The days move on and on. Rapidly changing my life my circumstance. I have a court date coming up soon. The left turn incident, it all happened so fast. Unbelievable that the asshole cop wrote me a ticket too. We all know it was the young women out to buy stimulants who hit me. She did, She hit me. It all happened so fast. October 29Th is my night to be there or be square.
So school, is acceptable. It’s beyond that, it incredible. My psych teacher puts his whole course online. So we don’t even need to come to class. I said “Professor we’re all social animals. We need to connect to each other. We need to be in the presence of others to satisfy our enormous appetite for attention from others.” He told me “well while your online listening to my lecture why don’t you log onto your facebook account and have a chat with a friend.” The whole class laughed. Made me kind of sad. I like being involved with my peers. I like to know the people who are interested in the same subjects I am. Unfortunately my chance to talk to my fellow class mates is going to be limited to test dates and exam review days. Oh well.
The best part of my time at Concordia so far has been the Media man. the schools presidents right hand man. He’s a the guy who is creating Concordias public image. Given us the shine. The school is immaculate. The only thing wrong with it is that I don’t make money being here. Otherwise this is a school any parent should send his kid too. I haven’t even met any kids on drugs yet. Drunk maybe, but not one on drugs. Not even any rich coke heads here to appease their nagging rich father. I’m keeping my eye wide open though for a flaw. It could be like that green screen I was using while taping the next Concordia ad campaign, what I’m seeing could all be an illusion.
The days move on and on. Rapidly changing my life my circumstance. I have a court date coming up soon. The left turn incident, it all happened so fast. Unbelievable that the asshole cop wrote me a ticket too. We all know it was the young women out to buy stimulants who hit me. She did, She hit me. It all happened so fast. October 29Th is my night to be there or be square.
As long as she can ride in the Porch, she doesn’t care about the other women. That’s what I think women really want. They want access to a really nice car. Young women don’t want a solid guy(if you get my drift) they want a man that fits into their princessy world of shiny shoes, and jewelry. I never want to be part of that fantasy, But I do hope I have a nice ride. Sweet wheels, that get me from a to b, my Mazda 323 is falling apart. I love that it get 800km to a tank of gas though. It needs work and I can’t afford it. Hope my girlfriend likes an old, little, green ride.
Totally waiting for my student loans, I even bought my book with my own money. I have a feeling I’m going to go hungry before I get that check from the government. A check that I have to pay back. So you all know , I’m not getting a hand out like I did with guru. I’m getting a student loan. I don’t even know how much their gonna give me. Not too much, I’m a psych major what are the chances I’m actually gonna get a job that makes me any money. Fucking psychology, God damn why? Why do I like such cheesy shit? Why can’t I just love driving truck, or construction work. God why didn’t you make me into the rest of the world. Big and dumb and ugly. Fuck God I feel dumb and ugly and small. Hey God, I’m looking for work and I’m babbling cause I’m hungry.
Writing is keeping in you touch with your moment. Whats been groovin in my part of the movin. Concordia. Great school. Great, Great, Great, school so far. The same professors as the UofA, smaller class sizes. Awesome kids. So far. I played soccer. It’s actually a class geared toward “How to Coach” a soccer team. I like soccer. I ran my heart out. In touch with my physical self? No, but I’m gonna be. My heart was pounding, I could breath though. I stopped smoking almost three years ago I think. Man I’ve changed. I’ve adapted my life to fit adulthood.
Psychology, my major. Well I’m almost finished any classes that involve anything psychology. I do have a Learning and Behavior class and it rocks. Behaviorists? We are a product of our environment. John Lock mother fuckers. There is no conscience. We are just reacting to life. I want to go further then my environment is telling me. I want to succeed because there is something inside of me that wants me to live my life. I’ll achieve self actualization. Move beyond the norm. Make a difference. My environment told me to write that. My reaction to the world around me. I bought text books. 250$ and that was at half price. Love ya Bye.
It’s your photo. com was officially started as of this weekend. People were happy as pie to have their pictures taken by yours truly. Yet still I only have three clubs to shoot next weekend. I need more people to let me take photo at their clubs. I’m not going to go broke trying, I’m gonna get rich working my ass off and marketing the web site. Hits are coming in. People are making their way to the site to see themselves. Not sure if they are uploading the pics though. I wounder if the flicker account tells you that you’ve had people actually upload the photos. I love those photos. I love that style of work. Someone just asked me if I could shoot a fundraiser next week. I can make a little on the side and also promotionalize myself with itsyourphoto.com. This would be a cooler idea if I could get people from all over the world to the site. If I could have actual international events on my list. I would love to be flown around the world to take photos. God are you listening.
I recently received a comment from a reader. I stab at Christianity. Man that was a malicious attack on a religion. Good for you. I like honesty. Jesus likes honest people too. So recently I had the opportunity to sign myself up to hang out with a disabled student. Not sure what his physical problems are but I know that they are hard core. Dealing with disability is something I’m going to have to learn to do in my job. I would like to learn how he communicates. Does he have the same style of thinking as me? Is he angry. All that stuff, I need to know.
Concordia is opening up lots of doors for me. I can tell. The school is obviously committed to creating a learning environment and gearing the students who are willing to a productive pace. I am so proud of myself for deciding to come to school. It’s more then I deserve. Living in my own house. Taking care of myself and my sun, independently. Wow, now all I need is the part time photography biz to pucker up and make me some money. Rock on.
It’s raining cats and dogs out there today. Well off and on. I had my first official lecture in Intro to Christian faith. I asked the age old question, does God exist? I was told that we were going to learn about that. God is real in my mind, but I can see how he’s not really understood by everyone. Maybe I’m full of shit who knows? I like going to school it’s awesome. The kids are straight out of high school. You can tell there is some seriously pretentious rich assholes. I even saw an adolescent driving a Hummer. It was a cheap H2 or whatever, but I’m circling the outskirts of the campus looking for free parking for my Mazda 323. I am so broke, I know this photo stuff is going to pan out. It’s gonna be close though. Rough and poor at first. I got 1000 cards printed. That’s one of a couple of things I’m looking forward to do this weekend other then study of course. I hope the rain stops falling in time for the photo shoots. I need another battery for my camera bad! It’s an expense I might have to risk today. last week my battery ran out while I was in the clubs. I got the shots I needed but still I was so fucking worried about it throughout the nigh I probably compromised a few shots. Whatever! I’ll be on the ball this week. I mean this Friday, I’m going to sonic BOOM tomorrow. Yeeee Haw!
Behavioral change is the topic of my psych class. I love psych. It’s why I entered into the program. I was trying to figure out what I was doing in university, then I remembered I’m going to destroy any psych competitor. Whatever the fuck that means.
I’m inherently good at it. From Freud to Skinner, I understand the concepts before they arise. What I really want to do is build my own psych theory. A model that focuses on diagnosing problematic behaviors before they even happen. I want to create a theory that works, one that finds the real dangers to society before they even become a danger. One that stops people from committing suicide before they even think about killing themselves. Am I manic? probably, but I also drank a phat cup of coffee. So who knows if I’m bipolar or strung out? A good psychologist I suppose. Unfortunately they are few and far between. I think it’s been a while since I’ve seen a doctor or shrink of any sort. Why I’ve been sober for over four years. On my own accord. Psychology starts with the person. You can’t fix people that are not aware of their problems, can you. I’ll figure it out and get Pfizer to build me a new drug, one that prevents craziness. HAHAHAHAHAHA
Ok so I’ve simmered down. Man she must have pissed me off pretty bad for me to have written a blog about her. Even though my ex totally threw me a curve ball she actually left me an excellent child. God my sun is so bright. A star that’s for sure. Makes me think about my dad. My dad is officially a dead beat father and grand father. If he still reads the blogs that’ll stab the bastard in the rib. My father lives on the south side of Edmonton. In the past year I bet my dads seen my sun once, and that was at SouthGate. I don’t care though. I’m trucking along I’m lucky that I have a kid. My life would suck without him. He is why I get up in the morning. Not my pa. Tonight I had to put him to bed and because of the recession and the job lose and the move into my new apartment I don’t have a little baby bed for my little guy. He sleeps with me. It’s often in those moments when you’re putting this little three year old monkey to bed that you realize how good life is. When you can cradle your child to sleep in a big warm bed. It makes you smile, even though your always thinking about the next week and the cash you need to survive. That feeling of being able to give your child security. That’s so far in my life the biggest pay off. My father raised me kinda. He was there most of the time. He never cradled me and he definitely never showed me any affection. Encouragement was given with a belt. I’m not like my father and it’s his fault. Watching my parent fight my whole childhood taught me something, “don’t fight in front of your kids and love and kiss them.” Families are the fundamental part of a quality existence. To build a family and maintain it is to build and empire. My family is new to Canada, I have a Polish passport. I was born in Canada but my first language was Polish. My kid on the other hand is pure 100% Canada. Maybe now we can start building a lasting family because the one that parents hoped to build here in Canada died until my sweet ray of sunshine bounced into the planet.
The hunger strikes. O.k so today I have my first class and I can’t wait. Intro to Christian faith. All right!!! For real I can’t wait to meet the kids. I’m hungry though. That’s what I get for living by myself. My ex girlfriend is making my transition to becoming a successful student a difficult task. She just decided to take her unemployed ass to Calgary. I thought that because she was out of a job we could share the responsibilities of parenthood. I thought that because it’s my first week of school she could help me arrange a comfortable schedule for me and my sun. Not a chance. My ex is as selfish as it comes. Hasn’t worked in almost a year. Just had a flood hit her house, now she is spending insurance money for a living. She never made any transitions easy for me. From becoming a father to dealing with drug addiction. I’m a selfish ass too, but I’ aware of it. Not her, she could rear end you and drive away, and if you confronted her about it she is the type that would say it wasn’t her. She knows how to change the truth. It’s actually kinda psycho, but don’t tell her that cause she’ll never admit to it. So now I’m going to my first class. I’m gonna keep you guys updated.
Concordia has arrived. Thanks to the assertivness of my assistant Dean to admissions I’m logged on to my computer through my campuss access pass. I’m a fucking twenty seven year old student. Plus I got a kid. Wow! I can already tell this is going to be a joy ride through hell and back.
This is a religious campus. That’s new for me. I’ve even met someone looking to become a Pastor. Holy SHit. I have very little to do right now other then describe to you what I want out of this experience. I want a good story. I want an ending that keeps moving toward a positive goal. The campus is young and I know that I’m so fucking excentric that they might have a hard time understanding me. I guess there has to be an adaption. I have to change, not who I am, but how I interact with the delicate souls here in Concordia. Thats what I really want out of this Psych Degree.
I don’t want to talk shit about the school, so far everyone here has been great. the staff I hear is conservitiv. The soon to be Pastor guy I met was sporting a conservitive t-shirt. Dealing with conservitive thinkers is a chalange for me but again learnign to deal with other styles of thinking is what I really want out of my education. I want to be part of a community. A comunity that’s seen in the sun light. No more darkness, unless of course I’m out shooting those night club photos. That’s a whole other web page.
Orientation day is sweet. Hords of young kids learning that university is like an unsupervised high school. Concordia has a gorgeous campus, it over looks the river valley. there is a Chappell, a church and it’s a focal point. Unsupervised campus my ass, Gods out there, watching. I’m hungry, Gotta go.
So I’ve been working on creating a web site that houses all the clubs across the city. The site will allow the viewer to upload and image of themselves for facebook, myspace, a blogspot, whatever. The person just uses the image and published it wherever they want. When things start moving for me I’ll watermark all the images with the clubs logo. That way when the image makes its way onto the social networking sit it’ll also be a powerful marketing tool. I know I can make a living doing this. Here is my new site URL www.itsyourphoto.com. Tell your friends!
Over the past several months I’ve been agonizing over FTP protocol. What an asshole? When I lost my hard drive all my web site stuff went up in smoke. The web site was in my servers memory though. The site was visible for months without me being able to modify it. I’ve properly connected to my server and the customer service I received from my web host rocked. I’m going to start using the system. Well I just want to show you people what I’m working on. My own web sit. taxitruth.com. Tell me what you think.
Over the past several months I’ve been agonizing over FTP protocol. What an asshole? When I lost my hard drive all my web site stuff went up in smoke. The web site was in my servers memory though. The site was visible for months without me being able to modify it. I’ve properly connected to my server and the customer service I received from my web host rocked. I’m going to start using the system. Well I just want to show you people what I’m working on My own web sit. taxitruth.com. Tell me what you think.
Terwilligar is an area in south Edmonton that sprung up during the boom. Like most “boom” things the neighborhood is falling apart. Yesterday my sun was spending the night in my freshly moved into apartment. My ex girlfriend, the babies mama stayed the night as well. His mom and I are never going to be lovers again but we sure seem to stick together when it comes to raising our child. Well anyway she spent the night in my apartment and left her new Terwiligar home alone for the night. This morning she was awkwardly awaken with a telephone call from her rental suits property manager. “There has been an accident and your apartment has been flooded.”
It being my morning to take my sun to daycare, I drove to the deep south end with him. My ex drove to her Terwiligar apartment complex. A series of building designed to accumulate excessive wealth for the contractor during the boom. To bad the developer hadn’t finished fully developing the project when the economic bubble burst here in Alberta. The massive undertaking was brought to a slow down. No one could afford the skyrocketing prices of the housing unites. The prices fell and the already second rate work that was being done during the boom turned into third class trash. Last night my ex girlfriends entire life was drown by a water main break in her suit. She lost so many material possessions of her life. Form photographs, computer, cloths, babies first everything.
The flooding wasn’t noticed till someone in the parkade stumbled upon a river of water accumulating in the concrete underworld. The best part about that is that my ex, yeah she lived on the third floor. Every suit under her was completely drenched. Non of the other residence notices the water level rise in there homes. Not until it was too late and a few million dollars in damages was done. Unbelievable, I’ve never seen what can happen when water attacks a house. The water was also steaming hot, very destructive. Imagine your apartment was leaking and no one noticed till the water drained into the deepest crevice in the joint.
All I want to say is Terwilligar is not Riverbend. IF you bought anything to live in south of 23rd ave you should probably be aware that you’re living in a leaky house. You should also be aware that the neighborhood was designed by sheep for sheep. One more thing, Riverbend is still the best community in the dirty dank city of Edmonton.
Summers up. Teachers are back to school cleaning out old class rooms, kids are getting ready for another shiny new year. The nights are so much shorter. Chilly too. The end of summer means my birthday is looming. I’m getting older. Years just seem to wizz by these days. Having a sun in my life makes living move at the speed of light. Just like this summer. This kick ass summer. I took this summer in. I sucked it up. Business spite me out. Life showed me love from all sides of the spectrum. I had a great summer.
