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Business at Pump 5!

The wind has been HOWLING across Kansas and neighboring states the last two days. A fierce low pressure system brought a blizzard to Colorado and high winds and rain to Kansas. The barometric pressure in Russell at one point yesterday dropped to 977 millibars (28.77 inches), the lowest ever recorded at the Russell airport. That’s lower than most Category 1 hurricanes.

That pressure is nowhere near as low as it is in the center of tornadoes. I believe the pressure in the center of the EF5 monster which struck Greensburg in 2007 was 840-850 millibars. That’s going to cause a hell of a lot of destruction.

I drove to Kansas City this morning and arrived just after 1000. Right now, it’s 4 Celsius (40 Fahrenheit), but the wind and mist makes it feel much colder than a calm day when it’s minus-15 Celsius (8 F).

I stopped for gas at QuikTrip in Parkville. I pulled up to a pump on the back row, behind a van from A.B. May one of the two major HVAC installers in Kansas City. Ironically, a van from his competition, Bob Hamilton Heating and Plumbing, was at a pump to the left.

I was not happy the A.B. May van was parked in front of a red pump, which is for non-ethanol gas. Not all QuikTrip locations have them, and those that have them have only four pumps at most dedicated to non-ethanol. The ones I have noticed with them are State Line and I-435, Parkville, Riverside, I-435 and Parvin Road, and Blue Springs on Highway 7.

In October, I boiled over when I noticed two cars parked in front of non-ethanol pumps on State Line Road, yet the motorists were using the black pumps for the gas with 10% ethanol.

It happened again today with the van from A.B. May, as well as two other motorists. But the A.B. May van really got under my skin.

After pumping my gas, I pulled up to the parking lot in front of the store. When I got out, I noticed there was a man inside the van. He was texting away.

I went into the store and used the restroom. That took 10 minutes, and the A.B. May van was STILL in front of the pump!

You know how some companies have a number to call on the back of the van to report bad driving? I’m tempted to call that number. I’m also tempted to call A.B. May’s main number.

Look, if you have pressing business to conduct while you’re at a gas station, pull up to the front or side of the store and do it. Don’t block the gas pumps.

If this were a station in a crowded part of a big city, it might be a problem because there might be a line for gas. The old Exxon at Lee Circle in New Orleans comes to mind. That place was ALWAYS busy prior to Katrina.

Fortunately, it was not a busy time and Parkville’s QuikTrip is not in a crowded area. It also has a lot of pumps. One of my favorite stops on the circuit.

Otherwise so far so good in Kansas City. Fourth laser hair treatment on my body went well, checked into the hotel, trivia at Buffalo Wild Wings Shoal Creek, where I saw one of my favorite bartenders, Tina, for the first time since December 2017. I’m very happy she recognized me.

Phew, yuck, brrr!

One scare and one lesson learned yesterday.

The scare: I thought I forgot the AC adapter for my CPAP machine back in Russell. The dread hit me just after the Brookville exit on Interstate 70, 13 miles west of Salina. I decided I would stop in Salina and if it weren’t there, I’d either have to drive back to Russell or just go without it.

Fortunately, it was there. It hit me at Interstate 135 that when I checked the top of my chest next to my bed, there was nothing on top where the CPAP usually is. Sure enough, it was there. Relieved.

FYI, only one Popeye’s in Salina–the new one on Ohio south of Crawford–sells onion rings. The older one off I-70 in the travel plaza doesn’t. If Popeye’s doesn’t have onion rings, Foots won’t eat at a particular Popeye’s. Simple.

The lesson: try to not use dish soap to wash out plastic drinking implements if you can.

After arriving in Kansas City, I stopped at the QuikTrip in Riverside for a drink. I noticed a terrible aftertaste to my pop.

I deduced soap had seeped into the mug. I was pretty grossed out by the aftertaste. Had to do all I could not to throw up.

I stopped at another QuikTrip in Overland Park and bought a new mug, since it was only $6. I left the old mug in a corner outside the entrance, so if someone wanted it, they could have it. Good luck trying to get the dish soap aftertaste out.

