I'll skip the cheaper gas, thankyouverymuch

On the way into work this morning I needed gas, so pulled over to the rest stop on the highway. There are two gas stations at this stop, a Shell and a Mobil. The Shell is the first one you come to and their gas is always a penny cheaper per gallon then the Mobil- never understood this. Anyway, there are two gas islands there, each with two pumps. The one on the left was full- four cars, two on each side of the island, so I pulled to the one on the right which was otherwise empty. I pulled up to the first pump so someone could pull in and use the pump behind me. Stopped, rolled down my window, turned off the car, opened the flap for the filler nozzle, and waited. I could see the solitary attendant sitting on his chair at the other island. After a minute or two he realized he had another customer and sauntered over to my window. I reached my credit card out and said, “fill up with regular, please”.

He took my card and said, “pull up”. I started the car and put it in gear, but instead of stepping on the gas to pull up 2-3 feet, I waited a couple seconds until the transmission engaged and just released the brake enough to roll up a bit. All of this was taking much too long for the guy and the whole time he’s angrily shouting “PULLUP!!PULLUP!!PULLUP!!PULLUP!!”

I said, “Relax! I’m pulling up!”

He started bitching, “I need you to pull up, you pull up! You do it when I tell you! Why it’s taking you so long!?!?”

I yelled back, “I’m doing it! If you’re in such a hurry maybe you could have moved over here a little faster!”

“You don’t tell me what to do! I have other customers! I need you to pull up, you pull up!”

I replied, “Just pump the gas.”

He held my credit card at my open window and shouted, “I’m not your laborer- you don’t tell me what to do! I’m not your laborer!”

Looking at the card he was returning to me, I said, “You don’t want my business? You’re not gonna pump my gas? Fine, I’ll go next door.” And I took back my card. He kept shouting back “I’m not your laborer!”

As I pulled away I shouted back “Jackass!” and he gave me the finger.

I pulled over to the Mobil station and went through the same initial routine, through and including “fill up with regular, please.”

The attendant smiled, took my card, handed it back to me at the end and said “thank you”.

I think I’ll fork over the extra penny per gallon at Mobil from now on.

You just made me glad I live in a state where they let you pump your own gas.

I’m sure the manager would love to hear about this.

Of course, if the jackass IS the manager, maybe not.

Notice to Employees:

Effective Immediately, on slow days Shell employees may not read ‘The Communist Manifesto’ between fill-ups.

Thank You


What the fuck is wrong with that guy?

I’d tell everyone I know and then write a letter to the manager. I doubt they’d care, but still.

Sorry to hear you had to have such an unpleasant experience first thing AM.

I can’t imagine not being able to pump your own gas. What states don’t allow this?

Be honest; you stole this dialogue from the opening scene of David Mamet’s new film, Dinosaur, didn’t you?

If not, you should expand it and sell it to him. Casting as follows:You: Joe Montagna
Passenger: Rebecca Pidgeon
Attendant: Sam Rockwell
Gas Station Manager: Danny DeVito
Policeman: Ed O’Neill
Magician/Wiseass: Ricky Jay
Random Background Guy Who Turns Out To Be Key To The Whole Con Game: William H. Macy

I expect a “story” credit, and maybe a “characters by” as well.


New Jersey and Oregon do not allow you to pump your own gas. It’s either the ultimate jobs program or they know something the people in the other 48 states don’t about the hazards of gas pumping.

I don’t know that I would be able to refrain from giving the idiot a 2 hour long lecture about how, yes, indeed, he quite by definition is my laborer. When I pay you to do a job, including, but not limited to pumping my gas – that makes you my laborer. But, then again, I am the bitch who will be late to work just because some asshole wants to ride my bumper when I am going the speed limit, so I will slow down to about 20 mph until they go around me or turn :slight_smile: no, I don’t have issues – but I cause them in people around me…

Litoris- I was so tempted to double back after I finished at the Mobil to really give the guy a piece of my mind, but I decided to let it go and tried to put it past me. I figure maybe the guy was having a bad day so I’d give him a pass.

SOAT- I love it. Dialogue occurred more or less word for word, I may have misquoted him a bit as there was somewhat of a language barrier but I got the gist of it.

nyctea- I’m in New Jersey. Usually it’s not so bad, especially when it’s raining. Whenever I have to travel to Pennsylvania I make sure my tank is full before I cross over into PA b/c NJ gas is so much cheaper, even though you’re paying someone to pump it for you.

Although it’s certainly mundane and pointless, I couldn’t help but think that maybe I was the asshole all along, so I posted it and was half expecting to be called out on it. But I took great pains to relate the story as it happened and avoid sugarcoating my own behavior.

A bit of both. It does create jobs (although crappy-ass jobs) and nominally reduces the public’s exposure to hazardous chemicals. It also doesn’t increase prices. (Wikipedia)
Although I grew up in Orgeon, I moved to California at 15, before dealing directly with refueling a car. It’s kinda weird to go back (I instinctively started to get out of my car), but not as weird to me as it is to my California-native wife.
The funniest thing is I know people who’ve taken pictures of themselves not filling up themselves, and I have relatives from Oregon who have pictures of themselves filling up personally.

Me, I’d go back there. And I’d. Pull.


To the.


As slooooowwwwly.




Heh. I’d rather pay more for gas and always fill it up before I cross the border. I have never seen the lackeys at the NJ stations be careful…they spill gas down the side, “top off” if you don’t watch them, and are generally surly and disrespectful. I’m fully willing to agree that it might be some of NY’s influence; after all, I rarely go deep into NJ, but by default I don’t fill up that close to the border in NY either (once I hit the Palisades on this side, no stops for anything.)

And what happens if you attempt to pump your own gas? Do you get a ticket?


(getting out of the car, continuing to point a cellphone at the fool) Congratulations, pal. You’ll be on YouTube in about an hour. (getting back in the car, laughing)

Thanks for the reminder. I’ll be going to Oregon soon.

I’d definitely speak to the manager, though. He may wonder why his business is worse than it should be, especially if this guy doesn’t pull that kind of stuff when the boss is around.

Actually, he rather was your laborer at that point in time, so his protestations didn’t even make any sense.

I have a couple of ideas why they’re cheaper.


The pumps don’t let you; you’d need to enter a password (presumably only available to the authorized pump jockeys) before you could pump.