Saturday, March 24, 2007

Idiocy in Three Acts

Act I

I was sent to a bar to pick up a lady, and I waited more than five minutes; I called inside to the bartender, who was drunk off his ass. He probably didn't know his own name, let alone who might have called for a taxi. So I waited some more. There were people milling about the parking lot, but nobody stepped forward. By this time I was trying to reach dispatch to report a no-go so I could get another ride. The night dispatcher is a *unique* individual; he was probably cuffing the governor instead of listening to the radio. I started to leave.

Then, and only then, did the lady approach the car. She had been in the crowd in plain sight of me the entire time. She wasted a lot of my time and for some mysterious reason wouldn't indicate she wanted a cab until I was leaving.

Act II

When we arrived at her house, she wanted to pay the $5 fare by check because she didn't have any cash. Who writes checks these days? I wouldn't take a check from God.

Eureka! She'll just go inside and get some money. Except that she didn't have her keys. We were going to have to wait for her husband to ride his bicycle home from the same bar. He had left about the same time we did. And he had had some drinks with old Navy buddies, so there was no telling how long it would take the drunken Lance Armstrong to appear.


I finally told her I wasn't going to wait any longer. The ride was on me. Have a nice evening, Ma'am. She insisted on taking my cell number and promised to call tomorrow so I could drop by and get my $5. Will I drive a car that guzzles gas the way I once guzzled beer to her house for five whole dollars?

She did everything in the most aggravating way possible for a cabbie, except for rudeness. If I had waited around for Lance Armstrong, I'm sure I would have been stiffed on the tip. Or I'd still be waiting there when George Bush XI is president.

I really felt like reading her the riot act.

UPDATE: Gotta love the web. I found the actual riot act from which we get the expression.

    Our sovereign Lord the King chargeth and commandeth all persons, being assembled, immediately to disperse themselves, and peaceably to depart to their habitations, or to their lawful business, upon the pains contained in the act made in the first year of King George, for preventing tumults and riotous assemblies. God save the King.

Here's an updated version:

    Our sovereign Lord the King chargeth and commandeth all taxi patrons, being assembled, immediately to cease and desist being a dumbass, and peacably to depart to their habitations, or anywhere far away from exasperated cabbies, upon the pains contained in the act made in the first year of King George Bush, for preventing general idiocy. God save the King.

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