What Would You Do?

This story was shared with my by a rider who heard this story from another Uber driver. It got me thinking and as a result I’ve used it as a conversation topic. The responses I’ve gotten have been quite interesting to say the least.

Here’s the story:

Uber guy picks up a very drunk girl late one night. When he arrives at her destination, he discovers that she’s passed out. He calls out her name she does not stir. He opens her door to wake her up and she falls out of the car onto the ground.

Helping her to her feet she can barely stand. He asks if their is anyone he can call. She mumbles a phone number, he dials… Her phone rings!

At this point he’s out of options.

Now here’s the challenge question:

What should he do next?

Answer this question to yourself before reading on to see how your response compares

There were a few patterns that took shape from the various responses I got

Most responses fell into 1 of 3 types: Selfish, Selfless, a hybrid of the two.

Call cops

Get her out of car. Your responsibility stops there

Help her into her house

Call a friend/relative keep them on the line while you help her into her house

Just get them through front door

Call ambulance

How did your response compare? Would you recommend a different approach?

Turns out I picked up an off duty police officer for the San Jose Police Department. Posted the question to her.

She agreed that an ambulance should be called

She said while the police would detain a person under the influence they typically don’t book you or put the incident on your record although you will be put into their internal system(this is assuming you haven’t committed a crime in your drunken state)

Typically, you will be released after about 4 hrs or when you sober up.

The Greatest Wedding Proposal That Could’ve Been Greater

This story is epic! It begins at Stanford University where I picked up Rashni. She told me an incredible story about how her husband Satish proposed to her.

Now they had been dating for about a year and a half when Satish suggested they take a road trip up to San Francisco. It was a perfect day, not a cloud in the sky.

On the 280 freeway he tells her he has to stop to take a leak. He gets off at the CA-1 headed toward Half Moon Bay. For those not from the Bay Area this road is a 14 mile bypass around a moutainous valley of sharp twists and turns, a minimum 30min drive. And that’s without traffic!

I imagine at some point Rashni had to have thought “My God this is quite a detour for a pee! I see plenty of bushes that could do the job.”

Satish said he’d found a hotel that surely had a restroom. He plugged in the directions, it was 3 miles away. As they drove they passed a McDonald’s, a Safeway and a host of other shops. Not to mention countless bushes and shrubs. Still Rashni was none the wiser.

She attributed the random route to Satish’s stubbornness. Once he made up his mind about something, there was no changing it.

Eventually, they got to the hotel. After Satish “relieves himself,” he suggests they walk around a bit as traffic would be bad at this time.

He takes her out to the balcony. A perfect view of the ocean. The sun is setting over Pillars Point leaving a beautiful amber hue as the backdrop. His timing was perfect!

Dropping to one knee he pops the question. “Rashni will you marry me?” Through a telescopic lens, Satish’s friend captures the entire event from an adjacent balcony.

I was so impressed by the level of detail he put into planning his proposal. I asked what was the ring like? She said “What ring?” Tires screeched as I slammed on the breaks. What?! HE HAD NO RING?!

Didn’t want to tip her off he says. BS… I say. The ring is one of the most critical components of the proposal! It’s the cherry on the sundae!

And every man who has proposed in the past has to figure out how to determine his future wife’s ring size without tipping her off.

You find a way.

You figure it out.

It’s part of the process!

Part of the fun!

If you can’t figure it out, you do something, anything, hell, even a ring pop will do! But in my opinion, what you don’t do is show up empty handed!

WTF?! Compilation Pt 1

I’ve had my fair share of weird but every now and then I’ll have an experience that’ll leave me saying WTF?!

Here’s some top picks from the archives.

Big ass Troy Palomalo looking Samoan jumps in my car grabs my Super Big Gulp full of water downs it then proceeded to pour a beer into it! All the while eyeballing me like Jules Winfield did Brett in Pulp Fiction when he downed his Sprite! WTF?!

This drunk girl jumped in my car asked me to give her a ride. I explained it was an app service and she said can I just give you my credit card? Uh, No. WTF?!

Gave a ride to another drunk lady and her 10 yr old daughter. Asked what she did for a living and she said she was a broker then spelled H-O-O-K-E-R! Her daughter was in the 4th grade I’m pretty sure she knew what that spelled! WTF?!

Ernesto had a coworker he was attracted to who had a boyfriend. The interesting thing is her and her boyfriend had an open relationship. The weird thing is when one wants to venture outside the relationship the “prospect” must be interviewed by the couple first. WTF?!

An Irish guy from the Bronx told me a story about a time he walked into a bar in Oakland full of black guys. Being the only white guy in the bar he thought it would clever to say “Ok everyone I’m a fed I need everyone to put their hands on the table and remain calm.” WTF?! Well I guess that’s one way to break the ice! Obviously he lived to tell the story!

I was waiting on a rider and when he arrived he apologized for the wait said he had just finished putting a load in laundry. WTF?! I was like what kind of fetish is this guy into?