My birth day always meant back to school. Since my twelfth birthday it meant great change. I was born on the 29th of august, end of the month. The year I turned 12 in 1994, that night I moved out of my childhood residence. The night the light shattered. My family broke apart for good. My parents divorced. Since then I’ve tried to change my existence dramatically every year. I’m going back to school this year. After four years of driving hack I’m going back to school. Shocking…..yes! I’m going back as a mature student, unemployed and a single father with rent to pay. Oh and don’t forget student loans. Things sure were easy back in 2005 when on my 23rd birthday I jumped behind the wheel of a Banff Taxi Cab for the first time. It was an adventure. But I’m sure that at the time the transition from hard core prescription drug addict to fully capable working, loving father was a scary, daunting and hard task too. Change is a good thing I’m going to do while I’m in school. Schools all about learning to reflect all that you already know. I am so excited.
My unemployment issues are being dulled out of my mind by my new job. It’s not really a job….yet. So in the very beginning of the summer I was hired as a club Zone photographer. Cool gig. I got to go to the night clubs and photograph the patrons. Initially I sucked. Club Zone only had six paying gigs for me to shoot. I did them. Over those six shoots I did some mild upgrading to my camera stuff and I got better. One of the club owners liked my style and asked me to come back and I did.
I’ve been back about a dozen times now. I don’t get paid much but I am getting exposure. Lots of it. I’ve done at least 400 pictures all involving 1 to 20 people. I’m learning to get them looking good. Well there is only so much I can do. My flash has become an extension of my arm. Lighting sucks in night clubs. Everyone looks good in the dark. That’s something I learned in the Taxi.
The Taxi, I don’t miss driving, I miss how I did it. I miss what I did. I’m doing it in other ways. I just got to get cash, make money doing what you want to do. Being who you want to be. The taxi was my medium. My stage. I was in control of more then just the car, I was in control of my where I was going. Taking people to where they wanted to be was a delightful burden to bear as long as I got to put on my show. A fare getting in my car meant a curtain was lifted off of me and when my top light was switched off, a spot light shined down on yours truly.
Taking photographs is sweet. Just the thrill of approaching someone to ask if they want their picture published on a clubs web sit. Most females want it. They pose for me before I even ask if I can take a picture. Club owners recognize that. That I’m actually getting them thrilled. That excitement is also translated into a photograph that is posted on a clubs site, the photograph becomes a marketing weapon. So I guess that taking photographs is beyond sweet, it’s dangerous. That means that maybe there is potential for an explosive career ahead of me. Don’t worry kids I got Ideas baby I got Ideas. Like common how many people do you know that can get the T.V stations to do stories on them.
Global Edmonton is officially the Sponcer of www.myfares.blogspot.com. Not! but they did totally do a great story and they used every minute of the footage I produced, Rock and fucken role. Here is the link Cab coasts going down.
Here is the RSS feed. I just couldn’t make a living. Here is the CBC link it’s not my story it’s the whole wed episode watch it then you can maneuver the video controls.
I got a cool shoe cord for my camera so and the clubs are waiting for me to shot their patron. I’m excited to try the new device, it lets me play with light by giving freedom with my flash. You guys tell me what you think of my exposure, I thought the Global part was great, Linda Nguyen was awesome and nice. Her camera man was on the ball too. He made sure my dirty house was out of the shot. You guys I must be one of the most powerful Barrel driver to ever exist, just wait it’s my turn to bite the bullet. Oh and the CBC, Man I’m too flustered.
How is taxitalk going to work without the taxi? Well I’ll be the judge of that. Concordia. My new school has handed me my schedule. A miserable timetable filled with courses like “Brain Behavior change, Social psychology, Intro to Christ, Soccer and English lit. To top it off I have an Applied Music class. The price of the fifty minute lesson, 420$. The teacher smokes dope. No he doesn’t! Yes he does! Fuck what a night without the taxi, broke and unemployed. I feel wealthy. I’m following a dream. I’m going to be a rock star. I mean psych asshole. I want a vehicle to dive my life, my story.
I’m getting a student loan. Right now the government is thinking about how much money they should give me. You see I’m a single father, but my babies mama is awesome(most of the time). So our relationship is civil and she claims him as her dependent. I toss her cash to even out anything financially uneven. I also take him in two or three nights a week. Well now that the money’s all gone and I’m unemployed, I need the government to look at me as a provider and ease up on the student loan activity. I’m not worried, loans are a method the federalies use to bring in a profit. The banks and their interest payments? I’ve had three hundred bucks in the bank for almost one year now. I wish it collected five thousand dollars in tuition payments.
School is going to do it for me. Break me out of this box I’ve stuck myself in, this car, that container, my life, taxitalk. Brain Behavior Change, that’s what I actually need. I’m not one of the young students anymore. I’m an oldy. Sagging, stinking, I’ve already reproduced. I’m not the youngest cabby anymore. That might give me an edge though, an “Intro to Christ” is class I have to take, I met Jesus in the back seat sober. Religion! Now that’s gonna be new for me in School. I mean in post secondary, even though UWGB was totally a Bible thumping place. Who cares? God is a great thing to talk about, read about and think about. School is going to do it for me, the taxi isn’t the social psych experiment, class is. The blogs gonna need to take part in all this stuff. The school is totally a part of my dream, the dream, I just have to make sure I stay on track. I mean keep the ball on the field cause it’s Soccer ever Tuesday Thursday. Crazy!
I am my own way home. I’m the one who’s going to pay his rent at the end of the month. I’m the one who’s going to play out a great life for myself. Grammar and punctuation are going to be a part of that, so is this blog. No there won’t be a new one. I’m the taxi, cause I’m the talk. I’m still going to go through life drilling the reality of life into the minds of others. Come on you don’t think I can use an English lit class to bust out my way of seeing it. My story is awesome. If you turn back the pages nine months you’d read a killer story in my book. Peace the fuck out!
Unemployment without the insurance is a scary thang! Since I stopped cabbing my immune system has fallen apart and I’ve attracted a virus. I think I have a cold. FUck. Lovin every minute of it. I do feel like scurrying back to the job. You know running back with my tail in between my legs. Only to work like a dog for 1100 bucks a month. Fuck it. I might feel like I got diarrhea and the shits gonna hit the fan but I ain’t running back to the good old bucket seat. The crown Vic is dead to me. From now on I’m a Boz. No, no there is so much going on around me. I’m going to finish my degree. I wish it was in photography but it’s gonna be psychology. I’m actually pretty far along. I have a year left. It’s a bastard though, going to school isn’t like booting around downtown in a boat lifting people back to their pad. I’m going back thought, I’ve already invested some money to go. Money I can’t get back. Money I wish I had. Unemployment is new to me. It’s hard to get a job. I’ll get it, along with an education, and ill start a band and raise a child. No problem. I’m the fucking man right! Right! Yeah this blog means to much to me. ‘m going to have to update it all the time.
Peace with ignorance.
This is the article bout me in the Vue weekly.
I liked it.
Tonight’s done, finished, I’m moving on with my life. I washed the car tonight at 107 and 107, I was with two friends. Sandy was one of them, we did some photo shooting. Kinda crusified myself on the cab. Cool shots. I worked for several hours tonight, and even thought there was a folk fest there were no calls. It was my last night and I was afraid I wasn’t going to be able to pay for gas. I got two calls, two eight dollar fares. One of them was a couple of girls that worked at Luck 13, a local night club. I asked them if they knew what a blog was, they both said “no”. Then I asked them if they could read they both said “no.” But there were hot, so I’m sure they’ll do fine in the future. So I’m no longer a cabby. I gave myself up tonight. I hung myself out. I gave my boss back the keys to my car, a piece of my life. Fuck, I wonder how I’m going to do in the ordinairy world. I’m going to keep this bastard blog updated and I plan on starting a new one soon. I love writing, even though I’m sloppy. So the rat race, what’s that like? Is there more money out there? Are you allowed to do whatever you want, like hold your hand in the wind and sing your favorite song on the radio as loud you can, whenever you want? Is there freedom out there in average land? I know there is. The best is yet to come, but I can’t help feeling sad about leaving a job I adored. I fucking loved this job even when it became an expensive hobby. This is it though, for now!
Remember the girl who was sexually assaulted a few weeks ago and I drove her to the hospital, well I saw her again. She’s doing much better, she looked way different. She told me that she has been going through the recovery process using professional help. Good for her. I’m happy she’s moving on with stuff. Not me, I’m still so aggravated by my cities lack of attention to the drinking and driving problem. Edmonton should be ashamed at itself. The EPS should be replaced with gun yielding, cocaine selling, drunk and angry gang bangers. At least when the city is all chaotic and stuff we won’t have an organization like the EPS lie to us saying “we’re doing the best we can.” If our police department did try to prevent drinking and driving I would probably still have a decent job. I can’t do it anymore. Watch my life fall apart because of the recession, try to be optimistic about a city of mostly red neck nothings with only hell in their futures. This city is disgusting. Edmonton settles with mediocre everything. From public transport to the police service, it’s all second rate. You know I’m right. God knows that this is a province of crap. I wonder if our mayor knows how bad the city is becoming. Fuck I wonder if he cares, on TV he always seems so caring, so understanding. Mayor please pay attention to the police, please do something to protect the city from being eaten by the ignorant monsters who are terrorizing our citizens. Please don’t turn a blind eye to the night because one day you’ll wake up and someone you knew will be dead, hit by a drunk driver. A driver that could have been stopped by preventative tactics that the EPS never use. 911 curb the danger is not working. Edmonton needs help. SOS mayor Mandel please look into it, please don’t let me loose faith in humanity, I’ve already lost my income and my ability to provide for my family doing the job I love. Please Edmonton open your eyes and do something to make this shit hole a decent place to raise your children. Oh and on a happier note there was this women, totally a little fire ball, well she told me my voice was so sexy I should record myself reading erotic novels and sell that when I’m unemployed. lol. Imagine me saying with my deep voice “and she grabs the long, solid shaft and begins to stroke…..”
Now back to the pain. lets all remember this before we get in our cars and drive anywhere loaded
Our day is not what it used to be. The season change quickly here. The nights are getting longer and colder. Remember when you were a kid and you realized the sun stays out late in the summer. I remember the instant it happened to me. Today I drove someone that told me a childhood friend of mine past away. I drove a person that knows everyone I grew up with and moved away from, this guy knows them now. You think about stuff when you remember the past. Tonight was almost a good night. It’s funny how it happens, how sometimes things work out in you favor. You drop someone off at a house where someone else needs a ride. I call that a “Bingo” and lately scoring any money is like a prize. God knows that if I did this job for the money, I would’ve split in January. Schools coming. September is almost here. I’m still waiting to find out about my student loans. Fuck I’m off topic. K. tonight was a great night to drink and drive. It was intense, impaired driving at the max. I saw several serious collisions. I took no pictures, and I ignored every drunk son of a bitch I saw. The nights are getting chilly already, I had great summer, my body is tanned from head to toe. A fare of mine, an army guy, young, is going to Afghanistan. Such a cool Kat. Unique. He told people in training camp about me and my blog. Totally a strait edge, cool guy. He’s my friend and he’s going to War. I’ll see him soon. I also drove this little guy, called himself a midget, Davy. He wasn’t a midget, he withdrew 500$ from the Scotia Bank to smoke crack all night in the South Bend Motel on Calgary Trail. The worst part about it was that it was his wife that drove him to it by trying to prevent him from indulging. Angry little fellow, bald a and punchy. There were also these musicians, a couple guitar players and a girl from the band great lake swimmers they were really cool. I think their band is bigger then I realized. Their Folk style. Deep. I think I drove most of the band. One of them even gave me a pick. Watch you guys I’m gonna rip it up like nobodies business, thanks great lake swimmers.
Photo by Sandy Phimester
Fuck! I know I’m back again. This job is hard to ditch. All you kids out there who’ve been driven by me know, they know I love my job, it’s a big part of my life. Tonight I drove an academic. When he told me that he was an academic I wasn’t sure what he meant. Then he said ” I teach Political Science at the University.” I asked him “Teach me something.” He kinda laughed then said “with the rise of the middle class all over the world, especially in the heavily populated areas there is going to be an increase of need for protein.” Then he looked me in the eyes from the back seat through the rear view and said “Saskatchewan is gonna be huge.” He also said something about the Internet. If you would like to learn more go to the University of Alberta. The early evening was good. A few fares, theses two crack dealer whose bro just got out of the Remand Center. Actually they just called me like a minute ago, had to tell them that I only work till five am. Pretty sure they were watching the candle burn from both ends. METH. I had a few weird things happen to me, things I felt happened on purpose. The first was, at eleven as all the people were leaving the Folk Fest I decided to try to avoid any long line-ups and traffic back ups and stay clear of the venue. Well I caught a flag. I was very lucky. Some people had decided to walk to Downtown but as they got further away from the Folk Fest the more they realized it was late and cold and they needed a taxi. They flagged me down. They gave me their address. ” Stony Plain Rd and 130 something street. I looked up at them and told them “I know that address.” Then I heard a voice in the back seat say “Jacob.” That put a smile on my face. I knew them and we met up by coincidence, what are the chances? That fare was beyond generous. Then as I was driving up Whyte ave I spotted a dude, a fare from the past, someone who had read the blog and commented. I poked my head through the window and silently screamed “Mickey.” He looked at me and said “Jacob.” I waved him in right away. We started talking, then out of nowhere he said ” I owe you 40$ for driving me that time.” I didn’t know what he was talking about. I guess I had given him a ride and he didn’t have the cash to pay. Then he lost my number and never was able to repay me. I forgot. All I remembered was that he had left an excellent comment on the blog. I remember thinking about him a few times, and why he stopped calling. Then there was this friend of mine who I met on the street next to 711 just out of the blue. He said “I knew you drove a Taxi. I think I saw you over there a few hours ago.” He pointed toward the school close to where I dropped off the Political Scientist a few hours earlier. That was weird. He had already seen me. I also drove this rigger. Travels the world working in places like Syria and Iran. Well he was pissed with immigration Canada and he told me to tell you guys to read this about immigration. After looking at it I realized the guy was very radical and a little extreme, but hey who knows. He paid me very well. Then later I parked next to New City and well wouldn’t you know Bryan Birtles from the Vue Weekly was chatting it up with some of the clubs patrons. He looked over and at the cab and then I heard him say “Jacob, is that you?” Again a smile came to my face. We chatted and then I continued into the night.I made no money, but toward the very end of the night I saw a guy walking up Jasper I took a second glance. It was Mickey, I did a U turn and caught up to the him. He had walked himself home form the bar. He said ” I should have called you.” All I could think was “you already gave me 40$ for nothing, I bet I was the last thing on your mind” I drove him the last block to his house, then I delivered a stool sample to Dyna Care.
