that confirmations can be made.
- If a player needs to take a nap, this must be announced; and play will discontinue until five minutes after the napper is ready to continue.
- Don't say, "Remember when we saw _______." No retroactive checking-off is permitted.
- Name one person as "Judge," the final arbiter of disputed sightings. Mothers are usually a good choice for this.
- No cheating. Remember, to cheat at Cow Running is extremely pathetic.
LEVELS OF PLAY:
Friendly Cow Running -- Observe all time-outs and share the driving. Be polite. No tricks. Make all attempts at fairness, good sportsmanship, and decorum. Help other players by pointing out items they might miss. This level is appropriate for children, whiners, and insecure adults who believe that life should be fair--in other words, almost everyone!
Freestyle Cow Running -- No time-outs. You snooze, you lose. The more gimmicks and tricks players can pull to improve their sighting odds--and, thereby, thwart the competition--the better. Caution, this level has been known to ruin vacations, damage friendships, and end marriages.
No prizes are necessary. However, a prize can be pre-agreed upon, and may greatly enhance enthusiasm for the game--particularly in freestyle play. Suggested prizes include a dollar, a beer, a lunch, a kiss, etc. Goofy awards (Example: a box of brown rice) also work well as motivators. Use your imagination.
- Actually read the directions. Research indicates that most players never read rules, thereby missing important information.
- Memorize as much of your list as you can.
- Segment your list (Example: using highlighter pens) by anticipating items you expect to see at a particular time or place: at night, in the desert, at the beach, in Omaha, on Highway 49, etc.
- Sneak peeks at other players' lists. Divert their attention at critical times to "help" them miss sightings from their lists.
- Hide your list.
- If driving, take creative detours you believe will result in good sightings for you or non-sightings for others.
- In order to fluster or discourage other players, brag about the number of items checked off your list.
- Or play possum. No "trash talking." Feign disinterest, maintaining a "low profile" in the early stages to allow others to battle among themselves and ignore you. Blow them away at the end.
- Drink coffee. Players are more effective when their eyes are open.
- Put other players to sleep by feeding them lots of sweets, causing their blood sugar levels to crash. Surreptitiously order decaffeinated coffee for them.
1) Use PayPal to order Cow Running via CREDIT CARD for $6.95
NO POSTAGE or other hidden fees!!! Click the button below.
2) Mail a CHECK or MONEY ORDER for $6.95 made out to Christopher B. Jonnes at:
COW RUNNING COMPANY
11765 N. 102ND STREET
STILLWATER, MN 55082
Be sure to include your complete and legible email address. Your payment covers all shipping and handling. Each game includes enough materials for six players. Lists can be reprinted again and again for future trips. Years of travel fun!