Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Some Questions Concerning Light-rail & For-hire Cars as Taxis?

Some folks are under the illusion (or maybe delusion) that Seattle is a cosmopolitan and sophisticated city, both smart and efficient, a miniature Paris or London.  Those of us who have long observed the place know quite differently.  Add one confused Atlanta, Georgia businessman to that number of potential skeptics.  I found the guy at one-thirty Saturday morning standing outside the Beacon Hill Light-rail station chilled to his toes and mad as hell because a downtown train taking him to the airport had instead gone out of service half a mile out of the station.  I told him welcome to Seattle as I took him back to the Sea-Tac Doubletree.  He was so shook up that he even left his telephone in the back seat and I had to return it to him.  He just couldn't understand what had happened and why.  "And I had no idea where I was," he lamented.  As I told him, he wasn't the first victim of the light-rail system that I have encountered and nor will he be the last. 

Earlier this year I found a completely bewildered passenger with a bunch of luggage standing at the intersection MLK & Rainier Ave. South.  having been tossed off an in-bound train from Sea-Tac.  It was 12:30 on an early Monday morning and rain was falling.  He too couldn't believe what had just occurred.

Anyway, returning to Mr. Atlanta, he was freaked out.  I don't blame him for that. The experience was too much for him to bear. I suggested that next time he wear a hat.  I also told him to file a complaint.  Let's hope he did.  If Seattle/KC doesn't get its act  together  some isolated soul is going to be found murdered in Rainier Valley, all because of a simple expectation that a train ride begun will be a ride completed..  Ha Ha! that's certainly humorous, don't you agree?

Walking down Broadway East this morning I met an ex-Yellow driver now in his very own "for hire" vehicle. He showed me his very extensive flat-rate list covering every inch of Seattle and King County.  It was impressive.  He also said that he and his "for-hire" brothers are going to try to make it legal for them to pick up passengers just like the taxis.  He obviously was sitting on Broadway waiting for the random walk-up.  Even without any future legal permission he and everyone else knows that enforcement of the laws governing his actions are non-existent.  Craig Leisy and Seattle/KC have released a monster upon the local streets.  Will it ever be recaptured and and locked back into Pandora's Box?   Personally, I think it is highly doubtful.  The "for-hires" are here to stay.  Again, what is there to impede them?  We all know the answer.

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