Five Things More Expensive Than Gas
It’s really an exciting time for water-cooler talk. Hillary calls it quits, a heat wave hits the East Coast, and gas prices are doing their very own imitation of that Mountain Climber game from the Price is Right. Of the three, I think gas prices truly have the staying power to be part of office chatter for quite some time.
Gas prices have risen from $1.34 just under eight years ago, (Hmm, what happened eight years ago?) to a staggering nationwide average of just more than $4—an pproximate 64 percent increase. In an effort to help everyone cope, I’ve put together a little list of five things more expensive than gas. Perhaps it will provide a little perspective and give each of us something to give up instead of our addiction to gas. (Oh, yeah, two oilmen moved to Washington).
Diet Mountain Dew: While not a staple of all diets, I do find the Dew helps me get through a sluggish, hot afternoon. With a 20 oz. bottle running $1.25 in the vending machine, I make that out to be a full $8 dollars a gallon. Which, to me, begs the question: How can soda made in a factory cost more than a fossil fuel pumped out of the ground and refined 12 ways to Sunday?
Milk: This is an easy comparison because both gas and milk come in the standard gallon—even if milk is a product that has its own artificial price controls. A gallon of organic milk was listed on Wegmans supermarket Web site for $5.79. Wegmans started in my home town, Canandaigua, N.Y., so I felt the need to include a mention.
Starbucks Coffee: Who is more evil, Exxon-Mobile or the venti-sized coffee house’s founder Howard Schultz? With a 16 oz. grande cup of joe running $1.98 ($15.84 per gallon), it might just be Schultz. Imagine if I ran the numbers on a shot of expresso. (Okay, I did and a gallon of expresso would cost just shy of $50 a gallon).
Ketchup: I know there isn’t a big outcry about the cost of ketchup (yet), but it seemed more fun to figure out than bottled water or iced tea. A 24 oz. bottle of Annie’s Naturals Ketchup comes in at $2.99 making a whole gallon retail at a price point of $15.94. It is good ketchup, so this one may actually be worth the cost.
Old Spice: Now, I don’t use Old Spice, and probably won’t start doing so at any point in the near future, but I was curious how it ranked on the supply-and-demand-driven consumer market. A 4.25 oz. bottle of the original will cost $4.29. Which, considering the highly intoxicating aroma, may seem worthwhile, but, when the math is all said and done, every dad’s favorite cologne leads the list at $129 per gallon.
In any case, I hope this helped put the gas crisis into perspective. Maybe the point is not that we’re paying too much, maybe the problem is that we’re simply using too much. (And, of course, it’s a good thing cars don’t run on Old Spice, expresso or ketchup.)