Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The EPA's War On Common Sense

I rarely post something in the first person, but sometimes it's needed.

A couple of days ago, I was warming up my wife's car.  I didn't check the gas when I started the car and it ran out.  I figured, no problem, I'll just go get a gas can, get a gallon of gas, then put it in, right?

I go to the store and buy a gas can.  They are a lot more expensive than they used to be, but I chalked it up to inflation.  Then I get to the gas station and open it up.  It looks like some kind of system that belongs on the space shuttle, I mean, that used to belong on the space shuttle when we used such things.  I put the gallon in anyway.

When I got home, I tried using the can.  The nozzle system was more complicated than I ever dreamed and all I accomplished was spilling about a pint of gasoline onto the ground.

At this point, I figured out that this must be the EPA's fault.  The private sector is best known for selling products that are easy to use and get easier over time.  The gas can used to be simple, a nozzle and a vent in the back.  It operated on the same principle as canned juice.  Open both ends for a smooth and easy pour.

Now it works on impossible to discern engineering principles.  As sure as I had just ruined my leather gloves by accidentally spilling gasoline all over the place, I smelled an EPA rat here.

Sure enough, I was right.  Long story short, the EPA forced mind numbing, California originating, standards on gas cans to do what?  Prevent spillage.  Apparently, all over the country, people are spilling gas from these stupid things.  I spilled more gas with the new can than in 40 years of life combined.

They also have a tendency to inflate in hot weather and rupture, spewing gas everywhere.  Why?  They are airtight.

And I still couldn't get gas in my car.  But my daughter came to the rescue.  She and her friends had run out of gas months before.  They also couldn't work the gas can, so they came up with a good solution.

Cut the bottom off of a water bottle and get a coat hanger.  Use the upside down bottle as a funnel while the coat hanger opens the tank.  Take the entire nozzle apparatus off the can and pour the gas out directly.  No muss, no fuss.  And try to find a safe place to dispose of the bottle and hanger.

Or, figure out where racing teams buy their gas cans.  They still use the old style.

Thanks EPA.  One more thing that you have done to make everyone's life a little more frustrating.  Now I will have to remember you more often than when my low flow toilet backs up.

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