Monday, February 16, 2009

Taxi to the Dark Side

I house sat this weekend in the suburbs for a nice Jewish fam with a miniature poodle & a long-haired cat. Today, I planned to cab it back to the Cleve so that I could visit Bravo's Chef Spike Mendohlson's Good Stuff Eatery on Capitol Hill, which I've been waiting forever to go to.

Short on cash, I phoned Regency Cab 20 minutes before I actually wanted to put in a call, just to check that they took credit cards; I was assured they did. I called 20 minutes later to get a cab, no problem, & a friendly operator told me it'd be 10-15 minutes.

That's where the friendly ended.

A mere 25 minutes later (please note my immediate sarcasm), my cabbie shows up, & when I got in, he lazily says, "So where we goin'?" as if I hadn't, you know, called in with my origin & destination. And then he says, "And how do I get there?" Right, because I know how to navigate the 'burbs of Bethesda. YOU'RE A CABBIE; Connecticut Avenue isn't exactly an unknown back road. Annoyed at my ack of directional information, he puts my location into his GPS & we set off for home. A couple blocks before my apartment, just for good measure, I ask, "I can pay with a credit card, right?" & he says no. Ina bored tone, he "explains" that his credit card machine worked earlier but now "it don't have it," whatever that means. When I tell him I only chose Regency because I was assured I could pay with a credit card, he says, "I can drop you at an ATM."

Clearly pissed, I get out of his car at the ATM two blocks from my place, where I take out a $20. When I get back to the car, I discover my driver has run the effing meter while I was getting money out! At my wits' (& patience's) end, I tell him, "I'm not giving you $19.50. It was $18 when I got out. I'm not paying you for having a broken machine."

Oh, & did I mention that he dropped me off two blocks from my destination? Didn't even take me all the way? Just left me at the ATM, luggage & all? What a gem of a driver.

Me being me, I called to complain, of course, & in all fairness, the dispatcher was VERY nice & apologetic & took all of his/my information. But me being me, I'm still a little bitter about it, & I hope this guy gets fired or at least reprimanded, if not for his crap credit card machine that goes against company policy then at least for being a huge jerk about it.
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