Archive for Misinformed

Hit and Run Or Assault

Posted in Close Calls, Law Enforcement, Road Rage with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 29, 2011 by HackingVegas

As my twitter followers know, I had another incident at work last week. This one pushed me over the edge and got me to try to get local media involved in order to better protect myself and fellow hacks in Las Vegas. It started with a typical fare pick up at a resort where I was taking the second half of a large group to the outlets.  As I was pulling down the driveway I had a van next to me. For no apparent reason he started to come into my lane. This is common so I tapped my horn a few times hoping he would correct himself. Instead he continued to try to run me up the curb into the planter. I laid on my horn as I pulled up to the stop light.

The driver of the van opened his door, jumped out and started to run to my driver’s door. I thought I was ok because our cabs have auto lock doors when you put them in gear. Little did I know mine were not working that day.  He grabbed my door handle and flung it open.  He was yelling at me asking why I didn’t stop at the stop sign behind us. I couldn’t help but laugh and said,

“I’m sorry my stop wasn’t good enough for you but what gives you the right to come at me the way you did?”

Well, I guess that wasn’t the best way to handle it because he responded by saying, “Fine! I’ll come at you like this”, as he took a swing at me. I leaned away from it and he missed. I was able to grab my door and slam it shut before he had time for another swing. I locked the door, hit the panic button on my camera and radioed into dispatch what was happening.

By now my fare is freaking out and screaming bloody murder. My dispatcher didn’t make things any better. When I called in, the dispatcher couldn’t get my cab number right if her life depended on it.  It took 5 times for her to finally repeat the proper number. I chalked it up to the crappy radios the company put in not too long ago. Then I told her what just happened and gave her a description of  the man, his van & his license plate number. Once again I repeated myself 5 times before she repeated the proper plate number.  At this point I’m getting pissed. I’ve given this person who is supposed to be there to take information from me a lot of things I couldn’t write and I was sure that none of it was taken properly.

After he drives off I pulled my cab to a side road and parked.  My Fare was scared but I was trying to explain that I needed a statement from them.  But just as one of them was willing to do it my dispatcher said that the police ran the plate and it came back as invalid. She repeated the number back to me and to no surprise  she had written it down wrong. I remembered all but one letter and knew it was one of 2 options. I gave her the right plate number with both possibilities and waited to hear back. She then came back and said that both Metro and the Taxi Authority (TA) were not going to respond but that the TA wanted me to go to their office when I was done so they can do the paperwork needed. My fare had enough and hailed a cab out of there.

I couldn’t believe that this lady caused two different police agencies to not respond. Twenty minutes later, a Metro Traffic Officer pulled up and I found out why they didn’t come. He was sent for a Hit and Run car vs car crash. Nothing in the call said there was an assault. He asked if TA was going to handle it and after hearing they were, he pulled off. When my Supervisor found out that the call said nothing about the assault he called the TA and filled them in on what was really happening. They still didn’t want to send anyone out and wanted me to just come to the office still.

So off I went…

Is That All You Care About (WTF 2)

Posted in Driving Basics, Law Enforcement, Road Rage with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 13, 2011 by HackingVegas

After being told to go back to the yard in “Who Needs a Door Handle” I did just that. I was only about 2 miles away so I was there In just a few moments. When I got there I didn’t see the road supervisor I was told to meet so I went into the shift coordinators office to ask what I needed to do. Per usual they didn’t know a damn thing about what was going on. So after I filled them in on what happened they asked why I was there. I told them I was told to come here and deal with it here. I asked if I need to feel out any paperwork and once again I got the response of, “I don’t know”. I found an incident report on the wall of information racks and took things into my own hands and filled it out.

