When I saw this little sticker on a gas station pump last week, I thought it had to be a joke. Thieves are running around town cutting fuel lines on cars to nick gasoline? Oh, I believe that every once in a great while some desperate person might try to get a gallon or two. But as a trend big enough to merit an orange warning sticker? That seemed implausible: gasoline is heavy, after all, and even just a few gallons could be bulky to carry, making it kind of hard to run from Officer Bluto. So I laughed when I saw the sticker, and thought it was so funny that I’d take a picture.
I shouldn’t have laughed. It’s happening all over the place. These gas thefts from passenger vehicles reflect the combination of economic hard times and the increasing value of energy. People adapt to the times.