Monday, 26 September 2011

Charging for Gas

Excitement! In Houston!

I've just come back from the supermarket. That's not it. That was only moderately exciting and only then because of the exchange with the man in the cheese counter that went decidedly frosty when we simultaneously realised we were both correcting each other's pronunciation of 'parmesan' (well, I was saying 'parmesan', he was saying something else).

No, the excitement occurred in the car park where I found a new installation! An electric fuelling station for cars no less! I know! In Houston, TX, the Coruscant of the US petrochemical industry. This must be how Howard Stableford or Maggie Philbin must have felt like I wondered as I instinctively went over for a closer look.

If it looks small and cute, a bit like a toy version of a grown-up's petrol station, then I should point out that it is. Like the tiny, shiny electric car they have plugged in. I spoke to the man (a silver-haired, moustachioed man, as if they hired him just to look mature and reassuring) and he went on at some length about voltage and socket specifications and so forth. The gist of it was, I think, buy a Japanese car and pay extra to get the bigger spout (it's NOT a spout, but you know) because then it would refuel faster - 40 miles in 15 minutes. If that doesn't sound terribly good, then consider that stations like this are for 'topping up' and one mainly charges one's car overnight at home. And the electricity has still got to be generated somehow of course but let's not be churlish. Mr Moustache tells me they plan to have fifty of these dotted around Houston within two years and I say good luck to them.

Of course, I'm his worst nightmare being a) already persuaded and b) unable to afford to buy an electric car anyway, but that doesn't stop me being excited and out of the goodness of my heart here's the link to the company's website.

Not living in California, or the Future, this is the first one I've ever seen and there was a moment, when I asked the man if I could take a picture, that I felt the temporal differential between my current self, all excited and startled, and my embarrassed future self who muttered "What are you like, it's just an electric car refuelling thingy; there's one on every corner in Space Year 2025." And I have to admit, this was compounded when I discovered the damn thing has been there for three weeks and I hadn't noticed.

And, for all I know, they're two-a-penny where you are too, but I don't care. There's one here, in HOUSTON.

How exciting!

No comments:

Post a Comment