Blanketing opinions that I'll probably regret soon.

Friday, December 09, 2005

I got in an argument with a cab driver tonight.

I've taken cabs in countries all over the world. I find cabbies to be a good lot---never had a problem with them. Until tonight. We got to my place and he didn't have enough change. I gave him a $20 bill and he scrounged around in his center console for some pennies encrusted in pubic hair for like 10 mintues---no, 15---before I got fed up. All the years that I've overpaid DC cab drivers came rushing forward. I think I said something like, "You fucks are overpaid anyway. Don't give yourself that tip. In New York this would've cost five dollars. DC is the only place that it costs two people eleven bucks to go less than a mile." Ok, those weren't my exact words, but I do remember the rantlet ending with something to the effect of him taking his measly paycheck to the bank and getting some change to pay his customers. It felt so good when I pointed to his filthy candy-wrapper-and-penny-stuffed center console and said, "You call yourself a professional?".

It got really ugly. Not violent-type ugly, but ugly in the sense that I felt like one of the dick-stick lawyers that I deal with daily. And what a strange feeling. It was a mixture of being pissed off and feeling guilty about it, and feeling like I had done a good deed for my city.

Our cab drivers have been stealing money from us for too long in the form of jacked-up fares. So even though they're jacked-up, people are supposed to lie down and take it because cab drivers are proletarian. Fuck all that. It's about time a dickhole like me gave them a piece of his mind.
If I were only so lucky to be able to get a cab to rip me off, next time you hop in a cab try getting them to take you 14th and Mass SOUTH EAST. You will always find that they were on their way home or some other excuse. One time I refused to leave the cab and he said he would call the police. As it were a police car passed I flagged him down explained the situation, figuring I would at least get a ride home. No such luck, the officer said the cabby said he was on his way home and even when I pressed the fact that he stopped and let me get into his cab it was for naught. This already after flagging down several cabs who were also "on their way home" Fuck cabbies walking is better for you anyway.
I've given people at work some shit before, and even if you're in the right, you still feel guilty for being a dick.

Don't worry about it, maybe he'll drop his tactic of not having change to get bigger tips in the future since he awoke the sleeping dragon.
I forgot to mention that he forced me to give him a $2 tip because he didn't have enough change. So I think the total was like $13 for taking me less than 1 mile and waiting 15 minutes in the parked cab waiting for him to give me change.
ugh. i hate dealing w/ DC cabbies. the majority i've encountered are decent, but its those few...
It is weird about the SE thing with cabbies. I can get out of SE, but it's hard to get them to take me back.

All the anger in the world is probably not enough for him to stop pulling that no change thing. People will do anything for a buck.

Wish they had a recording of that though...the new DC reality tv show starring *you*. Now that would be comedy.
Great entry! I agree cabbies around here can be tough. I just moved from NYC a few months ago and it has been quite an adjustment. For my first month here, I had to have my friends spell out directions for me if I knew I was taking a cab home (and tell me how much it should cost) so I wouldn't get ripped off. My advice? When you get a good cabbie, get his/her number. My friend has a limo driver's number (no lie!) and if he's free when she calls, he'll pick her up no problem. It's nice to have someone you can trust.
Mother fucker! I fucking HATE THAT SHIT. You should have kicked him in the back of the head. The truth is, I believe in the worker and I'm a generous tipper. I always give 20 percent on top of the 10 percent dc food tax. I always leave a dollar in the fucking tip jar at Starbucks and at bars no matter how little I order. I've worked for tips and I understand the importance of giving your part. But cab drivers who rip you off with the whole "I don't have any change" bullshit game should be dragged out of their cars and beaten to death. One time a cab driver drove me the 7-tenths of a mile from the metro to my house on a rainy night. All I had was a 20 and the ride was all of 3 dollars. I offered a 2-dollar tip and said "Do you have 15?" for my change. And he said, "Oh no no no no. I can't break a 20." So I stared at him a second and said, "Then I guess you're not getting paid or we're driving to a convenience store so you can get some change." MIRACULOUSLY he produced some ones he'd forgotten he had stashed in his pocket. MOTHER FUCKER!
Don't even get me started! We should all yell at these jackasses more. You did do DC a favor.

As far as I'm concerned, if they don't have change they shouldnt even take your fare. That'll learn em.
Bro, I feel you here. I lost in on a cab driver and was told that I had "anger issues". Every holiday those guys think that they can over charge their drunk passengers. I'm not paying $30 for two zones? Come on... This was on Halloween, you can read my depressing entry if you want:

Anyway, I'll look forward to getting charged an arm or a leg this New Year's. That, or I'll walk home to the ghetto as usual...
From the Washingtonian last December:

Over six months, in interviews and independent testing, The Washingtonian discovered many cases in which cabbies overcharged, endangered, or mistreated passengers. We discovered shoddy record keeping and lax oversight as well as reports of corruption and misconduct at the agency that oversees taxis, limos, tour buses, and private ambulances. In tests, we discovered that riders were being overcharged 41 percent of the time. In reviewing records obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, we learned just how little DC was doing to prevent taxicab abuse.


A majority of DC's taxicabs fail the required safety and emissions inspections.

Passenger complaints are often ignored, and those that result in a judgment against the driver are rarely enforced.

Convicted criminals are getting licenses to drive cabs.

How did the District's taxi system get this way?
Does not surprise me in the least.
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