Why We Can’t Quit

Oil Companies Adding Nicotine To Gas

Exxon/Mobil, Shell Issue Denials


Addicted to oil – more than a metaphor? 
Richieville News Service – ATLANTA
Researchers at Center for Disease Control announced today that they had found high levels of nicotine in gas sold at service stations throughout the country. The highly addictive substance, which is produced by tobacco and other plants, does not naturally occur in petroleum, nor is it a byproduct of the gasoline refining process. Oil company executives were quick to deny any responsibility.
“We have no idea how it got there,” said Exxon spokesperson Sheri Lee Braithwaithe, speaking to reporters at company headquarters in Irving, Texas. “The suggestion that we would add a substance to gasoline to make consumers crave the burning of fossil fuels is simply preposterous. However, people do tell us that it makes driving much more pleasurable.”
The CDC scientists stumbled upon the nicotine by accident as they were performing a series of experiments on rats relating to the transmission of flu viruses. “We had to transport the rats back and forth between two locations,” explained Dr. Peter Samuelson, chief researcher on the project. “We noticed that if we used a Ford Explorer they were calm for hours after the trip. But if we used a Toyota Yaris, they ran around like crazy until we took them for a drive again.”
Dr. Samuelson said his team was still studying the exact mechanism by which nicotine in gas might enter the bloodstream of drivers but he said they suspected it was simply coming out of vehicles’ exhaust pipes. This would have the effect of making cars with better fuel efficiency less satisfying to drive than those with lower miles per gallon ratings.
“I just got a Honda Fit,” Dr. Samuelson noted, “and though I like spending less money at the pump, afterwards I find myself driving around aimlessly for hours. I’m probably just trying to get my nicotine fix for the day.”
Executives in Detroit also denied any involvement in the nicotine additive scandal, but several said privately that they wished they had thought of it.  Insisting on anonymity, one conceded that it would certainly help U.S. car manufacturers who once again have been caught unprepared as Americans switched to smaller, more fuel-efficient vehicles.  “You can buy one of those 50 mile-per-gallon hybrids,” he said, “but you’re going to find yourself jonesing for that big, gas burning SUV.”
Meanwhile, Exxon spokesperson Braithwaite announced that next week the company would begin selling gas with three new ratings: full flavor, mild and extra light.

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