Tag: gas pump

Tales of a Second Grade Nothing

Tales of a Second Grade Nothing

In September while heading east on the Lincoln Highway in the Chambersburg area, I stopped to snap photos of two gas pumps that were part of the Pump Parade. The first was at Shatzer Fruit Market in Chambersburg. It features a Chambersburg peach motif.

A little way down the road was the “Nellie Fox” pump in St. Thomas, PA outside of the Oak Forest Restaurant. I just caught this pump out of the corner of my eye, slammed on the brakes and made a U-ey to take its picture.

The parking lot where I turned around at the Oak Forest had a row of buildings lining the edge of the property. They were small, bungalow-type houses. As soon as I saw them a flood of emotion came over me. This little cluster of buildings was similar to the place where I spent the earliest part of my childhood amongst the creeps, the drunks, the dregs and those of us with families who were just a little down on their luck at the time. And this, right or wrong, consistently fills me with a burning shame.

Why? Why should I care about something that was beyond my control as a child? I mean, I have come a long way from where I started. And yet, those meager beginnings still mark me with a stain that no one but me can see.

Growing up, our little bungalow community was bussed to an elementary school that intermingled us with kids who were comfortably situated in the middle class. We shabby kids rubbed elbows with the children of doctors and lawyers. But in school, kids were kids. We were all the same… until we weren’t.

In second grade, I got to invite a few friends over to celebrate my birthday. It was the first time someone from school who didn’t live in my neighborhood came to my house. My school friend walked into our two-room bungalow and said, “this is it?!” and incredulously noted that her living room was bigger than my whole house, which was true. I am 44 years old now and the sentiment still smarts. I didn’t know there was anything “wrong” with my life until someone else told me so.

I’ve been sitting on talking about my feelings after seeing those stupid little houses for months. And I’ve wavered on the idea that maybe there would be some kind of catharsis, or that I might absolve myself of the guilt of feeling bad about growing up poor. So far? Not so much. Now, I feel like I should be ashamed of being ashamed because as crappy as it might have been, there are people who are or were worse off.

It would be nice if I could adopt the wistful-sounding attitude of my mother. She talks of drying out teabags on the radiator and reusing them and being “as poor as church mice,” as an affliction that was triumphantly overcome. And I confess, in truth it was. But clearly, for me, there is a scar.

Get off the cross, we need the wood.

Revisiting the Ghost of a Coen Brothers Long Island Movie Location

Revisiting the Ghost of a Coen Brothers Long Island Movie Location

In 2012, the Coen Brothers were on Long Island filming the movie Inside Llewyn Davis. At the time, they built a false-front of a Skelly gas station in the town of Riverhead for shooting. I rode by and snapped a few pictures while it was up. You can see it at 1:20 in the movie trailer. (h/t Ally)

I rode by the “station” again this past Sunday – 4 years later. All that is recognizably left of the movie set is the Champion mural on the wall and the little white door.

This Google streetview image shows just how much magic is involved with creating movie sets. Amazing.

Sights from the Road: 4 Vintage Gas Pumps in Connecticut

Sights from the Road: 4 Vintage Gas Pumps in Connecticut

The Classic Auto Wash in Cromwell, CT is covered in a fiberglass menagerie of animals, dinosaurs and people. When we rode by the first thing that caught my eye though was the row of vintage gas pumps that stand front and center. They are really beautiful specimens.

Pumps from: Sinclair Gasoline H-C, Texaco – Fire Chief Gasoline, Sunoco Blue, Shell Gasoline

Vintage Shell Gas Pumps Cromwell Ct Vintage Fire Chief Gasoline Texaco Pump Vintage Gilmore Gas Pump Cromwell Connecticut

For More Information:

Classic Auto Wash Center
23 Shunpike Road
Cromwell, CT
Google Maps – StreetView

Oh, and hey – If you’re interested in roadside stuff:
I’ve started collecting all of my roadside finds that aren’t necessarily motorcycle related and posting them on their own blog: RoadsideGalore.com. Be sure and tell ’em that fuzzygalore sent ya. Wait, that doesn’t really make any sense. Tell me that I sent you? Whatevs. Just take a peek sometime. Thanks!

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