After I was done the road supervisor finally showed. He asked for my license and the registration for the car. I gave him he stuff and waited while he filled out paperwork. I got a shift coordinator to download the camera while he finished. When the road supervisor was done he asked if I had any questions and was trying to wrap it up. I asked when the cops were coming and if he wanted my report of what happened. He really wasn’t interested in what happened. He said, “well I have what I need and the video will help us get them to pay for it.”. I asked about when the Taxi Authority is coming and if Metro was on the way. He said that the Taxi Authority should be on the way and if I want to file a report with Metro I need to call them. He said they were called and told about the car so they can use that in the clam for repairs.


At this point I’m getting mad. I asked dispatch to call for metro and the Taxi Authority so I can file a report about the assault and it seems the only thing they care about is the car. This was made clear when I called Metro and asked if they could come take a report on the assault part of this. The dispatcher asked if this was part of the vandalism call at the hotel. I said yes and asked what was reported. She said they only gave them the make and model of the SUV and was reporting a vandalism. I asked if they knew about the assault and she said no. I then told her what happened and asked if they could come make a report. She said to stay at the yard and got the address. She informed me that someone is on the way. So I hung up, text the wife to let her know what’s going on and waited.

I’m a bit upset at this point and can’t believe the company could really careless about what happened to me and only was worried about the car. Maybe it’s just me but when I was in charge of field employees I made sure if something happened to them at work we did everything we could to help them. I mean they were my employees and were doing their job that made the company money. Yet I’m now all alone waiting with no support and no one to ask for help. So there I sit waiting…..


Now I’m Pissed

Posted in Driving Basics, Law Enforcement with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 8, 2011 by HackingVegas

I’m pissed! I’m so pissed right now that I paused my podcast to type this up and the wife can confirm that I don’t like falling behind on my podcasts. What could have possibly pissed me off to this point? Well let me tell you.

This morning I’m sitting at the Circus Circus hotel and I watch at least 4 groups come out and get in the taxi line. As I go to pull up the doorman helps them over to a shuttle bus sitting 10 feet from the taxi line. I blow it off thinking that they were just confused and got in the wrong line. I finally get a fare and go on with my day. It’s really slow today so I stay on the strip trying to make the time go by. A few hours later I pull onto The Cosmopolitan and get to the front kind of quick for how slow it is. Then, as I’m called up by the door man to load. I see a total of 8 people in line that are clearly divided into 3 groups.

I get out of my cab to help load the bags when the doorman takes the first group to a shuttle waiting about 10 feet away. I found that odd but then started helping the next group. While loading the bags the doorman comes back and helps with the last bag. But as he grabs it he asks if the group would rather take “the very nice shuttle for only $6 per person.” I stop talking to one of the guys and turn to the doorman. I feel my face getting red and my blood start to boil. Before saying a word I take a breath and remind myself that the doorman may not know.

See about a year or two ago, limo drivers were paying the doormen to pull out good fares from the cab lines and load them into limos. They were making up all kinds of stories to do this. We were told it was illegal for them to do so and we needed to call and report it to the taxi authority. I know at least 2 doormen were fired over this and even though it happens still, it’s not happening while the guests are in line.

So I let the door man know what he was doing is wrong and that doormen were getting on trouble for doing that in the past. He apologized and told the guests to get in the cab and enjoy the day. He then called over the head guy on the floor and informed him. The shuttle was gone by the time I got back. So doorman at The Cosmopolitan, you’re one of the good ones.

Now here is where the steam comes out the ears and flames come with every breath. After dropping off I decide to call the taxi authority about this. It had been a while since I’ve seen this happen so I should let them know. The dispatcher picks up and I let him know what happened. I asked if they are still needing names and plate numbers. When I’m done, I hear him laughing. Oh I’m pissed. This Taxi Authority is our “Police” and they are suppose to be there for us. Why is he laughing? When he’s done he says that’s not what they handle. They only deal with taxi issues. I let him know this is a taxi issue and they use to deal with this all the time. He blew me off and then said that they have never taken calls about this and I didn’t know what I was talking about. At this point I feel my heart racing and my blood boiling. I’m just about to go off but I bite my tongue and explain that I’ve called a few times about this and that I know of a doorman even being fired. He again tells me I don’t know what I’m talking about and says “if there is nothing I need from him he’s just going to go.” Oh shit. I cant even see straight I’m so mad.