Discovery: ordering kiosks in fast food restaurants are awesome.

I tried one at Taco Bell in North Kansas City last night after my mobile order didn’t go through. I was mighty impressed. Order completely accurate. Other perks: not holding up the line at the counter trying to decide what you want, easier to customize, and easy payment. The Wendy’s a block east of that Taco Bell also has kiosks.

It is brutally cold in Kansas City this morning. Currently minus-16 Celsius (3 Fahrenheit) with a wind chill of minus-22 Celsius (-8 Fahrenheit). I hope my car will start, because i have an 0845 appointment in Liberty.

The Saints were shafted!

Rude and disgusting people

**DISCLAIMER**
I am sorry about all the cursing. I wish I didn’t have to. But it’s been that bad. 

Today has been hell. As bad as it was discovering the hotel in Lenexa was an island in the middle of a sea of construction, it would get worse. Much worse.

First, I should never, ever have assumed Peggy Cox told me not to come to Ottawa Saturday to watch Caitlyn play. I am very sorry I said that. I should not have.

When I left the hotel around 3:00 to go back to Johnson County, I backed out and happened to bump another car. I was scared shitless. I looked at the lady like I didn’t know what to do and I was so scared I almost took a dump in my pants. I screamed out loud and she got scared, but her husband told her I was screaming at myself, not her. He said everything was okay. I am very grateful. If they think I’m a total fool, then that’s fine. I don’t blame them.

The only good thing about today was getting my car cleaned.

Then came two incidents at two places along State Line Road that boiled my blood.

The first was at the QuikTrip just off I-435. I stop there quite often for gas and a drink, and sometimes to use the restroom. That QuikTrip is one of only a few which has no-ethanol gasoline.

I HATE ETHANOL. I HATE IT. It is dirty, it causes farmers to farm too much corn and not enough other crops, and it significantly reduces gas mileage. I was royally pissed later this evening when I found out Trump wants to allow the use of E-15 gas year-round. Asshole. Fuck you Trump. .It has been proven E-15 is 6 to 8 percent less fuel efficient than non-ethanol gas.

At the QuikTrip at State Line and 435, there are four pumps with non-ethanol fuel. Yet when I arrived at 4:15, all four pumps were occupied by customers buying non-ethanol fuel.

There are 16 pumps at this QuikTrip which do not have non-ethanol or diesel fuel at the pump. Diesel customers are not common in a big city, although I’m sure that QuikTrip gets some. Why the HELL do customers who want to buy the cheap shit have to block those who want to buy non-ethanol fuel? I complained to the ladies working the registers, but nobody seemed to care.

When I exited the store seven minutes later, three of the same vehicles which were blocking the non-ethanol pumps were still there!!!!! I saw one woman who was driving one of the blocking vehicles in the store.

That is pure rudeness right there. When you are finished pumping gas and you want to go into the store, please pull up to the front of the store and let someone else pump gas, especially when it’s blocking a non-ethanol pump and there are only four on site. At least she returned to a car after two minutes waiting and I was able to get my ethanol fuel.

What really pissed me off to no end was the other two vehicles sitting there in front of the non-ethanol pumps. A guy in a van with a Kansas plate (Franklin County; lordy, lordy he’s from Ottawa) was eating. EATING! Give me a break.

There was a woman in a black Toyota sitting there talking on her phone. She had the phone in her ear when I arrived at the store, and when I finally finished fueling, 12 minutes after arriving, SHE WAS STILL ON HER FUCKING CELL PHONE.

Okay, talking and driving is dangerous. But sitting in front of a gas pump at QuikTrip is not a place to conduct business or gab. If the woman’s conversation was THAT IMPORTANT, she should have parked somewhere else at the station. In her case, it would have been just as rude to take up a parking space for someone who wanted to go into the store, but there was plenty of parking at the back of the site (closest to 435).

Even worse, the woman was blocking a non-ethanol pump. What a rude bitch.

I was so pissed off about this I sent an angry message to QuikTrip through its Facebook page explaining this. I believe the stations which have non-ethanol fuel should post signs for customers who are not purchasing non-ethanol to avoid using those pumps if at all possible, and if not possible, to move immediately following fueling.

