Wednesday, June 30, 2004

It's here

Ok, I'm much better now. Thank you. So last night was really busy, but somehow I didn't make any money. Again I'm not sure what I did to Steve, but he hates me for some reason. There were nothing but big fares going out last night, and got nothing but single digit fares all night. I actually only had 4 fares that were over $10, and 2 of them were before Steve came on. Dammit. He did send me for a $65 fare to Long Branch at one point, but before they got there he sent me somewhere else and put someone else on the call. That sucked.


Anyway, my first call of the night was awesome, it was these 4 drunken Portugese guys off one of the oil ships. They didn't tip a penny, but they were so much fun. Surprisingly they weren't rude either, they did hit on me but it was never rude. They were going from Moby Dick's to Breathless, and all they kept saying the whole way was "Go Go, Go Go". One of them in the back did a pretty good George Bush impression. When I told them my name, they started singing it out like the drunken sailors they were. I dropped them off and they said they were going to ask for me, but Mike ended up getting them instead. (He says the whole ride they kept asking for me though)

The next woman I picked up made me wait 20 minutes before telling me She wanted to be picked up on the other side of the building. Bitch.

Then I took a regular guy to work. He works at one of the trucking companies unloading the trucks. I guess he had a busy night, cause I never heard his call go out to go home.

Next, we were late as hell getting some chick to work at the Turnpike rest stop, which she certainly let me know about. The next fare as well, some Arab dude going to the same place that I could have grabbed together
if he had called 5 minutes earlier.

I brought I stripper to Charlie's Angels, who made my skin crawl by sucking and chewing on ice the whole way. She kept calling me ma, I think this is some new rap slang like shorty or something, I keep hearing this lately.

Willy was next, and he was so wasted he couldn't remember why I won't pull up his driveway, but he did go through his entire spiel on how I need to wait for him to get away from the car and blah blah blah.

The next call was a freakin mess. Let me give you a little back story. We used to have a driver that I was pretty good friends with, (I actually miss him a lot as now I have nobody to call in the middle of the night and bitch about work to) who had a very jealous girlfriend. She actually called me one night flipping out because my phone number was on his phone. So this was the girlfriend. She was drunk as hell, going to some guy's house, while telling me she was running away from her boyfriend. She tells me all about how this boyfriend is crazy, and threatens to kill her and steal their daughter, and all sorts of other drama. She also tells me how he cheats on her, as she is on her way to this dude's house.
I know this other driver had his problems, but the picture she is painting is a really ugly one. She didn't tip either.

I grab a 6 pack from the Main and run it over to the Mexicans on Kimball. This proves to be really difficult as TT (I mentioned him the other day) is in the bar (and drunk) and follows me to the car, refusing to let me leave. (I did manage to leave, but it was after threatening never to pick him up again)

I grabbed a guy off Woodbridge train and took him home.

Now, I get sent for the Long Branch, but before they get there he sends me to get Annie. OK I can deal with losing the good fare to get Annie, but that's not what happens. I get over to Fridays, and Annie's not outside, so I figure good, I can run in to get her and pee. So I park the car, lock the doors and go inside. The bartender tells me Annie already left, this guy passed out over here needs the cab. So as I'm unlocking the door, I feel this guy grabbing me from behind. I freaked out and pushed him off me and was just about to knock him out when I realized he was just stumbling, drunk. He's lucky. So now he passes out in the car (thankfully after I realize who he is and where he lives, since he's going to Clark) I manage to smack him awake in front of his house, he hands me some crumpled bills, (which don't include a tip) gets out and falls face down in his driveway. Oops.(I said to myself as I drove away quickly)

Back to get the girlfriend at the dude's house. Now she's even drunker, and crying because the police are at her house. I'm not totally sure why, she gives a few explanations (one of which include her calling them) but none of them make much sense, and she has me drop her off 4 blocks from her house. While I have her with me, I get another guy. This is the guy from the other night who wanted to know my life story. This guy is another one who is lucky he has limbs after grabbing my shoulder and attempting to rub it, he overtips to compensate for me yelling at him. Fine with me.

A few quiet people pass. An old friend of my brothers. And a few down moments when I finally get to pee.

