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a silent salute: The audience "claps" at Joke Night during Deaf Awareness week. Click Arts&Life for a link to story. / Photo by Leah Lopshire

Today's word on journalism

December 15, 2008

As part of my own personal "war on Christmas" (which a Utah state senator has offered legislation to outlaw), the WORD celebrates the season by going on hiatus until January. May all out days be merry and bright, and here’s to a safe, healthy and saner New Year. HoHoHo!

Empty Minds: "Of all the people expressing their mental vacuity, none has a better excuse for an empty head than the newspaperman: If he pauses to restock his brain, he invites onrushing deadlines to trample him flat. Broadcasting the contents of empty minds is what most of us do most of the time, and nobody more relentlessly than I."

--Russell Baker, Pulitzer-winning columnist

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Feedback and suggestions--printable and otherwise--always welcome. "There are no false opinions."

Bargain shopping for gasoline is still a smart move

By Jeff Eddington

November 21, 2008 | In the past month gas prices have dropped dramatically, but that doesn't mean the price every gas station is offering is the best deal.

On Nov. 21, a quick comparison found that there is a 16- to 18-cent difference in the price of a gallon of regular unleaded within a five-block range. So how does one make sure they are getting the best deal on a gallon of gasoline? Here are a six tips that will assist in getting the best deal all the time.

1 - Shop around. Make a note of the gas stations with the lowest prices as you are running errands, these gas staions generally will have consistently lower prices all the time.

2 - Fill your gas tank before you need to. Many times consumers pay more for gas because they have no other options. The most convenient gas stations are typically the most expensive. If you wait until your car is on empty your options are limited.

3 - Use membership cards. Many gas stations now have membership cards that will save a few cents per gallon. Some grocery stores will also offer discounts on gas when you spend a certain amount in their store.

4 - Don't use a higher octane rating than neccesary. Many people feel that putting premium gasoline, which costs more, with a higher octane rating in their car is a good practice when the opposite can be true. Many cars are specifically designed to run on a certain octane, deviating from the manufactuer recomendations can decrease engine performance and lower gas mileage, not to mention waste money at the pump. Check your automobiles owners manual for the exact ocate rating recommended.

5 - Use websites such as On this website users submit information on the cost of gas at local gas stations so you can shop around before you leave your house.

6 - Make sure you perform regular maintenance. Proper air inflation in the tires, new air filters and regular tune ups can help squeeze extra miles out of each gallon of gas. For more information on how to make your car a fuel miser the U.S. Department of Energy has a Web site of tips that will help lower your gas bill.

While gas prices are relatively cheap now it is no time to stop being a bargain shopper, after all an 18 cent difference in the cost of 20 gallons of fuel can equate to hundreds of dollars per year.


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