Photo By Bryan Birtles
My first fare was from the Ramada. Next to the Indy Race track. She was one of those women that liked to hang around the track watching all the guys strut their stuff without their shirts on. She was a hot chick. Tipped really well. After that nothing. Well I got a delivery from a continuing care center. Nutrient or something for older folks that can’t chew. When I got to the Nursing home the delivery turned sour. I went Voice to try to get the number of the center to call because there was no one who answered the door bell. I rang it a few times then realized that it was late enough to possibly be disturbing an older persons sleep. I went back to the car. Still no answer from dispatch. I got frustrated about five minutes into the wait. I called Barrel, I was put on hold for another four or five minutes. The Nutrient was sitting in front of the door next to the door bell. A call taker answered my call. I asked her what was going on. I interrogated her. I wanted her to tell me why the dispatch unit isn’t answering my voice requests, why I couldn’t hear them over the Radio. I wanted to know why I was put on hold for five minutes but I’m averaging six or seven calls a Night. I wanted her to answer. If I was up in that office I’d fucking know everything. No one there “knows” anything about the fact that money is non existent. She hung up on me. Two minutes later a Continuing care lady took the Nutrient in through the doors. I ran up to meet her. I’d been there for a long time. Right as I got through the door though I got a call from the dispatcher. He was pissed with me. Said I was hassling the call taker, he was right. The guy yelling at me was my favorite dispatcher. They fucked up tonight. Not the call taker. Tonight I had a ride along. A dude from the View Magazine. We more or less drove around trying to find a flag. They were non existent. The Indy wasn’t what it was panned out to be but there was definitely some cool shit. Unfortunately no one needed a taxi. I bitched about my Love for the taxi and how I was having trouble giving it up. I’m addicted you know. FUck! We found a few fares. Three I think and I made 60$ in those three hours. Last night was one of the busiest nights of the year and it died before it was born. What a bastard. We did have this one fare. A bunch of Quebecois. Crazy. They were with this chick. Well Nirvana started playing on the radio and we all had a crazy sing along. It was spectacular. I’ve kinda of given up hope of continuing driving, but like I said I’m addicted.
The night was eventful. Not financially but it was a fantastic night. Warm and all that junk. I miss making a living. I can’t support myself as a cabby. I don’t make enough cash to pay rent anymore. I’m using my savings this month. There goes the Camera I’ve been saving for. Who cares? I can do anything I want with the equipment I got. The fares? oh yeah. Tonight I had this bitchy teacher. She teaches kindergarten kids in Hobbema. Hard core hey? She was mean, I liked her. You could tell she was a good teacher. There was a few guys who liked me so much they said “You should manage my brothers band, he lives in Calgary.” They were serious. I told them to give me a call. The drunk drivers were out in full force. One after another just cruising around not a cop in site to stop them. Oh I did see a bunch off EPS investigating a crash where a tiny car hit a Grey Hound. Everyone lived. I drove a band The Apresnos, they were the nicest kids I could have had in the Taxi. God bless you bastard musicians. I only say this because I also trapped a member of Ten Second Epic in the back of the cab. I locked him in and tried to close the window but the mother fucker was to strong and he clawed his way through the window. The only way I was able to stop him was through his stomach. I threw a box of Taquitos at him and by the time he was done we were at his house. Where he got out and announced to the world “it’s my twenty fifth birthday.” Getting a rock star at the end of a slow night is exhilarating. God Bless that animal. God Bless the world, man we need it.
I work in an industry that involves sex. Yes Sex! Last night as I was dutifully making my awful rounds around the dead city of Edmonton I stumbled upon a group of two. They were a couple, the girl was wearing a bra and the guy looked like the average thug rig pig. The girls clothing was provocative but she looked kept. Like she wasn’t a street walker. She was actually very attractive. When they got in the car I mentioned how lucky I was to get the half naked woman. The guy wasn’t in the mood to chat he said “Sherwood Park, take Baseline!” and then the two started humping. Dry at first but it progressed into intercourse I’m pretty sure. I was trying to keep to myself even though the cab ride was gonna last at least 20minutes. The girl was already half naked when she got in. The two went at it hard, I just kept the music loud. At a certain point (Baseline and 17st) I believe the girl went down on the guy for a good skull fucking. Couldn’t see anything because of the shield but I could tell because of the repetitive knocking against the metal wall that stands between me and the fare. When we entered Sherwood Park I asked for a more specific address. I got no answer so I just kept going , until Sherwood Park ran out. Then the guy told me where to go. I asked “did you guys make a mess.” The girl said “we didn’t even do anything. Got a lighter?” I had matches. They both sat there and smoked. I made 60$ off that ride whatever they did in the back seat was worth it cause 60$ is a very good rate in these times. One of my last fares was this girl, 18. Young and dumb. About half way through the ride she realized I’m a cool guy and she doesn’t want to run on me but she has no money. She was going to party with some guys . I said “the guys will give you cash, you’re the only girl at the party right?” She said ” I am the only girl at the party, do you think they’ll give me cash.” I said “Yes.” I also thought to myself “you’re gonna have to suck some cock for it.” She was kind of that type of person. The type that ends up on the curb at the end of the night because she sucked the guys off to keep her at the party, not for the cash to go home. Harsh….
The designer is ready to move the fuck on. Just get his shit together and eat lunch. La Shish did it. 118st and Jasper ave. Try it. I picked up a couple of people. Four fares. Two were Philipinos, Great fares. Chilling night, literally cold. Yeah the high light was Lebanese food, rice, chicken, humus, garlic dip, pitas Salad and HotPepers for a reasonable price. I treated myself, I shouldn’t have. The job isn’t letting me. I’m so broke ass. I did it to myself, I fell in love with Taxi. A dead beat job in a bunk economy, but fuck when times were good the machine could bring in the income. Nothing Glamorise, but it was a flexible job. You’re your own boss. I’m going back to school. School is awesome. I can’t wait. I wonder if it’s going to rejuvenate my appreciation of existence. I know it’s all about jumping through hoops. Like a dog. I hear the Fashion industry feels a lot like… Fashion photography would be cool. All you need is a massive flash. Life is good though, real nice, you know like when you can put your hand outside the window of you speeding car. The feeling of the wind through your finger wind running up your arm and onto your face and shoulders. Nice. Edmonton is great right now. God gave this city a little slap in the face with that storm. Yes sir, but the city is great, the trees ah. Music and all that shit. Nothing beats it. Oh other then the open highway. Who dosen’t love the highway.
Last night there was an incredible storm. A storm like I’ve never seen in Edmonton. Tornado style but without the tornado. Almost the entire city was blacked out. The whole east side was black. Creepy but cool. At a certain point during the storm the taxi was being pelted by hail so big I thought the widows were going to burst. The night was filled with spectacularly massive lightning bolts ripping through the air. Trees were smashing to the ground all over the place. No joke. Trees were breaking in half. Bus stops were thrown into the middle of the street. People were forced to seek cover, people managed to get into my taxi. I managed to make a few bucks last night. Nothing incredible but enough to at least pay rent for another week of taxi driving. Sonic 102.9 has been playing the 90’s weekend so all the music on the radio is awesome. I had a couple of dudes in my car that were ticketed for jay walking. They said “oil city was starting to get violent. We needed to move away from the chaos. So we crossed the road.” the guy told me that the female officers stole everything in his wallet while looking for his ID. The storm kinda screwed up one of my photo shoots. All of Whyte ave was blacked out for the whole night. Police were forced to control traffic. They were pretty good at it. They had their hands full with lutters. The night went by fast, I think it’s because I really like taking the photos. I had to go to a huge club in West ed. The place was big. The decor was very nice, but the patrons were snobs. Many of the boys in that club were jealous I was taking pictures of hot chicks. Next week is going to be good I think, there are so many fucking festivals going on. Oh and next Wednesday a reporter from View magazine is going to interview me. I can’t wait to speak my mind. Rock on kids.
Wardrobe provided by
O.k guys I don’t have the job yet because the company hasn’t created the position. I wish I had the job. I need it. I made 105$ tonight. So thus far I’ve made 305$ since Wednesday. Meaning that I still have 65$ left to make before I break even. Remember I need 370$ just to rent the cab. So tomorrow if I make 100$ I’ll be up 30$ for myself. Making 30$ in four days of work is like being a slave. I might as well be unemployed. Last night I got a call to Riverbend. A very rich area. The house was so hard to find, when I found it no one was home. I called dispatch to bitch. The dispatcher said he just spoke with the girl and she accidentally gave the company her old address. I told the dispatcher to black list her. He told me to go pick her up at her new address. You know kids with money don’t care about much. They certainly didn’t care that wasting my time like that kept me from making a living. Nether did the dispatcher. No one cares. I witnessed drama tonight I don’t even want to talk about. It scared me and it wasted my time. None of the cabbies made any money last night. Who cares? Fuck I’m gonna eat shit and die. Poor. Oh but I did get to take some photos for a local bar. It rocked because I began to experiment with human subjects. Even though I don’t have the best equipment, I’m going to become the best photographer in the city. People are gonna pay me to do what I love. I just know it. I just fucking know it.
So I went to see the boss about the deactivation of my account. The boss took a look at my file and said “your record is clean. No client has ever complained, but dispatch has asked me to tell you to stop telling them how you feel about their work” I went nuts. I couldn’t believe that I was called into the office because I speak my mind to the dispatchers. I tell them what’s going on on the streets. If I get a call to a public place I tell them that I won’t even try to get the person unless the call taker included the clients phone number. “No number then I’m not going” I say. The boss liked what I was saying. I told him bout the blog. I even mentioned the CBC bit I produced with Scott Fralik. The boss was happy to hear I was so passionate about the job. Then I told him about the speech and the Vehicle for hire commission. I told him about how I use my camera to protect myself. I told him about the cops and how they jerk off. I told him all this in a frenzy. I went to visit him yesterday morning. Right after I came back from the hospital. I told him about the girl I drove on Thursday morning. He had no idea about most of my issues. He had no Idea that the drivers at night can’s survive. He listened to me. Then he offered me a new position. A position that would let me use all my angry revenge talents. He told me that the company is trying to put eight more positions in the budget. He said “we want supervisors, we want someone like you.”
So what happened. Well as I tried to log onto the system in the taxi I got a message saying this ID is inactive. I thought for sure I wasn’t going to work. Right as I was going to drive my own car home the owner of the taxi pulled up. I told him “if I don’t work tonight, I won’t pay rent.” He called management and Bam! I was back. The night was empty. Rotten, slow, awful. I resent life on these recession streets. I’m broke. I have no money. I have been paying to drive a taxi. I work to work. My life is as of right now officially over. Well I love to drive so I keep it up. I kept it up until 3:30 am. that’s when I got a flag. My third fare of the night. As she got closer I saw the tears flowing down her face. She was scared, she was beaten, and as she sat down in the seat next to me I knew she had been raped. I asked “were you assaulted?” She just kept crying. She cried and cried. Her face was a mess. Tears, snot spite and pain were all I could see. She was raped. I’d seen this before. She kept saying it was her fault, she’s twenty five she should know better. I knew how she was going to react to my next question but I asked anyway “we going to the hospital?” She just put her head in her lap and cried harder. She said “take me home, I have money, please just take me home.” I said I would. On the way to her place I stopped and bought her a pack of smokes. She wanted to smoke. Even though I’m flat broke I took care of her. I wanted her to go to the hospital. She was raped. She insisted I drive her home. I knew from past experience that the police weren’t even an option. Victims in her position never want to be violated by pigs. Somehow I convinced her to go to the hospital. She said”I’ll go but come with me.” I promised her I would stay as long as she wanted me to stay. I sat in the waiting room with her. The nurses thought it was strange. We talked about our lives in that room. She calmed down in that room. She kept insisting there was nothing that could be done. I just stared at her. I knew this would make both of us feel better. The first time a girl got in my cab after being raped I fucked up I said “lets go to the police, lets get the predator.” She said “take me home.’ The police are intimidating the hospital is safe. When the special nurse came to preform the “Rape kit” I stepped out. The girl wanted me to stay in the waiting room. I stayed. Security thought that was strange, the guards even asked me to leave. I told them i promised her I’d stay, they said “It’s gonna take hours, you should go home.” I told them I was going to stay. When they finished the tests and stuff she was given pills and sent on her marry way. The police were not called. She decided that it wasn’t worth it. She was scared and I bet she felt guilty. Scary. There is a rapist sleeping in the Days Inn downtown drunk and ready to rape tomorrow. I hope he dies. After the hospital I took her to McDonald’s to get some liquid to swallow the pills. They were big. I bought her breakfast and drove her home. She gave me her number I gave her the blog URL. I hope we see each other again because we had a strange connection, and we both lived through some serious trauma together. I was scared too. I don’t want to drive cab anymore.
Tonight was crazy. While sitting outside the 711 on Stony plain road and 154st I watched a man jump over my hood. The man had just run across the street, he had been stabbed by a group of gang members that were hot on his trail. The victim ran into the 711. The gangsters followed him inside and stabbed him. On security camera I guess. I called 911 because as I watched the incident unfold the clerk in the 711 just kept cashing. Customers service is more important to the Filipino clerk then a man dying on his stores floor. As I talked to 911 I explained where the gangsters were going, I tried to give the dispatcher a description of the assailant but the guy on the other end of the line hung up on me. The cops showed up about 10minutes later. There were several women cops and I noticed lots of pettign and giggling betweent the the boy cops and the girl cops while they waited for the wounded mans ambulance. I don’t think female cops can do what a man can do. Just like I don’t think a women could drive a cab in Edmonton at night. There isin’t any women driving cab at night in Edmonton because it’s just something that a man should do. Jesus knows how dangerous these jobs are. I also had a young woman offer to smoke a joint with me. I said “no” but sure did appreciate the offer she paid me way to well. Here is a video about hating the corporate pig.
and here is the link to the photos I shot this weekend ClubZone
Tonight was another photo night. I drove the taxi from 7pm till 9pm. In those two hours I made 20$. Jack shit. After that I drove myself down to Woolly Bullies. There I shot the party. UFC was on pay per view. Everyone in the city was interested in it. I don’t like watching the fights, it’s just not my thing. After that I proceeded to two other clubs, also to shot photos. It was great. As soon as I got back in my taxi I got a call from an old regular. She lives on the north side. I’m not sure why, but she gave me a tremendous tip. The type of tip you thank God for, but this girl is kind of a Satanist. Cool chick. She knows who she is and she know I owe her. Doing the photo shoots is risky. I might be loosing out on business. Well thanks to the huge tip I didn’t have to worry. Thank you Vicky you are a very awesome human being. Then I had a flag, this Mexican woman. I pulled over for her cause she was gorgeous and her husband looked alright. Well as soon as they got in they called over two other couples. I told them “No”. That’s just too many. the guys kept pressing. I said “No” then pointed at the ten cops standing around jerking off while watching the road. The three couples were saying “don’t worry they don’t care, we’ll give you an extra 20$.” I said “No.” Then they offered 40$ extra. I still said “no.” Then they offered an extra 60$ on top of the fare. I was seduced by the cash. I let all six in. The big tip was nice but it wasn’t enough to feed the family forever. I got the three couples home, it was a risk but it paid of. I got 100$ from the six people in the car. If I was caught doing that I would have lost my job. I don’t care anymore I need to take some risks to survive in this economy. The vehicle for hire commission can suck my dick. They don’t know about the blog. If they did they wouldn’t have the heart to read it anyway. They’re probably spending all the money they get from bribes, those asshole politicians. My last fare was a guy I think was gay. Maybe still in the closet. He told me about his old roommate. His roommate was 5.2ft, my fare said “I used to make fun of his tiny ass. Until one day he came out of the shower with this huge erection. His dick was massive. So big I wasn’t able to wrap my hand around it.” Then the fare showed me the size of his hand. The conversation started because the fare realized I was short. He said “you’re the smallest cabbie I’ve ever had.” I said “But I ain’t scared of shit.” Then he told me bout his old roommate and said “never underestimate someone who isn’t so tall cause you never know how big they really are.” I agreed.