Finally I do get Annie, and she's drunk as well. She says she left Friday's because this drunk guy was freaking her out. Thanks Annie I got him instead. She gets home with a minimal amount of trouble and now I can't hold my eyes open. I actually pored some water on my face on the way home just to not fall asleep. It was pretty scary. I drop the car off at the Forge, where P.C. (see post on other drivers) lives and will drive it to work in the morning, and head back to the office. I think Steve is happy he's rid of me for the night.

Gassed up and gone home. I think I'm gonna stop writing this after today, It's corny.

It's coming...

Hey guys, I just wanted to pop on and let you know that there definitely will be a post today regarding last night's adventures, but it is going to be a little later than usual, as the forementioned adventures are currently sharing space with the 2 nights previous. I haven't slept in a really long time, and my body has decided now's definitely the time. So I promise you I will write as soon as I wake up. Hopefully not for at least a month! Maybe I will also awaken to find I've won the lottery... (It will absolutely be today though I promise!)

Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Nothing Doing

Unfortunately, I don't have too much to report tonight. It was pretty slow, and (thankfully for me, sadly for you) everyone was pretty quiet.

My first dare <--- (went to fix spelling on this to say fare, but I think it was some kind of fruedian slip so I'm leaving it) of the night was this asian woman we pick up at the mall. This woman is freakin NUTS! It's hard to explain how, but ask any driver about Bergen Street and watch them roll thier eyes. There was another fare with this one, but she gets in the car, pays, and gets out of the car. A cabdriver's dream.

Some dude went from the mall to Carteret.

This guy from Riffy's I think he's some kind of owner or manager there. Everybody but me knows who he is, all I know is he hands you $10 for a $5 fare.

Next is some woman going to Bunns Lane with 2 massive laundry, I think she was moving in there. Also quiet.

Howie to the bar. Even Howie's quiet tonight. A guy jumps in with Howie goes to Carteret. Again not a talker.

Someone to work. No tip.

One of the Mexicans from Chi Chi's. He tips.

Now I get sent over to Dunkin Donuts in Fords in search of someone going to Jersey City. Naturally there is no one there. Gotta love the ghost calls. For some reasom I tend to get tons of these when Carmine's on the desk.

I pick up this couple from Moby's to Perth Amboy. The alcohol coming off of them is enough to get me drunk. At least the weren't obnoxious. The next guy however...

This dude is way too hyper. As soon as I think this, almost in explanation he offers me a line. Thanks but no thanks. I did accept a lighter from him though. I asked him for a light and he let me keep it.

Then I head for this kid whom I take all the time. He goes from Woodbridge to Fords. He never talks, and when I try to say anything to him I usually get a grunt if anything. Tonight he actually has me drop him off by his house, usually it's the corner.

I was on my way to get Annie when my direction changes to the airport. It begins to pour. So I hydroplane my way up there and find a woman going to Iselin. She was staying in a resort in Pheonix on buisness. It must be nice. She tipped very well though, for the weather she says. Hey, no complaints from me!

Strange guy who works at Wendy's. Lives in Fords.

And finally an old driver who now works at UPS calls & requests me. His car broke down in the parking lot. D'oh. So...

Gas up and go home.

PS - again, good for me and bad for you, not EVERY night is crazy. (just MOST of them!)



Saturday, June 26, 2004

Wet socks suck.

It was pouring rain when I woke up tonight. So before I even get started for the night, as I'm walking in, there is this HUGE puddle, no scratch that, lake in front of the door to get in. No choice but to walk through. So now my feet are wet for the night, and we all know there is pretty much no grosser feeling in the world than wet socks. Please Taxi Gods don't let this be a sign for the night! Guess what...

First call is a drunk guy with one arm. He's only going around the block, but can't slur out the address. I ask him to just point the directions out. (Bad wording.) But nonetheless he tells me he loves me as he gets out of the car. This is why I like the drunks, it's nice to be told you're loved.

Then the first of many, many ghost calls. (A ghost call is when you go for someone and nobody's there.)

I pick up a girl to bring to work at a diner. She has also switched shifts, I used to take her when I was on the day shift. Now she works nights as well.

