I’m a grown-ass woman!

I can pump my own gas!

Gas pump jockeys

Gas pump jockeys.

Oregon bugs me for many reasons.  First and foremost because it’s illegal to pump your own gas here.  An attendant must pump the gas for you.

Usually I stop to fill up my tank just before I hit the California-Oregon border.  Then I hope I can hang on, parcel out the driving, until I head home and get back through the pass and over the border so I can again fill up my own damn tank.

The last time I was here I was so spacey I stopped at a gas station, not even thinking about the no-pump-your-own-gas law.  I hopped out of my car and grabbed the pump to fill up my tank.  The attendant yelled at me and came a-runnin’.  Rather than get back in my car, wait for him to fill the tank and then wait for him to take my credit card and bring me that little signy plastic tray I simply said – “Never mind,” and took off on maybe an eighth of a tank, hoping there would be no delays.  I figured once I got through the two passes it was pretty much downhill the rest of the way and I could coast if necessary.

I guess I get it, Oregon wants to ensure employment for gas pump jockeys.  However, I’ve been pumping my own gas and cleaning my own windshield my entire driving life.  I don’t need some guy in a little suit knocking on my driver’s side window.

In other news… My father is still in a holding position, however he looks fantastic.  He’s stuck in limbo until his heartbeat is regular.  He’s suffering from Atrial Fibrillation, which sucks.  He’ll be converted (we hope) as soon as his coumadin level is therapeutic and blah blah blah.

Last night I made him lamb chops marinated in olive oil, cumin, chili and smoked paprika, roasted potatoes with crispy shallots, a salad of mixed greens and tomatoes (he has to be consistent with the green vegetable intake) and fresh sourdough bread – I stopped at one of our local bakeries on my way out of town to pick up a couple of loaves of his favorite bread.

Tonight I plan to make a pasta Bolognese with guanciale and grass fed beef from my daughter’s cows – Bolognese does feature meat and my dad is craving meat.  Probably I’ll steam some asparagus and slice up another loaf of bread.



Tomorrow – beef short-ribs in a soy-maple-citrus marinade with smashed potatoes and brussel sprouts.

Monday – croque Madam.  I brought him some thin-sliced sweet ham, guyere cheese and farm fresh eggs.

It’s kind of fun.  My dad is usually running around so much he has no time to sit still.  Fortunately, despite his inability to exercise, he continues to be super skinny so I’m not worried about him over-eating.

I also have an opportunity to go through all my old letters and writings – my mom saved everything, except my collectible comic books – which she tossed out – but we won’t go there.

So… talk soon!  Julia


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27 Responses to I’m a grown-ass woman!

  1. Penelope says:

    Sending good vibes to your dad!

    When are you opening up your own restaurant? Sign me up for reservations!

    Miss you. xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxox (a lot)


  2. Katalina Leon says:

    I’m so happy your Dad is feeling better.
    I’m with Penny. I’ll make my reservations for a window table at Chez Barrett, right now!
    XXOO Kat

  3. Julie L. says:

    Glad your dad is doing well!

    The only other state that is like Oregon about pumping gas is…NJ. And I’m a Jersey girl born and bred. I’ve never learned how to properly pump gas, so I am the complete opposite of you! I hate pumping my own gas!! I’m awful at it, I get flustered, don’t know how to pay for it, will I get gasoline on my shoes? I dread having to get gas on road trips! I admit, if I “have” to, I can do it, but it’s something I try to put off as long as I can. One time I drove away and forgot to put the gasoline cap back on and luckily my 11 year old son pointed out to me that he thought he heard something fall off the car. Luckily, I stopped the car and found it in the gutter! I really just wish gas stations would offer “full service” for those of us who are “self-serve challenged”.

    Happy new Year!

  4. Hi Juli, thanks. He’s hanging in there. Could be better, could be worse. I do agree full service should be an option however I want to pump my own gas! I’ve been doing it since the day I got my driver’s license. :)

  5. Kat and Penny – you are funny! Any time!

  6. Sandra Cox says:

    How nice of you to make those wonderful meals for your dad. I’m sure he feels blessed to have you, Julia.
    Wow, I didn’t know that about Oregon. That would be kinda weird.

