I might just be the first person ever to shut down a 24 hour 7 days a week famous gas station back in 1980 just to get a cup of coffee from Dunkin Donuts across the street. It was about 2 am on this cold brisk wintry Wednesday morning and I needed a cup of petro to keep me up. So I decided to just turn off the lights inside the lobby and the outside lights over the pumps to make it look like we were closed and walked across the street to get my caffeine fix.
As I was standing there on a short line waiting for my coffee and a donut, I looked over to the gas station just to make sure no one was there when I saw two cars pull up to the pumps. They were there for a minute or so till one driver got out and walk toward the lobby and looked through the glass. He then went for the door and that’s when I realized…I didn’t lock it.
At first I thought I saw him go to the bathroom but the second driver from the other car got out and I knew what was going to happen next. He put the pump handle in his car and started pumping his own gas. I figure I be out of double D’s before they would leave, but before you know it, the guy inside started taking the Hess trucks by the boxes. The passenger got out and he ran inside and started grabbing them.
When I saw that, I ran out yelling “YO” really loud like that was going to stop them when two more guys got out of the car. As I got closer to them they seem to get bigger in size. I was only five feet 8 inches tall and one hundred and fifty pounds soak and wet at the time, and they looked like Arnold Schwarzenegger and Lou Ferrigno ready to do some serious ass kicking, and that’s when I did what any other responsible gas station attendant would do…did an about-face and ran back to Dunkin Donuts.
I wasn’t going to get my ass kicked over those toy trucks that’s for sure. So I just stood there inside the lobby of Double D’s when they not only took a bunch of trucks by the arm full, but had the balls to pump gas in their car. Then I realize something. I forgot about the second car that pulled up that pumped his own gas…and he was gone. Then it dawned on me… I was getting robbed…well I wasn’t… but Mr. Hess was!
After everybody got what they wanted they left. It was now safe to walk over and check out the damage. Over 20 trucks taken and about $30 of gas. I felt like Lucy Riccardo and had lots of explaining to do in the morning when the day shift manager shows up. You see, during the midnight shift all customers had to have the exact amount because we didn’t carry any change and there was a sign above the safe saying just that…then it hit me.
I knew I was going to get fired once the manager finds out that I single-handedly shut down a major 24 hour gas station franchise known throughout the country, and I needed money to get me by till I found another job, so I took whatever money was inside the safe. I called the cops and told them that thieves took a bunch of trucks, gas and $160.00 from inside the safe. When they asked me how they managed to get the money from the safe, I already had an answer for that.
There is a padlock under the safe and I always forgot to lock it…well not always but most of the time. They just got lucky when they checked to see if they could take any money…and they did. That was good enough for them and they left. But wasn’t good enough for the manager…4 hours later…I got fired. So there I was, standing at the bus stop in my Hess uniform heading back to my room I was renting out of a hotel, wondering how far will 160 dollars was going to take me…trust me…not very far at all.