Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Do You Remember SERVICE Stations?


Shell Oil Company 1950's Premium Steak Knife Set Mint
Filling up your car with gas was quite different when I was younger. When you pulled into the Service Station, a young fellow would run out, ask a few questions about what you wanted, and, while the gas was pumping, there was a ballet of pampering going on.

He checked the oil, offered to top if off, if it were low, checked the other fluids, and the water in the radiator, too. Then, if you wanted him to, he checked your tire pressure and aired them up, if needed. He always washed down and wiped off the front and rear windshields, too, and the really good ones wiped down the headlights, too.

And, to top it all off, if they were having an advertising campaign, he gave you some kind of cheap parting gift for shopping with them! Those vintage steak knives, beverage glasses, and trinkets are highly collectible today.

You paid the young man for the gas, and you were on your way, never having left your automobile.

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5 comments:

Chana said...

Customer service is something so lacking now a days. I fill up @ Co-Op and they are wonderful but they don't give you free gifts. I never heard of that before and that sounds so nice. Probably, only, because of the nature of the gift-it's thoughtful and nice...

Dirty Butter said...

You have to remember that we go to Filling Stations, not Service Stations. Makes a big difference, doesn't it, Chana.

I wasn't old enough to drive back in those days, but maybe they got tipped for good service, which would partly explain the hussle. But it was still impressive.

As for the free gifts, banks used to do that, too! Now they charge for everything!!!

Dirty Butter said...

I asked my hubby about the tipping, and he said some people probably did tip, but it was not a general practice. So all that wonderful service was just part of the expected normal course of doing business!! Oh, how things have changed.

Mama Mouse said...

I'm sure my mother had a couple of the steak knives shown in the picture!! We always used Shell gas so we HAD to have had some!

My oldest son worked at a party store that also had gas pumps and he 'served' the customers. I don't think he got tips ... and I don't remember ever tipping any of our 'pump jockeys'. Probably should have .... but I don't think it was common to do so in our neighborhood.

Dirty Butter said...

Thanks for stopping by, Mama Mouse! The knives came from my in-laws house - the pack rats extraordinaire. We spent a year selling all the stuff from their house on eBay, not counting the furniture- other family members divided all that up!

Yes, we probably should have tipped them, but we took all that great service for granted back then, didn't we. Now, we'd be flabberghasted.