Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Two Hours of Agony & Sea-Tac Ground Transportation Hearing

She who can't be named commented that my "grinding it out" moved a trifle too fast, glossing over the pain and suffering of those lost early Saturday morning hours. And she has a legitimate point, because sitting in that taxi waiting "for Godot" does seem like an eternity or somehow similar to the most existential of questions concerning existence: where will life take me?  Suffice to say, minute by minute ticks by, and especially for those confined to a morning or night shift, each fading minute translating into missed opportunity.  During that time I was reading the newspaper, constantly scanning the computer and chowing down on my snack of organic mashed potatoes and turkey.  But even so, the goal is to have that meter running and nothing else.  Heading off to the University District gave me almost an immediate position of "first car to go" but again all I did was sit.  Yes I was beginning to swear out loud.  I even pounded the steering wheel for some distracting melodrama. It was dark so no one could see me acting the lunatic!  I could go into far more detail but you have the pathetic picture. Sitting in the taxi for over an hour waiting for what we don't know is a minor version of Hell.  Maybe Rick Santorum's evil Satan had something to do with it.  Is Satan a Roman Catholic?

Sea-Tac Appeal Hearing

My friend Sorush M., a taxi veteran of over 27 years was nabbed with a $300.00 dollar ticket for the alleged crime of sitting on the ticket level trying to pick up all the customers that were no where to be seen that Sunday night of December 11, 2011.  I just happened to be dropping off just after an employee from Sea-Tac ground transportation  had confronted him.  Sorush was finishing up a credit card transaction and the fellow in question tapped on the taxi window demanding Sorush's taxi for-hire license.  It appears that the gentleman refused to identify himself which prompted Sorush to call 911 and request police assistance. I too tried to make sense of the situation, talking to the police that Sunday evening.

Fast forward to this morning to his appeals hearings which I attended as what I could describe as an expert witness on the behalf of my friend.  After Sorush's very emotional testimony I said that if I didn't know that ground transportation had police-like enforcement authority then clearly no other taxi driver could be expected to be aware of that particular mandate.  The four women on the panel were reasonable, and I think the chances are good that Sorush will be left off with a warning.  He took me out for Chinese afterwards.  Nobody likes going through these kinds of personal trials alone.  It isn't any fun.  I told the panel that the entire situation was counter intuitive.  Like me, Sorush just works the weekends.  His "day" job is being a civil engineer.  My day job is sleeping which I am about to attend to. May I not dream about taxi!

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