My Encounter with an Uber Cab Driver
I had an encounter with an Uber cabbie this morning.
When I pulled into the parking lot at the front of my townhouse complex, I noticed this guy sitting in a small, Uber-like car, staring at this dash-mounted smart-phone, and looking confused.
He was sitting in front of unit #1.
I got out of my car and started walking toward my own unit which is also numbered. It's not a gigantic complex, so in my simple, low-tech, cab driver's mind, I figure that if you are looking for a unit number at an address, the first thing you should do is look at the number on the unit. If that number is "1" the next thing you do is look at the number on the next unit.
Often, though not always, that number is either a "2" or a "3" depending upon the numbering format. In my complex, the next number is "2" and so on. For a taxi driver that information can be critical.
So this guy looks up at me as I am walking by, and asks me if I know where unit number "100" is.
"Here we go," I thought, "this guy is an amateur Uber driver who has been lulled into believing that consuming his capital for a little bit of cash in the bank, is a new form of, "job."
Now, if I were a normal Canadian, all giddy with this 150th year of our nations's birth (Happy Dominion Day!) and so on, I might have simply explained to the man this,
"Well, the next unit is "2" and the next one after that is, "3" and so on, and so on, with a possible minor deviation here and there. So if you just drive around the loop, I feel confident that you will find the unit "100" without much mental effort.
But I was not in a good mood. I had just finished a Friday night taxi shift. Post Uber. (When most of the Uber drivers clog up the bar districts like Hess Village, Augusta, and King William streets to "share" their cars with people who need a taxi. While the "low-tech" taxi drivers sit around the same areas with their thumbs up their behinds, thanks to their local politicians.)
So my thinking was,
"Wait a minute, aren't you a representative of that marvelous high-tech wizardry that ingeniously connects riders with drivers? I thought you had an app for that?"
And my next thought was, "Yeah, and this is what all of those spineless, principle-less, cowardly, and blatently dishonest (See, for example, Hamilton Mayor, Fred Eisenberger's preposterous claim that selling out to Uber by creating a two-tiered taxi bylaw had the "backing of Hamilton's taxi industry!") politicians unthinkingly endorsed when they opted to award an unlimited number of taxi licenses to Uber, based upon the ruse that Uber was not involved in the taxi business. (!)
And what have we got? A bunch of freakin' amateurs who think that their own thinking, judgment, and experience, can be replaced by an app.
Before long, people will not even bother to get off the couch to go to the bathroom. They will just shit in their pants and then, tap an app, to summon a bunch of app-oriented nursing assistants to rush in and change their diapers.
Anyway, I just looked at this paragon of the new "sharing economy" and it's claim to rely upon "smart regulations" and so on, and so on,
So I asked him, "Are you an Uber driver?" To which he replied, "yes."
and I replied,
"Go fuck yourself."
That seemed to confuse him even more.
Poor guy. It was nothing personal.