Tonight was unreal!. You see I got a job photographing club goers. No not people going to the club in the taxi but people in the clubs. I was hired to go to a club and take pictures of the patrons. It’s a promotional thing. I hope I get paid. Well one of the club owners saw me and asked if I would come back tomorrow and photograph the UFC audience. We negotiated a deal 40pics for a bunch of cash and a bar tab. Score! I don’t drink. It’s funny how things are working out. I started my shift at 6pm last night. I drove 100Km before I was suppose to go to the bar and take pictures. Within that 100Km time frame I made 16$ + a 4$ tip. From 6pm till 10pm I made 20 bucks. Who cares! I’m a fucking professional photographer. I even used my G10 I can’t afford a SLR on my current income. If things continue the way they have I’m gonna kick ass. Photography! fuck imaging if I got to make films, man that would be sweet. See I figured out that I’m a storyteller. I was nervous last night but once I got into it people were approaching me to have their pictures taken. Like it mattered or something. A safe ride home is more important, but less fun. I’m lucky. The change in my earnings is forcing me to change. If I kept making money driving taxi I would stay a taxi driver. There is more to me then Taxi Talk. That’s something I almost forgot about driving around a dead end career. Taxi Talk is a good friend of mine but she needs tweaking. Change. It’s coming. Not just the blog, my life. I’m going back to school. I want a different story to tell. I just have to look at school as a taxi ride. I wonder……….What’s the back seat? I know, the other students maybe. What’s the road? Well that’s easy the God Damn curriculum. The teacher are the law enforcers, they have the potential to make or brake you. I’m just a bum who thinks he knows everything. A guy who knows he doesn’t but he thinks he does. My first fare after the photo session was a personal. As fate would have it he called me the moment I was passing him on Whyte Ave. He was a Hoolioes Bario. The weather had turned and the rain was falling heavily. He wanted to go to londonderry mall I told him that that’s where hookers go to buy crack. I was exaggerating. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen any body picking up hookers. Most people can’t afford the luxury. Crack! I haven’t really dealt with any in a while either. It’s the economy. Tightened everything up. It’s strangling some. I’m not letting that noose choke me but I can feel it. Fuck. That first fare, that guy that I so fatefully picked up, he gave me 60$. Thank God. It was one o clock and I able to pay for Gas. I drove on. I made some money last night. I had a girl try to fit through the window in the shield. She almost made it. I drove Shaun Bogner to and from the bar last night. Always a little bit of good luck out of that. Man tonight felt good.
So tonight Kenny Chesney was in town. Probably the only country western mother fucker who decided to leave Calgary. The guy filled the Stadium. That’s so many fucking people. His concert was the only place to find people to drive. Most of the audience was from out of town because I drove almost everyone I picked up at that concert to a Hotel/Motel. One of the women in the back seat was a correctional officer at a federal prison for men. I asked her why she didn’t work with the women. She said “could you imagine a whole prison full of women PMSing at the same time.?” I said “No.” What’s up with women all getting their periods at the same time? Did you guys know that girls mature faster closer to the equator? Last night I had a fare to Sherwood park, one of the three dudes threw up on the car. I got lucky because one of the guys in the back seat had a garden hose at his house. He got to wash the old boat down. My last fare was a girl who works at lucky13. She told me that a Spanish looking girl did not want her to serve her drinks because she (the waitress) was white. How often do you hear about that? Reverse racism. It has happened to me. Some Punjabi guy harassed me for no apparent reason, I told him to get out. Yesterday I watched a movie about Def Leppard and I fell in love with the group. Come on, a one handed drummer. God I wish I was a rock star. I would act responsibly and buy aaaaa an army of soldiers to back me the fuck up. I drove a soldier tonight. Like always a fine young gentleman. He told me that before he gets to go to Afghanistan he is going to work the 2010 winter Olympics. He said “the government doesn’t want civilians to know that we’re out there because Canada is suppose to be known as a perfect place without any real violence.” He laughed out loud after saying that. He told me that Canadians aren’t just peace keepers anymore. He also told me that a soldier who doesn’t get to go to war is like a lawyer who has never seen the inside of a court room. Fuck I want a gun.
Sunday is my kinda day. It’s relaxed. My Saturday night was so stressful I was furious. I kept talking shit to the only thing that would listed to my rant, God! I was alone in the cab yelling at the almighty. Cursing, calling the big guy upstairs every name I could think of. I slammed a door on my chest last night, that wasn’t Gods fault neither was my bad night. So this Sunday morning I went to church. Not! Screw church for me driving the taxi is church. Tonight was slow. I think I had four fares and three were my own clients. One of the kids in the car tonight was drunk. He needed to take a leak, I stopped and waited for the guy to get out and pee. Well when he came back there was a stink. The mother fucked stepped in dog shit. The worst part was he couldn’t smell it. Fuck! I parked that stinky car and went home. What a night. It rained.
It was so dead last night that when I was asked by a fare to go to Beaumont I said to the group of young adults “I don’t want any cash up front, but if you guys rip me off my kid won’t eat.” They all laughed thinking I was joking. Then one of them said “dude you’re not Taliban, we’ll pay good just go.” I went. They were one of my only fares last night. I wonder if the guys that look like members of Al-Qaeda made any money tonight. I drove this girl just as the sun was setting. I took her down town. She said she was meeting a military guy. “He’s an old friend” she said, “he drinks a lot, but he’s a nice guy.” I told her to stay safe. So at three in the morning I get a call from her. She sounded funny, like she was scared. I told her I would go out of my way to pick her up at the bass. The military barracks are as far north as you can go. On the way there she sent me a text that she had no cash. I called her and asked “Are you OK?” She said “No.” I asked “are you safe?” She said “no.” I said “you can pay me back the cash I’ll be there in five minutes.” When I got there she was no longer answering her phone. I wonder if she was getting rapped. Over the phone she gave me the impression that her soldier buddy wasn’t such a nice guy. She never answered my calls when I got there. I hope something happened to her because that call wasted any chance I had at maybe making enough money to survive. So Kira I hope he did something to you. Cause you worked me, you probably lied to me and I wanted to help you. Next time you cry wolf I hope the monsters you hang out with give you what you deserve. The last fare I had that actually paid took me to Millwoods. One of the two guys in the back seat was east Indian. He was kinda in a weird mood. I took them to his place first. He wanted me to keep driving. He directed me to a tree with flowers hanging in it. He introduced me to his brother, a kid who was shot dead right at that spot. The east Indian dude was in a strange place so his buddy paid me and told me to go. He said (not the east Indian) “I’m gonna walk him home” you could tell they were friends. I left the two guys standing next to a tree looking up to the leftover pieces of the shrine. I wasn’t sure what to think other then RIP. Tonight was so bad. All I can say is that in the past 40 hours of work I brought home 200$. I am officially a crappy provider for my family and the corporate pig is definitely winning. If you are a part of the plastic world go fuck yourself in the face.
Tonight one of my fares told me how he lost his virginity. He said “once when I was eighteen I was moping around a 711. Looking for some candy or something. When this chic came up to me and invited me over to her house. She was kinda scraggly but I went. Well we drank some beer and we fucked. That’s how I lost my virginity.” I looked at him and said “wow special.” He laughed and screamed “that’s not it, there is more!” he paused took a breath and spoke “I never told anyone this story, I didn’t want people to know that the first time I had sex was with a women who kicked me out right after because her boyfriend was on his way home. I was happy it all happened so fast.” I told him “I lost my virginity to my bosses daughter when I was twenty, her dad was also my principle. We both shared an interest in prescription anti depressants. The relationship did not last long.” Later I drove several groups of people high on X. Canada is a big producer of the shit. One of the biggest in the world. Fuck one thing I can honestly say about Canada is that it carries some serious and extreme drug cultures. One of the groups was a bunch of young women. The other was a group of adolescents crack dealers. The drug seemed to make both parties nice, polite, happy and pleasant people. The two fares combined made up half my income for last night. I gave every member of both those groups my telephone number. I need people to start taking my taxi and nothing beats a young kid on probation with a healthy income. Other than a group of girls who don’t think you’re creepy and understand that gratuity is welcome. They rock and they’re safe. I drove a lawyer last night, he told me “I’m a criminal lawyer, it’s a job that’s never boring, always challenging and often overwhelming.” He tipped me fourteen dollars and took off.
As Someone who drives a vehicle for hire I rely on the Vehicle for Hire Commission to make well educated and informed decisions. I rely on a line of communication that adds an air of transparency to the system that is Vehicles for hire. That allows me, the driver and you the counsel to understand each other so we can work in unison. A line of communication that helps the counsel define problems in the system and allows drivers to present their issues. A line of communication that, exposes bad drivers and flaws with the laws. A good line of communication helps bring not only drivers and the Government together but also the everyday Edmontonian. I love driving a taxi in Edmonton.
On the morning of April 11th I witnessed a Gypsy taxi steal my fare. I was in shock. I radioed dispatch to find out what I could do. I made sure to get the guys license plate number. Dispatch had no idea what to do. Dispatchers at my company are not trained to deal with these issues because my dispatcher told me to go to the police. I called the EPS thinking they might catch the guy and give him a ticket. All they did is give me the number to Shar Wellers office. I phoned immediately only to find a recording stating that Share was on Vacation and if I wanted to speak to someone about my taxi problem I could call 311. So the next day I did and was told to phone the vehicle for hire commission. I was thrown in a loop. And a man breaking the law was allowed to continue with no repercussions. I was in shock. Nine days later I got an email from Share apologizing about the delay. She informed me about the city of Edmontons Municipal Enforcement Officers and how they conduct roaming inspections of vehicles on a 24/7 basis and also do follow ups on complaints regarding taxi violations like gypsy cabs, from their office location. I wondered how they got their information about those issues. Since yellow cab had no Idea who to get a hold of in regards to the gypsy cabbies. Based on my experience yellow cab dosen’t communicate with the vehicle for hire commission and the bylaw office does not receive an accurate amount of complaints regarding the vehicles for hire. Why can’t I get a hold of these bylaw officers 24/7. A line of communication.
The 3$ sure charge is another issues that I think is causing some of my financial stresses. Since January business has been down. Fares are almost non existent. The recession is one of the causes for the problem. People are out of work. The problem with the the extra three dollar charge is that it seems to be a deterrent. Clientele that would have hopped into a taxi on their way home often decided to walk now because their 10$ fare looks more like a 15 dollar fare. In these tight economic times 5 bucks can make or break someones decision to take a taxi or drive home drunk. I believe the Vehicle for hire commission has over priced clients for too long causing a customer back lash. Could you guys please look into finding a suitable solution to this problem. Wait times are non exsistent, there is no need to entice drivers to come out at night. Get rid of the extra 3$ and make sure to inform the public.
Quality control, there has been many issues related to poor service in the vehicle for hire world here in Edmonton. Don’t get me wrong, we have excellent drivers and some incredibly good people out there. But there are complaints. Training seems to be one of the only ways to inform drivers how to behave with the clients. I believe there is more that can be done. Since organizations like yellow cab have nobody out on the roads paying attention to customer complaints and driver problems I think the vehicle for hire commission should implement rules that corporations like Yellow cab have a secret shopper programs and someone that enforces the rules. Stops illegal driving tactics and habits that have become common on the roads after midnight. Police are too busy looking after normal citizens breaking the law. Cab drivers with bad attitudes are not at the top of their agenda but they should be at the top the vehicle for hires commissions list of priorities. As a guy that works the night shift I am aware that taxi drivers have freedom. I am also aware that some of the drivers abuse that freedom. Whether we want to admit it or not, the city has some bad apples. Drivers that use the cars as a cover to sell drugs, alcohol. I’ve witnessed children driving around in their fathers car doing whatever they wanted. The city needs to step up and force the corporations to deal with these renegade drivers. Hopefully you guys can hire an organization that uses secret shoppers to evaluate drivers conduct and performance and report the findings directly to the city not the company that often protects inappropriate behavior.
Now safety, We have safety shields but is that enough. I don’t think so. To tell you the truth the people in my car are usually people who’s behavior I can predict to some degree. To me the real dangers of working in the taxi business are the other dangerous drivers. EPS has a Curb the danger program. I’ve used it on many occasions.I witness many awful things driving the night shift and I often feel the need to communicate the issues to the authorities but dispatch is not in direct contact with the police. I believe that there should be a direct line of communication with the taxi service’s and the police. We see more crime then most people can imagine. Most of it can be ignored, but there are times when you have to tell someone what you know. About a rape, or a very dangerous driver, or someone out to hurt another. The commission should look into creating a hot line for taxi drivers where they can leave tips through dispatch and feel safe. I’m not sure how but it could make the city much safer. The shields were not the worst choice I am safer.
As a driver behind the wheel of an Edmonton city hack I feel the need to inform the vehicle for hire commissions my problems, views and their solutions in my opinion. I believe I should have more access to bylaw officers and their services. I believe that the crisis behind the lack of drivers is over and the 3 dollar sure charge should be abolished. I believe that the citizens of Edmonton deserve taxis and drivers that have been put through a program that ensures quality control. I believe that as a driver I should have access to programs that can help me do the right thing with information that I have acquired through my job. A vehicle for hire is more then just a car that makes money, it should also be a person who wants to be a responsible and a trust worthy part of the community. Driving a taxi in Edmonton is an amazing job, let’s keep it that way.
