Friday, December 26, 2008

Social Experiment

Steven and I made a long trip out to Albuquerque; our first stop on a two day journey to northern Utah. We decided to take the route that lead us through NM instead of OK KS & CO just in case weather decided to get ugly and we couldn't make it over the Rockies.

Needless to say the trip is boring - actually to the point of tedium. So we concocted a little social experiment as we were driving through west Texas. We thought it would be interesting to pull over after a long stretch of nothingness and just a mile and half before a gas station and feign being out of gasoline. We wanted to see how long it took for anyone to stop.

Once we stopped we called AAA to see how long it would be before they could come help they said it would be just over an hour (we had to make the experiment realistic - most people have access to a cell phone and would call for help). Then we waited to see if some sweet Samaritan would beat them.

We all got out of the car. We ate a few of our snacks. We tried to keep the kids out of surrounding cacti. We had awkward bathroom breaks. And we waited.

15 minutes have passed.


A half and hour has passed.


50 minutes after we stop, someone finally pulls over in with their motor home. He and his son get out and tell us they can pull us to the next town. Steven explains to them that we've already called for help and not to worry about us; someone would be here shortly. He also explained to him that he is the first person in almost an hour to stop and even ask if we're okay. Our Samaritan tells us, "I saw the kids and you just have to stop if little ones are involved."

What in the world was wrong with the other thousand cars that drove by us in that hour? I was a little disappointed in humanity.

Oh, and if you haven't already figured it out, there was no feigning. There really is nothing in all of west Texas. You can't tell yourself, "we'll get gasoline just around the next corner." Because there is no gasoline. For a really long time.

We're really awesome. And we feel really smart.

BTW, we're up to $840. Anyone else want in on this action.


Tim and Clarissa said...

Well last month when Tim and I were coming home from Utah to Albuqueruque our tire blew. A women with a small child in the back stopped minutes after we started to change the tire and asked if she could be of assistance. I thought she was crazy to stop with her little child. For all she knew we could have been crazies! So I guess there are a few good people in New Mexico. Nobody else stopped. In fact nobody even got in the other lane so not to hit Tim while changing the tire. That made me mad! Oh well we survived!


Ashley said...

If you are still in Utah and are going to go through Colorado on your way back we would love to see you! You can even stay with us if you want to. Hope the rest of your trip went well!

Janene said...

Yep, that is a long stretch of land. Sorry that you got stuck out there! Word to the wise, don't go through El Paso. We were idiots and tacked 3 hours on to our trip that way. We did see Mexico though! Have a good time and a safe return

Kaylene said...

I LOVE driving that way! Pop the kids on a movie, pop in the iPod, and enjoy the scenery! Hehe.

OK, now to the REAL reason I came to your blog. :) Have you seen the Joy to Everyone music video? About 2:14 in I SWEAR it's Steven. LOL! Let me know if it is, K? Such a awesome video, I really enjoyed it over the Christmas season.

Jamie&Gina Adams Family said...

On one of Gina and my trips back to Phoenix, we stopped at a small gas station just outside of Tucson. The place was packed. We had to wait 10 minutes in line just to fuel up at the only two pumps. As we waited, we noted a mini-van at one end of the parking lot with a flat tire. There was a mom with a broken leg, her 12 year old daughter, 9 year old son, and a girl toddler trying to help this woman in a cast change a tire. There were rows of bikers on Harley's sitting there drinking sodas and watching her. As we sat there, dozens of men and a few "burly" women passed by without even saying hello. After Gina and I got our gas we pulled up next to her and asked if we could help. She burst into tears and begged for assistance. She said that she and her family had been sitting there for 4 hours and no one had even offered to help. Gina tended the toddler and I gave a 12 year old girl a lesson in tire changing as she watched over my shoulder. I was done in about 20 minutes. As I got back in my car I looked over at the guys on the Harley's and said, "Clearly the age of chivalry is DEAD!" They all looked at me and almost in stereo said, "all she had to do was ask..." WOW! What has our world come to???

Jodie Haney said...

Crazy. We make the trip for Houston To El Paso ever now and gas, food or shelter. Pack a tent and a gas can, right!?!?!
I have felt that way about humanity sometimes. I choose to think it is ignorance rather than indifference. That helps.

Brekke said...

I thought that was a rather odd "experiment" to suggest - especially with kids in tow. I'm glad you were okay.

Also, I think I might want in on the action. I'm still trying to decide on a plan of attack.

Julianne said...

When I was about 13 we drove to UT from CA at Christmas in two cars. My 17 year old sister was driving the car I was in (with another sister) and she slid off the road and got stuck in the snow. So here we were three young girls stuck (our parents were 3/4 of a mile ahead of us - and this was before cell phones) with everyone passing us in the snow. Someone finally pulls over and pushes us back on the road. We meet our parents up a few miles at a gas station and notice lots of the cars who passed us and one of them was a family we knew from church. It is kind of scary how people don't stop to help.

Kristen said...

Um, not to put salt in your wound but a lady stood in church to bare her testimony today about how grateful she is to live HERE :) and how on her way home from the grocery store, she had 8 people (that is EIGHT) stop to help her when she had car trouble. That was in a 10 minute period. The woman was waiting for the first young man to return with anti-freeze so the others were off the hook but just a thought. Hee Hee. Only pointing this out because I bawled like a baby when I came home to my quiet empty house after you guys left! So don't get mad over my not so subliminal messages.
Love ya

P.S. Macy thinks it is stupid you live in Texca. She can't pronounce it and I told her that you had to go back there because that is where Steven works. Her solutions is that he can go to work with Matt. 3 year olds are so smart.

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