Here we are, just a few days later, and much to the chagrin of SUV drivers up and down California, we have met (and surpassed) $3.785 per gallon for 87-octane fuel. For the record, 91-octane petrol passed this mark some time ago.
As I passed my local fill-up station today, I was stunned to see that the price for 87 octane had risen dramatically quickly to $3.859 per gallon. This, logically, put the 91 octane at $4.059 per gallon - a price not seen in the US since the petroleum supply in the southern United States was interrupted by Hurricane Katrina.
This brings the price of petrol in Southern California up to 102 cents per liter, the very same price I paid for a whole US gallon when I started driving 9 years ago.
We are only in February, roughly four months before the annual spike in gas prices, meaning that the price will only be going up from here.
I think we have all but seen the end of the era in which Americans pay far less for gas than their European counterparts. When broken down per unit of currency, we are now paying almost the same as those in Europe (currency conversions aside).
I'll never forget the day my high school economics teacher told us that we would never see gas for under $2 per gallon again. That was the only bit of truth he told us burnouts during that astonishingly boring semester immediately before my graduation.