Last night a man was killed at a bus stop.
To tell you guys the truth I’m pretty sure Canada burnt down a long time ago. We live in a shell of Canada. We live in the USA. Tonight was alright. No one was really wasted. I asked one guy “What do you do?” He looked at me and said “I give head.” That was more or less most of the conversation. I had a group of kids that had just been robbed. Robbed meaning they left their purses in some dudes truck and the guy took off. They offered me their shirts to get them to the closest 711 I drove them for free. I drove a web guy and a welder. Lots of police out tonight. Probably because a few years ago rich, spoiled, and ugly Edmontonians rioted. The reason, we’re a rich spoiled ugly and immature version of the United States of America. Whatever the fuck that means. Police presence helps business. It’s still slow, but the web guy said hes still making great cash. The welder, well he paid me 60$ to drive him around for an hour. “Thank God”. Really cool guy too, eccentric but not in that gay way, not that there is anything wrong with that. Traffic was unbelievable. People were everywhere. I wish I felt closer to the nation I grew up in but I don’t. I feel like Canada has made an effort to turn itself into a first class duchebag. Yes Canada, you. You are run by a Conservative Government that is run by clowns and puppets. Our once great social health care system is being picked apart by the pigs with money and the government. Our infrastructure is falling apart. Oh and we look, sound and feel like Us…….A. Get it. Try not to be pissed with me try to make this nation better, and lets be honest we should have celebrated our Independence in two more days.
Wow I’m Vacating for two weeks. I’m gonna be flying to the Okanagan in a couple days. I’m going out to shoot the Urban Underground Life’s been o.k now that driving taxi has become a very expensive habit, I mean hobby. Yeah it’s a hobby. Tonight was more of a scenic ride through the city dozens of times. I had these two couple mess around a bit. It was gay pride week. I drove several homosexuals this weekend. Nice people. The weather has been spectacular in the past few days. I love life. I can’t wait to board that plane. All I want to do is swing a golf club. I also wouldn’t mind playing the guitar while my sun dances all around me. My mom hooked up a mansion on the lake for a family reunion. Nothing like Canadas California, nothing like life on a lake. Fuck I’m hungry. Driving a taxi I can’t afford to eat but I sure can think I can. Mmmmm that’s some sweet oyster pie.
My job is to step on the gas. My job is to stop at the red. My job is to go on the green. My job is to smile and act like I’m not really unhappy or mean. My job is to drive. My job is to keep you alive. My Job is to steer clear of bad apples. My job is to clean the streets. My job is to stroke the bad guys ego, my job is to see what happens after you go home. My job is being alone. My job is fun. My Job is dumb. My job is to watch cops not do a good job. My job is to appreciate the police. My job is to love the government. My job is to trust God. My job is to watch the sun rise. My job is to reflect what the moon says and translate all her miserable lies. My job is to watch her cry then laugh. My job is what I do. My job is to be memorable. My job is to avoid collisions. My job is to make money. My job is to be a better man. My job is to make what I want out of life. My job is to get married and have children with my wife. My job is endless. My job is friendless. My job is to drive fast. My Job is to make ends meet. My job is like yours. My job is better then yours. My job is to pick you up. My job is to drop you off. My job is over, I’m gonna lay down and die. I drove a dude that travels the world as an expedition leader a summit climber. Interesting fellow Phill Michael. Just came back to Edmonton for a few days. Right after that I drove past a man being beaten with brass knuckles,while a gang of men chased down another man with belts. I tried to catch it on camera but the lighting sucked. The EPS is at it again, not preventing crime that is but that might be their job. One of my fares had me in the past. It just so happened that she flagged me down tonight during the bar rush. Fate. She was so happy it was me. That makes my job worthwhile. That’s the only part of my job that has recently given me a smile.
Jesus Mary and Joseph were a nice little family. I don’t think Joseph ever got the credit he deserved. Last night was hot, summer and sexy. Hard to explain but the city is getting randy. Kids want to get it on. I love watching nature take it’s course. I’m a fan of watching people dress up and go out on the town. I used to work in the airport behind security in a toy store. The thing about the airport that was so appealing was that the patrons were almost always well dressed. I kinda dress like a bum. I do it because it makes me look less like the guy a criminal should rob. There are all sorts of new fashion trends happening in 2009. One of the most prominent is the super fucking high heel. I’m talking so high most girls don’t have a chance in hell to look gracious in but they wear them anyway. I like the look it makes woman look kinda vulnerable hobbling around like some not so super super models. The sun has been coming out by the end of my shift now. One of my favorite perks of driving a taxi, the Sun. One of my fares last night was a 26 year old woman. She told me that when she was 19 she married a 50 year old man. She said “I like older men, they adore me. I’m the center of their universe. I like that, I need that.” I asked how the marriage is going she said “oh, we divorced a few months ago, the asshole was too controlling.” When I got her home she was out at least 10$ on the fare, I told her to give me a blow job. JOKING! No I said “don’t worry about it.” She took my name and number and promised to be one of those people who would pay me back. I wonder. Oh I also had an 18 year old fox, insurance broker tell me she drives a Subaru Impreza. She said “I would never drink and drive with my baby.” I wouldn’t either but for some reason my 26 year old ass has been stuck cruizin in a Mazda 323 from the early 90’s or a Crown Vic ex cop car. I wish I had a WRX to pick people up with. That would give me an edge and some serious style.
Fuck me, if you guys don’t want to hear about the economy. Edmonton has been hit with some tough mother fucking times. Today I had some great clients. Yeah like 4 people. They were all really nice. One guy insisted I smoke some pot with him in his incredible steam room. He lived in Riverbend. He was also recovering from cancer. Guess what kind? That’s right he lost his testicle. Just one but that’s enough to ensure that you truly feel a lose. He was a great person though and I hope that cancer never comes back in his life or anybody elses. There was also this guy who was with this girl. He was all over her. She was hot. She worked for him, she was his rep. He was a sales man and she was the body that sold the stuff. Well anyway the two were getting “it” on in the car but when we arrived the woman said “you can’t come in.” He tried and tried to convince her that the best thing to do was to have sex but she wasn’t having it. When he came back into the taxi David Bowies the Man Who Sold the World was playing on the radio. He explained the situation to me. He said “she has a dude that’s in Turkey probably having sex with some other chicks. She’s here but she won’t fuck me cause she actually cares about him.” The he said “I have a girlfriend too, I’ve been with her for eight years.” Then I asked “am I taking you there right now? Your girlfriends?” He said “yes.” All I could think was how does a guy do that. Screw around behind his womans back then just go home to her. Fuck. Oh you guys I read the speech. Spectacular, that people in the Vehicle for Hire Commissions had to listen. I also had a reporter from VUE magazine cover the story. I’m hoping he saw and heard something that would be worth publishing.
The worst part about the recession isn’t the cash flow. It’s the lack of good stories. Now that no one goes out nothing interesting is happening. At least not on a regular basis. Things are slow as fuck. The one topic that comes up is the new shield. Some people like it. They think I’m safer. I don’t feel any safer. My only real danger I think is drunk drivers and the law isn’t stopping them. It’s cut throat out there. I’ve been in several fights over placement in a line up at a club. Tonight some fuck said that he was in line waiting to park where I was parked. He pointed to where he was parked and said “What’s going on, this is my spot.” I looked over to where he was pointing and said ‘ you were parked in front of another club, that’s not the line, I’m sorry buddy but I ain’t movin.” He drove away angry. Then double parked in front of another taxi. Anger is everywhere. Money seems to be in the hands of the rich. I don’t trust money or people with it. I cater to them, but people with lots of money seem crooked . Bad. Sorry bout no post last night, I went to the Rise against concert which was out of this world because I actually really went to see Rancid. Fucking Punks, they should stay in California where it’s warm. I’m joking back off.
The cage makes me feel more alone. The protection achieved by the plastic shield damages the communication. Really the shield tries to deny “talk”. The transaction is forced to focus on Location and cost,”Taxi.” I can’t hear what’s happening back there. People sit in front. I don’t mind that. I like it. I always did. Tonight I was waiting for the light on 156st south bound to turn green. I wanted to turn west onto Stony Plain Rd. This thug. Tweaked out. Skin, bones and bling wanted in. I told him I wasn’t giving him a ride. It’s slow. I realized that I could have thrown him in the back. Sealed him up in that box. No go. There was this guy, I picked em up next to New City. He asked “can you take me to the west end?” “Damn right! Get in” I said while waving him into the front seat. This was a normal dude. We talked about his shitty night. He was sad. His girlfriend ditched him with his cousin. The two took of to whore around for drugs. He was stuck getting home. Half way there he looked up and said “I only got 8$.” The fare was running at around 14$ at the time. I laughed and said “don’t worry you’ll get home.” I was happy he told me the truth. I gave him the URL to the blog, The fucking blog. Lots of drunks hitting the streets. Driving, biking, skatin DRUNK. Even though its really cold, good on you people. I drove this woman she just dropped a dude off. She was a designated driver. She was a professional. Wanna Go Home With Us , sounds dirty right?
I drove a girl who told me that Alberta is going to loose it’s social health care program. She said “It’s stupid conservative Alberta.” I agreed. She was a communist and she worked for our sellout government. Our Government is a whore. Not much else happened. Relaxed night. No one acted bad behind my bullet proof shield. I did have a call to an address that I ditched once. The guy took to long so I drove off. Well tonight as I drove up to the apartment building I realized that it was the same address. I was hesitant but I called them to say “I’m here, like it or not I’m here.” The guy remembered my phone number. He was upset with me but still thought I was one of the best cabbies in the city. I felt bad for ditching him a few weeks ago. He called the company not me so the level of service though unmatched by any other Edmonton cabby was not what he would have had had he phoned me directly. I treat my customers like royalty. Why? because they chose me over the corporate pig. Fuck you people, is there any other job as interesting, exciting and fast as taxi. Yes, the army but not law enforcement that’s for dirty rats that allow intoxicated drivers to exist. Imagine being a rookie cop…….I was going to be mean but who the fuck am I to judge. Imagine having a gun to shoot. Peoples wallets are squeezing tighter and tighter.BANG
Patience? Tonight I was trying to discipline myself. It’s slow right so you got to pick your club and sit there. I did I waited. At the Funky Booda. I was the first in line, I just sat there for a long time. Over an hour I think. I’ve never done that. Sat in front of a club forever. Patience is not really my thing, but I was trying to be diligent. I knew I was going to get a fare. When it finally happened the couple told me that they were just going up the street. I told them how long I was waiting. They both knew they saw me while out on their smoke breaks. They ended up going down town and tipping me ten bucks. The trip was worth it but I was expecting a bigger pay-out out of the trip due to the patience factor. Not a financial pay out an inspirational one. They were a couple in the grips of lust and passion. They were on their way to have sex. Whatever. Right as I was leaving their parking lot I got a call. The first call of the night. 112ave east side of 75st. North side. The woman gets in. Drunk. “Where we going?” I ask. She looks at me and says “the river, by those stairs.” Then I asked with a confused look on my face “the river? Downtown? Where?” I could tell by the way she was looking at me this was going to be a strange ride. She was wearing a shirt, you could clearly see through. ” Got money?” I asked.” “I’ll pay you tomorrow” she told me. I asked her where she was going. She said “lets fuck” then she got real close to me with her chest. She tried caressing my chest but got a fist full of the G10. The lady was all over me, I said “I’m not going to be with you.” “DO you have a wife?” she asked I said “yes.” She said ” I won’t tell.” This was pretty intense. All I could think about was that wait outside the Funky Booda. Patience. This woman was pure evil instinct sex cumming at me like a title wave. Scary what goes through a guys head. She used the dirtiest words she was bad news. I told her “get out, I can’t do that.” She reluctantly stepped out of the taxi. “Come over when you’re ready, I got weed and beer.” That woman tried to seduce me. Why? I have no idea. The way she wanted to go to the river. What the fuck did that mean? Patience. Was it worth it? I learned a lesson tonight. Sometimes when you listen to that little voice in the back of your head. The one that says “be patient wait” even though that other voice is screaming ” GET THE FUCK OUT OF HERE.” You wait and wait until you get your fare share. If you really listen to that little voice that voice that almost doesn’t exist you get more then your fare share. You are given the ability watch that instinct that animal in you and everyone else. It’s a lion. If you really are patient enough to listen to that voice then when the demon throws itself at you you know what to do. I felt tested last night. I followed that voice around and it threw me to the wolves. I dealt with it. I passed the test.
