Tuesday, July 25, 2006

I should start a blog


On Ninth Avenue tonight, two guys were walking in the middle of the street. When I pulled up behind them, one of them turned around and, instead of getting out of the way and walking on the sidewalk like a normal human being, said, "Calm yourself, you fucking CUNT."

This was so out of nowhere and so utterly uncalled for, I snapped. I was, at that point in my shift, just so sick of the abuse, sick of the idea that some idiot crossing in traffic can turn around and use some shitty sexist slur against me, and sick of the fact that it even bothered me at all. But it did. In fact, I'd rather be called an asshole, or even a motherfucker, but cunt? It hardly fits.

So, yeah, I lost my cool. Despite the fact that I had a passenger in the backseat -- a circumstance under which I usually have much more restraint, since the point here is to work and make money and not let shit get to you -- I yelled out the window a very boring and tired old "Why don't you come back here and call me a cunt to my face, you fucking retard."

The guy, of course, returned my unoriginal question with his own very unoriginal move of grabbing his balls at me. At that point I had unbuckled my seatbelt and was reaching for my camera, but just then the light turned green and I remembered I had a passenger, remembered that I was working, not playing some stupid ego game, so I pulled myself together and just drove away.

I felt pretty stupid and weird and pissed off, and I felt I had to say something to my passenger so he didn't think he was riding with some psychopath -- though, at that point, he was. I said, "Sorry about that. I'm just sick of these guys who walk in the middle of the street and then think that I'm like trying to hit them or something, and then say shit to me like I shouldn't be driving on the street they're walking on."

The guy didn't seem phased, saying only, "Oh, it's okay." Maybe he really didn't care, but I have a feeling he might have been scared of me, and I ended up feeling like a total fool. Maybe even a bit of an asshole, but definitely not a cunt.

Later on, my last job of the night, I took a middle-aged heavyset guy to Glendale, Queens. The entire ride there we talked about the rising price of gas and he explained to me in complicated detail the mechanics of our economy and how gas prices were going to exceed people's need for the stuff and eventually prices would go down, etc, etc.

After a while, he asked if I was a student. I get asked this one a lot since I look a lot younger than my 30 years. I said no. Then he asked, "Well do you do something else besides driving the cab?" I've learned over the past few years that people really like it if you're doing something else. They don't like to hear that you're just a cab driver, they want you to be working towards something.

I've started to tell people different things, but a lot of times I just give some vague, weird, embarrassed answer like, "I guess I'm trying to be a writer these days," or something like that. Sometimes I'll even tell them about the blog, but most often not.

This guy got all excited when he heard this answer. He went on and on about writing and then said, "You should use the internet to leverage that -- have you heard of blogs?"

I said yes, and was about to tell him I had one, but I couldn't really get a word in as he quickly went on to explain, again in meticulous detail, how I could start a blog and get Google advertising on it and get twenty- to thirty-thousand hits a day (not likely) and make a ton of money. By then we were in front of his house and talking with the meter off already, so I didn't really feel like getting into it and prolonging the conversation. I just let him talk himself out until finally he paid me, wished me luck, and jumped out.

I probably really should start a blog, shouldn't I.

89 comments:

Anonymous said...

You make my heart smile!

caramaena said...

What a novel idea! You really should do that ;)

Ali said...

yea ... why don u put some google ads onto your blog ...

zhaf said...

Don't let the jerks in the middle of the street, actual and metaphorical, get you down. I think you're doing a great job.

Anonymous said...

You rock....

Why fiddle around... say yes, I am a writer! and those farqtards are going to be in one of my many books!

You've got the skill, no doubt. A little free advertising on the job, and with no spell checking!

Oh, and I would have reacted the same way. I find it funny though, all they could do is grab their balls... were they expecting you to grab your boobs? Of course not; now that would scare your fare! And why do guys think that's the answer anyways... hmmm.

love your blog from here in Oregon

Desiree said...

I wish I could say at my office job "Why don't you come back here and say that to my face you fucking retard!" when the people around me are jerks. That would make my day! You cabbies have all the fun!

But really, thanks for the window into your world.

sbntom said...

Years a go in Santa Ana,CA. I was working for an Office Equipment retailer delivering furniture. One day I was waiting for an elevator in the lobby of a business building. An old man next to elevator running a news stand made some rude remarks to me about my long hair and a beard. Having Midwest, middle class morals I kept my mouth shut. When I got back to the store I told the manager about the incident. His remarks were reassuring. People like that are looking for a confrontation and it's best keeping your mouth shut. It stops them in their tracks. Keep writing!

Drunken Master said...

