Tuesday, March 19, 2013

This Week In EV Valley; Surveys, Does Anyone Ever Win The Prize?

The rock band Heart has announced they will be touring with Jason Bonham, son of Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham.  Bonham will play a 30 minute Zep tribute at the end of the Heart Concert.  Despite the WA State roots, early tour info shows the closest they will approach the Emerald area is Portland, OR. Like wow, what is with that??

My inability to keep any job long term (interest or circumstance) has allowed me to  earned a pension from two different companies. It wont be much but it will be two separate paychecks both starting at 65 (Social Security says my full benefits will not start until I am 66 years and 10 months old...).

My dad retired from the Army then worked civil service, retiring from there as well. So, he is set. My old neighbor retired at 50 something from Boeing collecting $40,000 a year in pension payments. (no wonder planes cost so much!)   Yesterday, Boeing workers approved a new contract where Boeing employees hired in this department after March 1, 2013 will have a 401K plan.  Now, we have only ourselves to rely on to put away the money for our golden years.  Guessing, Boeing paying as well as they do will have a generous matching program to help with that.

Wow, times sure have changed. This all reminds me of the struggle for EVs to exist in this "Old World."  The reason pensions went away is because of the long term cost.  The reason EVs are struggling is the same thing but backwards. Its the "entrenched" money that is desperately holding onto the legacy gasoline based car.

Like 401K's, it is now up to us to manage and promote EVs.  Writing to your congressman to let them know their EV stance will control your vote is one way. Now, we need to work on that "entrenched" money  and let them know that if they dont support EVs, we wont support them.

One of the jobs I have is inventorying the drugs at the Walgreen's Pharmacy's in Western WA.  This as you can guess can keep one very busy because there are a lot of them!  Which means the opportunity to purchase items is a common one for me and Walgreen's also provides you an opportunity to fill out a survey asking about your experience while visiting their stores. The info for the survey is printed on your receipt and you can go online or call their 1-800 number.  So, naturally all my surveys to them (and for any other store that offers it) has either

As an EV driver, I can't tell you how invaluable it is to me that you are hosting an EV charging site.  When making any unplanned  purchases the primary factor controlling my decision is convenience. However, Walgreen's is always my choice because of the charging stations. Granted, I will only get a few miles of range for the short time it takes me to get what I need and my fondest wish is that you encourage your other locations to do the same. Once again, thank you for recognizing the importance of supporting a great, clean and green transportation option for the future!

As an EV driver, the ability to grab a quick charge can be the difference between a stressful drive home with the  minimal range or knowing that I can get the few extra miles I need while visiting your establishment.  As an electric vehicle charging station host, there would be little doubt in anyone's mind concerning your environmental stance.  Several of your competitors have taken on that responsibility to help support a method of transportation that is cheap, efficient, clean and powered by homegrown electricity in a very green way.  I frequently make unplanned purchases and the primary reason for the business I choose is convenience and location and that means several choices.  A charging station makes the "tiebreaker" an easy choice.  
OK, so I guess the real reason for this post is that I need advice. I want to definitely give the business the impression that if they dont have a charging station that they are pretty much not on the list, but I dont want to sound like I am giving them an ultimatum, so am looking for some advice. Do you think I have gotten the point across in a "semi PC" way?

Now, dozens of stores offer a survey and offer anywhere from great prizes ($10,000) to "is that a prize?" (free whopper IF you buy something else...never guess where that is from eh?) Now, I have to be honest with ya. Until I started campaigning for charging stations via survey, I hadn't really noticed how many were doing this but having filled out about 50 or so in the past month or so and have yet to win anything!  Wondering if they are dissing my entry based on my comments?

But considering the free charging from Walgreen's and others, I guess I am a winner!


  1. You'll need to add a few more zeroes to the number of surveys filled out to begin to have decent odds! ;-)

  2. Jay; I am getting there. Until I started doing the surveys, I was completely unaware of how many different companies offered them. Walmart, Safeway, Target, Albertson's, etc. Look at your sales receipt. You never know. You might win some day or at least get a business to install a charger in your neighborhood!