I hang up and start remembering every reason I hate this job. I have my ups and downs but for some reason when I deal with the taxi authority it’s always bad even when I’m the victom (I’ll share that story soon).  I’m not use to being treated the way hacks are treated out here and I wish we had a stronger voice. But when our unions suck and most of the drivers are too afraid to speak up because they know they will lose their jobs, it’s hard to make things change. Those of us that have the skills to change careers make too good of money to just up and leave without it impacting our families. So deal with the shit and move on.

I pulled this off a website ran by a Las Vegas Cab Driver:



This website/forum is operated by a Las Vegas Taxi Driver who wishes to remain anonymous. Unfortunately due to the corrupt nature of the Las Vegas Taxi Industry, agents of change must remain anonymous for fear of severe repercussions. History has shown most who speak out are run out of the business altogether.  The drivers need a voice, and this website is one of those.


So now that I’ve vented, I will take my two days off and head back in Sunday hoping for a better day. What a way to end the work week.

Praying To The East

Posted in Driving Basics, Foreigners, Random Info, Road Rage with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 6, 2011 by HackingVegas

There is a lot of things you can say about a hack, but in Vegas you can’t say the industry isn’t diverse. When you talk about a hack in most cities 9 out of 10 times people will think about an Arab man wearing a turban.  This is such a common thought that even Hollywood uses this as comedic relief in their movies.

Here in Vegas we have about every region of the world represented and therefor we have all types of religion as well.  One nice thing is that with this diversity most everyone gets along. Most ethnicities hang out in the same groups but are always willing to bring anyone into their circles.  I love this and wish this was the case around the world.

Even though this is the way of most, we do have a few bad apples.  The most common issue we have is against anyone who prays to the east or does any type of religious ritual while working. For some reason people still have issues about things they don’t know much about other than what they’ve seen on FOX News, or “facts” they’ve gotten from a friend. During the day if you drive around any taxi hang out, you will see people on their mats praying. Most of them try to find dark corners to do this but we do have a few who are proud and don’t hide from the public.

Over the years I have seen many of these men get yelled at and have things thrown at them. I hate this and hope the people doing this to these people trying to mind their own business get whats coming to them.  Many of these drivers who pray during work have set up their houses as a safe prayer zones and have even got a restaurant to open their doors to them in the early morning to give shelter.  I love this but at the same time wish they didn’t have to go find places for them to go. They should be able to stop anywhere and do whatever they need to do to fulfill their religions practices.

To wrap this up I’m just asking for people to stop hating and educate themselves of what they are uncomfortable with. If  8,000 hacks can do it I think anyone out there can.  If you don’t feel that you can talk to people to educate yourself then I would like to introduce the world to the Internet.  It’s amazing what you can learn. 

Who’s Parked In My Spot

Posted in Driving Basics, Random Info with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 4, 2011 by HackingVegas

What in Sam Hell is going on around here? I pulled up to my favorite little downtown staging area and our parking was taken over by this:

I pulled around to where other cabs have made their own staging area and tried to figure this out. I saw a bunch of guys walking around in all black with head sets on. This looked all too familiar. It was reminding me of the days I worked in theatre. Then a large moving truck pulled up and they started unloading road cases for a band.

I was confused. We have live music on Fremont all the time and they never block off the streets. Why this time? Why on a day I’m working?

I pull up to the make shift cab stand and grab my phone to start typing. As I’m pecking away on my phone as fast as my two thumbs can go, I hear a rumble. I look up to see a big shiny black diesel truck about two inches from my door. I guess I was so engulfed into the post I was writing I didn’t hear it sneak up on me. I look up to the driver who has now thrown it into reverse and is laughing at me as he backs into his spot. That’s when I saw it.

