1. You remember in youth soccer when you kicked a ball as hard as you could into the wind and yet it still boomeranged behind you.
20 mph wind is just a mild breeze here — that’s why for energy production Wyoming is proudly home to some of the best wind in the country.
2. You have modified a potato gun to shoot flaming tennis balls.
You learned to make your own fun when growing up here. You never had the man-made musings of the big city, so instead you used the wide open spaces to host your creative endeavors. From building dams in the neighborhood creek, to constructing forts deep in the woods, to setting off your own fireworks extravaganza, you’re also adept at putting out prairie fires.
3. You talk less, but say more.
There ain’t a whole lotta room for jive talkin’ city slickers in Wyoming. You don’t brag and you don’t waste words. You tell it like it is without undue drama.
4. Pistol-packing 2nd Amendment lovers don’t phase you.
In this part of the country people see guns in a whole different context. You may not own a firearm, but seeing rifles in the rear windows of trucks is the norm here. These weapons aren’t really a threat, but rather a defense and you can bet that the good guys with guns outnumber the criminals.
5. Big cities actually make you nauseous.
On average there are less than 6 people per square mile in Wyoming. You are accustomed to having room to roam. Cheyenne is the largest city with just 63,000 residents and many of our Wyoming towns have less than a dozen stop lights (some have none at all). It’s not that you can’t handle the big city, but you don’t want to. The crowds in the concrete jungle make you queasy.
6. You halfheartedly support an out-of-state team.
The University of Wyoming Cowboys are the highest profile local squad, so if you want to support a professional team (in all sports except rodeo) you are forced to go out of state. On the plus side, you can always choose a team with a winning record and, if need be, swap your allegiance without too much hassle or guilt.
7. More than five pick-up trucks lined up at an intersection constitutes heavy traffic for you.
You think 10 minutes is a long drive in the city. Even with recent ‘sprawl’, Wyoming’s biggest cities can be driven end-to-end in less than 15 minutes (excluding the occasional buffalo jam, of course.)
8. You have definitely run out of gas at least once in your life.
If you don’t count the ghost towns you can bet on driving at least a couple of hours to get between population centers – and service stations.
9. You have driven for more than an hour without steering or braking.
Thanks to the endless expanse of plains, gun barrel straight roads are a common feature in the Wyoming highway system. In some parts you can cruise for 100+ miles without having to brake or turn the wheel more than a few degrees. While you’re thrilled to live in one of the few states with 80 mph speed limits, part of you still wishes the legislature would resurrect ‘reasonable and prudent’ speed laws.
10. You’ve built at least one snowman in June.
Every couple of years Mother Nature brings a late spring blizzard nasty enough to justify a snow day. These storms can wreak serious havoc on trees that have already begun to leaf out. Hopefully you were able to enjoy the day building a snowman instead of knocking piles of slush off the cottonwood tree in order to prevent it from collapsing on your house.
11. You know what they meant by “where the deer and the antelope play.”
Because they did so right in your yard. You now take open spaces and wildlife for granted. Miles and miles of nothing but miles and miles is the norm. In many cases home is on the range, and until you spend some time outside Wyoming you don’t realize how special these open expanses are. Only when out-of-staters gawk at the herds of elk along the highway and refer to hills as mountains, you start to understand how unique a place your state really is.
12. You (or at least someone you know) have a freezer stocked full of wild game.
Even if you aren’t a hunter you can still count on eating many meals featuring venison or elk. If you grew up in a hunting family, you probably even prefer the taste of wild game over corn fed beef.
13. You seal the deal with a handshake.
The small communities in Wyoming hold honesty and integrity in the highest regard. A know that handshake is better than a piece of paper. You simply come to a meeting of the minds and fulfill your promises.