Thursday, June 23, 2011

Tank 282 - 23 June 2K11 - 78 Degrees before dawn and a 5 digit ZIP code complaint!

Refueled at the Fas Mart ("home of the world's slowest gas pumps!") near my home on my way to work this morning. Yes, they are slow, but it's conveniently located.

As usual, I paid with my credit card. Since I have been tracking my fuel economy, gas pumps have started asking if my card is credit or debit. That's fine, I guess, although I thought these types of cards were different and not able to exist on the same piece of plastic.

So I pick "credit," because that's how I roll, and then it asks me to ENTER 5-DIGIT ZIP CODE AND THEN ENTER.

Why do I need to press enter, if it's expecting 5 digits? My ATM machine knows it's waiting for four PIN numbers (Yes, I know that's technically like typing "personal identification number numbers," but such is the dumbing down of America that I, too, have slid down the IQ scale. IRREGARDLESS...) and then moves on after I press my 4 digits. Why does the gas pump force me to press enter after the last digit of my zip code?

It's silly and a waste of my time. Plus the enter key is in different places so I am looking for the dumb enter key each time I refuel, since I fill up with gasoline at various places. This waste of time could add up to minutes (MINUTES, I TELL YOU!) over the course of a year.

But such is the burden we all must bear in order to enjoy such modern conveniences of life.

So as I dwelled on this stupidity in the pre-dawn glow, 10.606 gallons of 10% ethanol-infused unleaded gasoline dropped into my tank. I had gone 419.1 miles, so my mileage was an impressive 39.52 miles per gallon. I am pleased with this, as I was carrying my new bike on a trunk-mounted bike rack a few times on this tank and was concerned about fuel economy implications.

However, seeing on how last tank registered 37.13 mpg, it's just as probable that the pump last time just put in more gas than today's pump replaced, skewing my current numbers.

Luckily, I believe the aggregate averages will tend to be fairly representative of actual gas mileage. Knowing that, I am happy to report that with today's tank, my average gas mileage for 2011 is 37.88 miles per gallon. This is the highest "yearly" average mpg ever, topping the old recordhoder of 2007 by 0.01 miles per gallon!
Of course, now I have the pressure of keeping this up for more than six more months, so there's a chance I won't be able to maintain this effort. Only time will tell.

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