The Suitcase Lady


June 2, 2015, 9:25 pm

On September 30, 2014, I published a blog about New Jersey. (“Jersey” in the archives.) I’ve recently discovered a vitally important fact about the Garden State that I omitted. An update is in order.

For seventy years, New Jersey by law has prohibited self serve gas. The only other state with a similar law is Oregon where the ban is currently being repealed. New Jersey will be the last bastion of full service pumps.

A recent poll of Jersey residents found 63 % in favor of the no self serve law. The issue appears to be a sacred cow to the population.

Proponents of self serve bring the issue up in the legislature, but can’t get traction. Assemblyman Declan J. O’Scanlon says, “Nobody can make a sound argument why we should not allow this. The only way to win that argument is if you can make a legitimate argument that New Jerseyans are more flammable than other people.”

To arguments that repeal would be a burden on the elderly and people who cannot reach the pumps,  O’Scanlon quips, “do they have no senior citizens in other states, no short people?”

New Jersey residents know that rational arguments are irrelevant. They want this little luxury, this special treatment and this distinction. And they are street smart enough to know if they give full serve up, they will never get it back.

The next time I’m standing in the rain, wind and cold, fumbling with a smelly gas hose, I will be exuding envy of those Jersey drivers who get to say, “Fill er up!”

2 Comments for this entry

  • Karen Little on Facebook

    Here’s the thing. Our state puts people to work who would have problems finding a job. In Weehawken, we even have human sidewalk sweepers. One by us is Julio. It is a wonderful thing and we need more employees everywhere. Enough with mechanism.

  • Mary Tooley on Facebook

    I agree that is a good thing for all of us. So many jobs are disappearing. We were recently asked at a big hotel chain if we would like to save five dollars a night on our room by turning down maid service. We replied that we would rather have a person keep her job.