Wednesday, November 20, 2013

It's All About The Averages

In a continuation from the previous post, last week was a similar story.  I worked on Monday, and it was an okay day.  And then Tuesday, I showed up at the garage where I waited and waited and waited only to go home empty handed after sitting in the cold for 4 hours.

All this waiting gets to be pretty mundane.  And I've been getting to know a couple of the other drivers a little better and we have great conversations.  But still, all the waiting gets frustrating.  I have been saying I was going to do it for a while now, but last week I finally brought a hoop with me to keep me busy while I wait.  It's a custom made taxi hoop, actually.  Made for me by my hooping teacher, Amy.  But I finally busted it out and its been great.

A lot of the guys at the garage got a kick out of it.  It's not every day someone at the garage busts out some moves on a hula hoop.  I made myself get over the embarrassment though, and hooped away.  And it was awesome.  Not only did it kill a LOT of time, but it kept me moving and warm, as well as made me exercise when I would otherwise be sitting on my butt.  So yeah, that's been pretty great.  So glad I decided to bring it to the garage with me.
 I decided this week since I have been having not such great luck getting a car on Tuesdays, that I would work Sunday and Monday instead of Monday and Tuesday.  I had to kick myself in the butt to get myself to the garage on Sunday.  There were other things I wanted to be doing, but I made myself work.  And I was so glad I did!

I made it out of the garage a little early, and headed into the city.  On my way, I got hailed near Grand Army Plaza and the guy needed to go into the East Village.  This was awesome.  I was heading that way anyways, so why not get paid for it!  I could tell it was going to be a busy night.  It was a bit gross out weather wise, so people didn't want to walk.  And being a Sunday evening, people were coming home from their weekends.

As soon as I dropped the first guy off, a woman flagged me down and I took her right back into Brooklyn.  She was just going to Williamsburg though, so thankfully it was easy to get back into Manhattan.  From there, I couldn't stay empty!  It was great.  And everyone was really nice.  At one point, I picked up a couple and they were headed to JFK.  Traffic wasn't too bad getting there, and I didn't have to wait long at the airport before getting a fare back into the city.  And it was pretty funny because the people I picked up at the airport were going to the same block that I had picked up my fare to the airport on.  They weren't as amused, but i thought it was funny.  
Sitting in my taxi, waiting in the JFK taxi lot.
I stayed busy for a while, even had some bigger fares.  Was all over the place.  Brooklyn, Queens, Uptown, Downtown.  It was a good night.  At around midnight, I had just gotten back over the 59th st bridge, and a woman flagged me down.  She was headed to Rego Park.  I brought her home, and decided since I was so close, I would call JFK and see what they were like.  The recording said that as of midnight, the lot was at 40% and busy.  I decided to head over.  

Best move ever!  I got there and they were well below 40%.  There were probably 4 lanes of taxis(the lot has about 45-50 lanes total).  And they were moving.  Cars were being dispatched faster than new cars were coming in.  So I was there for all of 10 minutes before heading off to a terminal.  And I was lucky and got a nice fare right back into Manhattan.  Three JFK fares in one night is awesome.

From there, I kept getting lucky and finding fares, which on a Sunday night after midnight isn't always easy.  But I kept getting them.  Even in Brooklyn.  I picked up a fare in the East Village into Williamsburg.  And then from there, I picked up another fare into Bushwick.  And then from Bushwick, two girls ran down the street after me, and they went back to Williamsburg.  And then in Williamsburg, I got another fare!  I seriously was planning on calling it a night after that first fare to Williamsburg, and just wasn't able to!  I wasn't planning on staying out so late, but I didn't get back to my garage until 3:30am.  And by the end of it, I was thrilled that I worked that night.

Monday was less prosperous.  I got out of the garage a little late because my car for the night needed a new set of brakes.  So by the time I got out, it was a little after 5.  And it really wasn't busy at all.  I had a few okay fares, but for the most part, it was slow, and the few fares I did manage to find were usually small.  
Waiting for a new pair of shoes.
People were nice for the most part, though nobody really talked much to me.  I did have one awful woman with her two daughters.  You could tell these girls were rotten.  Literally one girl forbade her mother from buying a particular apartment...  She must have been about 13-14.  And the mother was a space cadet.  When she finally gave me an address, she would ask every few blocks exactly where we were(rather than, you know, looking out the window) and when I brought them to the exact address that she had given me, she was asking ME if this was such and such restaurant.  I told her I didn't know what restaurant it was, but this was the address.  She then said that the restaurant moved and where was it.  I Told her again, I wasn't sure about the particular restaurant, but this was the address she gave me.  Meanwhile it was a very narrow street and there was a truck and line of cars waiting to get through, and the woman and her daughters took a hundred years getting out.

Because it was so dead, I ended up staying out until 4am just to bring in less than other nights where I stay out til 1:30.  I know you have to look at the big picture, and if you count the success of my previous night, I did okay over all.  But it is still very frustrating when you stay out really late, bust you butt and come home with a lot less than usual.  

But the holidays are coming, so things will pick up much more.  The city is already lit up with a lot of the holiday decorations.  So I am looking forward to the busy season.  I just wish the Taxi TVs weren't playing Christmas music already!

If you are interested in a hoop or hooping classes, check out my teacher Amy Rogers at The Hoop Movement.



  1. Story of my life. No car available for parttime drivers! Btw which garage you work for?

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