Another feature of Main Street that cannot be overlooked was the vastly similar yet different Service Stations. I cannot remember the names of them, there was so many. You would pull into the lot and run over a rubber type hose that signaled the attendants. Immediately someone dressed in a uniform would be there before you turned your Chevrolet off. He would say, yes sir filler up, check your oil. While he was putting gasoline in your faithful old 51 Chevy that you just came into town from deep into the countryside where only gravel roads existed. This smiling neatly groomed man in uniform would clean your windshield so you could clearly see the big town. I kid you not, once upon a time gasoline retailers fought over your business. They would have promotions and give away free goodies like glasses and such. Them there Service Stations would even check the air in your tires for free! Uh Huh them crazy S. O. B's actually wanted and fought over you for your 10 gallons of gas at 20 cents a gallon.They would hand wash your car of course they charged for that. They would fix a flat tire for you. Them fellas would tune your old Chevy up to purr like a kitten. Instead of that old 235 cubic inch six cylinder running sickly them there engine wizards would put new points and plugs, throw a new air filter, time that baby and adjust the carburetor so that your return trip into the boondacks had you sliding like you was running the Daytona 500 on the ocean side like they first did many many moons ago. That old dust covered bucket of rust became a smooth running mean machine or at least until Grandma smacked you side the head and said straighten up boy, you made me spill my coca-cola all over myself and you know, you don't want Grandma mad because you won't get no homemade dumplings for Sunday dinner.
I know it is hard to imagine times like this but this type of Service Stations once existed, before giving way to what became Filling Stations and somewhere along the line gave way to what we call today, Convenience Stores. What the hell is convenient about them? You pump your own gas if you can get Big Bertha to turn your damn pump on for you. You hear a voice squawking something unintelligible over the squawk box. You don't know or care what was said, finally your pump is turned on as your freezing your ass off pumping over 3 $'s a gallon gasoline. You decide to clean your windshield, there is no window cleaner in the plastic bucket hanging lopsided on the pole, no paper towels, no squeege. You are thinking to yourself, what do they expect me to wipe my windshield off, with my frozen ass! You put 80 $'s of gas in your SUV and walk in to pay. There is 10 people in line waiting and Bertha is talking on her cell phone. You are frozen and have the fun of paying all of your weekly allowance on gas. You are thinking I am going to tell that Bitch what I thunk of her Convenient Store. As you wait 20 minutes in line your ready for Big Bertha but as you inch closer you see tattoos and writing etched on her knuckles from her time spent in prison. You can't read the message on her fingers and you have now changed your mind about doing anything except for paying for your gas and getting the #@%& out of there. You finally get close to Big Bertha and you gladly hand her your 80 $'s and tell her to have a nice day. You run to your SUV where you are safe and glad to be alive thinking to yourself I won't have to go through that again until next week! AH! HA! HA! HA! HOPED YOU ENJOYED MY LITTLE BLAST FROM THE PAST AND MY SCARY CONVENIENT STORE STORY. I BID YOU ADIEU UNTIL NEXT TIME.