[O.C.T.O.B.E.R. IV-20] Still 2.39

Several of my blog posts recently have been inspired by my bike rides, and today’s is no exception. Interestingly, though, 2.39 is quite the antithesis of taking a bike ride.

This is because 2.39 was the price of regular unleaded gas at the Kwik Trip gas station right off of Stout’s campus today. Thus, I wanted to briefly talk about my relationship with gas prices.

Until 2003, when I started driving, I didn’t pay much attention to gas prices, which is somewhat surprising considering the other details which I had paid attention to when riding in the car, such as street names, buildings, and the path that we took.

When I was in high school, however, Mom and Dad paid for my gas. They still recommended that I try to find the most inexpensive gas stations. In Lincoln, there was often a 10-cent-per-gallon difference between the stations on the north side and on the south side.

As I finished high school, the gas prices hovered around two dollars per gallon. But then in my second week at UNL, Hurricane Katrina hit, which sent prices spiking to three dollars per gallon or more. Though I drove quite a bit in Lincoln, I spent most of my time in college on campus or doing short drives in Lincoln, so that my tanks would usually last a month or longer.

Come the end of my junior year, however, gas prices had spiked to well over four dollars a gallon. This is when I started to realize the utility of my bike and the bus as a manner of transportation, and my pocketbook survived the high gas prices of summer 2008.

It was quite a relief when gas prices dropped to below $2/gallon for much of early 2009, since I took several trips to Kansas/Missouri for Pokemon TCG tournaments.

But, for the six years that followed, I didn’t care about gas prices, since I had no car and took the L and my bike everywhere.

Now that I have my own car, I am more cognizant of gas prices. They have been pretty stagnant between $2.39 and $2.59/gallon for about the last month in Menomonie. That is not terrible, but I’m still doing my transportation within Menomonie all on my bike. However, I’m not regularly biking to St. Paul! It might start to get too cold to do another round of JCHE.

Either way, gas prices are a consequence of driving. I’ll accept them no matter what they are, but will likely change my car usage accordingly!


Today is the twentieth day of the fourth round of O.C.T.O.B.E.R. That makes two weeks and six days.

Memorial Stadium: 4 days.

Thanksgiving Day: 37 days.

Joint Mathematics Meetings: 78 days.

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