Now that we have a car that we can (almost) actually use, Tobyjoe and I have started noticing and discussing gas prices. We’ve decided that using up an entire tank of gas just to move the car from one side of the street to another is a sure sign you’ve become a New Yorker. Although, the first and real sign is to not have a car at all and an even bigger one is to not even own a driver’s license, but I digress. We now have a car. And since it has reached heart attack age and is well into retirement we feed it the most expensive gas. It takes about 38 dollars to fill up our tank. And I wish I knew how long that tank lasted, city miles and road miles, but I haven’t paid much attention to that.
I have a question, though: given that the talking heads would like us to live in a constant state of fear regarding the rising gas prices, how much have you actually spent this year in filling up your car and how does it compare to, say, 2000? Do you drive less? Do you think twice about driving to the 7-11? Or do you just throw your gas fumes to the wind and go for a drive whenever you’d like? Has the rising gas prices really affected you all that much?
Another way of asking: are people paying out enough every year to merit the constant complaining? Is it a matter of $500, $1000, $2000 per year? More? Ours is probably $160 or so per year. That’s 2 or 3 dinners out. Getting upset about that would be silly. We’re New Yorkers, though, so we rarely drive (1 tank per month).
Is this all just way over-hyped? Prices today are $0.25 higher than last year. One thousand gallons is only $250 over last year. Ten thousand gallons is $2500. And that’s a LOT of gas.