Huh? Blog, really? Is that what this is???

It's interesting to note that listening to crap like the "cunt" jibe is not construed as abuse on the job.

TUFFENUF said...

If I wasn't already retired, if I had it to do over - I would be a cabbie. However, I understand that it is not an easy job to get, esp. in NYC. Besides, if someone said that to me from the middle of the street, I might run them over! Good luck to you, I enjoy your blog.

astrogir1 said...

maybe you should think about Ad-Sense...

btw..luv reading your blog.. :)

Katy said...

maybe you should use vista print to make some business cards that have your blog address. that way you can give them to those people. It would be fun to read comments from people that rode with you (well from some of them not the Assholes.

... said...

Actually, I think it would be a hell of a lot of fun to read what the Assholes had to say!

Steve B said...

So did you get 30,000 hits today. I say go back to updating more often. So many website fail due to reader getting used to regular updates and then the author getting lazy. We like your stories of citiots on the big apple. Keep up the good work and keep us in the loop

Anonymous said...

Ah, fuck that guy. Don't you let that piece of shit ruin your day. Thanks for the great writing. We really appreciate it.

Windjammer said...

What a very original idea! If you started a blog, I'd read it!

Pat T Hat said...

You need to come up with a holster for that camera. "The Quick Draw Hacker Holster"! (Soon to be sold at finer cab stands and dept. stores?)

Mark said...

The guy was obviously suffering from High Self Esteem. There seems to be a lot of that going around these days.

It's a tragic affliction, but it's hardest on the families.

Big Gay Monster said...

you rock

Anonymous said...

My favorite blog...

Excellently written (grammaticaly correct??) and always very interesting. How is the book deal coming by the way?

Kari said...

Start a blog? I don't know, it seems so public!

Thanks for that picture. I was in NYC, staying at the Grand Hyatt just days ago. I tell you, I don't know how you survive in that city driving a cab. I wouldn't last a minute!

Have a great day.

NorthPut21 said...

I drove a truck in NYC for a few years. Even succombed to a particularly nasty case of road rage one afternoon and chased a guy all the way through the Midtown tunnel and into Maspeth(even though I had no need to go to Queens). Out of all of the things I've called people (including many a cab driver) I've never called someone a c**t. That word is reserved for real special cases. And I doubt you could come close to that. Even on your worst day!

wil said...

Damn, 20-30 thousands hits a day? Yeah, right.

I must be doin' sumptin' wrong.

Has anyone ever been paid by Ad Sense?

CharterJames said...

What you failed to understand is that Ninth Avenue is his personal patio, not a public thrufare as you mistakenly believe. Put in this perspective you can understand why the man became upset, even abusive. The gratuitous violation of peoples' personal patio spaces in the traffic lanes of Ninth Avenue has become so rampant that people have given up reporting even the most aggregious incidents.

Greg said...

I once saw the band Cordero perform. Their frontwoman, Ani Cordero, told a story about being on the receiving end of some sexual remarks from a couple of Latinos. She said she responded in Spanish with "Did your mothers teach you to speak to women like that?" and they became visibly ashamed. She said Latin men have a weakness for their mothers, but maybe that retort (in English) would work on other men, too.

I hope no one who reads this blog entry is made hopeful by that passenger's observation that gas prices will go down once humankind doesn't have as much of a need for gas as we do now. The substitution in significant numbers of motor vehicles that don't rely solely, or at all, on gasoline-burning internal combustion engines for the motor vehicles on U.S. roads today will take many years.

Anonymous said...

I enjoy the glimps into your life so much that I look to see if you've posted almost everyday! I know you are very busy but....WE WANT MORE!

Anonymous said...

pick me up already!!!!!!!!!!!

Clankazoid said...

I recommend ads for headache remedies, Calgon bath products and throwable Ninja accessories

Anonymous said...

love the blog, I read it every day. your subject matter is great and your a great writer.

Nicole said...

I wish all cab drivers (or bloggers, for that matter) were as reflective, honest, and sensitive as you. I often feel scared to get into a cab because some of the drivers are, well, scary. It is sweet that you were thinking of your passenger while this guy was being such a jerk to you. That shows a lot about the kind of person you are.

Anonymous said...

Jeez...GET OUT OF NY....

I have never seen anyone under so much stress......

I hope you take drugs!!!

Anonymous said...

A blog? Never heard of that. Seems pretty useless to me.... wouldn't be caught dead typing in one.

Maybe you can drive a cab or something instead?

;)

Cheers
John M
Montreal, Quebec

Anonymous said...

Speaking of writing, how's the book coming along?

Anonymous said...