Some crazy people from Avenel are going to Linden. Well one of them is going to Quick Check and back, the other 2 on to Linden. The guy keeps trying to offer me gum, I don't know why, but he keeps insisting I take some of this gum. It almost seemed like he was pushing drugs. Maybe I should have taken the gum...

I can't take Route 1 back because it looks as though there is a truck accident and it's closed, so I take 35 back. Tim (who dispatched till about 2) sends me to Bud's Hut. Ghost Call. Main Tavern. Ghost Call. Chi Chi's. I'm pulling in the lot and he says forget it, get Jammers. I wish I wish I didn't get Jammers.

Jammers is a guy who speaks very little english and is going to Newark. He says he doesn't know how to get there. So I get directions and jump on the Turnpike. About half way up he starts freaking out. (imagine this in broken english) "No NO Newark 10 minutes Avenel what happened?" So I tell him yes we are going to Newark, relax we're almost there. So from about exit 13A all the way to his house he's screaming and freaking out. I get to the exit I'm headed to and he's really panicking now. "No No Newark Newark!" Over and over again. Now I'm getting mad. So naturally I start yelling back at him. "We're in Newark. Where the fuck do you think we are?" So now we are a real special sight, sitting in line at a toll booth screaming at each other. The only time I've ever screamed at a customer this much I finally tell him "shut the fuck up dude you are an asshole". Contrary to what you may believe this did not make him stop yelling. (nobody ever said I have people skills.) He keeps going and I tell him if he doesn't shut up, I ain't taking his ass to Newark but to a police station. He didn't like that either. Finally we get to the toll collector and I ask him to please tell the idiot in the back seat that we are in Newark. He just laughs. Finally I get the guy out of the car and head back to sit in traffic. (The truck accident I mentioned has been cleared, but the road is still closed for some godforsaken reason.)

I should just go home now. I should re-name this site sado-maso-chick instead.

I pick up a guy at the Main who tells me all about how much money he makes working at the NY Stock Exchange. But I'm taking him from the Main Tavern (5 old guys sitting on the stools) to the City Motel Tavern (3 old guys sitting on the stools). Yeah you're rich buddy.

Then I got a guy from the Holiday Inn in Carteret who blew a tire getting off the Turnpike and had no spare. He was actually pretty cool, easy conversation all the way.

Back to the Main for 2 drunks, one of which bartends at the VFW, and usually is too wasted to get into the car, and the other is carrying a (probably stolen) neon sign. Thankfully that goes smoothly. Neon sign guy tips really well.

A few quiet people take their rides and get out.

I take Annie home, and she listens to me bitch about how mean Steve is being lately. She's always good for that. I guess it comes from 15 years as a bartender. She also offers to have him "taken care of for me", nice offer, but I know Annie is damn serious.

Now I'm sent to pick up on a corner in Woodbridge. Turns out to be TT, a previous driver. TT never wants to go home and literally begs me to let him ride for a while. He says he misses the job. TT took a DWI to help someone else out. He wasn't driving, but the guy who was depended on his drivers license to live. So TT took the fall for him and lost his license, and consequently his job. I feel bad for him and figure why not? So he rides along for a while.

We go to pick up the bartender from the Main. He tells another way too descriptive story about how he burned his ass falling asleep on a heating pad. People seem to get into my cab and think I want intimate details about them for some reason. I really don't. Really.

Since I'm up in the area, I grab Jen (another driver) and bring her into work. She's nuts she works 4am - 4pm. That's a crappy shift.

I get 1 airport and it's someone TT knows, his best friends mom. She didn't tip though. She's a flight attendant, and is headed to Cancun today. 1 round trip, 8 hours, and she makes $750. Where did I go wrong in life?

Last fare is a waitress from the REO home, and then to drop TT off. I get back to the office and Steve is bitching about how stupid all the drivers are. Last impressions are just as memorable as first ones. Kind of like how the last song you hear on the radio in the morning sticks with you all day...

Gas up & Go HOME!!!!!!!


PS - I never work on Saturday nights, so have a good weekend and I'll be back here early Monday morning with Sunday's events.

Friday, June 25, 2004

I'm on the Night Train

Dammit, I overslept again, and didn't make it in until like 10:30. I don't know how my body expects me to make any money if it keeps doing this to me. Maybe it's mono, or maybe I'm just really depressed. (Ok, bad movie reference. I know. Hey, could have been worse, I could have said "Maybe it's a tumor, It's not a tooma") But anyway, Steve said he was in a good mood when I got there, so that's always a good sign.

