17 Aug 2012

The 44 gallon drum in the back of the F350

17 August 2012

Two things stopped the sale of petrol in the mid 1970’s. The Oil Crisis, and Wildcat Strikes.

Both are foreign concepts in these easy days, but I remember petrol rationing. We had a car with an even last number, and the Ford F350 gig truck truck had the odd number. A Cleveland 300 cubic inch six cylinder Ford engine demanded a healthy flow of juice, so I strapped a 44 gallon drum in the back of the pantech and got a hand pump to fill the gerry can, which then was used to pour gas into the tank far too often.

Wife took car to servo on even days, filled up and came back so I could siphon petrol out of the car into the can. I got good at sucking on the hose without a mouth of juice. I really know about the fumes too, and can’t imagine why desperates inhale petrol fumes to get high.

Then there was a $10 limit on fuel sales, enforced by the dudes who did the filling. There were no self serves back then. We juggled petrol for the better part of 3 months, and I kept that 44 gallon drum in the garage for years, just in case.

The back of the truck stunk of petrol, the 44 didn’t seal 100 percent. Highly amazingly we didn’t explode since my colleagues all smoked while we loaded.

Those were the days – weren’t they?


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