Things that amuse me ...

Sitting at a bar in outer Gresham.


"I'm just here to pick up someone officers ..."

So it's a fairly slow Sunday evening in Ptown (unless you count the leather and vinyl folks in town for the Goth Fest this weekend ... can I just say ... whoa!! :-), Memorial Day wknd so most folks are outta town. I'm sitting around downtown basically twiddling my thumbs when I get sent to The Governor Hotel to pick up some random folks. As I pull up there are 4 cop cars sitting there, the wrong way on the one way - as they do - and they all turn to look at me.

Ofcr1: You need to move on.

Me: I'm just here to pick up someone officers. I was sent here. What's going on eh?

Ofcr1: What's the name of the person you're picking up?

Me: unfortunately they (dispatch) didn't give me the name, so I just kinda looked at him stupidly for a second and right then a dude came walking out the front door ... Um ... Jesus! I hope it's Greg Allman since he just came out the door. Oh pleaseohpleaseohplease!!!

Right then Greg (um ... Mr Allman?) starts speaking, angrily, to the p.d. about something that happened in the hotel lobby w/another guest. I'm just sitting there staring at Greg when someone finally comes outta the hotel to get in my cab.

Longer story short, of the next 15 ppl I spoke with, only 1 of them knew who he was.

Man, I'm old.


"Um, ma'am? MISS? Or whatEVER you are..."

I get sent to pick up a lady in a nice neighborhood, not really affluent, more middle class - larger than average size homes, but close together. It's in the sw hills and had just gotten completely dark. I get to the street and on the entire stretch of 2 blocks not a single home has their porch lights on and all have their mailboxes attached to their places so I can't find an address. It's somewhat irritating to me as I refuse to walk up to anyone's home that doesn't have a light on at night. I just ... won't.

I get to where I think the home should be and stop in the middle of the road, car running and try to reach dispatch to get a phone number for this lady as she isn't answering her callout. While I'm sitting there, apparently the woman had come out onto the porch and was waiting for me to drive up into the driveway and help her out, but instead of being a normal person and saying anything even somewhat normal ('Hey, I'm here.' 'I'm your fare.' or even 'HelLO???') I get "Can you get your ASS UP HERE???"

I look back over my shoulder and can just barely make out a woman standing on the porch of the home just behind where I'm parked.

Me: Are you talking to me?

She: Hell yes. You are the only cab sitting in the street aren't you? I need you to help me out.

After thinking a few choice thoughts I pull the car up into the driveway and walk up to her standing on the porch.

Me: Hi. Sorry about that. I wasn't sure where you were as no one on this street has their lights on to see the address.

She: Well, can you see it NOW?? Shit! That's not my. fucking. problem.

Me: Of course I can see it NOW, I'm standing 5 ft away from it, and it IS your problem if you want a cab to find you. Next time, turn on your porch light.

She: It's not my fucking house, I just clean it. Would you just pick up my shit so we can go. I need to get home and take my pills.

I just look at her for a moment and she gets a bit ... agitated.

She: What? You want a light? I have a light. Here. One second ... let me find it in my goddamned purse. HERE. Here's my fucking light. she pulls out a little flashlight. NOW can I get a fucking ride? and she shines her light in my eyes.

Me: Ya know what? I'm sorry, bu ...

She: Yes, you ARE sorry. And you can take that goddamned smile off your face. What? You think this is FUNNY? Are you STUPID? YOU were late. Aren't you people supposed to call when you get here?

Me: I tried calling but you didn't answer your phone and as I was saying before you interrupted me to insult me, I'm sorry, BUT I'm going to call you another cab.

She: Ex-CUSE me?

Me: Certainly. I'll excuse you as I'm SURE that's your way of saying you're sorry for being so rude, but I'm still going to call you another cab.

I turn around and head back to my car and she starts sputtering at me as I walk away ...

She: Um, Ma'am? MISS? Or whatEVER you are, you can't DO that.

Well now, THAT got my attention.

Me: And THAT is why I will never give you a ride anywhere, my Gawd you are a piece of work lady. And what I AM, is the person that hopes you have a nice wait for the next cab, I'll be sure to tell them to rush right out to get you. Have a lovely evening.

As I drive off I hear her yell at me "You fucking BITCH!!!" I make sure to laugh loud enough that she can hear me.

I called dispatch and told them what happened, the girl on the radio said "I totally understand, I took her call."


