I am horrible about waiting until the gas light flashes on my car’s dashboard before filling the gas tank, particularly since my new car shows me how many more miles I can travel. For example, even though the gas gauge registered less than one-quarter of a tank of gas yesterday, I saw that I could still travel about 80 miles. Based on that information, I didn’t stop at a gas station, even though there’s one only a mile from my house. This morning, I jumped in the car to run errands, and again, although the gas gauge was flirting with “empty,” I continued to cruise on by at least three different gas stations. Finally, when I started home at the end of the afternoon, a message flashed on my dashboard and on the Chevrolet MyLink screen informing me of the car’s low fuel level. The MyLink screen even asked if I wanted to access a list of nearby gas stations. As a result, I figured that I’d better take the time to stop and get gas. So, I turned into the nearest gas station and proceeded to fill up the tank. As I stood beside my car, watching the numbers on the pump spin, I wondered why I always wait to do this. I mean, it’s not like this is the first time (or even the second time) that I’ve done this and it’s not like a trip to the gas station is some awful, negative experience (depending on the price of gas). What’s the deal? Is it just because it’s easier to put off those things that seem so simple? Or, have I just gotten so spoiled by the information provided by my car? I mean, with the push of a button, I know a lot about how my car is functioning. In addition to the features available in the car, I also have the myChevrolet app on my iPhone. With this app, I can see where my car is currently located, tire pressure, status of the life of the oil, fuel efficiency, and any recalls. The app also tells me how many gallons of gas are in my tank and how far that will take me. Do I simply have too much information at my fingertips? Have I been lulled into complacency so that when I pull up this information, it doesn’t really sink in until a specific message flashes that lets me know that it really is crunch time?
Maybe it’s not about the access to technology at all and I just like to procrastinate. Maybe there are so many other things that I’d rather think about and do (like which book am I going to read next and the lessons I’m planning for the new semester and when my friends and I are going to meet for dinner) that paying attention to that gas gauge just isn’t high on my list of priorities. Maybe I’m just overthinking this situation as I wait for the gas pump to click off. I do suspect, though, that this same experience will probably happen again next week when my car has to remind me that yes, it’s time for a fill-up again.