My first call of the night was 2 chicks from Denny's just going to Chain O' Hills, they had the cutest little black boy I have ever seen with them. As he's getting out of the car he puts his little hand up and says "high five, high five" it was just adorable.

Next, I pick up this stripper a few blocks away to take her over to Charlie's Angels. She has these humongous boobs, I'm not sure how she walks. She tells me the whole way that she is so fucked up, she's been smoking blunts and drank 3 bottles of champagne. She can't believe she's going to work this fucked up... as she continuously sniffs coke in the back seat.

Then I take this dude from Krauzer's to Michael Court, he was pretty quiet. He does this often enough, and he tips well so rock on.

I sit in the office for a little while, and Steve asks me to go get him some McDonalds. He always has these Entertainment Book coupons so he gets 2 meals. At 5 bucks, why not? (That is if you aren't one of us people trying to avoid being obese.)

Next, the guy who works at Poor Billy's home to Clark. Poor Billy's has the worst parking lot in the world in my opinion. It's all brick, and there's like this circle carport type dealie where people pull up for valet parking, (Which they won't let you into the club without using.) and it is ALWAYS backed up. The only good thing about this parking lot is one of the valet attendants is rather cute, and tends to flirt with me.

From there I take one of the Mexicans home from Red Lobster to Carteret. If you are not familiar with Woodbridge, there are about 5 houses in the area that the Mexicans live in. And they ALL live in 1 of these 5 houses. (about 40 per house it seems) Some drivers bitch about the Mexicans, personally I don't mind them. They always pay for their rides, they usually tip (even if only 50 cents), they don't really cause problems (well with us anyway... they stab each other, but they are very quiet about it), and they work REALLY hard for their $2 an hour. They do all the jobs that you or I certainly wouldn't want. So I figure let them be.

The next girl I pick up is a freakin mess. She's going on a drunken booty call to her ex ex ex ex-boyfriends, as she puts it. She asks me to stop at 7-11 so she can pick up some condoms, which unfortunately she gives me a way too descriptive explanation as to why she needs them. She also tells me all about her evening getting drunk and puking on her front porch. (again, one of those things maybe I didn't need quite so colorfully described)

I run over to grab the Irish chick from O'Hallorans and she regales me with the story of a baby bird she saw dying on the ground this morning and how it reminded her of a human baby struggling on the ground. Really uplifting, if you see no other movie this year...

From there I run to Poor Billy's and wind up with these 5 drunk screaming kids. Not a one of them could have been even close to 21. The one in the front seat insists that they go "to the black guy" while the small blonde in the backseat sings "yay-ya yay-ya yay-ya" over and over again. He was unsuccessful in collecting money from his friends so he decided not to go. I was glad, he didn't seem to have any idea where he was going... all he knew was "it's in the hood" and a few random lefts and rights.

Next was a guy going from one mexican house to another. Just as I was getting ready to tell him "cinco cincuenta" ($5.50, the only spanish I know, and their usual fare) he shocked the shit out of me by speaking almost perfect english. I felt almost a mothers pride for him! He was pretty cool though.

The next guy I grabbed from the train station was freaking gorgeous. Total pretty boy with bright blue eyes and spiky blond hair all dressed up in a suit and tie. While on route some drunk ass drove his Blazer up over a curb and practically flipped over. I said something along the lines of how everybody seems to be drunk tonight, and the guy in the back says "tell me about it, me too". He tells me he had just 1 too many bong hits in the city before realizing how far from home he was, and now he just wants to put the covers over his head and die. Hope he didn't actually die, he was way too pretty.

Back to the train for some dude to Careret, who insists on asking me my life story, but doesn't seem to like it when I ask him questions. He tells me I "seem" too cute to be driving a cab. Whatever that means.

A very small Puerto Rican girl sneaks out of a house in Port Reading, and goes to Perth Amboy. She didn't say a word other than the address she was going to.

A regular chick to work at Shop Rite, usually this one is never ready, and you always have to wait. But she was pretty quick this morning.

