Oregonians Can Now Pump Own Gas, Do Not Like It

'This is a service only qualified people should perform'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 4, 2018 3:00 AM CST
Oregon Mocked After Partially Lifting Ban on Self-Serve Gas
A filling station attendant pumps gas in Portland, Ore.   (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, file)

Change can be a scary thing—but the rest of America isn't overflowing with sympathy for Oregonians freaking out about the fact that they're now allowed to pump their own gas. The state partially lifted its ban on self-service gas on Jan. 1, allowing people in rural counties with less than 40,000 people to pump their own gas between 6pm and 6am and the Detroit Free Press was among those laughing at responses to a KTVL CBS 10 Facebook poll asking whether self-serve gas should be allowed statewide. "I've lived in this state all my life and I REFUSE to pump my own gas. I had to do it once in California while visiting my brother and almost died doing it," one Oregonian wrote. "This a service only qualified people should perform."

New Jersey still bans self-serve gas, but many in the other 48 states were amused by the worries of Oregonians. "On the skills spectrum, pumping gas is closer to 'urinating by yourself' than it is to 'properly eating a lobster,' or 'building a model rocket,'" writes Jason Torchinsky at Jalopnik. "It's just not that big a deal." Kale Williams at the Oregonian, however, notes that the law introduced in 1951 protected around 10,000 jobs and says people sneering at the state may just be jealous of their "fancy gas waiters." "Generally, the best food is delivered to you by an attendant well versed in the ways of the cuisine who smiles and makes sure you've got everything you need," he writes. "Could it be the rest of the country is mad they don't have access to the fine-dining equivalent of gasoline?" (More Oregon stories.)

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