May 14, 2007

It figures...

... that on the one day I'm in a kind of hurry, I hop in a cab with the World's Least Assertive Cab Driver. No exaggeration.

Coming up to a red light (where I feel obligated to mention, we were going to be making a right turn), the cab stops no fewer than five feet before the stop line, and made no moves to suggest making the right on red was even on his mind. Just waited patiently for the light to turn green (I looked for 'no turn on red.' didn't see it). On the way to the airport, he exhibited none of the maniacally aggressive cab-driver tendencies which most of us loathe and revile while driving near, but we do so tremendously appreciate when we're the ones benefiting from the onset of others' road rage. He let people merge. He didn't accelerate to stops, or jump from lane to lane at the first hint of a quicker line of traffic.

In short, he about drove me crazy.

I realize that we would all rather that more cab drivers would behave this way, but I'd just as soon they get enlightened when it better suits my needs. I don't think that's all that much to ask, is it?

I did see a couple of interesting things on the way, though:

A car turning into the flow of traffic with a steady stream of smoke coming from under its hood. The driver looked almost serenely unconcerned, which bothered me immensely. It bothered me that he wasn't bothered, and I was much happier once we passed him and made him someone else's problem.

If you travel down 23rd St to Constitution in the afternoon, you are no doubt accustomed to seeing the far right lane blocked by at least one car still parked at the meters, despite the fact cars aren't allowed to be there. The difference this time was that the lone offending vehicle was a WWII-era, olive drab Jeep. White star on the side and everything. I can only imagine Gen. Patton was off breaking a dollar for meter change.

The funniest thing about the trip was the car radio. Like many cabs, I'm sure, this one didn't exactly have a Bose premium sound system. Far from it. The upshot was that I got to listen to Wilson Phillips' "Hold On" with a disproportionately high bass level. Think about that: Carnie Wilson with Dr. Dre-level bass lines. It totally changed the song, which is to say it almost made it listenable. Almost.

Of course, Wilson Phillips was forever changed for me after I first heard The Dan Band. If you don't know who these guys are, you should, and here's why*:

I got to the airport and made my plane in plenty of time, so it was all good. But it wasn't quite the ride I was expecting, not by a long shot.

* safe for work, but there's a long-ish intro with some bleeped swearing.


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