The last guy I take is a garbageman in Newark. He had a very strange accent (almost sounded like crackhead-ese), and a horrible stutter. I guess the guy who normally drives him to work blew him off today. He gave terrible directions there, but excellent ones to get back. His job paid for him to come in, and they actually tipped. Let me tell you it's a lot of fun to sit in a Public Works parking lot at 5 am with all the garbagemen circling you like vultures. Not.

As I was in the office booking out I heard about another driver who totaled a car pulling out of the shop parking lot where we get our cars serviced yesterday. Hope he's ok. Supposedly the airbag saved his life. He was in the new 25 car, they just aren't having any luck with that number as I wrecked the last 25 car in February. Whoops. Still dealing with the traffic ticket on that one.

Anyway, gas up and go home.

Thursday, June 24, 2004

Blah.

I had a really bad night. See, politics in this job are a big thing. Piss off the dispatcher and you ain't makin any money. I must have done this somehow. Granted it was very slow, but there were calls going out there. Thankfully I managed some decent tips or I'd be starving today based on what I booked.

My first call of the night was from Sweethearts (strip club) all the way to the top of Wood Ave. past Inman Ave. (PS - I HIGHLY suggest not EVER hanging out at that club. Nasty.) He is completely wasted. So he tells me he has no money on him (I wonder why) and needs to go in the house to get it. I tell him ok, but I have no change on me, you are my first fare of the night. He says this is fine. So we get to his house, he takes his sweet ass time coming out and asks me for $10 change. Grr. So now we need to go to Quick Check. He gets out of the car, goes into the pizza place & comes out eating a slice of pizza, he says "ok, I ordered my food it will be a few minutes". WHAT!! Ordered food? You bastard. So he gives me the money, and wanders into Quick Check. 10 minutes later, I called Steve and explained what was going on and can I leave his ass. Steve proceeds to freak out. "What do you want me to tell you, do whatever you want Carmello gave you the call I have no idea what's going on. I have calls coming in that will make me money." Click. Only wanted to let him know what was happening when the guy inevitably called him. Oh well. I tore ass out of there for sure.

A regular from the train home from work.

Green Street, these bastards. A group of kids stood on the corner looking like they had nowhere to go for 10 minutes finally come sauntering over to the car. When they got in I asked them what the hell was that for, and they replied that the dispatcher told them 15 minutes, and I came in 5 so they waited till 15 minutes to get in the car. The balls on these kids today I swear.

Few more quiet regulars from the train home.

An airport call. I drove through the terminal 3 times, each one getting out of the car & yelling "Checker". Almost get a ticket for stopping traffic. Finally on the 3rd time I find the guy. He gets in and sighs "finally". I tell the dude I drove through 3 times and he tells me I'm bullshitting. Whatever. So now he's mad that I don't remember him and where I picked him up to take him to the airport 2 weeks ago. Ok dude I have seen like 300 people since then, please don't act so incredulous I don't remember what kind of wallpaper you have on your walls or whatever. He only has a $100 bill which I can't break. Yes it's been slow. I'd booked less than $50 by then. So I stop at one gas station who can't break it either. Dude is now officially freaking out. Finally I get to a gas station who can break it, but he makes sure to pump gas into all 4 cars in the lot before helping me. Fine.

Mary is going home. She kind of makes me feel better & worse by telling me the shitty night she had finding out her ex is having a baby with some crackhead. Mary complains a lot, but there is something in her voice tonight that makes me truly feel bad for her. Sorry Mar.

Then I pick up one of the most talkative guys EVER. I tried to ignore him a few times but he just kept going till he got me to talk back to him. He needed to strap a bike into the trunk, then he starts telling me he graduated 4 hrs. ago, and his girlfriend is camping in her friends backyard, and he needs a car but insurance is too expensive, and he wants to buy an old cop car, and his friend works at an auto shop that services cop cars, and his friend can get him a new engine, and all about how engines work, and I look young to drive a cab how old do you need to be?, and maybe he'll do that, he needs a job at night, and he's gonna take the civil service test, and he wants to be a cop and, and, and... Told you he was talkative.

