17 January 2011

Taxi Drivers


They paved paradise and put up a parking lot

One of the environment and pocket unfriendly habits of mine is taking cabs. Environment-unfriendly because the amount of energy used is not maximized because only one lazy soul get to travel compared to other public transportation system. Pocket-unfriendly because...okay, no need to discuss this part.

The only consolation I get from riding cabs, aside of course from convenience and I get to save myself from being squished to death or suffocated from lack of oxygen or from too much pollution, is that I get to have interesting conversations with cab drivers. Conversation may be a bit of a stretch here. Yes, I usually initiate the conversation but I really don't talk back much. I prefer to listen and here their thoughts so I only say something when a.) I feel the conversation hits dead air, b.) if a response is needed to keep the conversation going or c.) when my being to occupied in my  amusement of  listening to them pour their hearts out will lead to the end of the conversation.

Topics of the conversation are vast - traffic, sex, stupid traffic enforcers, high prices of commodities including gasoline, stupid traffic rules, showbiz, stupid government, politics, stupid drivers, the tale of how Manong became a taxi driver, stupid passengers and commuters, and other stupid stuffs. Cab drivers like to vent out their angst while you, the passenger, will have to absorb it all. But I'm immune to this since, I confess, that I don't really pay much attention to what they're saying. While they talk, my mind wander with thoughts like gee, this driver really likes to rant or gee, this driver really knows politics, or gee, this driver is really opinionated he could join a debate and win or gee, this driver needs to shut up stat or I'll feed him with his stupid opinion, punch him in the gut and leave him crying for help.

Of course not all drivers are annoying. Some are just like encyclopedias full of amazing facts. I particularly like drivers who tell me stories about the 70s and 80s and how they survived martial law or how they despise people who despise Marcos.

I also like some who can beat any newscaster, reporter or investigative journalist with their comprehensive knowledge about political controversies. How and where do drivers get information, I have no idea. But they really amuse me. A few weeks ago there was this driver who made me compute how much money will be corrupted by LTFRB in the modernization of cab meters. Manong knows his math.

Of course I like cab drivers who talk about sex. Be it the latest sex scandal or their sexual escapades. I once rode in a cab with a driver who practically offered to give me the number of a prostitute he knows. It started with him telling me how hot his passenger before me was and what an ugly skinhead that passenger's boyfriend is. I responded with baka magaling and then Xerex Xavier took over Manong's body. He talked nonstop about his sexual innuendos - in detail - all throughout the one hour travel from Mandaluyong to Quezon City. Seriously, it was like a recital of smut. I gave him a generous tip.

Some drivers prefer not to talk though and I respect their choice. These drivers, no matter how hard I try to make them talk, only respond with a nod, chuckle or if I'm lucky, a yes or no. I guess if passengers can be moody, why can't drivers be, right?

On the other hand, I don't like drivers who put me in the hot seat. These drivers ask too much. I don't mind being asked how old am I, what do I do for a living, the province I came from, but drivers who challenges my political and religious beliefs or the absence of it, questions my choice of field over more practical fields, annoy me. I like my cab rides smooth and easy.

With the upcoming fare hike of cabs, I'd probably be forced to ride other public transportation system. I would have to endure suffocation, pollution and the danger of being squished to death. I don't mind those much though. I'll get by. But I'll surely miss listening to cab drivers' edifying, arousing, sometimes annoying, but most of the time amusing stories.



P.S.
For the record, I refused to get the prostitute's digits. I told Manong I don't need no prostitute. Ha.
Also, the answer to Manong's question on how much money will be corrupted is billions of pesos.

15 comments:

  1. Yeah, i seldom ride a taxi but i surely love listening to taxi drivers sharing their different stories. nice one sir :)

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  2. well, there does exist a different breed of taxi drivers.

    teehee ;)

    but i just heard lang a. i know not of such because i'm dalisay, busilak, and mayumi hihihihi

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  3. @dhouseboy salamat. welcome sa AP blog. =]

    @ternie haha. i've read stories involving that breed of cab drivers but i haven't encountered them. are you sure you just heard of them? come on. hahaha. =P

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  4. I'm a bit wary sometimes of talk-active drivers.. coz some apparently use that to distract my attention from the meter that is running even if we're on a standstill

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  5. @clarence lol. true. i'm not sure about this but someone told me that meter still runs even if your idle. it runs after every two minutes during a standstill.

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  6. i usually end up with those with sad life stories to tell. hay. minsan dapat ako na maningil ng boundary noh! pero swerte naman kasi they're all nice. not to the point naman na tulad ng kwento ni Ternie about a friend of his friend of his friend of his friend ;)

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  7. @sean yeah. those drivers are too nice. haha

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  8. Timely naman nito. Kanina ko lang din nalaman sa taxi driver na magiging 40 na daw pala ang flag down ng taxi dito sa Davao. 40 na daw ata kasi diyan sa Manila? Tama? And 16k naman daw ang bawat meter na de-resibo. Fail!

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  9. pips, sabay tayo taxi pauwi. ay wait, north ka pla :)

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  10. Hi! Add kita sa blogroll ko ha. nice post. lol.. hehe buti hindi sya mismo ang nag offer ng sarili nya, yung driver. lol.

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  11. @nox sige sama ko senyo. haha

    @nielz salamat! kung inoffer nya sarili nya...bababa ako ngdi nagbabayad. haha.

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  12. the sex stories are always fun. haha i used to take these long cab rides from mandaluying to espana. in the wee hours of the morning, i guess drivers just have a lot of steam to release. lol

    i need to take less cabs too. srsly, i wonder how many people will stop taking cabs when they roll out the new price.

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  13. @abou
    good for you then =]

    @nyl
    we should two of those people, nyl. lol

    @you-with-the-inverted-name
    =P

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