MY HEART GOES OUT TO YOU, HUMMER OWNERS

Posted in Rants on July 14th, 2008 by Ed

The thinly-veneered "lifestyle" journalism that masquerades as news these days has yielded another gem, courtesy the New York Times (At $100 for Tank of Gas, Some Choke on ‘Fill It’") The purpose of this slipshod amalgam of random quotes is unclear. Are we supposed to feel sorry for these dipshits or simply marvel at the fact that some people buy GMC Suburbans without realizing that they will have to put a lot of gas in them? To wit:

Bryan Carisone, a heating and air-conditioning contractor in Raritan, N.J., “absolutely loves” his new GMC Denali XL, an extra-large sport utility vehicle with televisions built into the leather seats. But in June, one week after he bought it, he pulled into a station on a near-empty tank and watched the total climb higher and higher — to $109. “It just about killed me,” Mr. Carisone said.

Apparently the size of the GMC Denali XL's fuel tank and the EPA mileage estimates are both classified information, as obtainable to Mr. Bryan Carisone as the launch codes for Soviet ICBMs. It is unfortunate that he was forced to buy this grotesque land yacht without that information.

It gets better.

For people who love their big vehicles, the pain is acute.

But the Avalanche also has a 31-gallon tank, which would cost $127 to fill at Saturday’s national average price. Even the truck’s most dedicated fans find that galling. David H. Obelcz, who founded the club in 2002 and is still a member of the board, sold his Avalanche because he could not afford gasoline for it.

At what point in one's journalistic career do the trials of being a brainless yuppie qualify as "pain" let alone "acute pain?" Hold on while I cry my fucking eyes out for the Fan Club devoted to the Chevy Avalanche, a vehicle whose turn signals are labeled "port" and "starboard." I hope Mr. Obelcz had the version with the 8.1L V8, which is by far the largest gasoline V8 in a passenger vehicle.

Families that were accustomed to the convenience of sport utility vehicles are having to cut back as well. Colleen Hammond of Chagrin Falls, Ohio, loves packing her three kids and all their soccer gear into her 2000 GMC Yukon XL. But she hates paying $160 to fill the 38.5-gallon tank. Last month, she parked the Yukon in her driveway and borrowed her friend’s Toyota Land Cruiser.

Again with the dramatic language. People who have to decide between food and medicine "cut back." People pissing and moaning about how much their SUV costs to own do not. And for the last time, no one owns an SUV because of "safety" or "convenience." Minivans are far safer, hold more people and cargo, and are more fuel-efficient. People buy SUVs because they think it looks cooler than driving a minivan. Period.

Steve Burtch bought a Dodge Ram truck last year, when gas cost $3.75, because he thought gas prices had peaked and would start coming down.

Steve Burtch, I have taken shits smarter than you.

“It’s a huge inconvenience,” said Dr. Walter Bahr, a chiropractor in Cape Coral, Fla., who drives a Dodge Ram 2500 pickup and pays $130 per tank.

WHAT IN THE HOLY HELL DOES A CHIRPRACTOR NEED A 3/4-TON PICKUP FOR? This is not a rhetorical question. I will give anyone who can answer it one million dollars. Ram 2500 pickups are made for construction work and building contractors – they're work trucks with 10,000-pound towing capacity. Apparently Dr. Bahr needs it to haul his tiny penis around rugged Cape Coral, Florida.

And here's the best part:

By late spring, owners of pickups and sport utility vehicles with 30-gallon tanks, like the Cadillac Escalade ESV and Chevrolet Suburban, started paying $100 or more to fill a near-empty tank. As gas prices continue to rise — the national average stood at about $4.10 a gallon Saturday — membership in the triple-digit club is growing. Now, even not-so-gargantuan Toyota Land Cruisers and GMC Yukons can cost $100 to fill up.

Way to pander to the yuppie readers, New York Times, by noting that high gas prices are also affecting the (implicitly "normal") vehicles that a quarter of your Sunday demographic drive.

The Toyota Land Cruiser is over sixteen feet long and six feet wide. It weighs 5,690 pounds empty. It has a 5.7L 381-hp V8 (larger and more powerful than a Gen-IV Corvette from 1996). It gets 13 mpg in traffic.

The GMC Yukon has a 26-gallon fuel tank at 14 mpg city. It too has a large V8 (5.3L) and weighs over 5,300 pounds.

According to the Times, these are reasonable "not-so-gargantuan" vehicles which should not be expected to require $100 fill-ups. It is unconscionable to think that these entirely justifiable, average vehicles should be so burdening the wallets of the Normal Americans who drive them.

From now on I intend to season all of my food with the sweet, sweet tears of SUV owners.

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