"I'm sorry but your credit card declined"

I got sent to pick up an exTREMEly affluent gentleman last night that lives in Lake Oswego. Some area I hadn't been in before and the homes are - I'm betting - minimum 4 mill. I tried not to gawk toooo much as I got the call about 10 minutes before dude was to be picked up, and I was about 20 mins away. (That's a system setting: it will send out the call 20 mins. early and if no one chooses to take the call then it just sits there waiting for one of us to grab it. It's called "bidding" on an order.)

Anyway, I get out there and finally figure out which driveway is his as the homes on the lane he lives on apparently aren't gauche enough to put their addresses prominently available, at least not from the car. Dude's driveway is so long that I can't even see his home thru the trees but the reason I know it's their home is because as I'm driving up he and his woman are coming out of the driveway in their brand new Lexus convert. He jumps out and grabs his luggage outta the trunk and throws it into my trunk. He's a bit upset. Bitching about how late I am and whatnot, I figure he doesn't want excuses and I don't really wish to explain anything to this guy so I just apologize and we are on our way.

We have 25 mins to get there which, at the speed limits, this drive would probably take 30-35 mins anyway so I have him give me directions outta his windy-ass-road-neighborhood and we get onto 43. I'm zippin' along doing 40 in 15's, 70 in 45's and about 85-90 on the freeway, hoping the whole way I don't get pulled over or run up on a police officer. Basically, doing all those things that people hope their cab driver will do if they're running late, but bitch about if they aren't the one IN the cab running late. It's a fairly slow Sunday night on the roads so no one else it really at risk other than me and my fare. heh.

We get to the 'port and he asks how much the ride was.

Me: Free ride. I feel bad about us being so late. I hope you have a nice flight.

He: Now that isn't right. How much?

Me: Ya know what? I forgot to run the meter, so really, it's a free ride. (fyi: this would have been about $45)

He: I can't let you do that. Here's my card, charge me $30 while I run in and make sure my flight is still here.

He hands me his platinum Visa and heads off into the 'port. Comes back, apparently flight was delayed just a few minutes so we're good. He goes to the trunk to get his bags, I go back there and

Me: We're good?? he nods Good. I'm sorry, but your credit card declined.

He: What? Shit. Here, try this one. he hands me his pretty new Amex card.

I run the card, but being the airport lots of times there can be problems running cards, getting phone calls in/out, radio reception, etc so it takes a bit for the card to clear. As he is clearly impatient to get going I just let him sign his card and go.

*No pleasantries were exchanged at this parting.*

I get a mile or two down the road and the card auth pops up on the screen, this one declined as well. Gawd.

I call dispatch, no one else is having any problems w/their cards clearing, and he didn't seem too surprised that the 1st card didn't go so I figure dude is living a little beyond his means, if ya know what I mean. So I get dude's home phone # from dispatch and call.

I got an answering machine and leave a msg basically saying both of dude's cards had declined, I didn't expect him to pay for the ride anyway so I was just calling to let them know as he might wanna check into his cards before something embarrassing happens in San Antonio.

I called the 'port paging to try and track dude down real quick before he boards the plane. I give her my name and number and leave a msg saying I have his credit card (I didn't want to leave anything potentially embarrassing and she said she couldn't just hold me on the line and connect us, if he got the msg, and besides, he knows I don't have his card) Wasn't really willing to put much more effort into just being nice so I went about my business.

Well, he did actually call. 'Port paging called me and said she had him on the phone and was going to connect (I can only imagine how that conversation went :o)

Me: Hi, I just wanted to let you know that your 2nd card didn't go thru as well and

He: Fine. What is your name and way to reach you I'll get you when I get back. And do you have my card?

Me: No, really, I don't expect you to pay me, we talked about that. I just called because I thought you would want to know before you tried to use that card while on your trip. And no, I don't have your card.

He: Fine. Thank you. Whatever. Do you have my card??

Me: ... um. No. I don't. You put it back in your wallet.

He: Great. Great fucking night I'm having. My fucking cab is late then I get to the goddamned airport and can't find my fucking i.d. now I can't get on the fucking plane anyway because I don't have enough time to have my wife bring my fucking i.d. to the fucking airport because you were fucking late and now I have to take a fucking later fucking flight. SHIT!!

Me: Well, can I just say that after that outburst I was pretty damned amused. :o) I could run out to your house and get your i.d. from your wife and bring it back to you. No charge, again.

He: FUCK no. click. he hung up on me.


Oh to be young again ...

Picked up 3 very young (13-ish) girls last night after a 'play date' with their very wealthy young male friends at one of their homes on The Hill going to 198th/Farmington (about 25 minutes).

