Thursday, August 24, 2006

Road Trip!

My wife and I just took the kids on our first family road trip. We did the classic first trip (at least here in MN) and went to see Mount Rushmore and the Black Hills of SD. All in all it was a great trip and everyone had a wonderful time.

One of the little things that I notice any time I hit the road is how the businesses one finds along the highway change slightly from one region to another. The various service businesses that dot the freeways gradually morph from those that are familiar to other regional brands that are the same, but different.

I am always amused by the names that folks come up with to distinguish their brand from the others of the same thing that are already in business elsewhere, particularly convenience stores. There seems to be some unwritten rule followed by convenience stores whereby the name must reference both the gasoline and snacks that they have for sale.

For example, here in MN we have stores named Food-N-Fuel, which is quite bland but straightforward. Another similar example is Tank N' Tummy. Then there are some that just sound a bit odd:

Pump 'N Munch

Pump 'N Pak

Kum & Go

The kids couldn't figure out why mommy and daddy were snickering any time we were on the lookout for a place to stop for gas, and we didn't quite feel like explaining.


wunelle said...

"Pump 'n Pak" HAHAHAHAHA! I just can't keep a straight face with that one! (My kids would be basket cases.)

WI, I notice, has been slow to adopt the big city convenience store, though Brainerd had them over a decade ago. That Holiday station at 371 & Co. Rd. 77 is the quintessential do-all convenience store. We're finally getting these in Appleton. But even Wisconsinites are smart enough to use titles like "Express." Of course, "Pack" is a sacred word in chedd-o-lachia.

Jeffy said...

wunelle - you must not be paying attention. The land of cheese is well-stocked with convenience stores of this sort - just not so many which such fun names. You've got PDQ, Stop N Go, and Kwik Trips all over the place. - heck, Kwik Trip is even headquartered in Appleton.

Maybe they even sell giant jugs of Diet Coke.

Anonymous said...


I thought "Pump 'N Pack" was located in Sin Francisco.

And sorry, Jeffy, nothin' compares to the Holiday Station of which wunelle speaks. Nothin'.

-A. Random