If cab drivers in D.C. didn’t pick up Black people

They’d be unemployed. That’s a given. But even though I managed to hail a cab last nite — 4 cabs actually  — I never got a ride home. And that’s just as bad.

Now, of course I’m not new to the concept that cab drivers, chinese food carry outs drivers, etc. don’t always wanna travel to what folks consider the hood at nite, but dammit, if you refuse to enter an entire quadrant of the city, it’s time to rethink your career choice.

I’d been out of my house since 7:30 AM, so by the time I got off stage at about 9:30 PM I was ready to hop in a cab, go home and make myself a turkey sandwich and go to sleep. I was in Adams Morgan and I got a cab pretty quickly…

I got in and shut the door and here’s what transpired next:

Punk-ass cabbie #1: [Inaudible grunt] Where you going?

Me: [Street number, Street name] Southeast.

Punk-ass cabbie #1: NO.

No? Really? Cause I think the answer is yes. That is absolutely where I’m going. But he didn’t move. He didn’t look at me. He didn’t even ask me to get out of the cab. He just sat there. So I flicked him off and got out of the cab.

So now I hail another cab, and here’s what transpired next:

Bitch-ass cabbie #2: [Gurgle]

Me: Hi, I’m going to [Street number, Street name]……………….. Southeast.

Bitch-ass cabbie #2: Sorry, I have to pick someone up by 10.

Me: Then you shouldn’t have stopped.

Bitch-ass cabbie #2: Sorry, No.

Again no movement. Just a No. Once again I flipped him off and got out of the cab. Pissed. To the point of maximum pisstivity… But I tried again.

This time I was picked up by an American Black cab driver. I’m not saying that for any other reason than I figured., “Finally… This brother is gonna understand where I’m coming from. He knows people who live in Southeast. Hell, he may live over there too. Yay!” So I get in the cab, shake it off — ready to tell him about the 2 other drivers who wouldn’t take me home when…

Bald-Uncle-Tom-ass cabbie #3: Good evening, sista

Me: [Exhale] Hi, how are you? I’m going to [Street number, Street name] Southeast.

Now at this point I’ve unclenched my jaw. I’m rolling my neck around, ready to close my eyes for the 20 minute or so ride across the river, when…

Bitch-ass cabbie #3: Awww, hell no. You gon’ have to find another ride.

Alright, am I being punked. Really? What happened to “Good evening, sista?” This time as I was getting out of the cab, I added some colorful profanity to my bird flipping. It felt good to get that out, but I was still standing on the corner with no ride home. I won’t even go into what happened with Cumin-smelling-ass-cabbie #4 cause I think you see where this is going, but suffice it to say I had to go back into the show and wait for it to be over so my friend Jason could drive hella out of his way to take me home. (Thanks, J).

Now I know some of you are thinking, “That’s illegal, EJ. They can’t do that. You should have gotten their permit numbers and reported them.” And I gotta tell you. Each time it happened I thought the same thing. But I was exhausted and in disbelief and each time I told myself… No way is the next guy gonna do the same thing… Now I wish I’d done it, because as my boy John pointed out, D.C. Mayor Fenty is big into cracking down on this type of thing. A letter with the four drivers’ numbers may have done some good.

Also as I was typing the paragraph before last,  I remembered the “Looking Ass N***a Youtube clip that I saw on a friend’s blog and it made me smile. Maybe it will make you smile as well. Here is his explanation of the title phrase in case you don’t quite get it… ENJOY!

For those of you not familiar with all the ins and outs of black culture the term, “Looking Ass Nigga” is an insult. It’s like playing the dozens. Here’s how it goes, You think of an insult about a person, and then you say the insult and follow it with the phrase, “Looking ass nigga”. For example, an insult one could spit at Michael Jackson would be a “Ol Chimp Loving Single White Female Looking ass Nigga.”

Get it?


It’s not delivery, it’s…

No not DiGiorno.

So yes, I live in Southeast D.C. Do I live in the worst neighborhood? No. On a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being: DUCK NINJA!), I’d rate the relative sheist of mine and the surrounding blocks a 6.

So why did the delivery guy at the Chinese spot tonite say that he’d deliver my food, but I had to walk to the end of the block to pick it up? That doesn’t sound like delivery at all, especially when you consider that the damn carry out is only like three blocks away. I’m already in my jammies and my hair is wet, or else normally I’d walk and get it myself. I told him I wouldn’t be walking to the corner and he says, “Why you don’t just pick up? You lazy.”


Note to Danny’s Chinese Food and Sub Shop Owner because he/she is a regular reader: 1) You can’t advertise delivery and then tell people they’re lazy when they ask for their dinner to be delivered. On their menu it ‘clearly’ — and i use this word hesitantly — says “WE DELIVERY – MENIMUM 10 DOLLAR FOOD”. (hahaha :)

2) You chose to set up your business in the hood. So if safety is the reason your driver doesn’t want to deliver in the neighborhood, then you need to find someone who will.

I was telling my friend Dawan who was over for some Chinese yumminess a few months back that I’ve had several talks with the delivery guy on the occasions when I didn’t go pick up my food about how he refuses to look me in the eye. I hesitate to even use this cliche, but ‘I was raised’ to spend my money only with people who show me respect. Delivery dude doesn’t even say hello to me when he comes, and he takes my money and gives me change all without looking at me. I probably would have quit this carry out months ago if it weren’t so amazingly delicious. But here’s the thing, when I asked him why he won’t make eye contact with me, he tells me that he was robbed twice when delivering food and that the people who did it told him not to look at him — to forget their faces — and scared him from reporting the incident to the police.

Now even in the midst of all my stomach-growling pulpitting, I have to admit I felt bad for him then. BUT I have lost all sympathy now that he called me lazy. Anywayz, let me go and try and find something to put in my tummy. Latah.