When the times get tough I kinda panic. There have been times in the last couple months that I’ve though about escape. A get away from the everyday. The cab is unique but times are tough so the though to move on pops in and out of my head. The military is something I think about joining. It seems like The place to be if you’re disillusioned and poor. A paycheck all that stuff. Tonight I drove a couple of soldiers, cool guys. I think they were with a prostitute but nice guys. One of the them, the one in the front seat, me and him got to talking, he told me there is nothing in the world like fighting. I drove a chef last night. His fare fed my family. Thank God for good clients and big fares, everyone I drove was angelic last night. It was a pleasure to drive last night. I went to check out a fire on the south side. It was huge. I was totally wowed by it. I took about a dozen photos. I sat and stared into that fire. The word surreal comes to mind when you happen to stumble upon a horrible moment. You stop to take a picture in this day and age. There were so many people outside of those apartment buildings. I hope everyone is ok. Who cares about stuff, when you got your life. Right? Times aren’t that tough. Oh and screw the oil patch and Shell and Esso, assholes
Last night was what’s now becoming a typical slow night. Everything was slow. I drove a bachelor party of Polacks. You Guys know them Poles. It was actually a pleasure. I ended up on the North side. After dropping them off I got a call to the Evergreen Mobile home estate. Wow. What a maze. Trailer parks are cities, they are massive. So I call up the residence I’m trying to get at. A man answers he says “I’m not from here you’re coming to pick me up, please hurry!” then he handed the phone to some woman who sounded three quarters cut and angry. The directions she gave were awful, nothing she said made sense. She yelled at me and called me names. Then another man came on the phone, her father I guess, he tried to explain to me the ins and out of the trailer estate. Still nothing he said made sense. He was surely drinking by the sound of his nasty man voice. Then last but not least the mean woman’s mother came on she was drunk and stupid too. Then all of a sudden I saw some guy running at me at a hundred miles an hour. “You Joe?” I asked. The man jumped in the front and screamed “PLEASE get me the fuck out of here.” I thanked whoever was on the phone and hung up. The man told me he had met a woman online. He said she asked him to come over to have a BBQ and some beers with her parents. When he showed up with a two four of beer he quickly realized that there wasn’t going to be a BBQ but the whole family was going to partake in the drinking of the beer. I asked him “was the women good looking?” He smiled and said “shit yeah!, I wanted her so bad until I realized that after chugging ten beer she became a sour cunt.” He took a breath and said “I had to get out of there. I’m never trying to hook up on the Internet.” What’s funny about that story is I got a phone call from a strange number this morning. When I answered a woman with a mean voice said “You’re the cabby from last night?” I was still in my bed in a sleepy daze. I said “Sorry I work the night shift.” Then the voice on the other end asked me “got any money?” I hung up. I realized looking back at the number I dialed in that trailer park it was the sour cunt. Things are slow. I pulled up to one of my buddies that drives taxi. Big black dude. He is beyond cool and he always gives me Tim bits of wisdom. He’s been driving for almost 20 years. Well as I was pulling up he jumped out of his car and threw a shoe that was on the ground in front of his car across the street. Some weird looking native guy in short shorts ran to go get his shoe. The driver told me that the guy has been bothering him. He said “tonight Ive had nothing but trouble, I drove a guy to that hotel on 215st, he paid me than looked me in the eye and said “Hows life Nigger?” I told him to leave because he already paid me. The guy just sat behind the partition and kept rambling insults at me. So I turned the car off and stepped out.” This driver is totally a big black dude. Intimidating. “Well the fare ran away” he said. “Then when I tried to start my car the battery took a shit, I was stuck on 215st and the fucking bastard fare kept running around saying “go away I paid you.” Rough night.” Then he looked at the native guy getting his shoes and said “Now this.” I looked at the concrete and asked “how did he loose his shoes?” The other driver looked at me and said “he was trying to kick the car, I again got out and smacked him upside the head. He ran so fast his shoe fell of.” We both had a laugh as we watched the native guy who looked like a male prostitute come back for more. We looked at each other and just drove off simultaneously. No one wants any real trouble other then the Gay native asking for it on Stony Plain Road. I’m sure that guy got hurt by someone last night.
The night started at around 8:00 pm. I checked the oil and did my walk around. The car was fine. I got in and started it. As the engine ran to life I realized my day driver had left the gas tank at a quarter tank. About 20$ worth of gas. “Fuck” I shouted. We’ve been having a gas war, me and the day driver. I was thinking at this point that I’m gonna leave him an empty tank. Just then as that thought was entering my thick skull my car’s owner pulled up. He told me “Don’t driver that car it’s been in an accident.” I looked at him and said “really? I looked. Where?” He pointed to the back bumper. I got out and looked and saw nothing. The car didn’t even have a scratch NOTHING. I took a closer look and laughed. My boss told me that he was here watching. Some thugs been smashing car windshields for the last couple months. My boss caught em. Some kids coming from a house up the street. Even had a shoe print for the police. A couple of the thugs were squatting in the abandoned cars too. Tinted windows?? Well my boss was watching over the place waiting in the morning for the police and he walks up 158st and sees 93, my car. The day driver is sitting in the front seat about to make a left but he wasn’t moving. My boss says ” I guess he was lightly hit, there’s no damage but he’s claiming an injury.” I slapped my head. My day driver is Middle Eastern. Then the owner threw me a set of key’s to a new car. As I sat down I felt different. It was a Crown Vic like every other, but she was equipped with a shield. Oh my God! A fucking shield. I felt like I was kicked in my taxi face. A plastic cage with a tiny window. The Vehicle for hire commission has locked me up. Jail. When I try to talk to the people it echoed. Weird. You can’t hear people. That’s the worst. You can’t tell if they’re whispering. That’s scary. I knew I relied on hearing the bastards in the back seat. The shield makes driving scarier. The people in the back are enticed to go crazy because of it. Well it hasn’t caused any problems so far, other then the hearing issue. But the shield is kinda like wearing a condom for me at least. I lost a lot of the sensation of the voyage with the person. The wall between us ensures that there will never be any real connection. Who cares? Anyway I drove Bryan Birtles a local reporter. He encouraged me to write the Vehicle for hire Commission and present them with a speech about my issues. I’m going to do it but I’ve never written a speech and don’t really understand the format. Does anyone out there know? Help me. I fucking need help. There is so many issues. My first fare tonight was a schizophrenic. Off the Meds, heavy duty! The first thing he said to me was “Do you ever feel surreal, like you’re in a fantasy?” I asked him “Can you see me? I’m your cabby. I don’t feel surreal and man this shit here isn’t like I’m in a fantasy.” He laughed and we drove to the Liquor store. He was tripping. Manic hard core. Nice guy. Gave me a fat tip. I said “Jerry I don’t want your money if your off your meds.” He said “take it, it comes out of the walls.” Then I said “Jerry before you crack your beers pop one of those pills. I don’t want to see you running around naked or something.” Then I said “Jerry they’ll lock you up, I know.” Jerry got out and right as I was about to pull away he leaned into the open window and asked “do you want to come in for a beer.” I said “Yes, but I can’t.” Then I gave Jerry the URL to my blog and my phone number just in case he wanted a ride ever again.
Last night I got home and felt like falling asleep. I just went to bed, I was tiered. Not much happened last night. I do remember this one thing. A group of dudes. They were roughhousing around the bar and on the road. I remember thinking they were assholes out loud. I was the first one up in a line of taxis. Hudson’s on Whyte. There were lots of people in front of the place. Closing time. All of a sudden one of the rowdy air head roughhousers gets in the front seat of my car. Then two more jump in the back. The first thing I hear is “You’re such a fucking cock block.” One giant guy accusing another massive human being in the back seat. The argument continues to escalate. It gets physical. Nothing extreme. The guy in the front seat saw a the situation and asked “Where is your shield?” I said “It’s coming next week.” I wonder what it’s gonna do. You know to the overall feel of the taxi. Mines coming. Funny now that the times are tough I’m getting a cage. I’m one of the last cars in the fleet not to have one. With a little window and a money hole. Awesome. Tonight I drove my aunt to the McKernan LRT station. In my own car. Off duty. She was going to the El Divo concert. Well she made it to Rexall and back with no problem. Fast and cheap. That train is going to run to Heritage soon. All the way to 23rd ave. Damn that’s gonna kill business . Ha. I just want to drive around this summer. I am anticipating a change with the shield a psychological one, in me and the passengers. Well with the economy and stuff I think this summer is going to be exciting.
Finally a night where I had more than three people in the car. What makes taxi so cool isn’t the cash flow (which can be good sometimes but not during a recession) it’s the people. My job is fun and I love it. I love cruising up to your house and meeting you, especially if you’re someone I don’t know. That’s when I can grab you and get you to fall in love with me. I mean that’s how I get you to call back. If not me then the company I work for. Tonight was awesome. It started like every other night this week. Slow. During the boom I was busy for 92% of my time spent in the car. Now calls start coming in at around 11pm. It’s weird everyone wants a taxi at the same time, people seem to behave alike. K tonight I watched one of my fares dress their dog up like a princess. That was strange. I also visited Layne Mitchell and the intern army at the Pawn Shop. Even got a free hot dog. Score. Oh my second last fare a couple of girls I picked up on 102ave and 138st. They got in and I could tell they had no money but I told them I would take them down town. The Eurythmics were on the Radio “Sweet dreams” I turned the volume way up and we bounced to the smooth groove of Annie Lennox. After the song was done one of the girls asked me “Do you go on dates?” I knew what she was talking bout but pretended to be ignorant. “Dates? What do you mean” I asked. Then the girl in the back seat moved in on the girl in the front seat and they started making out. “You guys lesbians?” I asked. The girl in the front said “she’s my wife, it’s been two years.” I applauded them. “So you wanna date?” the girl in the front seat asked. I again asked “date? What do you mean?” Then the girl in the back seat poked her head into the front seat and said “Double blow job. We need to make some money.” I shook my head and said “I don’t pay for that, and anyway I’m driving you for free .” I stated with absolutely no intent on getting a blow job. I just wanted them to be clear on the fact that they were getting to 95st and Jasper for free. They laughed, then the girl in the front seat grabbed me, she tried to get at my cock. I laughed and said “I don’t want a blow job, I don’t swing like that.” She realized that their offer of a double blow job didn’t arouse me. When I got to their destination they wanted me to lend them five bucks for some booze. I said “all the liquor stores are closed, you ladies are just hurting for the rock.” The both tried to say “no” but they knew I was right and they were in denial. The girl in the front seat said “I’ll show my tits for five bucks.” I laughed again and thought about it, I thought about maybe taking a picture and publishing it on taxitalk but I knew that wasn’t going to happen I said “No” then she said “I’ll show them to you for 2$” I again said “no.” They got out and some guy pulled up to them in a VW Jetta I think. They disappeared. Fuck those lesbians all they really want is the shaft and a hard spot.
I am a great writer, at least in my books. I’m an excellent cabby but I think I have to stop driving. No money. In the last two nights I’ve brought home 200$,(20hrs) rent for the taxi is 370$. I have Saturday and Sunday to make taxi rent and try to pay my bills. Not sure if it can be done. The corporate pigs of the world should burn. It’s fate. I picked up a guy, my last fare. He remembered me and called me up, Thank God. The company only sent me four trips in the last two days. Four or five trips in two days is a joke. Well anyway the guy that was my last fare, I’m his favorite taxi driver. The first time I drove him he was with a woman in the back seat. She strung him along pullin his chain but didn’t actually get him off. Well last night he called me from her apartment and guess what? She did it again. Left the poor guy to go home and jerk off. He likes her though. Tease. No fares last night. A few people called me. My personals will help me pay next weeks rent. I’m going to work the whole week all seven days next week. If I still can’t make ends meet I’m out. Ill start collecting welfare until I get my student loans and I start school. Fuck paying huge rent fees so some corporate big wig rips off a bunch of mostly immigrant drivers. The company is no good and your safety is the last thing on their minds. I drove this metal head in this band Carrion Spirit he worshiped Satan. I thought that was cool. Worship Satan people cause God is acting like a bitch lately, sucking off the corporate giants. I think maybe he wants the world to end so he can fuck mother nature again and start all over from scratch. Pig. GOd is really a Dog. Woof. That’s only half true God Is a good thing too I hope, you just have to have faith but faith don’t actually pay the rent. Fuck the world my friends fuck this city.
Growing up is hard to do in these troubled times. You’d think. Not true. I drove a girl from high school. She sat down in the car during a Nirvana song, her and her boyfriend. I blasted it. Seeing kids from high school reminds me that I’m not a kid anymore. That chick was a woman. I have a kid, Fuck! I’m a man. Growing up. Sometimes I still feel like a kid, but once you have a kid you grow up. It changes things in a good way and a bad way. The good out ways the evil ten fold. Driving the taxi, I get to see people behaving like kids. Letting the inner demon out. I got to say “no one’s partying. No one’s really letting loose.” It’s a good thing and a bad thing. I need to go back to school. The night life is dry. No good stories. Lies! Tonight I drove a couple of kids that went to “Queen the tribute band.” They said they were the youngsters, they tried to get the audience moving but the people just sat and stared. I drove them up too Stony Plain Road to pick up some rails and a bag-a-dank. They only had seven bucks. They made it to their destination singing “bicycles! bicycles!” Yeah cutting people deals, cause I got one call tonight. Oh a cop car pulled up to me after I dropped off a fare. I was parked in the right lane on Jasper ave, my hazards were on. The fare took a long time to pay. Whatever. He was the second person in the car in three hours. Joey’s on 12st and Jasper. He gets out. Traffic honking at me. I tell the customer to stay safe. Then the SUV cruiser rushes up in the left hand lane and the guy sitting shot gun say’s “you can’t do that.” I look over and the taxi loading zone has a Corvette sitting in it. I point. The cop looks at me, I ask “Can I go now?” then the chick cop driver proceeds and cuts me off in anger. I laugh and thank God I’d didn’t get some bullshit ticket. I’ve never had a problem doing that I don’t think its illegal. I’m so hooked on taxi.
I gave another cabby the URL to taxitalk. Something I’ve never really done. Frustrated with the cost of rent. It’s hard to make a living. WEll You can make a living but just barely. I’m not the only one out there I know. I like it though, challenging, mean. This new world. It would be cool to get to travel during this Global Crisis. I bet you’d get great service anywhere on the planet right now. Oh I had a chick puke in her purse. Totally punk rock sweetie. I saw the partition I’m gonna be getting. The new shield. Mmm. New change. Punk rock is comin soon. Walls don’t stop shit. Walls stir shit up. Last night I drove two couples that worked in finance. They were both attractive couples. A mortgage is where it’s at. Yeah I want to start a Union. Rent is too high. I get like ten calls a night from dispatch and only five or six of those trips pan out. I’ve been getting fares that don’t have enough money. People with like eight bucks and it’s a 25$ fare. I take the money and give them a card. Tell them to call me if they every win the lottery. I wonder if that’s the ticket. I love driving the taxi. I want my own taxi. I wish I could ride around whenever I wanted. For Free. I know that’s a stretch but I like it. There was some serious drinking and driving tonight. Prom season. I haven’t had any graduates this year. Who the fuck graduates anyway? Oh yeah I talked to Danaye Maier from the Bear. She was a awesome. I could tell she was a nice person from the sound of her voice.
Last night was interesting. For the first time in a long time I had a fare that was vision impaired. She was an older women, but still a spry cat. She had the white cane. When I asked where she was going she said the name of a prominent strip club. I was in shock. I asked ” what you gonna be doing there?” kinda surprised. She turned to me and said “My son owns the club and I’m looking after it while he’s away on vacation.” A blind woman looking after a dance club full of naked ladies. Cool! She was one of my fist fares. What made the night a little more interesting was the fare right after the woman with the cane, she was a women with a seeing eye dog. What are the chances? Two in a row. The dog was so sweet. He put his face up through the gap in the front seats and I petted his Golden Labrador face. Then the blind woman in the back seat scolded me a bite and said “you shouldn’t touch the dogs when their wearing a harness.” I apologized for touching her companion. There was money to be made last night. People were scarce though, long weekends have become really chill in the city. Lots of people leave so night time drunken traffic seemed down. Not that I didn’t see any assholes on the road. There were a few accidents that I notice involving a head through a windshield. There was this one car I drove by last night. I was with a fare, the car was parked across the road. On the hill right underneath the Shaw Conference Center. Well as the fare and I passed the car we realized that someone was sleeping in the drivers side seat. Just passed out. I asked the fare if they minded if I stepped out on the road to take a photo of the rottenness. They were totally in. As I approached the car another man was also coming up the hill toward the car. He asked me “Who are you?” I said “the taxi driver” then proceeded to take a photo. I was able to snap one off of the situation before the guy told me “stop.” He was dressed in plain cloths “I’m a cop with the EPS, go back to your car and leave this to me.” He looked like a civilian but talked like a pig. I walked back to my car yelling ” fuck, you have your work cut out for you guys and by the looks of things you’re not doing the best job.” I jumped back in the taxi and drove off to the North Side.
