DK’s NYC Taxi Cab Chronicles (from 5/18/10).

The one thing I hate about rush hour in the city is when you combine the nature of this race against time business with rain..it can be a recipe for disaster, unless you can use your gift of gab with honesty.  My first passengers were two couples I picked up at Terminal 4 who needed to go to Greenpoint out in Brooklyn.  When it’s 6pm and you gotta contend with 2 jam-packed highways in the Van Wyck and the BQE..even having 90 minutes to drop them off and back is a challenge.  Combine that with the fact I had to drop them off in 2 separate locations and I standed very little chance.  Oh, did I mention that I have to take the Long Island Expressway too?  Ick.  Somehow though I got fortunate that the dispatcher gave me a pass on getting back 5 minutes late.

DK’s Geography Lesson of the Day (from JFK):
Couple- We’re going to 30 West Street.  Take the Midtown Tunnel to the FDR to Battery Park.
Me- Wouldn’t I take the Brooklyn Bridge to the FDR?
Guy- No. My daughter’s lived here for 10 years and she says this is the fastest route.
DK’s Brain- o_O
Me- Well that’s interesting, but okay; whichever route yall prefer.
Guy- Is Times Square still dealing with the bomb scare?
DK’s Brain- Have you been reading the New York Times archives or the most recent issues?
Me- No.

I have this strange tendency to pick up passengers whenever I’m hungry or need to take a mean piss ASAP.  You’d think on a Tuesday night I’d have plenty of downtime but hey..Money vs. Food I’ma take money everytime because…money buys you food and the more money, the better.  It was really weird this time.

I drop off this dude smokin a cigar in my cab on 2nd ave and 19th street.  I told him he could smoke it as long as the smell didn’t get inside my cab but he clearly didn’t get that part.  Some cab was drivin on 2 lanes and was in my way drivin hella slowly since he was empty; and after I get around him the dude is the one yelling at him “GET THE FUCK OUT THE WAY!!” I was dying.  I was gonna go to Robin Raj Deli on 3rd and 14th to get a Tuna Melt but when I turn on 3rd…I pick up a passenger going to Park Slope.  Willpower.
– Then I’m cruisin down 7th avenue over there and lookin for a food spot.  Some guy hails me down and tells me to take him to 5th ave and I forget the cross street.  Highly unusual for an intraboro pickup outside of Manhattan.
– I get on the Manhattan Bridge so I can get onto Bowery and eventually I’ll make it to the Deli to get this Tuna Melt.  This dude is hailing a cab from the south side of the street but he sees me stopped at a light going north and asks me if I’m available.  Sure, he can’t be going too far right?
Him: I need to go to Riverdale.
DK’s Brain: $$$$$
DK’s Stomach: Curse youuuu.
Sidenote- If you’re ever wonderin how much it costs from near the Manhattan Bridge to get up to Riverdale..it’s around $40 which includes toll.
– I’m thinkin this HAS to be it for today..so I’m heading down on the West Side Highway and a thought pops into my head.  CHICKEN AND RICE ON 53rd and 6th!!!  I didn’t want the meal though all I wanted was a gyro.  The thought of the gyro was really making me salivate.  I went across 57th street to 5th avenue I am so close that I could taste it.  I’m on the right lane…and then:
Guy: You available? (crossing street)
DK’s Brain & Stomach: NOOOOOO!!!!
Me: Yezzir
Guy: Bond & Lafayette streets
No gyro for me then aww damn.  But the thing about my last two passengers were that they were absolutely outstanding tippers.

I started getting hungry around 1130pm.  I didn’t get my Tuna Melt which I was ultimately able to get until 145am.  I’m gettin schooled tomorrow at 10am and then got a shift at 515pm EDT.  And so on.


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