Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Tank 311 - 19 March 2K12 (I Talk a Lot About Gas, But Would Rather Be Bicycling)

So I refueled early this morning at the convenientest gas station near my house, the locally famous Fas mart.

The Mighty Corolla had only gone 391.1 miles at this point, but my plans for the day include a field trip north after work to meet an old friend for dinner. I know I'd have needed more gas in order to make it there and also get home again this evening, and I also know that gasoline is typically more expensive than the $3.739 per gallon that the Fas mart was selling it for.

Yes, I know I am a big supporter of more expensive gas, because I'm pretty sure it helps traffic flow more smoothly due to a few people who start to drive less severely and more sanely to conserve expensive gas. But that doesn't mean I'm going to go out of my way to spend more on gas than I have to.

I just won't complain when gas stays above $4.00 a gallon.

Indeed, my choice to gas up at home instead of here where I work saved me about 25 cents a gallon. Which for my 10.049 gallons of gas, works out to about $2.50 that I didn't spend on refilling my gas tank this morning.

So my mileage for the tank was pretty good, at 38.92 miles per gallon.

This was only the third tank of gas where I put more gas in without the low fuel indicator light being turned on. The last time this happened, it was Veterans Day 2009 (11/11/09).

Upon further review of the data, I can't confidently say it was just the third time. I only started keeping track of this data in 2007. I started keeping track of it a couple tanks after my wife refilled the tank without writing down the miles she went, or resetting the trip odometer afterwards. That was a fun time. My data had been perfect up until then, and I think it was the first time my wife had put gas in the Mighty Corolla (Tank 117). She had taken the car on a trip or something and took it because it got better mileage.

But it's all okay.

I haven't ridden my bike since Sunday. It's only Tuesday morning, and my body can feel the lack of exercise in that my feet are going a little numb and my lower back is hurting a little bit. I think the bike riding position helps stretch out my lower back and release pressure on the nerves around there that make my lower legs and feet numb.

In the back of my mind, I remember hearing the doctor's words from four years ago. He said "look at this X-ray. See these grey blotches? These are your old failing discs in your back. Thise nice white creamy ones are okay, but these six- three down here, and three in your neck, are going bad. I'm fixing this one here (points to the one he was going to fix). I'll see you in about 15 years when the next one blows out.

"And also, your spinal cord is about three sizes smaller and skinnier than the typical man's. Good luck with that."

So every bike ride is special, because of these ticking time bomb discs in my back that are deteriorating each day. While I'm still probably ten years out from another "disc blowout" experience that cripples me to the point of immobility, the dark spectre of pain and incapacitation looms over my head, a shadow of dispair waiting to rip open and rain agony and depression upon me at any moment.

Have a great day!


1 comment:

  1. Don't worry about your back. The ossifying effect of your bones/ligaments aging will strengthen things down there. Plus any exercise you get is a good thing. 87 Octane Gas is now $4/gal in Corning/Painted Post NY.