Yayy a great Type-O song comes on the radio. A looooong Type-O song which I spend pretty much all of waiting for some dude to get in the car. He looks to be about 50 and tells me to "Turn this shit up!!" Ok, no prob!
This is my last official call for over 2 hours.

Another driver comes back from AC, and needs a ride home with his son & junkie (seriously) girlfriend. She won on slots, they broke even on poker. This guy & his son are major gamblers. His son's only ambition in life is to be a professional gambler. He has no other job.

So now I finish reading the entire paper cover to cover. (even every classified ad) Complete the crossword, the jumble, and the word search. I told you it was slow.

I get a call in Iselin that turns out to be a kid who grew up around the block from me, and we have a pretty intense discussion about Tool for 5am. I let him know that my little bro is going to be here this weekend for his 21st b-day, and he promises to come out.

Last call is a guy going from Fords to the old soldiers home. He was the sweet little old man type. Very cute.

FINALLY Gas up & Go Home. Hope tomorrow is better.

Wednesday, June 23, 2004


This is the picture on our website. I'm not sure why, our cars are neither yellow or that nice. Posted by Hello

Overslept

I overslept last night and woke up at 2am. Hence totally missed work. That's the good thing about my job, I don't feel like going, I don't.
So in the interest of posting something, I figure I will talk a little bit about some of our other drivers. Now, I don't intend to come off mean about anyone, but the truth about how truly fucked up we all are may not come out exactly nice. So in the interest of protecting those who may not know they are being immortalized here I will change their names. The very astute of you out there may be able to figure out who is who, but I will leave that to you. Also this isn't every driver with the company, just the ones I see most.

I will actually start with me. A mood-shifter can go from manic happy & hyper to pissed off, quiet & miserable with head-spinning speed. Either the nicest person you will ever ride with or the meanest.

Crazy (he actually may answer to this from time to time) - One of the angriest people I've ever met, he is banned from 7-11 for destroying the store. This is actually a pretty funny story. He spilled some hot tea on his hand and it hurt, so he knocked over the entire stock of cups they had on the counter, and when the indian guy asked him what the hell he was doing he grabbed the potato chip rack and threw it to the floor. Thankfully for him the rest of us are in there all the time so he called the office and the dispatcher managed to dissuade him from calling the police. Also for 20 something years old has the worst case of ADD I've ever seen.

Sam - A dispatcher, the only person in the world (that I know of) who can match my mood swings. When he isn't happy, he makes sure no one is happy. I like Sam, not many people do. That is one of the good things about working with him is no one else will. He has had quite a few fights with other drivers. We went out one morning after work for a few drinks, and he told me that I am one of the few people he's ever met that he considers on his level, as in not below his intelligence. I'm pretty sure this was meant as a compliment, but it didn't come off as very nice. He also isn't very nice to people on the phone. Which gets him threatened pretty often. Overall, I do really like working with him though.

Pete - Another dispatcher. Pete has the sexiest voice in the whole world. He just had a baby and his girlfriend hates me. She came to the office one day while I was sitting on the desk talking to another driver who happened to be in the bathroom when she walked in. Mind you I was nowhere near Pete, but you know how women can be. I feel bad for Pete, he deals with a lot of stress.

Abe - Abe is one of the managers, the only reason he works here is he's married to the owners daughter. He "works" for about 4 hrs. A day. Mostly talking on his cell phone, playing poker online, and making Pete's life miserable.

Harold - Main manager. Extremely nice, and terribly forgiving guy. Is like a 10th degree black belt in I believe TaeKwonDoe. He is amazingly patient. Abe is desperate to take over his job.

P.C. - His only job is calling the Welfare people and asking them if they are going to their appts. (doctor, meth clinic, etc.)PC will talk constantly in a straight monotone. Also drives Pete nuts. Poor Pete.

Bob - Bob works at night too. The world hates Bob because he's black. In his head anyway. He used to work for Lucent Technologies. When they majorly downsized and fired hundreds if not thousands of people, Bob was let go because he was black. Again in his head. He doesn't book much because he can never be found. Usually he is out wandering around somewhere. (in Iselin we believe) Also usually pretending to be on his cell phone having seemingly business conversations (at 4:30 in the morning.)