Who the hell is Ronnie Dunn and why the hell is he taking up my work space? I instantly open my web browser and Google him. The Wikipedia page pops up and I tapped it. I watched as a homeless looking guy appears on my screen.

So I read on. Come to find out this is the “Dunn” part of “Brooks & Dunn“. I have heard of these guys but that’s where my knowledge ends. Come to find out they are a country group and I guess they are quite popular. Dunn has decided to work on a solo album over the last year or so and this is part of the tour for it.

With this information I declared it was OK that my work space was being invaded. I mean everyone needs to make a buck. So back to work I went.

As far as all of you who have read this and are asking yourselves how can I not know these guys, I can say one thing; early on-set dementia with a butt load of not liking country music.


After getting home I jumped on the computer to put the pics in the post (never use the WP App because while you can use it to put pics in, I have lost two posts due to crashes) and had to go back to Wikipedia to get one one of the pics and noticed that I was more out of the loop then I thought.

Come to find out, the ACM Awards are here in town this week. That’s the real reason for this concert. While he is debuting his solo record, this is not part of his tour. If you would like to check out dates for it here’s the link.

A Cab Drivers Voice

Posted in Driving Basics, Law Enforcement, Random Info, Touching Stories with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 1, 2011 by HackingVegas

I recently wrote a post titled “F The B”  that struck a chord with me. It got me thinking about my industry and made me angry. I have my wife proof all my posts and when she finished “F That B” she asked me something I haven’t thought about in a while.

Wife: please tell me you reported this?
Me: I wish I could’ve but it goes no where.
Wife: what are you talking about, why wouldn’t it go anywhere?
Me: trust me, been here done that, I’m over it.

This conversation really made me think and it made me mad. I’m not this kind of person. I’m the kind of person that calls in every drunk driver, stops at most traffic accidents where help is not already there (I use to work in the medical field and try to help when I can), and help people in need within reason. So why have I changed my ways? Why is, “It’s a waste of time”, my first thought? I started thinking and I think I figured it out.

I remember the first time I reached out to try to help someone who was in need after I had started to drive a cab. It was about three months after I started and I had picked up a single male from the airport who was going to the Stratosphere Hotel. On the way there I started in on my normal chit chat. He was in from Kentucky and said he was wanting to find his friends while he was in town. I asked where they were staying and got an answer I never in a million years expected, “They’re dead”. A calm silence filled the car. I had no clue what to say. I’m a trained critical incident counselor and found myself speechless. So I did the one thing I could think of. I listened.

He started telling me about his plan while in Vegas and how he had even told people at home. He said they just laughed it off and told him,”you need this break so enjoy your time out there”. The details started pouring out. He came to town with a backpack that was full of every dollar to his name. He booked a room at the hotel for a week and after checking in, he was going to hit the tables. He was going to play the tables until he had nothing but $100 left. When he got down to his “goal” he planned to eat a “nice meal” and go find his friends. I asked how he planned to find his friends and he came back with a detailed explanation.

First I plan to rig a rope to the ceiling of the room. I then plan to dangle there until I see them. But if the ceiling is too low, I will find a way to fly off the tower. One way or another I will find them and life will go on.

Once again I didn’t know what to say. I started with the basics and I asked if he had thought about getting help from the VA. He said he doesn’t want their help and that he believed that they are the reason he feels this way. They took his friends so why would they want to help him. I then asked if I could take him to a place that was not a part of the military to try and get him some help. He refused.  I took the last few minutes to try to talk him down but had no response.  I was wishing that I could just take him to the hospital or somewhere for help, but as a driver it is against the law for me to take a fare anywhere other than where they want to go. I could be charged with kidnapping and much more. So I pull up to the hotel and let him out.  I then call over the bellman and let him know what he was telling me. I get blown off and move on to security with the same response.  I then call my supervisor and fill him in on what I had just been told and once again got the blow off.  Not knowing what else to do, I called the Taxi Authority and they said I need to let the hotel know and that it was all that I could do.