I only park my car in front of a pump when I am paying inside the store, and I only do it if there are more than half the pumps open. If it isn’t, I will fuel first, pull up to the front, then go in, or vice versa. Two credit card transactions is not the end of the world.

Then came the second incident I am pissed about.

I went shopping at the beautiful Super Target at 135th and State Line. Nice, big store, wide aisles, good selection. I will shop at Target any day of the week. NEVER WALMART. Lousy motherfuckers.

The shopping part was good. I went to the restroom, since I didn’t go at QuikTrip.

There was a man in the higher urinal, so I had to use the kiddie-sized one. Not a big deal.

But once the man in the other urinal finished, he just walked out WITHOUT WASHING HIS HANDS.  I’m lucky I didn’t pee all over myself. I was that angry.

I have a hard and fast rule: any time I use a public restroom, I must wash my  hands. I NEVER go without washing my hands in a public restroom. NEVER. That is absolutely disgusting to walk out without washing your hands. I’m wondering if he went home and touched his wife and kids with those nasty hands. Hopefully he isn’t married and doesn’t have kids.

I refuse to use a rest stop restroom on I-70 because they often lack soap to wash hands. I’ve encountered that many times at the one near Ellsworth, and also at the one near Solomon. I don’t use Solomon anymore, because Salina (westbound) and Abilene (eastbound) are close enough. The Ellsworth one is only westbound, and that’s why I try to stop before.

I wish there were a way the restroom door would lock if someone didn’t wash their hands. I would be willing to wait that disgusting piece of shit out until he washed his hands.

After what happened in Target, I was actually happy to sit in traffic on Missouri Highway 150 for a few minutes. I went all the way out to Independence to pick up Outback tonight. Then I had a 40-minute drive back west and north.

I’m going to try to forget about the rude people sitting in front of gas pumps and the disgusting man at Target. But I’m sure I will encounter many more of both types…probably before I leave Kansas City.

 

Descending the hump

My generous side just struck again. I made a quick run from Buffalo Wild Wings to the QuikTrip on Barry Road to get pretzels for two of my favorite people, Lisa Toebben and Brittany Davidson. I got a third and gave to Raymie, one of the new girls. Lisa and Brittany suggested I eat it, but I bought two of QuikTrip’s red velvet whoopie pies for me, and I also had three pretzels yesterday, all from the QuikTrip on Johnson Drive in Merriam.

I’m not the richest person by far, but I want to do what I can for my friends. I’d rather see them happy than please myself. I’m glad I could bring a smile to their faces. I wish I had more money to do more.

The best QuikTrips in Kansas City I have discovered are on Barry Road (Northland), Johnson Drive in Merriam (to/from north to south) and State LIne Road and I-435 (south KC). The one in Bonner Springs is excellent on getaway days, although construction on I-70 west near K-7 is a hassle sometimes.

In Wichita, the one I go to almost always is on Central and Greenwich, since it has the QT kitchens for pretzels. The one at Douglas and Rock is closer to the Marriott, but it doesn’t have pretzels.

I hope Liz is feeling better. She found her wallet earlier today after losing it and her phone last night. I hope her back is better, but I know she’s feeling down after Trey Cummings’ mother passed away Monday. I heard from Nadine she and Sean Cash were both close to her.

Buzztime’s SIX was a little more difficult than usual tonight. A few questions in the final round threw me for a major loop. I finished under 39,000, my lowest score at that game in quite some time. Had a better time of it

I’m probably done eating at B-Dubs tonight. I had the spinach artichoke flatbread, which was better than usual, which is hard to do, but there were huge chunks of chicken on the flatbread and the bread itself was extra crispy, the way I like it. I don’t care for thin crust pizza, but the flatbreads at B-Dubs are pretty good.

Tomorrow I check out of the Overland Park Marriott, but I plan on appearing at Buffalo Wild Wings before I either (a) leave for Russell or (b) stay overnight and go home Friday morning. Hard decision that one. I’ve got volleyball to cover Friday, I just don’t know where yet.