Ollie - Way to smart to be doing this. As a matter of fact, in testament to his intelligence, I mentioned to him the other night how smart I thought he was, and he told me smart meant "pregnant" in German. The guy seems to know a hell of a lot about a hell of a lot without coming off as a know-it-all. Ollie is great. He also quits drinking and smoking cigarettes about once a week. (He does these a LOT)

Donnie - Donnie works a swing type shift, he leaves not long after I do. Donnie drinks a lot. (Hey pretty much all of us do. Comes with the job I think) He kind of looks like Wilford Brimley, but his girlfriend is 10 years younger than he is and quite pretty. He's a lot nicer to me since I switched shifts, as he used to bitch I get all the good calls. If so it's only because he refuses them first. I have gotten some pretty excellent run-off calls from him. He won't want to go because he has to call his girlfriend, or use the bathroom, or stay at Metro or whatever. Nobody knows why, but hey it's his money.

Regular - This is his real handle, I'm using it cause he may read this one day, and he was a pretty good friend of mine. He talked me into taking the job. (Thanks a lot dude!) He used to be a 12-8er, but he's switched to the day shift now, so I never see him out anymore. Good guy. His thing is also drinking, a self-admitted drunk. (Again like the rest of us.)

Jim - A freelance photographer who doesn't do so well at it, I recall he was at I believe it was Gulianni's last day as mayor thing, to take pictures to sell to the newspapers, but he didn;t develop them for like a week. Jim isn't very bright (or very clean, he can be pretty ripe sometimes). There is a really funny story about him. He had a passenger in the car and had asked her if she minded if he stopped at Dunkin Donuts to grab a cup of coffee real quick. Well I guess he forgot he had her in the car because he got his coffee and proceeded to sit down and read the newspaper while she sat in the car and watched this. He needs a ride home every night, but no one wants to take him, he lives about 20 min. away and hands you like $2 if at all.

Mellow - This guy is cool as hell. He also dispatches. I love working with Mellow. He's always dressed nice, one of those people who makes sweatpants look good. Only guy I know that looks good at 3:00 in the morning on a Sunday. He works a lot. This is his second job, I don't know how he does it. He's sports guy, always a game on. (Yes even golf, on TV?!?) He's usually betting on the games I believe. He runs his own poker tournaments as well.

Carl - I don't like Carl. He's got some sort of fascination with me. I asked him out for a couple of drinks once just to be nice. (Dispatchers make you or break you, and I usually made good money with Carl.) He thought it was a date. Not quite dude. For the next week, he rang my damn phone off the hook. He's pretty new at dispatching, and he's not very good at it. I think you need just a touch of intelligence to do it if you get my drift.

Marie - Marie talks a LOT. Usually it's bitching. Scratch that it's ALWAYS bitching. Whether it's her health, or her car, or the customers, or the other drivers, it's always something. She will curse your name up and down, then be your best friend to your face. Marie HATES me. Darn. Another big drinker.

Bigpants - She's new. I don't know her that well other than the fact that she's usually hitting on all the drivers. And this the nickname they've given her on the dayshift. I hear she's leaving soon to move to Tenn. with some dude she met on the internet.

Todd - Knows everything. (Or so he'll tell you) Not a bad guy, another one I like working with, when I can get a thought in edgewise. (yes thought, not word, thought) No chance to think with him talking at the top of his voice.

Jim - Funny as hell. Jim has VERY recently started dispatching. A Lee St. graduate. (Raritan Bay Mental Health counseling, we drive a lot of welfarians here during the day.) He's kind of a manic personality, but fucking hysterical. He once told me he recently found out he's allergic to alcohol, he breaks out in handcuffs & restraining orders. I really like Jim.

I will probably use these people's real names in the posts if I talk about them, so good luck figuring out who is who. This is in no way a complete list (there are probably better than 30 drivers in all) but I'd better head off to work, so I'll be back first thing in the morning to tell you about my night. Again, please bear in mind that I am not trying to be mean in anyway about these people, just subjective. I remember once during my first week, I called Regular, and asked him if there was a single person who worked for us that was at all normal. He thought really hard for a minute and came up with a solid no. We are all seriously fucked up in one way or another, and we all have our vices. But then again isn't that true of everyone?

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Quiet, Good Or Bad?

