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Q&A: A gauge of gasoline prices

Gas for less than $2 a gallon?

When was the last time gasoline was under $2 a gallon?

AAA keeps track of the nationwide average of gasoline prices in its daily Fuel Gauge report. According to Geoff Sundstrom, director of public relations for AAA, the last time the nationwide average for self-serve unleaded regular gasoline fell below $2 was on March 25, 2009, when it was $1.986. The next day, it went back up to $2 and has stayed there ever since.

The all-time high is $4.114 on July 17, 2008, according to the report.

Some experts have been predicting gasoline may fall back under $2 a gallon this year, though in the past month or so the price has been going up even though demand is down, and likely to fall even more during standard time.

"When there's fewer daylight hours, people drive less," said Trilby Lundberg, publisher of the nationwide Lundberg survey that also tracks gasoline prices.

Guide for appropriate tipping

When we go out for a nice dinner, what's the right amount to leave for a tip?

Editors at the Food Network suggest the appropriate tip is 20 percent, which is what chefs say they leave when they eat out, and it's the amount they think is fair unless the service is really poor.

But 90 percent of chefs in a Food Network survey also said it's fair to penalize bad waiters with a smaller tip.

Who was that actor?

I was watching an Arnold Schwarzenegger movie the other day, Commando, and thought the female lead was delightful. What can you tell me about her, and whatever happened to her?

You're referring to Rae Dawn Chong. Now 48, Chong worked steadily in films through 2000 but now can be seen more often on TV. She has appeared in That's So Raven, Lonesome Dove: The Series, The Hitchhiker and The Outer Limits, and also had recurring roles in St. Elsewhere and Melrose Place.

The peak of her career was in the mid-1980s, specifically 1985 when she appeared in City Limits, American Flyer, Commando and The Color Purple. She has also written and directed.

Born in Canada, Chong is the daughter of comedian Tommy Chong, well-known for his pot-smoking hippie characters in the Cheech & Chong movies of the 1970s and 1980s. She has been married and divorced twice, once to actor C. Thomas Howell, and has a son.

A long stay for 'General Hospital'

How many years has the soap opera General Hospital been on the air?

The show premiered on ABC on April 1, 1963. It is the longest-running daytime drama produced on the West Coast, ABC said.

Q&A: A gauge of gasoline prices 11/03/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, November 3, 2009 7:29am]
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