Sunday, June 29, 2008

Oil Crisis...Bringing Families Together One Gallon at a Time

There are, of course, many negative news stories because of the high price of oil. Lost jobs, higher prices, shorter vacations, an increase in prices in other industries, etc. But today, I actually found an upside to the problem of high oil prices.

My family was getting ready for church and getting into my Suburban when I noticed my 21 year old son climbed into my vehicle. All of us were very surprised. This wasn't because the oldest son doesn't go to church (in fact, he some times has a better track record than mom and dad), but because he was coming with the rest of the family. Usually he takes his own car.

So, my wife asked, "why are you gracing us with your presence?" Without thinking twice, he responded, "$4.00 a gallon gas. It would take around 8 bucks to get to and from church today." He was off more than a little, but he would certainly be paying more than just a few months ago. As a result, we got to spend much more time with a family member who has become very independent.

It is true that the higher prices might undermine vacation times together. People will choose shorter distances for family time together. But I think they will spend as much time together as ever. Last year it was Orlando and Universal for my family, this year it will be a Hill Country cabin. However, we will still spend about the same time together.

Who knows, we might find an occasional upside to this energy crisis.

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Kevin Price is Host of the Houston Business Show (M-F at 11 AM on CNN 650) and Publisher of the Houston Business Review. Hear the show live and online at HoustonBusinessShow.com. Visit the archive of past shows here.

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