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California gas prices to tumble? Just my luck

October 08, 2012|By Paul Whitefield
  • Adrian Rivera changes the fuel price sign outside an Arco station in Stevenson Ranch on Friday -- and he's not lowering the price, that's for sure.
Adrian Rivera changes the fuel price sign outside an Arco station in Stevenson… (Jonathan Pobre / Santa Clarita…)

Darn it, I missed out again.

You know when the iPhone came out? Well, I didn’t buy one. Same with the iPod and the iPad.  

I also didn’t buy a Mini Cooper when they were such hot sellers.

And now I’ve missed the big gasoline price run-up in California.

My habit of missing out, or being late to the party, goes way back, unfortunately.  When disco was all the rage, I liked oldies rock. I stuck with film cameras way too long. I don’t have a smartphone. I still have a land line. I just bought my first flat-screen TV three months ago. And, horrors, I don’t have TiVo.   

But missing the gas thing really tears it. I mean, why didn’t someone tell me gas was going to go way up in price so I could’ve run out and filled up and then expressed outrage at how much it cost?  I could’ve taken pictures of how much I spent and put them on Facebook (I’ve been on Facebook for at least a year now).

But no, no one ever lets me in on the trendy stuff.  So there I am Sunday, stupidly pedaling away at CicLAvia and feeling all good about getting exercise and enjoying the weather and being with my fellow man -- believing that, finally, I was in on the cutting edge of something -- when it turns out I should’ve been driving around until I was on empty, then pulling into the old Arco and bellowing “What the heck!”

I mean, who knew that gasoline prices would go up? There’s plenty of oil, after all. And they’ve never gone up before. (Well, OK, maybe they did once, but that was Jimmy Carter’s fault.)

But I see the governor took action Sunday, and now the analysts say the price thing is already over.

Plus, The Times’ story said this:

Sen. Dianne Feinstein has called for a federal investigation into what happened to the price of gasoline in California last week, saying that she was concerned that the jump had little to do with supply and demand.

The state's most recent data on gasoline supplies had indicated that California was only 2.5%  below 2011 levels.

Which means that the situation is really, truly over, because that’s when Congress always gets involved.  (Do 2008, AIG, the mortgage meltdown, Lehman Bros. ring any bells? Or, for fun reading on a local case, Google “Enron” and “California electricity crisis.”)

Anyway, I’ve missed out again. And who knows, this may have been a once-in-a-lifetime event.  I’m pretty sure Chevron is about to build a new refinery in Malibu. (Somewhere near Carbon Beach, I’m told, but keep that to yourself. I mean, you didn't really think Larry Ellison had bought nine houses there to live in, did you?)

And there will be other refineries to come, in Carmel, and Laguna, and Palos Verdes maybe.  And when Mitt Romney is elected president, the coast will sprout oil wells like poppies. We’ll be swimming in oil, and gasoline. Prices will tumble in Mitt’s Utopian America, and we’ll all go back to driving 15 mpg Suburbans, and …

And I’ll have a bought a Prius, and won’t I look stupid. Again.

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