Back in May I made a trip up to the Florida Panhandle to cover the BP oil spill when the well had only been gushing for a couple of weeks. Along the way I passed several BP stations, some still doing a brisk business while others were boarded up or closed. Since it had been a short time since the spill, I doubted there was any connection to those that were closed, and this was before the boycotts began. Still, deep down inside I was glad they were closed, and sickened when I saw the ones that were still open and had lots of customers. Especially when there were so many other brands available to choose from, some right across the street. I probably don’t have to tell you that I was not about to go anywhere near a BP station myself.
Now it’s been over two months and as we all know, the gusher is bigger than we were led to believe and one of the worst in history. There aren’t that many BP stations around where I live so I haven’t been paying too much attention to local stations to see what kind of business they’re doing here. However, last week while on vacation I was traveling on the Pennsylvania turnpike with my family and we saw our share of them along the way. On one particular exit, we got off twice on two different days, coming and going. During our second stop we noticed something different. There was a BP station there during the first stop, but the next day when we passed through we saw this:
I thought to myself, hey “Shell” station! I could have sworn you were a BP station just yesterday! Oh wait, you WERE a BP station just yesterday. Could it be you still are?
Yes please, pay no attention to the plastic Shell logo tied around our green sign….or the taller one right before the exit with its own plastic Shell logo that isn’t tied down so well and flapping in the wind. Ha, ha. We may have a green roof, and a green sign just like BP, but really, we’re a Shell station! Trust us, would we lie to you?
Nice try BP. It turns out that there’s a lot of this BP “camouflage” going on at BP stations all over the country. Go ahead and Google versions of “BP” and “signs” and you’ll find lots of other examples like I did. This wasn’t the only one in the state of Pennsylvania, there were others. Some of them didn’t even bother with a brand, they just covered up that old “BP Blossom” with a black tarp. (Hey there’s a new term for the Urban Dictionary, huh? Move over Karl “Turd Blossom” Rove, you’ve got company! If it walks like a blossom, and talks like a blossom….it’s gotta be one blossom or the other!)
Somehow I don’t think most travelers will be fooled.
I think it’s safe to say the bloom is off the BP logo.