Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Will a cab company allow their drivers to rip off passengers?

Does the company exercise much oversight over what the drivers are doing?  Usually, in my experience, the company doesn't want to know what any individual driver is doing.  If they have to know what a driver is doing, usually that driver has gotten the wrong kind of attention.  The drivers are supposed to be anonymous, running around all over the place, giving people rides.

Can the dispatchers tell you which drivers rip people off?  Yes.  Can the lower level management, the dispatchers superiors, tell you which drivers rip people off?  Sure.  Are they going to make much effort to do anything about any particular drivers behavior?  No.  If the only complaints that come in about Joe Doaks are over being over charged, Joe Doaks will probably drive for many years.  Why?  It's just a misunderstanding, and the customer is exaggerating.  Did the customer get a receipt, and did that receipt make it into the office for evaluation?  It didn't?  Of course it didn't, it doesn't exist!!

I took about 18 months off, drove a big truck, and came back to town.  The first thing that happened was another guy who'd taken off and been gone for a while forced me off the road in McFarland, and insisted I give him a delivery I had in my cab going to Stoughton.  Why?  He was going to Stoughton.  He was BEHIND me, passing me wasn't ok for him to do.  There was a regular time call coming up in Stoughton he wanted, and why shouldn't I give him $25.  We'd never met before, and it was an occasion for him to make a permanent enemy.  The point of mentioning this is, PC (his initials) was known to everybody in the company to be a rip off driver, and on this day I came to know it too.  He tipped the dispatchers every day, and that made it ok.

Bottom line?  Call and complain about a driver who tips the guy who's talking to you on the phone, and that complaint goes NO PLACE!  Call the next day during business hours, the big boss asks the guy you talked to last night about it, and the complaint goes NO PLACE.  Get the idea?

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Standing your ground, defending yourself, and Eddies spin yet again

Trayvon Martin is a pretty famous name right now.  If anyone would have told him how famous he would become, a week before he died, he never would have believed it.  Like many Americans, Eddie and I discussed his death.  As usual, we didn't agree.

My best friend and I usually don't agree?  That's right.  Oddly enough, I finally discovered a subject where Eddie is much more cynical than I am.  Usually he's the shining voice of reason, but he's also human enough to have a pet peeve.

My spin on what happened to Trayvon Martin is as follows.  A moron got out of a car carrying a gun in his hand.  What are you going to do with that thing, you fool?  Get yourself in a hell of a lot of trouble!!!  If he had it to do over again, I'm sure he would have stayed in his car, as the cops suggested.  Once he got out of that car, was he totally responsible for any and all further wrong?

My best friend thinks so, I don't agree.  I forget what movie the line is out of, but I recall some Sargent telling a group of Marine recruits that, 'the worst sad sac Marine, is better than a dead hero'.  Is Martin even a hero?  No, he's generally accepted as a victim, not a hero.  A dead victim.  Did that have to happen?  I don't think so.

What do I think happened?  I think an idiot got out of his car and confronted a kid who could have torn him to shreds in an unarmed fair fight.  I think the kid reacted to seeing that weapon, the same way I react to seeing somebody brandishing a knife.  That fool won't use it.  Martin could have given him the finger, called him as many names as he wanted, then turned his back on the fool, and walked away.  If he would have done that I think he'd still be alive.

He could have gone into a rage, and told that pudgy white middle aged fool he was going to shove that gun up his................  And followed that up with trying to do just what he said he ought to do.  Then he was dead.  EVERY BODY LOST.  The kid lost, the moron lost, the community lost, America lost; we all lost.  Was the kid partially responsible?  I have to say yes.  The worst sad sac Marine is better than a dead hero, and nobody is elevating the kid to the status of hero.  He's simply a victim, and with better judgement, he could have walked away.