The first and second editions of Complete Idiot's Guide to Bridge by H. Anthony Medley comprised the fastest selling beginning bridge book, going through more than 10 printings. This updated Third Edition includes a detailed Guide to Bids and Responses, along with the most detailed, 12-page Glossary ever published, as well as examples to make learning the game even easier. Click book to order. Available in all bookstores and on Kindle.  


Is Top Tier Gas a Scam?

by Tony Medley


I was General Counsel for an oil company for several years. Basically they marketed gasoline. Although I never got into engineering or anything like that, one thought was paramount when gasoline was discussed, “gas is gas.” Everything else is marketing. Here’s what one internet commentator said, and I agree with him:


Oil companies spend lots of money explaining why their gas is better than the competition’s. Chevron’s gas, for example, is fortified with “Techron,” and Amoco Ultimate is supposed to save the planet along with your engine. But today more than ever, one gallon of gas is as good as the next.

True, additives help to clean your engine, but what the companies don’t tell you is that all gas has them. Since 1994 the government has required that detergents be added to all gasoline to help prevent fuel injectors from clogging. State and local regulators keep a close watch to make sure those standards are met; a 2005 study indicated that Florida inspectors checked 45,000 samples to ensure the state’s gas supply was up to snuff, and 99 percent of the time it was. “There’s little difference between brand-name gas and any other,” says AAA spokesperson Geoff Sundstrom.

What’s more, your local Chevron station may sell gas refined by Shell or Exxon Mobil. Suppliers share pipelines, so they all use the same fuel. And the difference between the most expensive brand-name gas and the lowliest gallon of no-brand fuel? Often just a quart of detergent added to an 8,000-gallon tanker truck.