Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Tank 222 - 2 February 2K10

This morning I refueled at one of the two Wawas near my house. The
mighty (and not recalled due to gas pedals or floormats) corolla had
gone 415.9 miles and I put in 11.398 gallons of gas, making for an
average fuel economy of 36.49 mpg.

Part of me wants to put more gas in this afternoon at the other Wawa
near my house just to see if anything different happens. Like in the
Groundhog Day movie. But I probably won't do that because it'll mess up
my "days between tanks" statistic.

One other thing I have been thinking about recently is the other cars
around me in traffic. I see a lot of expensive luxury and/or "sports"
cars around me on the highway and in town. Certainly these cars are
sold at a premium price because of the "extra comfort" and/or "extra
performance" attributes.

I can't say much about "extra comfort," because so far the mighty
corolla has been adequate for my needs. Perhaps as I get even older
I'll feel that my seats need heat and air conditioning, or that I'll
need a voice-activated phone or navigation system (doubtful). So
premium pricing for additional comforts perhaps can be argued as
worthwhile.

But paying extra for a car that can speed up faster or go around corners
faster is looking more and more like a waste of good money. Why?
Because most of the time when you are driving around, you are not on an
empty road and you can't drive with a lead foot or zip around turns with
careless abandon. Most of the time, your acceleration and top speed is
determined by the cars in front of you and around you.

What good is it to have a car that can get to 60 miles per hour faster
than most other cars, if most of the time you are stuck behind those
very same cars that can't speed up as fast? I think that would be
really annoying. Even in my car I could speed up fast enough to hit the
cars in front of me at a stoplight, and the mighty corolla isn't truly
known for its acceleration prowess.

Seeing those Mustangs and Camaros and Acuras on the highway, locked
between all sorts of average cars with people who don't really care to
accelerate with impunity, it's just sad. These "performance cars" are
corralled and hampered by all these inadequate impedances all around
them, preventing them from achieving the dream of amazing, blazing speed
that is promised in the TV advertisements.

It would make me weep if it didn't make me laugh so much.

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