Tuesday, October 19, 2010

2.97-- 2.98--, this just in...2.99

What is up with the undulating gas prices?

I only ask because yesterday on the way to pick up groceries at the local Big Y, the Mobil station on Rte. 6 posted unleaded regular at 2.95.  On the ride back from shopping, it was 2.99.  In the span of an hour the price had jumped .04 a gallon. 

What gives?

As a youngster, I remember gas prices firmly sculpted in stone.  When I write "firmly sculpted in stone," I mean literal concrete signs.  Brick and mortar numerals.  Cavemen crawled out of their caves to make them BC comic strip style.  Stone chisel tools, pounding away producing shards of limestone scattered at the base of the sign.  $1.79.  Bank on it.

I remember prices being so steady that you could actually budget your weekly teenaged allowance around them, sometimes even splurging for the more trendy Premium or Super Unleaded (purchased to impress the girl riding shotgun).

"That's right baby, only the expensive stuff when I'm driving you around town."  Of course, the fact that I droves a 1972 Datsun pick-up truck did little to mask the extra few cents a gallon.

Back to the point.  Steady prices.  Low prices.  Dependable numbers.  Unmoving.

Now, some gas station signs are digitized.  Changing with the punch of a button.  It's like watching the stock market crawl at the bottom of the cable business channel.

"Gotta time pulling to the pump just right, Henry.  Now, now!!!!"

"What's that, Emma?"

"Geez, look at that!  You hesitated and that Prius cut in front of you.  The price just jumped 2 cents a gallon!  You're a loser, Henry!  A loser!  Why I ever married you is beyond me.   Holy Smoley!  It jumped another penny, get yer butt in gear, Henry!"

I ask you, how many more marriages are now in peril like poor Emma and Henry?  All because of jumping gas prices.

I have a theory regarding the roller coaster, minute-by-minute jump and dip in prices-

**It's tied to the number of Snowball snack cakes sold nationally per hour.

On a side note, it rather irks me that the use of my debit card is treated as a credit card at some pumps, and cash at others, with as much as a 10 cent increase for using it instead of cash.  And this little bit of news is never posted outright.  You usually find out right after you've swiped the card.

Okay, that's it, I'm done venting on the volatility of gas prices in northeastern Connecticut.

** Note, the theory that the purchase of Snowball snack cakes is tied to the increase/decrease of gas prices is just a theory, and in no way based on scientific fact, other than the odd coincidence that the author's cravings of said product, followed by purchase of aforementioned snack cake is somehow inversely proportional to the ratio of observed increase/decrease of gas prices at Shell, Mobil, and BP stations in the greater Plainfield, CT area.

Snowball snack cakes are sooooo gooood!

But only in moderation.

Like buying gas.

But not having it.

Gas, that is.

That's bad.