My friend Meg stays with me in Fairfield after working for the day in New York.
She’s heard all about The Vanpool.
We take our seats in the back. Barbara is to our left and a seat ahead. She’s chatting away about the day’s headlines with Jennifer. However, we can’t hear her.
I don’t want to let Meg down. I peek over Barbara’s shoulder and read the NY Post.
There’s a headline called “The Cab Ride From Hell.”
“Excuse me, Barbara. But can you tell me what that story is about? I heard a little bit about it on the radio this morning.”
“Oh,” she says. “It’s about some cab driver who picked up a lady at LaGuardia and got into one of those road rages.”
“You never know with these cabbies,” she says. “One time, I had a cab ride from hell. The driver, he was one of ‘those people.’ Anyways, he drove straight into traffic in Manhattan. Can you believe that? Who drives you straight into Manhattan?
I had an appointment I had to get to, so I started screaming right in his ear, telling him what an idiot he was.”
“I had no idea what to do.”
“But one time, I had this cabbie who was the best. He was this great old-fashioned black gentleman and was nice as can be. It was like he was straight out of Gone With the Wind.”
I don’t know if Barbara – or anyone else – realizes that the black people in Gone With the Wind were enslaved.
Barbara then starts talking about a previous article in the Post which talked about various scams taxi drivers pull on their passengers.
“You know, with Bernie Madoff and now these can drivers, no wonder there’s no money left in America,” she says. “I wish I knew some kind of scam.”
“I can teach you how to pass bad checks,” I tell her.