So, I went to the gas station this morning to fill my car and realized one thing I really Really REALLY dislike is the invention of the video-embedded gas pump.  Does everyone have these??

When you activate the pump, the screen lights up and a “host” appears and starts “Welcome to Shell…” and then goes into a spiel extolling their wonderful $4.50/gal product.

Now this wouldn’t be so bad I suppose (how much white noise is there in our lives?) – but the truly maddening thing is when there’s 10 pumps all going off at different times.. “Welcome to Shell…” “…better than other low quality gasolines..” “Welcome to Shell…” “…keeping tires properly inflated can lead to…” “Welcome to Shell…” “…one way Shell is helping the envir….” “Welcome to Shell…” – talk about maddening!

There’s a circle of Hell full of these things, I’m sure.

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28 thoughts on “Cacophony

  1. Our Shell station added this lovely feature in the last couple of months. Annoying as all get out! Guess they are trying to distract us from the ridiculous amount it costs to fill up our tanks!

  2. Of all the things I miss from the city, that is not one of them. I always preferred the stations that showed CNN or Headline news. One or two I found showed local stations, those were usually the independent stations that used to be part of a chain.

  3. oh, I can't stand them either. with all the money these companies are
    making, you'd think they would provide customers with something more
    useful than pumps that talk over each other. so.annoying.

  4. Ugh. So annoying. Makes me feel like I am being forced to be one of the future-humans from WALL-E, who are constantly surrounded by screens marketing stuff at them.

  5. Thankfully we don't have them in Spring Hill….but they had the audio versions in Columbus, Ohio where I used to travel for my old job. There was a button you could press to turn it off once it started, but I think people went postal on those buttons, b/c after a while the "plastic" over the buttons became dented (like someone took their anger out on it) and you couldn't disable them…..UGHHH. Like we need more noise in our lives.

  6. I hate these, but at Shell it partially has to do with the fact I KNOW the guy (host in the lab coat). Let's just say he dated a close friend of mine, he's a jerk, and he's made TONS of money from being the Shell guy. Urgh. One more reason for me (and my friend) to cringe at the pump.

  7. HAHAahaha. I actually kind of like the videos, but I've never experienced hearing them all go off at (nearly) the same time. Another invention you have an evil marketer to thank for. ;-)

  8. Between those voices, the gas prices and being asked every 10 seconds if I want to buy a car wash, no wonder people are always disgruntled with road rage. we're pissed off before we even get on the highway…

  9. Wow. Never thought I'd be *glad* to live in a state that's so far behind California. I'd want to punch that thing in the… face?The gas stations in Brian's town have TVs, which fascinates silly country bumpkin me. Whoo-ee, look at them there new fangled gas stayshuns wif der fancypants news programs blaring!!! *shoots pistols into the air*

  10. Wow … never thought I'd be so glad to live in the boonies, but I've never been talked to by a gas pump. I usually just listen to the voices in my head that say "please make it stop, please make it stop" as I watch the total spiralling upwards.
    So, the big question is … did the company intend for "Shell-Hell" to become a buzz word?

  11. Most of the stuff I can think of would either be ineffective or would get you arrested, but yes, Project Mayhem all the way!!!- Smear the screen with vasoline so it's too blurry to see- Similarly, glue/superglue pieces of paper over the screen that say "Sorry, Pump Broken, Use Other Pump" (do it to ALL the pumps in the station)- Screwdriver through the speaker (old Navy trick for silencing unwanted alarms)- Hijack the screens so they show reruns of "Everybody Loves Raymond" instead of the Shell commercialAnd FYI, the "Project Mayhem" idea supposedly originated from the Cacophony Society. And your post is entitled Cacophony. Coincidence? I THINK NOT.

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