Uber Tales: Never a Dull Day, Edition

I still haven’t had a completely wacked-out Uber driving experience but in the last couple of days I’ve had a few quirks in the driving Matrix here.

First off:

Last night I was taking this lady home from the airport, and she lived in a high enough-dollar subdivision that had a guard at the gate. She was a nice lady, really friendly and a good tipper. Now when I was coming back out of the neighborhood the guard is standing by the guard shack and he waves at me to stop. So, I stop and he comes up to my car and he says he loves my haircut. Okay, I’m thinking that’s an interesting compliment and say thanks to be polite. Then I tell him I cut it myself and he says he’s a barber (though maybe not the most successful barber if he’s working as a security guard on the night shift, but to each their own). He then goes on and on about how he’d love to cut my hair and would be willing to do it for free. He says he’s cut ladies hair as short as mine and in fact, offered to cut mine into a flattop. I keep politely declining him and trying to get him to stop talking. Now I’ve had hair stylists compliment me on my hair all my life and gush about how they love my hair is really awesome according to them (it’s thick and wavy and when back when I had it monstrously-long it was a major pain the ass to maintain so that’s why I keep so short now). Finally, just before I was about to flat-out tell him I needed to get back to work, he let me go.

But jeez, Universe, why can’t I get the attention of someone who doesn’t come off as a total borderline-perv loser (he was an older white-haired dude who did give off a slightly pervy vibe)? Why can’t I attract, even for just a few minutes, a Keanu Reeves or George Clooney type?

Then earlier in my day yesterday I get what I thought would be a nice lady but a lady whose dumb-ass arguments I had to demolish one by one. First off she asks me how I feel about President Biden’s administration hiring a bunch of new IRS agents because they’re going to go after little peons like me. I told her that was a bunch of whack (politely) and said it was to go after the big tax cheats (which it is). Then she talked about gas prices and how the President sets them and how they went up because he stopped fracking. I immediately schooled her on the greed of the oil business and how we don’t need to frack for oil. Then she talked about the evils of labor unions until I set her straight there and told her how labor unions ended child labor and brought about protections for workers. Then just as we were turning in to her hotel she says the country is going downhill because we got away from God. I let that one slide because her God and my God are two different entities. I also didn’t tell her how she’d probably shit bricks if she walked into the grocery store nearby and saw women in full chadors and veils and African women in their very colorful and beautiful dresses. Because the side of town I live on is a mix of rich and poor, and at times my lily-white ass is in the minority, and I love that. But to buy in to those dumb-ass arguments because Fox News says so- not in my car.

Then early Monday morning (around five a.m.) I head to a pickup with a slight case of dread. The location tends to mess with the GPS so I’m not entirely sure sometimes where my pickup is in this area. Well, the pickup was outside the sleazy strip bar next to some apartments. And my pickup was waiting at the end of the parking lot for me- a single guy who seemed reasonably sober. So, I pick him up and it’s not a long ride back to his drop off (a hotel downtown). He tells me his buddies left him at this strip club and I told him that sucked. Then he says something about picking up a ‘scoundrel’ like him. He wasn’t Han Solo in any way, shape, or form so I said NOTHING to that. Instead, I focused on turning up my ‘don’t fuck with me’ vibe, which must have worked because he clammed up and didn’t say jack till we got to his hotel and he thanked me for the ride (and tipped me well like my right-wing nut lady and the lady who lived in the neighborhood with the guard-letch).

I don’t like strip-club pickups because I had one guy hit on me so bad he made me an indecent proposal (which he immediately apologized for after I called him out on it with a simple, “Excuse me?”) and others where the guys were drunk and pissed off because they didn’t get a blow job from one of the strippers. I have so much respect for women who work in strip clubs because of all the shit they take. But these days us ladies seem to take so much damn shit (even from other ladies) and I think we’ve had enough. I was talking to one of my fellow woman-drivers and she was telling me how she told off one of the other drivers at the airport waiting lot for being an asshole to her (he hit on her and she turned him down and he got all pissy about it so she chewed him out in front of all his fellow-guy drivers- I would have paid good money to see that).

So, there’s never a dull day on the road and the tips are very good.

Uber Tales – Frequently Asked Questions, Edition

I’m going to list some of my most frequently asked questions (FAQ) here but if you have any questions for me that are not listed here, just let me know in the comments.

How long have I been driving for Uber?

  • Five years as of this year.

Do I like it?

  • Yes. (If I didn’t I don’t think I would have stayed with it as long as I have because of the freedom I have with this job).

Longest trip?

  • Current record holder is three hours (would have been three and a half if I hadn’t taken a couple of alternate routes around some high-traffic areas)

Biggest tip?

  • Current record is still $100 though if anyone wants to break that record they’re more than welcome to.

Any really strange or outrageous passengers?

  • Nothing totally bizarre or anyone I couldn’t handle.

How much time do I spend at the airport?

  • Enough to where I sometimes call it my home-away-from-home.

Are you from San Antonio?

  • Born and raised, and I’m old enough to remember when things were built, or something else.

When do you drive?

  • Anytime I want to though my bank account pretty much dictates when I work and for how long.

Has anyone ever puked in your car?

  • No, which I am forever grateful for. I’ve reduced that risk greatly by not 2 a.m. bar let-outs though I do get the occasional day-drunks.

Have I been like a bartender-therapist to people in the car?

  • Yes. I don’t mind because sometimes people just need to talk and I’m more than happy to listen.

How many ‘morning after’s’ (formerly known as the ‘walk of shame’) have I done?

  • Lots. And occasionally I get the story. And I call them ‘morning after’s’ because I had a family in the car one night (mom, dad, two young girls) and the mom was up front with me asking me questions. She was about to say ‘walk of shame’ but I stopped her with ‘morning after’ then angled my head towards her daughters in the backseat. I didn’t feel right saying ‘walk of shame’ in front of young kids and I think I also kept the mom from having to explain that term to her daughters.

Extras

  • I was offered pot in lieu of a tip twice in one week. First time was when I dropped this guy off and he said he didn’t have any cash on him for a tip so I told him he could tip me through the app. Then he offered me something to eat or drink (I politely declined) then he went, “Can I offer you a bag of weed?” I went, “Uh what?” because I wasn’t sure if I heard him correctly. He said yes rather enthusiastically but I declined and got out of there. Second time was a couple of days later when I was driving this lady home and she said she didn’t have cash for a tip so I told her she could tip in the app. Then she asked me if I wanted a joint but I declined smoothly by saying, “No, thank you, ma’am. I don’t smoke.”
  • I’ve been asked out several times (declined firmly but politely) though I got a rather indecent proposal from this guy one night. He was drunk and hitting on me then he offered me money for an indecent time and I went, “Excuse me?” in a tone of voice that made it very clear he crossed a line. He apologized all over himself and I let him flop around like a fish on a hook for a minute or so before I told him, “Apology accepted.” He tipped me well so I let it slide.

If you would like to ask me something that wasn’t addressed here, please ask in the comments here and I’ll do my best to answer it. Thanks!

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