There was a time when I used to go to my local Hess gas station. I would get gasoline, I would get some tasty treats, and on at least one occasion, I earned a pair of free New York Yankees tickets for three gasoline fill-ups. Oh yeah, and there were the cool Hess toy trucks every year. I keep thinking about collecting them, and then after about 15 minutes of thinking about them, I change my mind.
Then, in 2014, the company that owns Speedway gas stations purchased all the Hess stations in our area, and turned them all into Speedway shops. Okay, I guess I can live with this, I guess …
See, for the past four years, I’ve kinda felt that the Speedway gas experience was about as wonderful as a non-anesthetic root canal. With dirty dental tools. And your dentist has bad breath, and the dental assistant is wearing some perfume that has a hybrid mixture of Eau de Sweat Sox and Essence of Old Barn.
How did I hate Speedway? Let me count the ways.
First off, their hot food borders on barely edible. If it weren’t for their breakfast pizzas (which, when compared to the other gas station breakfast food, is quite palatable), the Speedway hot eats would border on torture food. The sandwich buns are at various levels of staleness, the roller grill food could double as a labrador’s second-best-used fetching stick, and whatever they’re calling “Applewood Smoked Bacon” is none of the above. Plus, all their “hot” food is only hot because it’s cooked somewhere else (I suspect Ohio), then quick-frozen and shipped to the gas stations here, where someone probably micro-nukes it in the local Cuisinart and puts it in the heated glass display enclosure. Yum-o.
Cleanliness? Yeah, no. Like the time I boycotted them for a month because one of the managers decided it was too much of an inconvenience for him to use a COVID-proof plexiglass barrier at the cashier’s terminal. And there have been times where I’ve seen oranges on display that could grow their own penicillin, if you get my meaning.
Oh, and then there’s the glorified point system. Buy six sodas, get the seventh one for free, so long as you use your trackable Speedway card – or you end up using the shopping points of the stuck-up tartlet who thought she was a 10 when she was barely a 5.5.
Oh, and if you do get to accumulate enough points to earn some sort of bonus – like, let’s say, a discount on your gas – be prepared as Speedway found a way to screw you out of your discount.
So word on the street is that the company behind 7-Eleven gas and convenience stores were taking over all the local Speedways (and the AMPM Mini-Marts as well), I was hesitantly pleased. If it means bulldozing all these grimy Speedway shops, then so be it.
Because, let’s face it. The only saving grace for Speedway, as far as I’m concerned, is their breakfast pizza – even if it’s made in Ohio and sent to the stores frozen and they thaw it out there, at least it’s got somewhat of an edible content to it.
That’s your challenge, 7-Eleven. Get me a decent breakfast pizza and I’ll be first in line when you finally take that big red S off the signage, and we can all kick Speedway in their big red S.
Oh, thank heaven.
That, and at least 7-Eleven left the Stewarts and the Cumberland Farms stores alone. 😀