As time passes and technology takes over I find that there are many things we have let go to the wayside, disappear, and forgotten; simple things, fun things, and the not so fun elements of our daily lives. I have started this blog to catalog those "missed" things that when mentioned to a younger generation will cause knitted eyebrows, shaken heads, and a "what's that?” expression; now you have a place to show them just…What

This is a catalog of all the things that I and others miss from their younger days and olden times.

Monday, April 18, 2011

#91 ~ full service gas stations

---remember them?

The other day I was driving and I happened to look down and saw I was driving on gas fumes. I needed to stop and get some gas. Now there are a few things in life that are not my favorite things to do, and pumping gas is one of them. This chore it got me thinking about this week's 100 things i will miss.

Of course I don’t like pumping gas. It stinks, it can get dirty and it can be a pain. Maybe I’m just spoiled. I was raised in a time where people were trained and qualified not only to pump your gas, but to tend and care for your car and free of charge. Some of you know what I am talking about, it was called “full service gas stations” and it used to be all we had.

 Do you remember the full service gas stations? I sure do. Checking the tires, the oil, even the battery, belts and everything else. What I recall is that they did it with a smile as well. The gas station attendant seemed to take pride in their work. They enjoyed working with people and greeting them. It was a piece of American culture.

And as a kid, it was an adventure and was certainly an opportunity get pampered. My mother used to pull into the gas station and the attendant would greet her by name, fill the car, wipe the windshield, check the tire pressures, give me a wink and a piece of candy and check under the hood. I wanted her to get gas every day. I wanted her to get that tiger in the tank!

 Some days the friendly gas station attendant would let me pump the gas. He would hand me the silver nozzle and help me to pull the trigger. This is what makes childhood memories. Nonetheless, it baffles me why I enjoyed it then and not now, unless it was because I would get a reward then: sometimes a toy, sometimes a blow up tiger, sometimes just a chance to do it again.

 Plus, who can forget the soda machine that had bottled soda and for a quarter you could get a Coke or a Bubble Up and just for a few extra cents more... a great piece of candy at the candy counter. Gas stations as a kid were an adventure.

 Sadly as gas prices rose, in the early 70s, gas station owners gave people the opportunity to save a few cents at the pump and let them self serve their own gas. I know that in Oregon and New Jersey, you are not allowed to pump your own gas, someone does it for you; however, you do not get that service with a smile, nor anything else but your gas.

I never thought I would ever see these gas attendants go, but they sure did, they are a thing of the past, much like what is happening to our banker. I have no doubt that bank clerks will be a thing of the past and one day you will see an article that says “do you remember bank clerks?”

 So, back to the original statement, do you remember the full service gas stations?

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