I got a phone call from the RCMPA
have you guys heard of them?
You guys I was interviewed by Venture Inc about maybe being their video guy
Please cross the fingers
As soon as I get in the cab these days I do my routine. I go circle the west end then move downtown. I gotta boot around like a little rocket man. University is gone. Nothing. That’s a big deal. I’m gonna have to work it a little harder if I want to survive in this industry. It’s like Mars out there, cold as hell. I love the cab. It’s an addiction. One that’s allowed me to see many walks of life. It’s outer space. I picked my first fare up at the bus stop, 102 st and 82 ave south side of the street. He was hitchhiking. I pulled over and asked him ” Where ya going?” He was an old dude, kind of a honky cat. Rig Pig, old enough to be my dad. “I need to find a Best Western. I’ll get cash.” I believed him, and right now it’s worth the gamble. My car is running. I might as well try. We move up to 109st, the Safeway. He goes in and it was closed. The security guard followed him out. He got back in my car. I drove him to the Money Mart on Jasper and 108st. Someone named Daniel sent him the Money order, think he said it was his older brother. While he was getting cash, a bum came up to the taxi. I was right there on the corner of the street. He asked me for Money. I told him “I’m trying to get paid by a hitchhiking crack head rig pig that’s sleeping in the Strat and fucking hookers.” The bum laughed and that Elephant band Turned on the radio, it was a good Boarder song for us. We listened to it. The rig pig came back. He had 50$. He told me that Saturday nights for fighting, he said ” Yesterday I blew 4800$.” Then he said “when you come back from workin you gotta let loose.” I told him smoking crack with Hookers is worse then dancing the crocodile rock. Fuck! I let him off at the corner of Gateway boulevard and 83ave. Told him to get a pack of smokes and go to bed . Buy breakfast in the morning and get on the bus to fort mac.” He gave me 20$, said he’d give me ten but that would leave him with 40$. That’s what he needs to buy a piece. He took off. Goodbye yellow brick road. That dude was a hit in the dark, a candle in the wind. I got 20 bucks. That’s a hustle. Then I drove this 19 year old loner transient Australian kid who told me “Mike Patton A Perfect Twist that’s your song.” Times are tight but nothing beats driving the Sunday night. Things are gonna get better, you know I read it in a magazine. Maybe its about time I pop a Benny and take off on a Jet. I won’t let the Sun go down on me. Not today. Maybe it’ll be nice and I can get a tan. Imagine. Oh imagine this, Rig pig dude picking up cigarette butts off the ground in the same spot I dropped him off two hours earlier. I pulled up and asked “you bought a 30$ piece right?” He looked up and smiled this shit eating grin. Nicotine can be picked up off the streets.
Economic slow down. You guys know what that smells like. Teen spirit, I had some of that last night. I was picking up one of my first fares. A 19 year old kid. I thanked him from the bottom of my cabby heart for calling a cab. “Thanks man, most people stay away from taxis these days and drive drunk.” The 19 year old looked at me and said “my dad was killed by a drunk driver, it’s something that’s in the way. I can’t drink and drive.” Sad story. Something like that can really drain you, but this kid was cool. He really appreciated me, taxis need the work. I need work so bad I picked up this 26 year old. He was out with his friends at on the rocks when he had a few to many. He got sick. Even thought there hasn’t been any work lately other taxi drivers rejected this guy. His friends told me he was vomity. I could tell. “That’s cool I got convenience bags, like on a plane.” The kid almost filled one. He was a good fare. He barfed in the bag and made it home alive. His friends kinda ditched him, when they threw him into the cab they said “he has a credit card. and if not his mom does.” You know those bastards just wanted to go back to the bar and breed. I had a bunch of girls from a bachelorette party. The bride to be was already gone, I guess she had a few to many too. Well one of the women I let in the car liked me. Her name was Ashley, hot girl. You could tell she was horny, you know in bloom. It’s strange to hear women talk about needing sex. See when guys do it it’s territorial pissings, but when an attractive women talks dirty it’s thrilling. For me at least. I like that come as you are attitude, that openness that makes people feel like maybe they don’t need that lithium. Maybe the world is a decent place after all, not just some sleazy lounge act. Life is more than a pirate feeding his pet Polly some crackers right?
Tonight was another night. I had a good one. I was invited back to the Y after hours. I’ve been living the Zen style, Welcome to wherever you are, kinda thing. I was in the club tonight. I danced. I was offered drugs last week and this week. I’ve been staying clean and well, that’s the thing I’ve been clean for like four years. I watched all the kids in the club get wreaked. Life times, wasted or maybe not. I got there as the club was opening. 3am. You can only get so far in the line up. You can watch kids get all fucked up in that first hour. I stayed for an hour. I danced for most of it. I watch all the kids trying to move to the beat. Some were having a hard time just trying to stand up. The drugs pounding through their bodies with every heart beat. Costa La vista baby. I’m not saying that I can dance but I do sober. It’s sweet. Windows into a different world. I can get the vibe I want off the other people. Without the drugs. I do it in the cab every day. Drugs generate behaviors. Those behaviors are provoked by feelings that are brought on by the drugs. Just mimicking those actions creates those feeling. Drugs real aren’t necessary, especially when you truly understand what”s yours to loose. First and foremost the dancing in an illicit, dirty, seedy, underground club is cool. You don’t have to be high to have fun. If you insist on getting high look further, now what do you see?
Last night started with a fare from downtown to Steel Wheelz. Three kids stocking up on treats to eat after they indulge in a bit of a blunt. I got 20$. First fare made my night look promising. They weren’t going to be knocking any one up. Then a personal call. Cause I’m on call. An old client. I need her. Shes a charmer. Then I drove a couple of drunk guys, one of them was an Oiler. No Joke. Dough Kicklac or something. The guy in the front seat sold pasta sauce. You know Ragoo or something. He said his sauce is the good stuff. For that 30$ pasta. Told me bout growing up in the west end. Kings of that hood. Booting around in the good old Camaro kicking ass. McFearless’s. I’m lucky I got them. They paid for gas. There was nowhere to stop. All stands were full. Top light s On, the black thumbnail of life. I drove by a club that had a dude being arrested in front of it. I backed myself right in there thinking it might attract a fare. Nothing. a good show though. Then I drove a dude named Kim. He asked me for crack. I asked him if a driver has ever hooked him up with a piece. He said “Yes.” I doubted it. He was a gross guy. As we were pulling up to the ATB he touched my arm and said “don’t worry I’m not the runner.” I told him “hurry up.” His hands were dead cold. You people aren’t fans of cold hands are you? My last fare was a woman that was loitering around the Petro-Can I fill up at. People who loiter usually want something. She wanted a ride three blocks away. On the way there she told me the Sheriff kicked her out of this house at 7am. She’s going back to break and enter. I could tell she was a fresh user. I asked if she was using hard or soft. “Hard” I yelled before she could answer.”I’m a nurse” she told me. I told her to get off the crack. Man a couple of weeks on that stuff and your done. You end up in someones trunk. For some people it’s the true love way. For me, my way, I’d live in Arizona or New Mexico and I’d have a half pipe in the desert. It would be my party. I’m moving to Canadas California soon.
Sunday night my first fare was the same women from last night. She was the one who worked in the massage parlor. Actually that’s where I was called to. The same women. She told me she had one client. “165$, that’s what I made today. Not bad.” I said “Sure I guess.” She told me that a member of a prominent Rub and Tug on 109st and 105ave got AIDS. She was thinking about it out loud in the car, “Imagine if she went bare back, Imagine if I had one of her clients.” I could tell she was scared. I could tell she didn’t always use protection. I had a good night Sunday morning. It was stress free like every Sunday should be. It rained. That was the first bit of rain I’ve seen in a while. Freshened the world up a bit. Summers coming.
Aaaaha. What a night! Almost all my clients were personal. Lately because it’s slow I focus on picking up personals. In the past the bar rush was six hours long. Now it’s over before it started. My personal are all rocking. I had this women get in. She had something about her. She was older and she was very plain but she let of this … I don’t know. As she walked into the liquor store all the men were watching her move around. She was in and out of there fast. Then when she hit the 7/11 all the dudes tried to stop and talk to her. Weird. She wasn’t anything out of the ordinary. One guy even came up and asked me “Whats her address?” I gave him a bunk location. Then he pulled a stolen pepperoni from his sleeve. He looked at the 7/11 and said “Man that place must loose 10,000$ a month in revenue. I never pay full price.” I laughed. He stood next to the car until she came out. He tried to talk to her he even said “I know you!” She told me ” go, I don’t know this guy.” I left laughing. On the way back to her place she told me ” I work in a massage parlor.” That explained it. She was a hooker. Off duty though. Fuck men can smell it a mile away. Men are pigs. The night was slow. Lots to piss me off. I’m trying something new. I’m trying to live and let live. I’m trying to be zen. I’m trying to stop stressing about money and control. What I do is stay in a good mood. When someone cuts me off and my heart starts to pound I relax. I try to let it go. Really a difficult thing for me. It helps. I’ve been making more money in the zen state. Thinking more rationally. I was having trouble focusing on the blog earlier. Not able to think about anything better then the crappy dispatcher or the worthless pigs. Then I walked upstairs and ate an orange. I mean I actually sat there and enjoyed the orange. The dame fruit was delicious. The texture. Fuck. Then I ate another on. Every time my mind wandered into the no-mans land of anger and misery I would loose the great sensation on eating that orange. I want to live that sensation. I want my life to be so good I want more.
Tonight was not ordinary. I actually had an incredible morning. Well the night started with an excellent meal with a friend a sexy friend. Then I started work around 9 pm. The roads were busy with all those Friday night assholes. It’s weird seeing so much traffic throughout the night. I drove the Inarticulate drunk guy last night from the Bear. He was cool. Not much happened until I got a call from a friend Mr. Dave. Well he had been sitting at his house pounding a few beers back with his boss. When the boss needed a ride home I was the lucky recipient of the phone call. When I arrived I was welcomed by a group of men that had obviously been having a “good” night. I took Dave’s boss home. Nice guy owns an international electrical company or something. The man gave me 100$. Wow. I almost blew a gasket. My night was all of a sudden looking good. Money is tight these days, a 90$ tip goes a long way. Thanks man. Later, and this is the weird one. Donair shop on 82ave and 106st, three dudes get in while I’m rocking Nirvanas “Polly” loud. I tell them to simmer down cause I want to listen to the song, then I blare it. They dig it. Seems I got a fighter in the car, a massive man. A Doctor (General practitioner) and their friend (don’t know what he did). On the way to the Y after hours they wanted to stop at their truck. We stop. The boys get themselves a whiff of special K (Ketamine). All of a sudden they are totally clued into me. They loved the ride so much that when we got to the Y they offered me whatever it took to get me to go in with them. I said “100$” I was joking but bam they gave it up no problem. We entered. So I’m in the dance club with a doctor and a man that is huge. All the women were staring at us. well not me, the guy with the massive biceps. They bought me some water (5$ a bottle) and I sat down in the chill out room. I watched a guy tripping on Ecstasy throw up on the floor. The Y. I talked with my new buddies. They were cool. I think they were out of their element and that’s why they wanted me to come in with them. They had drugs. Lots of drugs (pharmaceutical) and money but they weren’t drug people. Just a threesome of dudes letting loose. I thought it was cool. They took good care of me in that club. I was happy to have been given the opportunity to make a 100$/hour plus dance around a club like a teenager. I left after the hour, my fares stayed. Dudes you guys were the shit, I don’t believe you people stepped into my life like that thanks. As I walked out the club towards my car a girl approached me. She wanted a ride. I could see the line of taxis in front of the after hours club. I asked “Why don’t you take one of those?” She said “you write a blog right? My sister almost had sex in your car once, she said you blogged about it” I smiled and let her in. My night was incredible compared to any other cabby last night for sure. I am so lucky to be me and I love the summer time so party the fuck on kids.
Oh I also saw the bastard Gypsy cabby. Hey I snagged a pic. Just look at his greasy mug. The mother fuck is missing his front teeth. You guys tell me what you think of the picture.
So these two guys get in an start talking bout their night. They told me that they had a women walk out on them. I picked them up a a restaurant named “happy family eats” or something. I was dispatched to the trip at 3:30am. “Why did she walk out on you?” I asked. One of the guys turned to me and said “cause I never thanked her for ordering such a great meal.” “Did she pay?” I inquired. He says “No, I paid but the meal was exceptionally good and I guess she was hurt that no one cared to thank her.”
Oh you guys the world is changing. No joke. I like recession. I hope it hits hard. People change during the tough times. People look real. People are loosing their jobs. I paid my “shift rent” today. I didn’t have an envelope I gave my boss a fist full of cash. He counts it and says “rent went up 30$ a week.” I was like “when?” surprised as fuck. “Last month” he said. I owe him a bunch of extra cash. Funny, I was just thinking that rent should be lowered since I can’t get ahead financially. Fuck a trip to the dentist is a tough pill to swallow. I’m getting insured. I need Life insurance. It would suck to get hacked up and tossed into the trunk of my taxi for “nothing.” All in all I can’t think of a better job. Tonight I drove a couple members of the “Cree Clan.” These kids kicked ass. I wish I could link them up. These dudes were just such nice people. They were from the reserve. They opened for a rapper at the Gas Pump. Looked like it sold out cause the Gas Pump was the only place to get a fare. The Empress too. The last Thursday of every month is a Gay Night. Gays are some great people. I’m really actually comfortable with gay men. I try to shoot the shit with them. I’ve driven lots of gay people, my fare share.