Well, for the most part, the night sucked. Dead. Booked less than $100 tonight, and the freakin dispatcher needed a serious tampon or something. He can be so moody, and when Steve ain't happy, ain't nobody happy.

So my first fare of the night was this couple headed from Carteret to the LaMirage via Suchs Bar. I was actually quite surprised to find that the girl who seemed nothing but ignorant at first was actually pretty cognizant and empathetic. Actually a pretty sweet girl. Aside from the fact that she was headed to a cheapo motel with a bunch of liquor and said she was going to call in 2 hrs for a ride home.

Now we head off to pick up another driver, Mary. Mary is drunk and freely admits this. She's headed from the Main to the Glass Bar. Crappy bar to crappier bar. Ouch.

Next guy complained my air freshener made his allergies bad. Sorry, but some of these people friggin STINK! My Avon Vanilla body mist goes everywhere with me! (I don't wear the crap just douche the cab with it.)

Willy. Dammit Willy's next. Let me explain Willy and my history with him a little bit. Willy has some kind of weird issue that makes him have a hard time walking. (My opinion is he makes a lot more of it for sympathy than it really is.) I think it's some kind of rotting on the bottom of his feet. (Seriously.) So he always makes a big deal that when you drop him off you can't pull away until you have watched him walk into his house or the store or whatever. He will tell you exactly HOW to drop him off every single time he is in your car. Usually Willy insists you drive him all the way up his driveway to his back porch. The problem with this is his driveway is about half as wide as the car is with big bushes on either side. So the last time I pulled up this driveway, the bushes scratched the shit out of the side of the car, I almost got fired for that one. They were convinced that I sideswiped something and ran. Honestly I wasn't even aware of it until the next night when I was getting yelled at. It was the passenger side for one, and it's dark when I work, so I never noticed. Who would think bushes could wreck a car? So anyway he wasn't happy I wouldn't pull in the driveway, but he finally deals by telling me that I have to wait for him to get in the house flick his bedroom light. Whatever. See ya!

Then I get a Raritan Center call. It turns out to be a girl that i went to high school with and sort of ran in a few of the same circles. Grr. Not that I don't like reminiscing as much as the next guy, but I don't really like talking to people that much. She wants to stop at Walgreens and spends 10 minutes in there. She comes out with like 10 bags and somehow managed to go grocery shopping in a pharmacy.

Then I pass an hour sitting at WB train station. Yayy. Finally I manage to snag a Carteret off a train. He proceeds to light a blunt upon entering the car. Great, now I get to be tired, AND smell like pot. Avon Vanilla to the rescue!

Another hour passes, but this time I'm sitting in the office with Steve watching some LifetimeTV sitcom, (Told you he needed a tampon!) and listening to him scream at customers on the phone. This gets me sent off to pick up one of these (now pissed off) customers. The guy seems to have a hard time telling me where he lives. (Now I know why Steve was yelling at this one at least) Then in an amazing flash of brilliance he says "You must think I'm a complete idiot." There's hope for the human race yet.

Annie's next. She is awesome. She goes from work hopme just about every night. She always tips double her fare. She's a bartender at a Sheraton, and one of the sweetest yet kick your ass people you will ever meet. She moved into a new apartment and is looking forward to her vacation in the beginning of July, also she has aquired a really hot roommate.

Another very long hour.

Walter Drive. Screaming Woman. Hospital FAST!. Husband says "we think it's ribs" what ever that means, I think he did it. He keeps quietly telling her to calm down and shut up, nobody wants to hear her scream. Young child with them as well. Bear in mind it is 4:30 am. Child is crying too. But very very quietly. Not a pretty scene. He tipped $2.00. He seemed too happy. Whole thing very unsettling.

Another LONG hour and just a regular morning train person.

Some talk in the office about another driver Brian. We are now convinced he is some kind of pedifile. He says he's just working here till he can afford his day care center. If you met the dude once you realize just how creepy a thought this is. maybe on one of my days off I'll write an entire post introducing you to the other drivers. (This could be an entire blog on it's own. Some strange cats indeed.)

Gas up and go home.

Monday, June 21, 2004

Welcome

Welcome! Tomorrow will begin the first day of something I hope could be really interesting to compile.

See You Then!!!!

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