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          77 Cent

(Not a hip-hop artist.)

I picked up some customers and they told me they wanted to go to LAX.   I said that I hadn't expected to get such a long trip so I had to stop and get fuel.   They were agreeable.

A few minutes and a mile later I pulled up to the compressed natural gas (CNG) pumps.   I was disappointed because these particular pumps were gougers at $2.59 per gasoline gallon equivalent (GGE).   I usually get CNG for $2.10.   Oh, well.   I had to get gas and it was a very good trip so I didn't mind so much.

After a minute or so while the CNG hissed loudly into my tank, a small black Honda pulled in.   A man got out to refuel his car.   After a couple of minutes I expressed my dissatisfaction at the high price.   He agreed but like me, he was low and needed CNG, too.   He said that he wasn't too concerned about it and proceeded to tell me his story.

He owns three natural gas vehicles:  the Honda, a 1998 Ford F150, and another (the make and model I can't remember.)  He went on to say that he usually refuels at home.   He had bought the most expensive natural gas compressor available.  He didn't say why.   He said it cost $12,000.

He laughed when he described the inspector that came out to his home to certify the compressor installation.   He said that the inspector didn't know what he was looking at.   Well, I guess the inspector made sure the connection to the natural gas line coming into his house was proper.   Perhaps there needed to be adequate ventilation.   And maybe the unit had to be so many inches away from the walls, etc.

The man rhetorically asked me, "Guess how much I pay for a gallon of gas?"  I told him that I had no idea.   He said, "77 cents a gallon!"  I was amazed.   He said that he paid for that $12,000 compressor in just one year with the savings.  I figure he's now putting that $12,000 savings each year right into the Hip Pocket National Bank.

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Latest page update: 8 Feb '12
Page first published: 8 Feb '12