I was upset. Everywhere I turned I got the same response and felt helpless.  I sat there for a few minutes and finally just went back to work. I felt like shit the rest of the day. The next few days I tried to find out what happened to him and see if the hotel had any issues with guests. I got no where and finally had to just push it out of my mind.  I had a few more situations similar to this and time after time I got the same response. I have developed a mind-set over the last few years to just let things go. I am just a driver and all I have to do is get someone from point A to point B. I only help when I’m asked to.

I still have a hard time with this and I know this fare will always be in the back of my mind. I wish there was a way to make changes in the industry. Give me your thoughts and let me know what you would do.

The Truth Shall Set Me Free – Thypolar (Guest Blogger)

Posted in Crazy Families, Home life with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 18, 2011 by Sheer Curtains

“A heart can be broken, but it will keep beating just the same.” ~Jessica Tandy in Fried Green Tomatoes

First, and most importantly, I  must point out that I have never been a “Mrs. Hacking” and he has always been “Mr. Thypolar (Mr T)”  With that said, I can go on with my post!

Mr T decided to fill the world in on his baking escapade. Now, why he tried to pin this whole ordeal on me I can only assume. Mr T’s grandma does have the best homemade pumpkin pie recipe on this planet. No joke, it is the best pumpkin pie I have ever tasted. But that my friends is where the truth in his story came to a screeching halt. Today, the truth shall set me free.

You see, he neglected to mention how difficult it is for me to live with a man that has the worst case of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder that the mental health division of Clark County has ever seen. It is so bad in fact, that the Center for Disease control was called in to to a toxicology screening because the psychologist was convinced some form of contagious disease was the cause of his mental instability. No such luck. He is just a certified nut job. If you are familiar at all with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, then you know that everything (EVERYTHING) has to be done his way. Frankly I’m over it.

So we have been making Grandma’s homemade pumpkin pies since we beat her down wrangled her for the recipe. Although I have made said pumpkin pies, Mr T wants the crusts done “his way” and refuses to  let me make them. So you see, I never “forced him” to make any pies because he INSISTED that he be the one to make them. For the past three months we have watched the ingredients to these yummy pies sit in the cabinet. Every week he says that he is going to make these pies and yet they were not being baked. Feeling guilty about this fact (I’m assuming) he starts blaming me for his lack of motivation by saying that I keep him too busy. Apparently I wasn’t giving him the “time” to bake. Fine then. I made sure he had the time and penciled it into his schedule. Ha!

The next morning while I’m working my ass off with the kids, he is busy in the kitchen baking pies. All the while he is plotting and planning his post. (proof that he is sick in the head if you ask me). So while the pies sit on the kitchen counter to cool, and after a month of getting nothing but whining and blame, I open an email of his new post titled “A Hacks Day Off“.

Not me, but might as well have been!

Karma is Bitch though, isn’t it?

Mind you, we have still yet to have ONE damn bite of these pies. Why is that? So let’s fast forward to later that evening. We have all been anxious to have a piece of the pies and Mr T is in the kitchen. Not only does he HAVE to be the one to bake these damn things, but he also HAS to be the one to slice them. He is so horribly obsessive about it that he pre-slices both pies every time they get made. Sick, right? So of course Mr T is insistant on cutting everyone’s pie and getting it plated. We sick back and watch the show unfold (sometimes, you just have to).

Now I’ve revealed that Mr T is a Taurus, right? And well you know the the sign of the Taurus is associated with the Bull? True to form, Mr T  pulled out all the stops, grew him some damn horns and considered my kitchen to be his china closet. While attempting to get out some plates, one of my large dinner plates comes crashing down and breaks all over the counter. SHIT! I love those damn plates you OAF!

Oh yes he did!


After we were done pointing and laughing (and changing our pants from pissing ourselves) we tried to help him clean up his mess. That’s when we realized the true horror of the situation. There was glass all over the pies.