Picked up this guy Devon a white coming from a Furry Convention. He was wearing a big raccoon hat and a tail. And yet for some reason he thought bronies were gay. WTF?!

Two men hopped in my car and started coversating about somevguns they had stowed in their trunks… I was like shit did I just pick up some hitmen?! Turns out they were off duty cops… Whew! Seconds later I picked a guy who was fresh out on parole! WTF?!

Picked up a girl who sits in my front seat pulls out a pipe and asks if I mind if she blazed? Hell yeah I fucking mind! I got kids I can’t have my car reeking of weed!!! WTF?!

A couple I was driving told me a story about an Uber driver who picked up a passenger who rolled down the back window and fired a gun at a passing house! An Uber drive-by?! WTF?!

Upon giving a ride to a homely woman in her late 40’s on her way to the airport I noticed she had no bags. Upon inquiring as to why she had no luggage she told me she was flying to Oregon to see a plumber. Without hesitation I said “Wow you must be very particular about who cleans your pipes!” Whoops! WTF?! For some reason the rest of the ride was uncomfortably silent!

Another Uber driver told a story about picking up a lady headed to the airport. He knocked on the door to assist her with her luggage. Oddly, she answered the door butt-naked! WTF?!

Picked up this couple from a company party at Hotel Valencia. His wife was a smoking blonde a bit tipsy though. When she got in car she took off shoes and laid her head in his lap. Seconds later I caught a whiff of something wretched. I thought, did this chick just fart and as reading my thoughts he turns to his wife and says ” Did you just fart”? WTF I was embarrassed for the both of us!

I picked up a young lady early New Years morning who mentioned she just moved to SF from San Diego and had been house hopping while she was trying to get established. I asked what brought her to SF and she explained she recently got divorced. I sympathized and said “That sucks, couldn’t keep it in his pants huh?” She said “Not him. Me!” Oh Snap!

I had a chat with a lady boy named Andy who I picked up from Shareworks (a hook up spa for homosexuals located in Oakland). Now Andy was a straight hustler and self proclaimed sugar baby. “What’s a sugar baby?” I asked. He said he has old rich guys pay him. Evidently, these guys love to be dominated and he just demands money from them and they pay up. The majority of his “clients” he doesn’t even see! Just talks to them over the phone! WTF?! Much safer than being an escort I imagine!

This morning I asked this guy Guillermo about his work he snapped at me and said he didn’t want to talk about his job because he hated everything about it. The work, the people, the culture… Everything! WTF?! I told him better to have a job and hate it than to be unemployed!

Now Helen was a black chef who happened to work for a Japanese cuisine. Now I could stop there but it gets better!

I had the windows rolled down to air out the stench from the previous ride. She said “Man you got all your windows rolled down!” I said “Do you want me to roll them up?” She said “Do I? I’m not trying to have my wig blown off!” WTF?!

If you have any rideshare stories that you’d like to share I would love to hear them!

Too much bullshitting!

Now before I jump into this story I want to preface that in no way am I trying to slander or disrespect any one culture or the way they talk. I’m giving you the story as I heard it. Nothing more.

Ok so the other day I stopped at a McDonalds in Oakland around 2am to use the restroom and recharge. I pulled up to another Uber driver, an Indian fella who introduced himself as Hari.

He asked me if I drive for Uber and Lyft(as if my decals didn’t give it away) I said… yeah. He said “I don’t drive for Lyft. They are no good. They are too much bullshitting.”

I was curious so I bit. “How so?”

Hari goes on to tell me that Lyft evidently deactivated him for too many customer complaints. “Lyft, they banned me. permanently, now I only drive for Uber. Uber they are different 3, 4 times already they deactivated me for too many customer complaints. ”

“But I drive for Uber for a long tine. Since 2015 I am driving . They say Hari we know you are good driver. Some complain some do not, the it’s all the same.”

“Uber, they understand. I am deactivated one month, 2mth, I re-register; they approve. no problem. But Lyft they deactivate me permanently. Fuck them they are too much bullshitting!”

Now I’m thinking Bro you are not seeing a trend here?! Both companies deactivated you for poor customer service! Instead of complaining about the company, why not look at the root of the problem! Apparently your customer service skills suck!

Too often I hear stories about drivers being rude to their riders, getting heated because a rider suggests a different route even to the point of kicking riders out of their car?!

The way I see it if a rider suggests a better route it’s probably faster which means you can get to your next ride faster. So why not take the guidance? It’s a win-win!

The only time I see this as a problem is when a rider opts for a Express POOL but then tries to beat the system by having you drop them off at their actual destination instead of the drop off point. I’ve only had that happen a couple times. Most people understand the game and are willing to play by the rules.

The other situation is when you pick up multiple passengers on a single UberPOOL or Lyft LINE and they want you to make multiple stops. That’s when you politely tell them that’s not how it works. Of course money is a powerful motivator and I might be persuaded to drive a couple of extra blocks if the tip is solid.

