Tampa, FL -- A Midwestern man plans to drive solo across the United States to make a point about gas prices.
"Gas really isn't that expensive," Ted Snorgel told reporters in a press conference from his truck on Monday morning, just minutes before he began the drive.
Snorgel has decided to drive from Tampa, Florida to Anchorage, Alaska, a journey that will take him over 4800 miles. Although about 1000 miles of his trip will be in Canada, most of the time he will be driving along interstates in the U.S.
The news that oil had risen to over $143 a barrel did not deter the thirty-three year old delivery man.
"People complain about how expensive gas is all the time. But it really isn't if you compare it to all the other crap people spend their money on. My neighbors buy a six pack of beer every day. That's only 72 ounces of fluid, a lot less than a gallon. And they are paying six or seven bucks for it. How can they complain about gas prices?"
Snorgel, a delivery man for an unspecified company, claims that gas prices have not affected his lifestyle at all, even though he has to pay for his own gas on deliveries and only makes $27,000 per year.
To drive his point home even harder, Snorgel will be driving an inefficient 1985 Ford diesel truck. "It gets 8 miles to the gallon, maybe 10 if I am lucky. But on this trip, I am going to try to use as much gas as possible."
Experts estimate that Snorgel will use over 500 gallons of gas and spend approximately $2500 on gas alone during his trip, or 14% of his annual takehome pay. After he adds food and lodging, that number will be well over $3000.
Snorgel plans to drive about twelve hours a day at an average speed of 70 mph. "Faster if there aren't any cops, but with all the publicity I am gonna get, I don't want to chance it." The trip will take about six days.
Several companies, such as In-Bev, the foreign brewer that tried to purchase Anheuser Busch by taking advantage of the weakened U.S. dollar, have offered to compensate Snorgel for his expenses, but he has refused.
"I even had a buddy say he would go with me and pay for half the gas. Hell no, I told him."