  7. Tom Stronach says:

    I’m with the others, open a restaurant, I could come and be the dishwasher

    give dad a hug from us and stop whingeing about the attendants, sheesh xxxxx

  8. Well Sandra, the one thing he can do is eat. He lost like 20 pounds from his already skinny frame during his hospitalization and initial recovery. He still hasn’t gained it back. Plus he’s craving meat so meat it is.

  9. Sorry, Tom. My dad has first dibs on dishwasher. It’s the one thing he can do. He says it’s the only thing making him feel useful. I don’t like attendants. Kind of like I don’t like bathroom attendants handing me towels.

  10. I was born and raised in Idaho. When we moved to Oregon, it ticked me off to have to let the attendant pump my gas too. Now I’m lazy. I sit in the car and listen to my Audible book while they fill the tank.

  11. I know my mom and dad like it, Stephanie, but when they grew up there were attendants. By the time I got my license we had self-serve gas stations.
    I have yet to listen to audio books in my car. I really should.

  12. Holding his own after all he’s been through is actually good news, isn’t it?
    And with you cooking such wonderful meals, hey, he’s definitely on the right track.
    The not pumping your own gas in Oregon was a shocker to me…

  13. I know, Marylin, right? I’ve always pumped my own gas. I don’t know what to do if I have to stay in the car! My dad looks like he’s aging in reverse, kind of like Benjamin Button. It’s quite interesting.

  14. Amber Skyze says:

    I’m keeping your dad in my thoughts and prayers, Julia.
    I’m with Penny and Kat. I want a table for dinner too. :)

  15. Illegal to pump your own petrol? I remember when we still had attendants in Australia – but no more. I can pump my own fuel, but I’m generally cynical about self-serve. If I’m doing the job the business used to pay someone to do for them, are they paying me? Or discounting the product? I bet not… all that saved money goes straight into their profit margin, and I pay the same for less. I have to pump my own fuel, but I won’t use self-serve checkouts unless I’m desperate.

    Hope your Dad feels better soon!

  16. Beckey says:

    Pumping your own gas is illegal in Jersey too. I understand what you are saying on that note….

    Keeping you both in prayers & sending well wishes…

  17. Kerriann says:

    I would like to share a recipe for you & your father to jazz up the brussel sprouts if I may? You need: olive oil, garlic, vadallia onion, bacon, white wine, Peter Luger steak sauce, pinch brown sugar add last. Hope your dad feels well soon!
    Best Regards,

  18. Tim Dittmer says:

    I remember when the stations started the self-service option. It was a few pennies cheaper per gallon to pump your own. Of course, I remember the first time it cost over three dollars to fill up my VW. It was shocking.

    My best to you and your family, Julia. Take care.

  19. Thanks, Tim. I’ve always known self-service, although it took my parents a long time to accept them. They would drive out of their way to go to a full-service station. As far as gas prices? I close my eyes. Don’t even look when I fill up my car.

  20. Thank, Kerriann – and thanks for stopping by. The recipe sounds great.

  21. Thank you for your prayers and wishes, Beckey. Means a lot. I don’t think there are many states left with self-service stations.

  22. Hi Ciara – once upon a time self-service was cheaper. I doubt it makes much difference now. However I have noticed gas is about $.10 more per gallon here than back home. And California has some of the highest gas prices in the nation.

  23. Saving you a place, Amber!

  24. Diana Stevan says:

    There is something therapeutic about cooking for someone else, someone you love. Helps both of you, I’m sure. Thinking about you and your dad. I’m saying prayers for his getting well soon.

  25. Thank you, Diana. I’ve always found cooking to be therapeutic. And eating a wonderful meal with people you love is twice as therapeutic!

  26. So funny you should comment about not pumping your own gas–it’s the one of the many things I miss about Oregon whenever we visit the Bay Area. (In fact, we only just returned from our holiday visit two days ago.) While we were down there, my husband and I both mentioned missing the full service. I detest getting gas and am thrilled to let someone else stand out in the cold and get their hands dirty. I’m a grown woman, but I’m also just plain lazy. ;-)

  27. Too funny, Katherine! I’m from Iowa where we’ve had self-serve gas stations for years. It feels so weird to me to have to sit in the car, twiddling my thumbs… I feel like a, oh, I don’t know, a queen or something with a servant to pump my gas.