The few in on the secret
An hour later we arrived at the station. Babyface was there getting ready to fill up car number four. People were at the pumps looking pretty angry. Apparently the cheap gas had run out. At least that’s what the first excuse we got was. An Arab looking fellow who was working there ran out and began pulling the pumps out of people’s tanks. A few got yelled at him for touching their vehicles. It looked as if punches would be thrown, but it didn’t happen. More cars pulled up to cash in on this deal that was spreading by word of mouth. The worker intercepted each new customer saying that the pumps were out of order. This obviously was not true considering some had just put as much as 34 gallons in their tank and for under ten bucks!
The folks at the pumps refused to leave until they received gas at the price which was still indicated on the pump at 27 cents a gallon. They said someone spoke with the cops and the officer told them that those at the pumps should receive it at the current price. The Arab worker ran out with register tape in hand (which he was keeping very close to hide it from some) telling people to leave because they were closed, which was contrary to the neon sign in the window.
We stuck around a little longer until the worker and some of his cohorts got the price corrected, which should have just involved moving a decimal point on the computer. The crowd slowly disappeared as their dreams of dirt cheap gas were flushed down the drain. For several hours though in south St. Louis, the gas was cheaper than it was in Kuwait.