Category: Gas Station

Never, Never Go To The Diner With a Murderous Gas Station Attendant

Never, Never Go To The Diner With a Murderous Gas Station Attendant

18-year old me in 1992. Stop laughing!

When I was a girl of about 18, I used to stop to fill up my car at the same full-service gas station often. Over time, it seemed that the guy who worked the pumps was glad to see me when I pulled in. He would chat me up as best he could with his limited English. Apparently flirting doesn’t require speaking the same language.

The attendant’s name was Raja. I knew this only because I read it off of his name tag as he gazed through my window, not because we’d ever formally introduced ourselves.

One summer night when my girlfriend and I were out cruising in her car, we stopped at the station where Raja worked. Somehow the conversation had moved in to a direction whose reasoning is lost to the cobwebs of my memory. I don’t recall who suggested it (I’m inclined to say it wasn’t me) but somehow we would be picking Raja up when his shift ended that night and going to the diner.

Uh… what?

During the hour or so that we had to kill before swinging by to pick him up, my friend and I had time to consider what we were doing. We were two giggling 18-year old girls picking up some strange 40-year old dude at 11:00 at night. The nagging voice of self-preservation began clearing its throat.

“Ahem. Yes, right then, ladies… This fellow with whom you can barely communicate is probably going to murder you in this very Ford Fairmont and no one will have any idea what happened.”

Right! Murderous gas station attendant! It happens all the time.

What we needed was a plan. And in our brilliance, the plan did not include simply not showing up to pick up the homicidal maniac who obviously pumped gas as a cover. No, that would be rude. What we would do instead was leave a trail of breadcrumbs in case the police needed a lead to go on. It made perfect sense.

We rummaged around in my friend’s car trying to find a scrap of paper. We would leave a note for the police in the glove compartment. Yes! Yes, that would be brilliant. Plus, the maniac would never think to look there after his murderous rage!

But we had to craft the note carefully so the authorities would be able to track down our killer. The police would sing our praises for being resourceful and our murderer would spend life behind bars.

When you’re riding shotgun as the passenger, the responsibility for writing notes to the police falls squarely in your lap. Thems the rules. And so I put pen to paper to avenge us…

“If we’re dead, we were with Raja.”




I guess you could say that writing with detail is something I’ve learned to do over time. 😏




Buzz’s Skelly Gas Station – Coen Brothers Filming Location?

Buzz’s Skelly Gas Station – Coen Brothers Filming Location?

The Coen Brother’s are currently shooting a movie called Inside Llewyn Davis staring Justin Timberlake. Some of the scenes are set to shoot here on Long Island in the town of Riverhead. While out riding today, after an off-handed comment by my friend Ben about an old gas station – I thought I would go take a look. I mean, I love that sort of Americana.

But when I got there, what I saw was too “perfect” to just be something a local was putting up for their own enjoyment. Then it dawned on me…

It’s part of the Coen Brothers movie set. The station doesn’t really exist. It’s on one of the roads set to close and well, you can see it’s a false front if you look to the side of the building.

Coen Brothers Buzz Skelly Timberlake Riverhead

I thought this was a pretty cool find.

Buzzs Skelly Gas Station Movie Location

Then and Now: Brick’s Gulf Gas and Service Station

Then and Now: Brick’s Gulf Gas and Service Station

There is just something that I love about old gas stations and gas pumps. There was often a stylish craftsmanship that we generally don’t see in the new all business, efficient stations of today. Beautiful looking gasoline pumps, decorative building elements, a person manning the station who does more than grunt at you when he gives you change at the register – perfect examples of they don’t make ’em like that anymore.

In many ways I suppose the gas station symbolizes being on the go and traveling. Perhaps that is part of what fuels my interest. If we’re filling up we’re going somewhere!

Brick’s Gulf Gas & Service Station – Then and Now

Then: Brick’s Gulf Gas Station – 1948
582 Sixth Avenue – West 17th Street – New York

So many beautiful vintage elements in this photo. From the construction of the station itself, to the vintage Gulf sign, to the fading ghost ads on the surrounding buildings. It’s hard to believe that this is the same 6th avenue of today.

Brick's Gulf Gas Station Sixth Avenue Manhattan 1948
Image courtesy: NY Public Library

Now: Sixth Avenue & West 17th Street – August 2010

6th Avenue and W 17th Street Today

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