An article in today's NY Magazine Intelligencer about yesterday's hike in taxi fares includes various statistics on cabbies' take-home pay and lack of health insurance. I'm not sure if this is supposed to appeal to whatever sympathetic side New Yorkers have left within themselves. First of all, if the stat regarding cabbies' take-home pay is true, they make about $3500 a month now with this increase, which is still only a dream to most people, some of whom are day-care center workers, hospital workers, school teachers and those who care for the elderly. Am I supposed to feel so sorry for cabbies that I would want to hand them at least $3 more dollars a ride, not including the tip they loudly demand, shitty attitude or not? Here's another spot where the hard-ass bitch in me takes over and replies, hell no.
People who do much more important work that actually contributes positively to the community are paid much less than men and women who sit in cabs all day and drive all over the city, blaming riders for the fact that they have such horrible lots in life and for the fact that their asses hurt with the horrible attitudes they almost always display. I've lived in New York for 8 years (not incuding college) and I have met approximately three cabbies who did not piss and moan and bitch the whole ride. And then, when they are handed the tips that are commensurate with the uncomfortable ride they have given us, they have the nerve to protest, quite rudely and loudly, and demand a larger tip. Consequently, they get the door slammed in their faces, if they are dealing with me. But I'm sure a lot of people are with me on this one. In sum, there is absolutely no change in service. Most cabbies are still as rude as they were before the hike, they all still mysteriously go off duty at the same time, which just happens to be rush hour, and they will still kick you to the curb if you have the audacity to want to go somewhere they don't feel like going. So why must I pay more for this? It's just another case of someone trying to get more for nothing, much like the MTA and other corporizations, and I'm afraid there's nothing I can do about this problem except to stop taking cabs unless I am doing the airport thing. I think a lot of people will do the same as me.