Bottom line there is no reason to be rude or impolite. Drivers are just trying to make that money and riders are just trying to get to their destinations. Why not make the best of the experience?

A good witch or a bad witch?

I would say one of my most interesting rides happened recently when I picked up a rider who needed a ride to an enchantment store in Campbell to grab some additional ingredients needed to complete a location spell. When I asked what she was locating, she said “My Nikes”.

Of course I needed the background, but she wanted to give me her whole lifes story and normally on a long ride would be okay but we only had 9 minutes so I needed her to get to the good stuff. After a 7min life story she finally got to the good stuff.

She said she’s been into it since she was 16 where she dabbled in Vampirism with her friends dad, drinking eachothers blood from wine glasses… Immediately I slowed down to 40 mph on the freeway; now we are getting somewhere!

Apparently things started getting weird with the dad as they got deeper into learning the craft. Apparitions appearing in the living room, curtains taking the shape of human figures. She discovered that the dad had been practicing dark magic

Eventually, she she stopped practicing witchcraft altogether when her friends father started catching feelings for her(go figure) and banned her friend from communicating with her. Apparently dad called “dibs”.

A few years later she started practicing witchcraft most recently by casting a love spell on a guy she was dating who evidently started something (sexually) but failed to finish. When I asked if the spell worked she said that it could take up to 21 days to work. I don’t know of a woman in this world who would have to wait that long for sex! Maybe this guy is special.

She did say that she was successful at casting a locator spell to find a pair of earmuffs she had lost. I hope she finds her Nikes!

Advice from a Luber – Safety First

Hey parents! I’m a “Luber” (someone that drives for Lyft and and Uber) and a father of 6 children. Listen up! I just had a rider yesterday that jumped in my car with their 2 yr old and had no car seat. I told the mom that her child needed to wear a seltbelt at least.

She complied but then her son started screaming once the seatbelt was fastened. We hadn’t even left the parking lot when she unbuckled his seatbelt so he would stop crying. This made me very uncomfortable as I was concerned for the child’s safety. I told her it was very risky and she explained that he doesn’t like seatbelts and screams everytime she tries to put one on him. Ironically he doesn’t scream when he’s in a carseat but she comes directly from work to pick him up from daycare which fortunately is only a 7 min ride from her home. Still, statistically the majority of accidents happen within 10 miles of a person’s home.

Luckily this time they got home safe, but if this is happening 5 days a week both to and from daycare you are putting your child at serious risk!

this got me to thinking about how many other parents are entrusting their childrens life in the hands of a complete stranger!

Yeah I may have a valid license and have passed a vehicle inspection to qualify to drive for Lyft or Uber. But I’m not the only one on the road and trust me… the road is filled with idiot drivers!

Before I became a Luber I commuted 50 miles a day and there was NOT a day that I didn’t pass by an accident. Many times there were accidents going both directions including passing by multiple ones on the same route! Eventually my time came and I was rear-ended myself!

My point parents is this: If you are taking your children in Lyft or Uber bring a car seat or at the very least buckle them up no matter how much they scream.

Accidents happen and I for 1 do not want your child’s injury or death on my conscience due to your incompetence as a parent! Let them scream! I may be on an island but I would much rather endure 7 min of screaming over a lifetime of shame and regret if something were to happen!

Be proactive. Plan ahead. I know it’s not convenient to lug a carseat to work with you so why not leave it at the daycare?!

Take it from a father of 6 whose made every mistake in the book as a parent. While there are some things you can bend on, your child’s safety should never be one of them!

Adult Piñata?!

I’ve been driving for Uber/Lyft for almost a year now and have had a lot of interesting experiences that I wanted to share. I try to have a conversation with everyone that I give rides too. For those that bite, many of the conversations have been informative, some comedy, others straight ludicrous!

I’ll start with a conversation with a rider I had on Saturday. For starters he was a white guy from Kenya named Gary, mid-thirties, no kids. Upon learning that I lived in Gilroy, Gary mentioned he was just in Gilroy during the 4th Annual Beer Crawl Festival in October. Evidently, he got drunk and bought one of those Mexican piñatas of all things!

At first, I was like whoa! Who buys a piñata with no kids?? See in my mind when he said “Mexican” piñata I was picturing one of those star shaped piñatas with the tassels on the ends that you can buy at Mi Pueblo. In actuality… he bought a Corona!

I told him a Corona piñata was more understandable for an adult but probably wouldn’t score at a child’s birthday party. He agreed and said he’d like to someday host an adult party and put that Corona to use! But instead of filling it with candy, he’d fill it up with mini bottles of booze!

Just then I got an image of that final strike on the piñata, mini bottles of Baileys, Jack Daniels, and Fireball, flying everywhere… grown men in business shirts and ties, woman in heels and skirts scrambling on the ground in a frenzy to stuff their little plastic bags with the bottles! Children standing by their parents directing them “Mommy grab the Hennessy!”

I told Gary his idea was brilliant and could be the start of a new tradition!