Can you believe this?

Karma is most definitely a bitch sir. All that work and still no pies. There is one thing that I know for sure. My crust may have not been done “his way”, but at least we would have been able to eat some pie! If you’d like to paint me as the crazy ass bitch from Misery, I’ve got a quote for you Mr T!

“[Right after smashing Paul’s ankles with a sledgehammer] God I love you.” ~ Kathy Bates in Misery


(taking my bow now)

Race Weekend

Posted in Driving Basics, Law Enforcement, Random Info, Road Rage with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 9, 2011 by HackingVegas

Well into race weekend here in Vegas and I started my week on the big race day. They reported about 150,000 people in town for this race, but you wouldn’t know it from the way the cab lines looked.

The Taxi Authority puts out more cabs when we have big events in town. Over the last few years they’ve put less cabs out for these events due to already having too many permanent cabs on the road. But with the last few events, a couple of the bigger companies have fought for more “convention cabs”. Last year’s race I think each company put out 8 extra cabs. This year they are putting out a total of 15. That’s over one hundred cabs put out in a town that already has too many cabs on the road.

I was looking forward to this weekend. I took a 7am-7pm shift instead of my normal early shift so I would be on the road during the main rushes on both ends of the race. I get to work and the taxi lines are over flowing onto the streets. I’m not too worried yet, it’s early. I got a few rides but noticed the lines are still there. They are about half as long but still there. It’s now coming up to the 10 o’clock hour and on Sunday’s that’s primetime. Everyone is checking out and we have a good two hours of non-stop rides. Soon after, the airport picks up with incoming flights and the day never really stops. If you wait for a ride anywhere you normally only wait about 5 mins but we are waiting upwards of 30 mins.

I don’t let this get to me. I find a few good fares and despite not getting a single ride to the track I know I can always get a few back from the race. As the end of the race comes near I start my way toward the track. About 15 mins from the track I hear the race ended and people are lining up. I’m thinking this is going to be good. I’m here toward the beginning of the end so I should get at least 2 trips from here and if I push it, I may get more.

I pull up to gate 5, which is where we have to pick up from, and I’m only 30 cabs back. We are stopped by Highway Patrol while they let busses out. One after another comes out then they stop them. Now they are letting the busses facing us start to turn left on to the base. Good, now they should let us turn left into the racetrack. About 10 mins go by and the track is yelling for cabs saying they don’t have any. Meanwhile the line of 30 cabs has now grown to about 200 and we are still waiting. NHP (Nevada Highway Patrol) then stops the busses turning on the base and start to let the other busses go again. We are now going on about 25 mins and I see the NHP officers laughing at us. Finally about 30 minutes after I show up and the fans have been waiting for well over 30 minutes, we finally get let in. The group I got was pissed and after hearing what happened they gave the NHP Officer directing traffic a ration of shit on the way out. This small event messed up the flow for the rest of the evening and cost me about $80.

Now that I’ve got that off my chest, I’ll take a deep breath and move on. Ok almost (my wife always says I can’t leave well enough alone) why did NHP take over traffic control from Metro Police? Metro has a whole division that does nothing but traffic control. They do all the big events in town, why not this one this year?

A Cab Driver Is A Get Away Car?

Posted in Driving Basics, Law Enforcement, Random Info, Robberies, UPDATES with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 2, 2011 by HackingVegas

I was going through my news apps yesterday on my phone and found an update to the Rio robbery I talked about it in the post there’s an app for that.

The Rio

As I was reading I was shocked to hear the true story unfold. Come to find out the cabbie that reported being held up, as I heard over the scanner, was really the planned get away car. The cab driver brought the robber and waited for him as part of the big plan. The driver, who drove for “Lucky Cab”,seems to have been down on his luck.

The driver and another buddy got arrested for the crime, but police are still looking for the gunman. You can read more about the court date for these two on my Facebook page by clicking the link on the right side of this page.