Hey, I live in Glendale, Queens, let me know where you dropped the guy off at, and I'll put a little message in his mailbox with your link, stating "I blog, do you?" with your link on it, and the suprise on his face when he reads your last entry, and it's about HIM! haha....good idea though, but seriously, email me qtbella83@yahoo.com, if you want me to do it!

Tanjents said...

HILL ARIE OUS

..perhaps, yes, you should start a blog.

Barbara said...

Hmm. Well, I dunno. You COULD start a blog, certainly... but do you think you have the talent to make it in the blogging world? Its a very competitive industry, you know. ;)

catkins13 said...

and once again, when in doubt, grab your balls...go figure.
blog on!!

Callie Ann said...

god you make me laugh so much some times. Wait tell one day when the guy finds your blog, or reads your book your working on and tries to say. "Yep, it was me who gave her the idea". Too Funny greatings from Oregon

Greg said...

HA HA! For the first time, I looked at the very first entries on this blog and found this:

[Photo of a sign that reads, "EFFECTIVE TODAY, August 30th, 2005 THE PRICE OF GASOLINE WILL BE $2.95 PER GALLON."]

"This was the second thing I saw when I walked into the garage today. The first thing was John the crazy Romanian dispatcher standing outside grabbing his balls at me. Frankly, I was more upset about the gas price."

Chez Bez said...

One day, I will ride your cab from Islip to Hotel Chelsea. I will be kind and polite. I will not use cuss words in your cab, but I will tip like a motherfucker.

All my best.

Chez Bez from Nashville

jo said...

Brilliant post - why do men feel they have to use the 'C u next Tuesday' word, just because we are women!!

I don't think you come accross as stressed - and don't do drugs - they will totally fuck-up your life.

Keep on with the great posting.

xx

Anonymous said...

I hate the word "cunt"...and I'm a guy!! "Pussy" sounds nicer, but is also derogatory...Funny how none of the slang words for genatalia(that I can think of this early)are complementary...and yet M.F. CAN be a compliment, though it's not usually...

You've heard it before, but I'll say it again anyway-BOOK DEAL !!!

Anonymous said...

ha haaaaaaaaa that's funny...

Jaelithe said...

A very pretty, feminine female friend of my mother's had a phrase she liked to retort with whenever any strange man on the street said something sexist and insulting to her.

She would say, "How would you like to come over here and suck my big fat dick?"

Stopped them in their tracks every time ;)

Green said...

The guys in the middle of the street didn't deserve any witty commentary on your part. As a passenger I wouldn't be phased by anything you might have said to them; I'd pay more attention to your driving than your talking.

I'm a secretary, and will be 30 this fall. People who don't know me often ask if I'm going to law school (no, I'd need a bachelor's degree and about 30 more IQ points that weren't learning disability-laden).

It kinda sucks. I hear you on that one.

framinghamonian said...

I love love love your blog.

I get the same question too. I work at a college and people sometimes think I'm a student. It's flattering but then it makes me think I should be doing more creative things with my life.

I would be so tempted to run that guy down but hopefully you got to go to sleep and dream about that later that night : )

iraqidirtchick said...

hahaha... too funny! other than that, i hope you have a great drive tomorrow...

Anonymous said...

ROFL!!

Anonymous said...

hey hack, why dont you do some footage of these arseholes and post it on youtube, only title it 'NY Hack arseholes, c u next tuesday' so we can all find it.

hey, you should also start a blog.

cordelia

lugosi said...

Yeah, that blog suggestion seems like a good idea. Maybe you should check out Blogspot.com. Of course, you'll also have to come up with a title for it, perhaps something that includes your location and job.

Of course, I'm just making a suggestion. No need to get pissed off. I certainly wouldn't want you to whip out that camera phone and (GASP!!) take my picture.

PJ said...

WTF! What is it about New York that you’re always being asked what else you do if you’re a hack or a waiter.

Hey, in my day when you got crap like that it was a good enough excuse to take aim.

Pat said...

I live in the East 80s and a few years back there was this abusive homeless person who would scream at people who didn't give him money.

The day Mother Theresa died I was walking back to my building and I saw this guy and thought of Mother Theresa and in her memory I decided I would be pleasant to this guy. When I got close to him, I smiled and said "Hello. How are you?"

well, the guy screamed "Shut up you fucking cunt!" over and over at me and I thought even Mother Theresa would want to bitchslap this guy.

Anonymous said...

ha! hey PAT, you should start a blog...or at least post on one from time to time...good story.

EverJack1 said...

This was a great segment, Milissa. I like your moxie.

I really hope you make it big with your book. :o)

EverJack1

Blip said...

