Dear Sidney

Feb 8, 2023 | Dear Sidney

Dear Sidney,

I moved up to the mountains as a single mother of two. Got a pretty good job as a server. Suddenly my SoCal Gas bill is more than my car payment. I’m frightened.

My doggie is wrapped in two sweaters. I’m sleeping in sweatpants and two sweatshirts, cuddled in with my kids. I haven’t received child support since COVID hit.

At bedtime, the thermostat is turned down to 45 degrees. I use the microwave to heat my water for tea. I won’t be able to make the rent because of the gas bill. What’s happening? What is the world turning into? I’m so afraid that I’m seriously considering letting my boyfriend move in when he is released from prison in August. What else can I do?

Economically Challenged

Dear Economically Challenged,

Whoa! Hang in there, darling. You’re not alone. Please don’t make a relationship decision based on the price of therms! Besides, in August you won’t have the heater on.

The gossip around the village is that natural gas bills doubled and tripled in size from December to January, while the thermal units were exactly the same. It’s hard to believe that the increase is justified.

Here is some good news from SoCal Gas. Go to this website and, perhaps, like many of us you can opt to put your gas bill on a level pay plan: On their website you will also find suggestions for decreasing your natural gas usage and programs available to help you and your kiddies out.

Ah, the sun is out today. I’m keeping the thermostat at 55 degrees and heading out to bring in more wood for tonight’s fire.


Send your questions for Sidney to [email protected] or by snail mail to Dear Sidney, The Alpine Mountaineer, P.O. Box 4572, Crestline, CA 92325.

This advice is intended for entertainment purposes only. No animals were harmed in the writing of this column.






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