They get in the car and we go on our way. They are laughing and giggling the entire way. I was thinking they were cute until about 1 min. into the ride where they started talking about their hair, and that is all they talked about the rest of the 24 min ride. The same words, repeated over and over. Loudly. Interspersed with lots of giggling. And since they were talking over each other it was basically a run-on sentence with some veeery long vowels: "ohmygawd. My hair soooo has to be parted on the right like yours it just doesn't look right on the left but I love yours on the left mine just doesn't work that way mine is just like yours but it's parted on the right we soooo look like sisters don't you think we look like sisters do you think my hair should be parted on this side? How about we take a picture we can all part our hair on the right side and take a picture and then on the left side and take a picture that would be soooo much fun are you ready ohmygawd i hated that one lets do it again no really it's cute I hate my hair in this one lets do it again but you look really cute lets take another one okay that one works you look so cute in this one but my hair looks bad no it doesn't really now lets do our hair this way and take another picture we're all going to be so cute because we look just like sisters don't you think we look like sisters everyone says we look exactly alike what do you think of my hair parted on this side?" and on. and on. and ooooooon. For 25 minutes.

Not that they weren't cute and all, and I would imagine typical preteen girls of this day and age, but ohmygawd I just wanted to beat my head against the window.


Heard in my cab ...

I had to go pick up this young man with a HUGE afro in Tualatin, take him to Beaverton to pick up this girl he had just met on the internet (and paid to spend time with him) and take them both back to his home. He and I had a fairly interesting conversation on the way up there. He's from Chicago. Only been here a few months. Kinda lonely. Handicapped after getting shot in Chicago. Etc.

We get to the girl's place and she comes out to get in the cab. He starts talking about how hot she is when she's walking to the car. How he likes 'em "big". Etc. She gets in and he is immediately all up on her. Kissing and whispering in her ear. That kinda thing. I don't hear much other than kissing so I turn up the radio and he takes that as an invite to get more frisky with her.

We're tooling along and he starts laughing, really loudly. Then he says "Daaayummmm girl! You're just like Pinky AND the Brain ... big AND smart!!"

I'm sitting up front rooting her on to just slug him. (Hell, I'da held him down.) She just laughs and says "Thank you for the compliment."

As if.


Heard in my cab ...

2 girls heading home from Blitz. 1st girl is crying over current ex, 2nd is commisserating.

1st: I don't know why he doesn't love me any longer.

2nd: He's an ass. That's all there is to it. I've told you that ever since you met him.

1st: Yeah, but I love him.

2nd: Yeah, but what kind of guy breaks up with someone as beautiful as you for a couple of weeks because he "needs some space to think about us"?? Huh?? An ass, that's what kind.

1st: I know. And it's only been 3 weeks. He says he can't trust me.

2nd: WHAT?? YOU. You are the most trust worthy person I know.

1st: I KNOW. (Picture Monica from Friends here) So what if I slept with his best friend? I was LONELY. It's all HIS fault. Not mine. The other guy wasn't even someone he knows.

2nd: Yeah, and you've been faithful to him the whole 3 months you were together too. He's an ass. I keep telling you.

It didn't get any better from there.


An update ...

Remember the twins?? I had to go give a deposition a coupla weeks ago about what I saw/heard/did. While I was talking to the DA I had to ask about how the girls were doing. They both had their babies, one boy, one girl and both girls opted to give up up their babies for adoption. When I was there they had both gone into foster care due to their age and situation.

I got a phone call earlier today, a msg was left saying they would not be needing me to testify after all. My depo was fine for now. It turns out that the girls had gotten split up in foster care and after they'd both gotten well enough after having their babies they've both run away. No one knows where they are. They won't give me any more information than that.

Those poor girls.

A request: those of you that believe, pray for these girls. They need all the help they can get.


"I just need money to buy my beer."

I picked up this older lady about 11p ish one night last week. She was only going a mile (to the closest bar) and had to get there in a hurry. They were closing at 12a.

I get her there with plenty o' time to spare, $4.20 on the meter. She hands me 4.25 ... in change. All quarters. Fine. I'll add it to the change bank I have here. (Sadly, this happens a lot)

Me: Thank you much. I hope you have a good evening.

She just looks at me for a moment. Sort of expectantly.

Me: Was there something else I could do for you?

She: I want my change.

Me: blink Oh. I'm sorry. You want your nickel back? I'm afraid I don't carry that sort of change on me.

She: Well, isn't it your JOB to have change?

