An idea for the next Olympic sport: driving 60 miles with 50 miles worth of gas

Perhaps it was the day’s rain that forced a synapse or two in the old noggin to run a crossing pattern. But I got wondering …

Issue I: Sometimes I think I’m the only one who struggles with the simpler tasks in life.

Issue II: So why not petition the International Olympic Committee to turn some of them into Olympic events?

In the spirit of hoping that I’m not alone, here’s a boffo idea about my latest plight: Buying gas.

Put it this way: If biathlon (skiing and trying to shoot things) is an Olympic sport, why isn’t buying gas?

It’s not like we all don’t make it a game.

Like trying to finish a 60-mile trip with enough gas to go 50 miles. Which I just did. There was a scare, sure, as I coasted through the exit ramp, gas light illuminated, as if to say, “you pushed it too far this time, dummy.” I shut off the heat, radio and was tempted to shut off the headlights, but thought better of it.

There is one gas station between me and the next 30 miles of my journey.

As I’m cruising along, I thought about who I might call if I did run out of gas. My parents came to mind. But the humiliation of having to call them to say I was in the middle of nowhere and out of gas quickly consumed me.

I thought of a cop friend of mine who was working nearby. But figured he would find a spotlight to shine on my stranded self and use the PA system to announce “DiMauro. Is that you out of gas? Did you run out of gas, Mike DiMauro?”

I thought about calling my friends, but was afraid they would actually show up, take pictures and would never let me live it down.

Needless to say, the car quietly (very quietly) coasted into the gas station. I feel triumphant in my victory of making it so far, with so little.

So now I’m wondering ... at the next Olympics, everybody gets in the car 60 miles away with 50 miles’ worth of gas and see who makes it first. (No hybrids allowed). Maybe we could get Dale Jr. as the guest analyst.

Then there’s the whole fill up thing.

What to do with the spare time?

First, I tried to cross my feet and lean against the car in a sort of Clint Eastwood-meets-the-gas pump-move. All I was missing was a piece of straw hanging out of my mouth.

Next, I thought about getting out my cell phone, but then decided I could survive this three minutes without it.

I started to hum. Got a dirty look and stopped humming.

The window thing seemed like a good idea. Although, my windshield was in much better shape before I tried to clean it.

So were my clothes. Every time I tried to lean over, I ended up brushing against the car and looked more and more like a dust rag.

I started to clean the inside of my car by throwing away trash. I must ask: Are the garbage bins at gas stations intended to be so small so that people like me don’t do a full car cleaning? How much is too much to throw away? I think I may have hit that mark when I had to push the trash down. Anecdotally, I feel the same way when I see a garbage can at the end of driveway through. If they put it there, they want me to use it, right?

So, now that I’ve filled the tank, I smell like gas, my clothes are dirty, and my hands feel like I just worked on the engine. I don’t have any leftover napkins because I threw them all away. So I slide into my car and infect my steering wheel.

My friends, I ask you ... is buying gas this difficult for you? Seems Olympic sport worthy to me.

This is the opinion of Day sports columnist Mike DiMauro




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