I jumped out of my humble economy-style car to fill it up with unleaded and before I was able to slide my debit card in the slot, I was approached by a middle-aged woman who was in a panic.
"Can you help me pump my gas?" she asked.
I thought for a minute that she thought I was a gas station attendent but I wasn't dressed like one. I also realized that I can't think of a single gas station that has an attendent where I live.
"Why, what's wrong?" I wondered.
"I'm from Oregon, and I've never pumped gas before." She confessed.
From my research I've found that this is a phenomena that exists in only two states in our great country -- Oregon and New Jersey.
I'm not familiar with why New Jersey prevents the common citizen from pumping their own gas, but Oregon approaches it from a safety perspective. They require a permit and license for those who handle certain types of combustibles. Public safety is a huge concern for Oregon. It it also interesting to note that Oregon law allows you to decide if you want to end your life with the help of a physician, (assisted suicide) but does not allow you to pump your own gas.
"Sure, I'll show you how to pump gas; it's easy." I said to her. After all, I firmly believe that if you give man fire you will keep him warm for a day...but if you light a man on fire you will keep him warm for the rest of his life.
"I don't want to know how to do it, I just want you to pump the gas for me." She explained further.
What a lovely woman. She wanted me to stop was I was doing and be responsible for her ignorance. She sees her problem as my emergency.
I told her, "I'll fill up your car if you promise to drive straight to the border and never come back."
She looked for someone else to help her fill up her car.