Thursday, November 18, 2010

Fair Well To The Drunks-Scam Artists- And Crack Heads.

Hello little old ladies and grocery runs.I have requested a transfer to day shift. After 14 months of working the night shift-I have had enough.I've been assaulted-verbally abused and threatened-cleaned up after grown men who have puked in my cab-and ripped off for fares to many times.I'm burned out, and its time for a change.
What other business requires one to continually have to argue with people to get paid for their services? The occasional hassel over a fare I can accept-but when I am continually having to call the police just to get some asshole to pay me-thats just bullshit, that I am no longer willing to put up with.
I made the final decision at the start of my shift today.My first fare was a sweet old lady who I got out and helped into my cab.She was thanking me profusely for helping her.When I told her it was no problem at all-she told me that rarely does a driver get out and help her.
That surprised and angered me at the same time.I mean I can be as lazy as the next guy-but jeez the poor thing was about 80 years old ,and walked with the aid of a cane.What happend to common courtesy?
When I dropped her at her apartment building,she wanted to tip me for the $5.00 fare.I refused and told her all cabbies are not the same-and that my being courteous did not require a tip.
As I got back in my cab I felt some satisfaction that I was able to help this lady- that I had left her smiling.
Thats when it struck me that, that was what I missed-the satisfaction of helping people out.Be it even just a small gesture such as that.
Prior to becoming manager at my former employer-I drove day shift there for 10 years.Which for the most part involved dealing with a totally different clientele, then one would find driving nights. Seniors-students-and also people with special needs.
I must add that of course not all my fares at night are obnoxious assholes-I have met and befriended many nice people that were sober, and even some of the piss tanks as well.
My former girl friend once suggested that I had become a little to sanctimonious-as I myself have been living a clean and sober life for quite some time now.I hope that she is mistaken-because that is certainly not my intention.The night scene is just not for me anymore-I find it depressing listening to my fares babble on in their drunken state.The young women openly discussing their sexual preferences with their friends-the guys talking about the latest shit kicking they gave some dude in the bar.The women wanting to trade sex for the fare-the couples male and female, doing each other in my back seat.I could go on and on-I have seen and heard it all.So hopefully next week it will be day shift for me-and if I get some granny who feels the need to share her favorite position in the sack-I will be sure to share it with you! ;)

Monday, November 1, 2010

Lonely Strangers In The Night-The Unexpected Sequel!

Staggering out of the bar, she heads over to my cab.I recognize her as the lady I had for a tour of the town just a couple of weeks ago.Only this time she is visibly wasted-and has one arm in a cast.She gets in and I say "Susan-thats you're name isn't it?" She looks over at me with bleary eyes and Say's "oh its you -the blog guy".Yup thats me I tell her-well she says "now you have another story to write".She then leans into me, head on my lap-and starts rubbing my leg and lets her hand roam a little to far south for my liking.Whoa I tell her as I push her back into her seat.What? she say's "I just want to snuggle with you".Well thats not on my to do list tonight sweetie- I tell her.You going home?I ask her. Yes she replies-"no tour tonight-just take me home-unless we can go to you're place".I ignore that and start out for her house.
On the way I ask what happend to her arm-"got drunk fell down and broke it" she says.Jeez I reply-don't you think maybe you should get off the booze-maybe hit an AA meeting or get into rehab? Nah she says "been there done that".Not feeling in "the social worker" state of mind tonight, I left it at that,and we continued the rest of the ride in silence.

When we arrived at her place the fare was $20.00-she starts fishing through her purse for the money.But of course there was none-and she couldn't find her debit card.I'm starting to get frustrated at this point-as it was a busy night- and I didn't have time for this.
Come on Sue-I tell her-you're costing me money-do you have the fare or not?
"Yes-yes"she exclaims -its here some where!Here you look she tells me-and passes me her purse.
I hesitate-but then figure I won't get paid if I don't.But before I do,I ask her if there is anything in the purse thats going to "stick me or cut me?"(With that comment-I figured I must have watched to many episodes of "COP'S") But on a serious note,I really didn't want to come into contact with a dirty needle at the bottom of her purse.
Thankfully there was no needles-but there was also no money.Jesus Sue-I tell her-don't make me call the police.Go ask you're landlady or a neighbor to lend you the money.She's muttering away now fumbling through her jacket and jeans all to no avail.So I reluctantly pick up my cell to call the cops.I really dislike involving the police-when its a situation like this-a non hostile fare-who is just really messed up-hell I've been there myself.But I also knew if I didn't-I would never get paid-and I have bills of my own to pay.

The police response was rapid as usual(they really look after the cabbies in our town).Two officers in an SUV and one in a cruiser pulled up.One of the officers recognized Susan-and exclaimed "not you again!"So obviously she has had some history with them.He asked her some questions-inquired about how she planned on paying me etc.Her replies where not winning her any points-as she was rather vocal about her disdain for law enforcement in general-and this officer in particular.His response to her was "that she was really starting to piss him off"and for her to get out of my cab.
He then took me aside and told me "this women has a problem not only with alcohol,but with opiates as well".At this point he turned to Susan and told her that he was taking me into her house to go "shopping".He was giving me permission to go in and take a CD or DVD player or whatever I wanted to take and hold, until Susan paid the fare.I was that legal? His reply was "that it may be unorthodox-but its not illegal"."I mean fair is fair is it not?" he asked me.Well I guess so-I replied.Its either that or I can arrest her-he told me.
Just then a car pulled into the driveway-it was Susans landlady.The other officer went inside with her-and a few minutes later came out with $25.00.The landlady has paid it he said-and keep the change.One more thing before you go he said-tell you're fellow cabbies to black list this women-she is not to be picked up again under any circumstances.I'll pass that on I told him-and thanked him for their assistance.As I pulled away I thought about the last encounter I had had with this women-and how I had thought at the time that under different circumstances-I would have asked her out-YIKES! I sure know how to pick them!