It has been said that beneath human civility lies the primitive nature, a hidden animal ready to pounce and devour the unsuspecting. And in the introduction from the 1930s radio series, "The Shadow," the narrator poses the question, "Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men?" His reply is that the "Shadow" knows. And I can now add that perhaps I too know all about it.
Taking it even further, I give you the three following quotes from Sigmund Freud, Carl Jung and Eric Berne, Berne being the founder of the therapy modality I studied for three years back in 1974-77, Transactional Analysis. Here in Seattle, our TA studies, taught by my mentor Molly Johnson, were aligned with an associated psychological umbrella called Radical Therapy, Radical Therapy itself a TA offshoot founded by Dr. Claude Steiner in Berkley, California.
Back in 1976 I met the famous Steiner himself at a TA conference outside of Iowa City, Iowa. At its height our Seattle-based therapy collective had nearly 200 members including a physician I remain convinced to this day was a government informant. It was those kinds of days, Molly and her various friends and followers chased out of the state of Indiana.
Radical Therapy operational theory was that therapy is a political act, translating into that all human interaction holds a political basis or foundation. Whether true or not, that is what we were all talking about way back then during those very different of times. Ah yes, what mysteries, not to say confusion, lurks in the brains of both men and woman? Do I really want to know the answer to that question? No, I don't think so.
"The tendency of aggression is an innate independent instinctual disposition in man....it constitutes the most powerful obstacle to culture."----Sigmund Freud
"Man's task is to become conscious of the contents that press upward from the unconscious."----Carl Jung
"Awareness requires living in the here and now, and not in the elsewhere, the past or the future." Eric Berne
I mention all this due to a short ride from the Dock Tavern to an address a couple miles away near the intersection of North 45th & Sunnyside Avenue North, having quickly turned into an instant nightmare, with the young woman, clearly in some kind of altered state of consciousness from it seems an unfortunate combination of alcohol and drugs, first refusing to pay the eight dollars owed, then physically attacking me, both hitting me in the face and knocking off my glasses. There are many inherent lessons contained here, but most importantly for me is that I must pay attention at all times regardless of how tired I am. If perhaps I had been paying better attention I would have noticed how disconnected she was, realizing how unsuitable she was as a passenger.
I have met others like her, individuals who are "blacked out" on their feet, making it impossible to communicate in any normal way, their overall quality (and state of mind) being violent aggression melded to a childish immaturity. If you can think of a worse combination, I suggest running as fast as you can in the opposite direction. I assure you it isn't anything you want to be involved with.
My only excuse for all of this is the usual taxi exhaustion blanking my mind at a time I truly needed to think quickly, forgetting to both send message 57 indicating I had an "emergency" and not hitting the emergency button next to my knee. I truly wanted the police to respond but at that moment my telephone screen had gone blank, allowing me to accept calls but not to call out. Since the fare was small I should have just let her go but in my lack of wisdom, deciding to keep the doors locked in a misguided attempt to hold the idiot accountable.
One step I sometimes take in situations like these is to take the person back to where the fare began but again this was a bad idea because the woman was completely berserk and clearly dangerous. On the way back to the Dock I got the bright idea to ask a group of "twenty-somethings" to please call the police. To my dismay they collectively refused, not having the ability to comprehend that something quite serious was occurring, or to put it another way, were confused by the woman screaming, and grew suspicious that the horrible cabbie was going something "mean and awful" to the innocent and victimized passenger.
When it became clear they were all about to become righteous vigilantes I kept going but stopping when I came across another Yellow cabbie, telling him to call the police. While waiting there, some of the heroic "twenty-somethings" came running up, with one offering to pay the fare. Handing me a ten, I gave him back his change. Given half a chance I would have told him I would now take the young fool back to her address but he and his comrades appeared more interested in saving the day so whom am I to argue?
My only vindication is that suddenly they had her on their hands, having to deal with the unconscious zombie that she was. Given that, I am sure they all had a good time. How do you communicate with a blank wall? From my experience you simply don't, walls very poor conversationalists.
Later I found her debit card on the rear floorboard, along with a drug pipe and various cosmetics. Anyway, if there is ever a next time, I am letting the fruitcake run where ever they like. I still remember a similar case, upon getting the guy to pay me, I last saw him running down the street screaming at the "top of his lungs." But hopefully, if there is a next time, I will be more alert and never, ever let such people into my cab again. While she was attacking me I clearly pulled a muscle in my back. Oh yes, isn't taxi fun? No, I wouldn't say it is, would you?
My final comment is that the lack of assistance from the kids on the corner reminded me of that famous murder in New York City dating from March 13th, 1964, when Kitty Genovese was stabbed repeatedly by Winston Moseley while people ignored her blood curdling screams. Would they have responded if I had been repeatedly stabbed? A good question for which I have no answer for but since I didn't the time to count all those kids, I still think there were fewer than 37 of them. God lets hope so is all I can say!
Hey, if someone asks to call 911, just do it minus any attempt toward unnecessary analysis. No, heroics aren't required but commonsense certainly is. What is that? Well if you don't know I give up, tired of explaining the what should be as obvious as, is said, the nose on your face. You do know you have a nose, don't you?