The Fluctuating Mileage Caper

It’s important that one understand that I make no claims for the veracity of these stories. I’m not suggesting that they didn’t happen, only that they may not have been original events. One of the characters at the center was Steve Parsons. There is more than one story which centers around him, some probably not repeatable (although I’ll try). This one is. Steve had bought a new car—probably a muscle car such as was popular in the ‘70s, like a GTO or Road Runner. He took anyone interested out to the parking lot for a walk around at every opportunity in the first week or so owning it, and it was a regular topic of conversation in the café.

Steve was asked about fuel consumption (it’s hard to imagine we cared much in those days at 30¢/gallon, but we did). Someone thought it might be fun to mess with Steve, so for a couple of weeks, they would sneak out to Steve’s car during the shift and pour a gallon of gas into the tank. After a few days Steve started to regale the troops about the mileage he was getting that seemed all out of character for a snorting beast of the 7 liter variety. The perpetrator carried this on for a couple of weeks, perhaps even increasing the frequency of largesse, and further fanning Steve’s flames.

Eventually, everyone tired of hearing what were surely tall tales of Steve’s car and Phase Two was implemented (you can already see this coming, can’t you?). The perpetrator began siphoning a gallon of gas from Steve’s tank every couple of shifts. Steve noticed the decreased mileage fairly quickly and, the car still under warranty, flew to the dealer to effect a repair. Everyone else now on board with the scheme fairly rolled on the floor at the thought of Steve regaling the service advisor with tales of impossible gas mileage followed by what clearly must be a powerplant anomaly of mythic proportions.

I don’t recall how it turned out, but I’m unaware of any bloodshed. I know that Roddy has blamed me for this, too, but it wasn’t me. Really. I hate the taste of gas…




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Last updated: 22 March 2009