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9.13.2011

NOW THAT'S FULL SERVICE!

My grandparents had a small country store when I was growing up.  It was long before the days of "convenience" stores/gas stations. It was still the era where everything was full service - gas was pumped for you.  Their small store sold gas - leaded of course:), a small array of groceries, cold meats and cheeses, toiletry items, pop, snacks, cigarettes, and a large display cabinet of chocolates.  You could get a flat tire repaired, request to have furnace fuel oil delivered to your house (gramps had a gas route) or just chew the fat with the regulars who liked to hang out drinking a cold glass bottle of soda pop (ah!).  It was a neighborhood gathering place.  Before there were big chain grocery stores their country store serviced that small rural area.  I still meet people from time to time who have fond memories of that store.  I was driving to work today by a Phillips 66 gas station.  Like most gas stations presently, it housed a convenience store where you could buy a can of pop, a bottle of Tylenol, a lotto ticket, fishing worms, and a gallon of ice cream.  Their sign near the road, just above the price per gallon, read....
 EBT HERE    HAIRCUTS $9 
I am not lying.  I looked twice and then not only shook my head, but laughed at the visual that played in my head.   I pictured a collision of sorts between something reminiscent of Mayberry and, the bad style and cheap cost of Super Cuts!!   Who goes to the Phillips 66 gas station and says to their mate, "Honey, I'm going to fill up the truck and get a haircut at the Phillips 66 station."  What gas station business owner, after much thought about how to grow their business, offer more products, declares, "I think there is a need that people have out there.  They need their hair cut, and we need to provide that service."  Do they really, really think that people who frequent gas stations automatically think "haircut" when pumping gasoline??  If I were looking through the Yellow Pages for hairstylists, barbers, beauticians and the name Phillips 66 came up (at least to a generation of us who truly know what Phillips 66 is), there is no way in hell I would call to make an appointment.  Come to think of it, I wonder if you even need to make an appointment.  Gramp's and Gram's store didn't offer haircuts, but Gramps could patch a flat tire faster than anyone I've ever seen.  Logical though, it was a gas station:)

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