Move the fuck along is all I can say. When shit gets you down, just get the fuck up. I met this boxer tonight. Young kid. Well he recently came back from a tournament that he won. That’s what he thought. The judges said it was the other guy. The crowd said it was my fare. You guys ever seen Rocky. Now that’s a great movie. When I was a child I would watch Rocky and then go out and kick all the kids asses. I was the toughest mother fucker on the block. I told my Fare (the Boxer) that if he understood his dream by the time he was 19 he should continue to pursue it. Most people have no Idea who they are. Until they die. Most people are followers and zombies. Boxing is a vicious sport. Brutal. It’s not golf. The kid had his head on straight and he inspired me. Tonight I had a weirdo try to take a dump in the car. He would not give me the address he wanted to go to. A bouncer shoved him into my taxi. He wasn’t all that fucked up, he was just a weirdo. I took him to the west end with the intent of dropping him off at the cop shop. I told him to runaway at the red light or pay the fare. He didn’t run till we were a block away from the west end police station. He never succeeded in taking a shit in the back seat. He never paid me. I love Sundays. Hell I Love anytime I’m not stressing. Stress is going to kill me soon, or a passenger with a knife. Screw the world it’s Monday. How is working the day shift anyway? And remember what I told you, take her to the zoo.
The Blog. 101.
I’ve been writing notes on my log, notes that I should blog. Tonight I wrote down Cage the Elephant, Bum-Anus and phone sex. Lots more happened. Unfortunately I can’t really tell you what Bum-Anus is about, I just wrote it down in the Log. Phone Sex is a great little story. Dude gets into my car and says “West end.” Happy dude works the rigs. On the way to his house he gets a phone call. “Hello” Its his girlfriend. She wants to talk to him. He has to explain to her that he’s in the car with the taxi driver and can’t talk. He hangs up. He tells me “I’ve never met her in person but we’ve been having phone sex for six months. I’ve seen pictures, she has big boobs!” I was like “Wow” then I told him he should hook up with her in person. He said ” I know.” He tipped me 5$. Tonight was nice. Smooth. Good music. Cool. I’m trying to relax. I need to step back, writing the blog kind of intensifies the taxi ride. Tonight I was grumpy. I’m weening myself off of sugar and Slurpee’s. Hard Core. Throw the skate board in the trunk. Get old gracefully while trying to succeed in today’s world. I’m going to enjoy the summer. At five in the morning the sun’s already showing his face. And the sun sets, I’ll get one for you guys, a picture.
Last night the kids were cool. I got the kid that was all high on mushrooms. He ate an eighth of an ounce. Then his friends dared him to drink a mickey of Captain Morgan spiced rum in an hour. They told me he came close but did not finish. He was done in the back seat, as soon as we stopped he ran away. Pent up I guess. I had one cabby steal my fare. There were 6 of them, I said “I can only take 4.” I told them “take a couple of taxis cause no car is gonna take 6 people.” He said “Yeah right!” and they all piled in to the other taxi. The other taxi driver let them in and made me look like a fool. So I took a pic. Looking at it, I won’t publish it. The people that piled into the taxi look like they belong to a prominent powerful gang. Actually I feel like that photo was not the best decision. Last night had some good driving. No one was too out of hand. I think it’s all the check stops the cops are starting to put up. I see one at least once a week. It might not make a big difference on a nightly basis but it changes Edomotonians state of mind about drinking and driving in general. Context Baby! I did not get enough rest today. I just want to sleep the day away. Oh yeah……I did I gotta go to work. Write you later kids. Don’t fucking drink and drive. Get High and walk.
Finals. Exams. University is on hiatus for a while. Finals mean sex in the car. Passions thrown at loved ones, or just someone else. Anything to forget about the stress. I never stressed over university. Multiple choice is a JOKE. I hope all you kids out there feel educated. They got drunk. Oh I got drunk at Gob you guys. I even gave the lead singer Tom the URL. After the show we took a taxi to my buddies house. We stopped at the Tops Liquor store to get some beer. I was to drunk so I sat outside the store trying to purge some of the booze I had consumed with absolutely no thought of the consequences. So I’m out there when the clerk (I knew it was a tops clerk cause only brown dudes work there) is being thrown around by another guy. The two were fighting over a bottle. The clerk was getting robbed. I was loaded and trying to puke on the corner of the building (to no avail). The perp got away. The bottle of Crown was stolen. The clerk sat on his stoop and stared up at the sky. My friends said they would be witnesses, but Mr.Clerk said “it’s all on camera.” He went back inside. This morning when I woke up I heard on the news that someone killed a man working at a Spa, then robbed a liquor store. When trying to run away he noticed police and blew his brains out. Weird. The guy that robbed the tops liquor man was a white guy. The murder suicide guy was black. That’s what I heard. There were drugs and alcohol involved. Tonight was fun. Kids where finished finals so they where getting loaded. I had fun with everyone. I drove my gangster girl. It’s been a while since I saw her. To tell you the truth I thought she was dead. Well she’s going to jail for at least five years according to her. She was high tonight. She thought the police helicopter was following me. I never saw it but hey. She said she might make it onto Edmonton’s most wanted. That would be cool. Good thing I paid no attention to where I dropped her off.
After coming home last night I washed my hands. I remember feeling like I just washed the night away. The three grungy drug addicts. The women who just returned to Edmonton from Vietnam. The two men, one a Polish guy I could communicate with and his friend a man that was raised in South America. None of them had anything in common other then I shook all their hands. The first fare was Robin and his crew. The three of them were obviously using drugs and alcohol. No! they weren’t children or young people these guys were veterans. Three suicides. Robin had the money on his bank card (I’ve driven him before, he always withdraws his daily limit and is forced to find a store that gives cash back, like Safeway or Walmart) he was in charge. His crew consisted of a “what looked like”a fifty year old prostitute and a big Indian dude. They were chugging beer. They were working up a massive fare, one they couldn’t pay for unless Robin found a store that would give him cash back. It was already past eleven pm on a Sunday so those stores were all closed. I was getting the feeling that they were going to try to skip the bill. They were to old to run, so the prostitute offered herself as collateral. I wasn’t having any of it. The boys in the back seat laughed when I turned down her offer of love. She was used to it. I drove them around until midnight. The cards withdraw limit is reset at the beginning of a new day. I got paid and they got home safely. I had fun with the old drunks, they were honest people. I could tell they had given up on life. I had to wash my hands after shaking theirs. The women from Vietnam had just returned to North America. She had a baby with a Vietnamese man and never married him. Asians marry people they have children with. She had a hard time assimilating into the Vietnamese culture without having a husband and with a child. She said that if she married the man he would have ended up on the birth certificate and that would have cut her freedom in half. Her husband would have custody of the child and without his permission she could never bring her child back to Canada. She was a strong independent women and global citizen with really nice hands. I wasn’t compelled to go wash my hands after shaking hers. My last fare was a man and his ex brother in law. The ex brother in law was a Polish guy who spoke Polish with me. A language I rarely speak in the Taxi. He was cool. The two were best friends even though the Polish guy divorced the other guys sister. You could tell they were best friends. The other guy was raised in South America. He told me he was shot in Venesuala when he was fourteen. The guy who shot him used a 12 gauge. He said after it happened he woke up at a Shamans house and she healed him. He had the scares to prove it. I asked if I could take a picture but he said “no.” The weird thing was that the dude did not believe in God. He told me the Shaw Women saved his life. I respected his opinion and looked up at the stars and thanked the Almighty that no ones ever shot at me yet.
So I got pulled over on my way home from work. My registration had expired last month. I got a 230 dollar ticket. I’m happy to see the cops are doing something. I wish I could have had an allergic reaction to PIG. I’m sad to say that’s it’s not pulling over crack dealers. Last night I drove a social worker, can you imagine having to try to re integrate a 13 year old gang member that already killed someone. They do that kind of stuff and sometimes succeed. Last night I kept getting kinky text messages from someone. I called them up and it was a guy. I told him that I’m a cabby and the girl that gave him my number was playing him. He kept sending messages. Dirty ones.I had a good night last night. There was one time that I got kind of frightened. I was sent to a north side address and five huge rig pigs came running out. I told them I can’t take 5. They all got in. Rig Pigs are big and they are bullies. On the way to their hotel they wanted to listen to the bounce and they would not take no for an answer. They asked me how much a whore goes for in Edmonton, I said “25$” and that’s a good one. They said since the economy changed Fort Mac Murry girls have lowered the price to 125$ a fuck. Rig Pigs have sex with prostitutes. If you have a husband up there. Suck him off good or he’ll bring home Gonorrhea. I’m happy I still have no respect for the law enforcement in this city, stay safe and have fun. Oh I have a funny one. This guy gets in and gives me his address, I write it in my taxi log. The guy watches me write it then looks at me ans says “Ukrainian GPS” I fucking busted a gut laughing. OH oh there was also a guy who sky dives he was tripping on some shrooms he told me he was going to jump out of a plane in 7 hours. Tubular.
If only every night could be as decent as tonight. It took me back to the beginning of the boom, there was sex, drugs and rock and roll. My first fare came right out of the Stollery Children’s Hospital. The women had three kids with her. Two of them should have had a car seat but you know cabs don’t use car seats with kids. She didn’t even strap them in she just threw them in the back. Well her 17 year old son was upstairs with his new child. The women I was driving was a grand mother, her teenage son was the proud father of a premature baby boy. The babies mother is 16. She tried to take him out of the Preemie unit, the nurses said that she couldn’t take the child because the baby was still recovering so the 16 year old mother abandoned it. The boy watching the new born upstairs right now isn’t 100% certain that the baby is his, the Grand Ma told me that they were still waiting on the DNA test. The possible other father is the Mothers new boyfriend. After she abandoned her premature child in the hospital she went and smoked meth with her man. This girl has already had three abortions. The women I drove was so proud that her 17 year old son stepped up to the plate of fatherhood without question and judging by the circumstances I was proud of the teen too. If all men could be so stoic. Tonight was awesome, all my personals blew me away, they treated me so well. My last fare was good too. She was a married women who is in the proses of a separation. I asked “why?” She told me she that her and her husband got pregnant but then she miscarried and she was devastated and the husband was happy. He has two children from a previous marriage so it was no skin off his back. His current wife on the other hand had an abortion when she was 17 so this lose hit her close to her heart. Her husband an ex Jehovah’s witness did nothing to comfort her so she slept with his best friend to find some solase. No one knew until she broke down and told her husband (a man who renounced his religion , wife and children) that she cheated on him. Hence the separation. I dropped her off back at their place. It was 4:30 in the morning, what do you guys think happened? O.k now it’s time for rock and roll. I saw a women walking up Whyte ave, I asked her if she needed a taxi. She said “I’m looking to make a couple bucks.” I wondered what she meant. Sorry now it’s time for the Rock and Roll Jake Ian folky, and the Old Wives Club the dude I drove has a wife that’s a lesbian and she is hot as hell. And this guy was with Greater than giants, Everyone Everywhere. Fucking Right, Peace!
Why would anyone sit in a line this long? Come on it’s not like we’re Communists!
I had three calls last night. It was officially a lifeless night. DEAD. Dozens of taxi drivers were ready to cut their wrists. Well my last fare was this autistic bar tender from small town Alberta. She was interesting because she had been smoking pot since she was a seven year old. I asked “How?”She said ” Small town Alberta, lots of grow-ops and because I was autistic and my dad was a teacher he was ashamed of me so I was pretty much allowed to do whatever I wanted.” Smoking dope at seven, that’s a new one for me. She also told me about a blind man that sits in Galaxy land in West Edmonton Mall. She said “he once came up to me on the bus and told me he was arrested for being a peeping tom. But he’s blind right? Wrong it’s a dirty charade.” I thought that was a cool story, so if you ever see a blind guy in the women’s washroom in West Ed remember that you can never underestimate a greasy peeping Tom. Hey guess what? There was a murder at the Klondiker. Where’s that? you ask. It’s the Jasper place Hotel. Yep you heard it here first. Oh and there is going to be a new taxi company soon. The taxis are gonna be red. The owner of airport taxi wasn’t making any money since the airport driver started a union. Those sneaky people trying to feed their families. Well the airport taxi contract is up in a year so the owners gonna get rid of that company and start a new one that’s more lucrative. I hope that he does well, unless he mistreats people then he can rot in shit. The company I work for is the oldest in the city, we are King. Guess that makes me ………
Rock stars do not wait in line!
Tonight was the first night of my work week, aah and what a night. My first fare was a native women with a guy on their way to the Lodge Motor Inn on Stony Plain RD. I want to mention her because she told me about one of her finest moments in life. About ten years ago she was in Hinton Alberta in a Motel. She said she had a big bag of Glass(Meth), a pocket full of cash, every drawer in the room filled with bottles of beer and to top it all of huge sac of mushrooms. She told me this story because as she recalled it was one of the finest moments of her life. What’s yours? Mine is the birth of my Sun. Not many fares after Mrs.LodgeMotor. I was cruising up 82ave when I spotted the boys from Ten second Epic. I had to pull over and wish them a happy tour. They were really nice to me and so I continued up 82 ave. I got another fare. A dude right out of jail, I told him that I had been feeling really angry since the economy crashed. He told me “if you got someone to love, and you got something you want to achieve plus your freedom you ain’t got nothing to worry about.” He was right. I got all those things. One of my last fares was a boy raised by a couple psychiatrists. We had a lot in common, except he was 18. We went to the same high school, and I shared the same type of extracurricular activities as him in my past. Lately I feel 18 again, I feel lost unaware of my destination in life. Over the past couple of weeks I’ve been smacked by some solid depression. I feel like things are falling out of my control. I don’t feel safe on the road. I can’t make money. No one cares. So I’ve decided that I’m going to look this adversity right in the eye and be positive. I no longer want to be negative I want to be positive. So after I dropped the psych kid off I parked my car across the street from Filthy McNasties. That’s where the boys from Ten Second Epic party and trust me they draw a crowd. It was the only bar in the city with patrons. I sat there and took photos. I was checking out my work when someone opened the door and sat down. I looked up and saw the lead Guitar player “Dan” from Ten Second Epic. He knows who I am so I asked “Did you know that this was my cab?” He said “No, but hey whats up?” I told him “I don’t believe I got one of you guys randomly.” We chatted and he made it home safe. That made my night. Tonight was a pleasure.
I have been lucky enough to drive everyone in the band except the lead singer. They rock guys so if you have a chance go and see them it’s worth it.
My view at night from taxitruth on Vimeo.
Someone thought this video was unsuitable for you tube. It shows a violent act on 82nd ave in Edmonton. The authorities never showed up even though it was in a very public location. I produced this to show Edmontonians what’s happening on our streets. To me this clip depicts a lack of police presence. I would like the authorities to acknowledge that fact, that currently they are not up to par. This clip shows that, if not by the violence itself then by the public agreeing with me that the cops should have been there. I have additional footage of the event. The bar it started at. (it would be a great add) I have footage of the bouncers at that bar allowing the fight to continue and not calling the authorities. This type of occurrence is caused by ignorance. The only one hurt was an innocent female bystander. Who do you blame? Maybe it’s society, but hey don’t shoot the messenger, I’m just doing what my gut tells me to do.