Not anymore, some other NYC girl driver beat you to it.

Anonymous said...

You should make a blog. I promise that I'd read it.

Greg said...

I just saw this on Gawker: The Web site of the Central Park Zoo says, "The zoo is also actively involved the preservation of endangered species, providing a home for rare tamarin monkeys, Wyoming toads, thick-billed parrots, and red pandas. Rumors of a secret exhibit featuring English-speaking cab drivers have never been confirmed."

So, M.P., if one day you can no longer afford the rent of a NYC apartment, maybe you could go live at the Central Park Zoo.

RHW said...

Why don't you start a blog about doing your blog? Then you can start a blog about that.

I Dressed Myself said...

Yeah, you really should start a blog. I heard that's the way to get rich these days. You must be raking in the dough by now! Ha! =)

Anonymous said...

As long as I have a face you have a place to sit! Look me up next time you are in California!

Greg said...

Gawker posted a correction to the item I quoted in my previous comment. The Web site on which that statement appears is not an official Web site of the Central Park Zoo, the Central Park Conservancy, or the Parks Department.

Eduardo said...

I can't stand the C word.

Vernon said...

Dear Heart, don't let the ass holes of this world get you down. Keep your eye on your goal, and go on from there.
I love your stories.

: ) said...

he sounds like one of those people who talks and talks and talks and doesn't really listen. ugh. I sat next to someone like that on the plane. it was awful.

anyway, if i got you as my cab driver, I wouls seriously die. I actually had a woman cab driver drive my boyfriend and I from to the Angelika theatre one weekend, and I kept staring at her thinking it could have been you. At that time I didn't know your name yet, so I didn't know. Ugh. WAS IT YOU?! I'll never know, but I would like have asked for your autograph or a picture of you or something.

I love this blog

EverJack1 said...

If she wasn't smoking menthol cigs, : ), it possibly could have been her. ;o)

EverJack1

Fits said...

Making me homesick.

freddybeach cabby said...

I imagine every job comes with a certain amount of abuse,either from the public or fellow employees or bosses.But driving cab seems to get more than its fair share of jerks,morons,and lowlifes...its just part of the job.Keep on keepin on!

BBC said...

You're thirty? Hell hon, I'm sixty-three, you haven't seen nothing yet. Hugs.

MrFunkMD said...

"Then he asked, "Well do you do something else besides driving the cab?" I've learned over the past few years that people really like it if you're doing something else. They don't like to hear that you're just a cab driver, they want you to be working towards something. "

That is so fucking true.

Zeke Fucks My Mom said...

You should get that site meter on here, so you can see how many hits you are getting.

http://www.sitemeter.com/

Anonymous said...

If I was your fare, I would have sworned that they just ran out infront of the cab and you couldn't stop in time. :D

William K. Scurry Jr. said...

I don't think you're a cunt. And I am one, so I'd know.

asy said...

Oooh, a blog!

THERE's a good idea!

Let us know if you ever do start one, won't you :D

I think I might start one too. Just in case I ever want to become an NYC Taxi driver! hehe

Oh, and, there was no call for those guys to use naughty words. I agree with you.

asy :D

Anonymous said...

You really should because you freakin' ignore this one most of the time...

Dylan said...

How ironic.

Anonymous said...

Hey girl, I get abuse like that all the time when I'm riding my bike -- for example when people are crossing against the light and I whiz by them. Let's face it - people are freaking assholes.

annulla said...

So ... about the passenger who was in the back seat during your encounter with the guys on 9th Avenue.

Did he tip you?

A lot?

yougogirl said...

Can you tell me why cabdrivers always get into fights with me when i want them to take me to Brooklyn?

Anonymous said...

you are a writer....trust me

Anonymous said...

you are a writer...trust me! oh and thank you

Anonymous said...

Dear Melissa,
Sorry you were treated like that, Some humans will find out when they die they will have to make amends to all the people they offended when they were alive, You see god loves everyone, but we as a species will never learn until we are confronted by him the almighty lord then i'll be too late. So for all us who said unkind words to you I stand up and say i'm SORRY for them...Melissa you keep riding the pavement of life we need alot more good souls like you out there.
Sincerely
doctorjpeg@yahoo.com

thekid9 said...

YOU, start a blog?? No one would EVER read it! =o)

Anonymous said...

Damn, you should start a blog.

Tim said...

Do you make much money off of the google ads?

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Fuel Price Fighter said...

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Fuel Price Fighter said...

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Hope this helps!

Anonymous said...

Shut up you CUNT!

Anonymous said...

you have inspired me CUNT, and by the way i will start bloging