I may have mentioned in passing somewhere in my last post that I wrote like a year ago or two weeks or something like that, that I was about to embark on a temporary adventure into the rideshare experience.
I’ve done it and this was my second weekend offering my personal vehicle to the drunk and disorderly of the Tampa/Saint Petersburg/Clearwater vicinity. Admittedly, this weekend was a tad slower than the previous one because we were largely under water.
No, that is not a figure of speech.
So, needless to say, driving around Tampa, and in particular South Tampa, has not been recommended. Unfortunately, most of the good “party areas” of Tampa are located in South Tampa and also where the best rideshare money is to be made. So whether you prefer Uber or Lyft or the criminals that drive the yellow cars, none of them are offering boats or any other watercraft.
Last weekend was a different story.
My adventure started in Brandon, Florida. For those of you not from the area, it’s basically East Tampa and not really known for it’s party scene. There are like three bars in Brandon and to hear Liz describe it, those are the bars you go to after you have failed to get laid at a bar in Ybor City at 2 in the morning.
The Bars of the Lonely and still pretty ugly even after 12 beers.
By the end of the night (defined as 4:00 am Sunday morning) I actually had to open Google Maps to figure out where in the hell I was.
Turns out I was 40 miles away on the North side of Clearwater.
And in that one night I had pretty much run the gambit as to the level of idiot that needs to be driven home.
I had the uptight douche who wanted the cheapest ride possible but was offended when I didn’t come to pick him up in a Porsche. (The app tells the rider what kind of car I’m driving. Don’t like it, cancel the ride, Assface.)
I had the recently divorced woman that insisted on sitting in the front seat that instructed me to drive 6 miles to get to a bar that was a mile away, then wanted to “chat” while we sat in the parking lot of the destination bar. (Sorry, 13 cents a minute is NOT enough for this shit!)
I had the extremely drunk dude that entered my car “pre-pissed off” and I got to listen to him tell me why he was pissed for the next 12 miles while he punched the back of my passenger seat.
The trip of the night, however, was the crowd that crammed itself into the back AND front of my car and attracted the attention of the cops standing nearby.
This trip was off to a stellar start.
. . . but lucky for you . . . my camera was installed and functioning.
. . . and they rode like that for 34 friggin’ miles.
Douchebag in the front seat was passed out for most of it, thankfully.
Girls sang for most of it . . .
. . . when they weren’t referring to me as “Ewic”.
Other two dudes in the back seat also passed out.
Fortunately, no vomit was introduced during this ride or any other that night.
Also, while I have the software that blurs out faces in videos, I found that shit to be harder to do than my lazy ass is willing to get into at this point in time, so that being said, there may be an unblurred link to the YouTube video of this group as they piled in my car hidden somewhere in this post.
On the plus side, the money is every bit as good as they say it is. I actually did really well. I used a tank and a half of gas last weekend and made enough to fill it 8 and a half times, so all things considered, I’m pretty pleased with the income potential.
Most importantly because Thursday was payday for both the hospital as well as the rideshare company and guess which one fucked up my direct deposit?!
The Feds at their finest, of course. If it hadn’t been for rideshare, I’d have had no money this weekend.
For those of you that use services such as Uber or Lyft or whatever that other one is, I’m gonna pass you some advice that the companies that provide the service won’t tell you:
- Tipping is not required, but it is not forbidden as some have been led to believe. It’s also a nice thing to do, particularly if you have just been given a $4 ride to go three blocks because you’re too drunk to stumble that far. There’s a good chance the driver had to drive 6 miles to pick you up to go three blocks.
- Tipping is also a nice thing to do if you’re a dick.
- That “star rating system” is a thorn in our side. In most cases, the company will drop us if our rating drops below 4.6, which can happen pretty quickly with every jackass that would have preferred a Porsche. General rule is, if you arrived in one piece and the driver didn’t give your girlfriend a purple nurple, give him or her 5 stars. Unless I get puke in my car or I am physically assaulted, you’re getting 5 stars. (Yes, the drunken crowd of 5 got 5 stars, even if I did want to stab the guy in the passenger seat.)
- Yes, there are a lot of stories on the news about us. It is not because we are bad, or expensive or a rip-off. We are in the news because damn near every taxi cab organization in the country is twelve kinds of pissed because we are doing their job BETTER and CHEAPER in SAFER cars with drivers for which ENGLISH is their first language.
For those of you that don’t use any of these rideshare services, I highly recommend that you start. You’ll never take a cab again.
On that note, I’m calling it a night. I have to get up early in the morning and go to work at a place that I hope will pay me to be there this week. I’ll try to post some more good stories from the road as well as videos for your twisted enjoyment.
. . . and don’t forget to tip your drivers!!