After reading this I sat and thought for a second. This driver lives here in Las Vegas. He works in Las Vegas, has been talked to about and must know about all the cameras this town, especially the ones on the strip. I know as a cab driver myself we have taken a massive pay cut. Some of us have lost about 50% of our income from just two years ago but I think you just adjust and move forward. Not in a million years would I ever think about trying to rob a casino. I think if I had to resort to crime, I would sooner hold up a bank than ever try to hold up one of our casinos.

Next time you’re in Vegas do me a favor. Look up when walking around a casino. Try and find all of the cameras clustered across the ceiling then I would guess you would have to double that number. Then once you’re done, ask yourself this….. WWJD? Oh wait no,  I mean…would you even pick your nose in one of these places?

The ABC’s Of Las Vegas

Posted in Driving Basics, Random Info with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 26, 2011 by HackingVegas

I believe I have talked about the “Alphabets” before, but after the other day I think it’s time to go into more detail. I start most mornings these days in the north part of town. This is the part of town I’m sure very few, if any, of you have ever been to or even know is there. This is what I like to call “True Las Vegas”. This area has it all, from drugs and gangs to the high and mighty rich. My company divides this area into 3 zones and each one has it’s good with the bad. On the west side you have some of the rich mixed in with a lot of upper middle class, which is topped off with the middle class. This zone isn’t too busy but when it gets busy, they are normally good fares. The central zone is full of middle class with a small dusting of poor and a hint of upper class. You get a lot of short Walmart rides and a ton of cross town rides. Finally, we have the east side which has a lot of lower middle class, military and the dirt ass poor. The poorest part of this zone live in what we call “The Alphabets”. This is an area with streets named A-N running north and south and Presidents names running east and west. Over all, this zone has a ton of rides all day long. Some of them are $5 fares around the corner and others are across town. It’s a real crap shoot.

Now with that out of the way, back to why I brought this up. I was on my way back to the downtown area after dropping off in the northeast zone.  Whenever I deadhead back from an area, I pull into every possible place that may have fares waiting.  About two blocks from Fremont Street, while waiting for the light to turn green, I hear someone yelling. As I turn to see whats going on, I see a lady running up to my cab waving her arms. Being the kind of person I am, I unlock my doors and tell her to get in. (SSSHHHH! don’t tell the Taxi Authority, I’m sure they will find a way to still give me a ticket for this) I ask her whats wrong and where she need to go. She explains that she missed her bus and when the cab she called showed up, he rolled his window down asking where she was going and then sped off when she gave him the cross streets. I asked where that was going and she said Madison and C Street.

Now I know this area very well and know that she is going to a highly active gang and drug area. This is the type of area that has the cops arresting people at gun point on every other street.  Most people think that they are not safe here and that they’ll get shot or robbed as soon as they cross into the neighborhood. Personally, I think that it’s one of the safer areas to pick up and drop off. The cops come up to me in seconds every time I’m here and ask if everything is OK. There are probably more cops in this 5 mile area of town then there are on the strip.

So I get the cross streets and off we go. She starts chatting it up about how there are not many driver that will just take her all the way home. She says that many time they make her walk the last few blocks. We joke back and forth about other cabbies and talk about how this area has truly been cleaned up over the years. As we are pulling up to her house she asks if she can get my number for the future. I give it to her and she hands me $20 for her $11 fare and says “Keep it. I’m sure there will be times I can’t tip you and I hope you’ll remember this”.  I get out to open her door and wish her a good night. I then pull off wondering if she’ll ever really call me.

A few days go by and then I get a call at about 4am.  It’s her. She has me take her to the store and gives me a few numbers to call saying that these people have asked her to have me pick them up too. All I had to do was call and get their address. I made all the calls and took them all to work, to girlfriends houses, and home from work. I have been getting calls from these people at least once a day since and hope to one day be the King of the Alphabets! OK, not really, but I do like the fares.

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