Me: No. Actually, it's YOUR job to be able to pay your fare with the equivalent.

She: Fine. Keep it. I'm sorry. I just need everything I can get right now.

Me: Ah. I understand. Well, have a lovely evening.

She: Well, do you have any dollars?

Me: Um. Yeah. I keep change for some smaller bills yes, but again, nothing of the silver variety.

She: Oh. I see. Well, here.

She hands me 3 dollars in quarters.

Me: Wow. Thank you. That's sweet of you.

She: Um. I need 3 dollars please.

I just look at her for a moment, then it dawns on me.

Me: Holy shit! You want to BUY my dollars from me? I thought you were tipping me.

She: No. Sorry for the misunderstanding. I just need money to buy my beer. And it's kinda embarrassing to pay for my beer with quarters.

Me: Ah. I would think it would be embarrassing to pay for your cab fare with change, but that's just me. But, here's your quarters back. I don't sell my change. Sorry I can't help you. Have a good evening.



"I just wanna dump these ugly fuckers and go home with you"

I got sent to The Sports Page off Hall and 217 to pick up some fella name of Chris. I get there and go into the bar to speak to the 'tender (as I'm told to on the instructions), as I'm walking in I run into one young fella walking out. Cute lil sucker, but loud. By himself. Apparently he thought himself amusing.

I spoke to the 'tender and told him I'd be waiting outside in the cab, send him and his friends out when he finds them. Go outside and there are 3 young-ish fellas standing at my cab, trying to get the doors open, including the cute boy I saw on the way in.

Me: Hi fellas. You who I was sent to pick up?

YB1: You our cabbie?

Me: Possibly. Who was the cab ordered for? they just kinda look at me Sorry. I need a name here guys. I don't wanna pick up the wrong person.

CB: Ah. That would be me, I'm Chris. You gonna let us into the cab?

Me: Yup. Soon as I get there and unlock the door. You in a hurry?

CB: Nah. I just wanna dump these ugly fuckers and go home with you.

Me: Ah. You're gonna be a fun one, I can tell. Here. Door's unlocked, hop in and take off your beer goggles little boy. :o)

His friends starts giving him a hard time about being a "little boy". He responds with the typical "I got your little boy right here" thing I've heard hundreds of times. I just roll my eyes at him and get in the car.

CB: Hell. If I'm your 'little boy' I guess that makes you my 'girl' huh?

Me: Until I get you outta my car Junior. Let's just make sure you don't force that to happen a little bit earlier than you wanted hey?

He just kinda eyeballed me for a minute. We drive along, the 2 in the back are yukkin' it up about something stupid. Jr up front is just watching me drive. We pull up to their house.

Me: Here ya are fellas.

CB: I'm betting you want me to be a 'girl' instead of a 'little boy' huh? You look like the type that likes girls. I could be your 'little girl'. he flashes a smile at his boys, he still thinks he's funny.

Me: I tell ya Junior, you're cute enough I might be able to use you as my 'boy', but if you wanna be my 'girl' then that means I'm gonna make you my 'bitch'. That work for ya?

His friends just laugh as he stomps off into the house.

YB1: who is doing the paying Don't worry about him. He's convinced he can make any woman want him so he's just not used to a lady turning him down. Thanks so much for the entertainment. We'll be sure to not let him forget you soon.


Welcome to Portland ... *sigh*

X 6 12 hr days/week = $500 +/- per week in gas. Ugh.

We are currently 5th highest in the nation for gas prices. Imagine how much fun I'll be having by the end of the summer. :o)

Ah yes, I guess I should answer the question: so far, no. Cab fares are not going up, yet. They (being the cab commission) is saying they're concerned that if they raise the price for cab fares then folks will stop using cabs. I argue the point that if folks choose not to use cabs the other option will be putting gas in their own vehicles. :o)

And the winner is ...


I enjoyed several of the other answers, but this one amused me the most.

Here is what she said:

I would be a Seuss-O-Phone™ because ...

a) I sound equally delightful in a bar, in a car, on a star or dipped in tar.
b) I, too, am a preposterous, impossibly put together hodge-podge of things that somehow works.
c) I am most artfully rendered in 3 colors plus black.
d) I am naturally drawn to cats--with or without striped top hats.
e) I would be as real as this Thing that supposedly made me.

So there we have it ... Ms. C, shoot me an email and we can chat ... mmshelle01@fastmail.fm. I set this one up JUST for you to reach me. :o)

And now we must get back to the regular cab stories 'cuz they're just piling up!