Tuesday, September 12, 2006

For some reason...

...New York City has decided to pull in a whole fleet of brand new to newish taxicabs. Of course, my predictable joke is "finally new fresh smelling cabs with leather interiors that still won't pick me up." OH!

Of course we're all accustomed to the Ford Crown Victoria pictured to the right (this is a 2006 model, I'm sure the cars they have range from 98-02). I like to call them the FC Vic's. Most people don't know what the hell I'm talking about. I'll say "Hey let's go get in an FC Vic" and I'll usually say it after someone asks me the time or my middle name. No one knows what I mean. Also, they are hard to recognize when they're not painted yellow or without the word "Police" written on the side with sirens on top. Isn't it hilarious that cabs and cop cars are the same model? One will be damned before they pick me up, the other CAN'T WAIT to get me in the back seat. OH!

The other day I was walking down the street with friends in the East Village area and there were a few of us. We were going to a party I think. A birthday party. And it was far enough that it would take a while to walk, but close enough that a cab would be inexpensive. At that moment, a van cab passed by which is of course the Toyota Sienna. he refused to take us. Refused. One friend of course was angry about it. As he is right to be. There is a law. A what? A law. Well what's a law? Glad you asked. WOW! Dictionary.com has 22 definitions as a noun. Must be an interesting concept. Here's the first 4.

1. the principles and regulations established in a community by some authority and applicable to its people, whether in the form of legislation or of custom and policies recognized and enforced by judicial decision.
2. any written or positive rule or collection of rules prescribed under the authority of the state or nation, as by the people in its constitution. Compare bylaw, statute law.
3. the controlling influence of such rules; the condition of society brought about by their observance: maintaining law and order.
4. a system or collection of such rules.

Hmm, so apparently there is a law that New York City cab drivers CAN NOT refuse a fare. But they do do do. Not all. I'm not gonna lump them together, but as a lot of people in this city know from personal experience that certain drivers will not take certain people to certain areas. This particular driver didn't want to take we 5 people to our destination. "Not even a few blocks." That is a quote.

The other day I had a cab driver (driving the new Ford Escape - escape from Manhattan) who actually said to me "I was looking for someone to go to Queens." WHAT? Wow. Sometimes there are the people are are refreshing. Maybe even personable. Sometimes they are funny. Smart. But still whenever I get into a cab with no problems, its so confusing I don't know what day it is. I think to myself "Is it February? Hooray, 28 days I can catch a cab." (That's a black history month joke for those who don't know.)


Mark Davis said...

I'm a pedicab driver as you may know. the taxi cab drivers are far from the most racist. the MOST racist are livery cab drives that make illegal street pick ups at the busyest hours. In the defence of the guy goign to queens he probabyl owns his own cab and was goign to his home in queens. think of it liek a guy thatrents a cab in shifts putting his off duty lights on and only taking fares in the direction he is going in.

As far as peduicab drivers are concerned we like black people. the stereotype is you gusy don't tip, but in reality you try so hard to overcome that stereotype that you tip VERY WELL. today I took a totaly smoking hot black woman a short distance for ten bucks she gave me 15. The people we don't like are asain women. They (not all of them but enough that it matters) are just rude and refuse to treat us like human beings.

This is not a joke but it might soudn liek it. I think black people shoudl develop soem sort of hand signal for cab drivers that means manhattan island but south of 96th street.

The greatest thing I have EVER seen on this topic is micheal moores old TV show, TV nation from the 90s. He had award winnign actor Yaphet Kotto (cause ossie davis was busy) and some white ex-con. Yaphet stood 20 feet infront of the EX con with a giant light up sign that said "I NEED A CAB" and the cabs consistantly stopped for the white guy.

Anonymous said...

Were all 5 of you trying to get in one cab? Because unless one of you was under 5 years old, it's illegal for him to transport all of you, which leaves a a way for him to legally refuse..

Ryan said...

Well, you can't really blame the driver.

You guys are all black, right?

I mean...

Anonymous said...

I'm a black female doctor who lives on the Upper East side, and I have pretty much experienced the same atrocious behavior from some cabs. The last straw came for me when a cab stopped, thinking a white passenger had hailed it. When I approached the cab with my hand on the handle, he proceeded to speed off causing me to fall backwards on to the road. A fellow cab directly behind him saw what happened and tried to help me get his hack number. I wrote directly to the TLC commissioner and got a prompt response. Everytime a similar incident like that happens, you need to file a complaint via the 311 hotline or directly with the TLC. These cab drivers are minority themselves, and it's preposterous for them to act in this manner. We need to make sure each time they try to discriminate, we file a complaint and follow through with it so they can be adversely affected financially.

shasha said...

spell check

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Laurel said...

there was a cab driver who wanted to go to queens?! i wish i met him because i face discrimination all the time....because i live in queens

Harpy Mandrake said...

To the first anonymous (not the 'bot):
He said it was a minivan cab. Those can take 5 people, no problem.