The Worst Taxi-Driving Nervous Wreck I’ve Ever Met

I just turned 30. People say that as we get older, we talk more and more, lecturing everybody in the vicinity, regardless of whether they want to listen or not. Maybe it’ll happen to me, maybe it won’t. I hope it’s the latter. I hope way into my twilight years, until I have to leave this world, no 30-year old young guys will ever feel the need to blog me as an annoying, hypocritical, foul-mouthed nervous old wreck who JUST. WON’T. SHUT. UP.

Because as a 30-year old young guy, that is exactly what I’m about to do.

It was a beautiful Friday evening. But I didn’t really pay attention to how pleasant it was because I was looking quite desperately for a cab. I’d got an appointment in the city, my office is in Chai Chee (think Bedok), and several cabs had passed by but they were all carrying passengers.

So it was with relief that I stepped into a cab driven by an old Indian man with an educated accent in his speech. He was quite pleasant as he said good evening, and asked me which route to take. Ah. It would be a pleasant ride after all, I thought. I leaned back, and started enjoying the cool breeze of the aircon and the soft reddish glow of that evening.

How wrong I was, I hadn’t known back then. He had to make a U-turn, but in front of us a motorcycle was crossing to the opposite lane… and nearly turned into an accident as there was a car behind the cab, which would have crashed into the motorcycle if the driver hadn’t been alert enough. The car driver immediately rolled down the window and started to berate the guy, who started apologizing profusely.

My hell ride started then.

Because for some unknown reason, the cab driver thought that he could have been blamed for that near accident.

He went edgy and started blabbering at me in great, meticulous details on why life as a taxi driver was shit (the diction was his), why as a taxi driver you would _always_ be blamed for _everything_, and why as a taxi driver _everybody_, including the passengers, would blame you if anything ever happen. How as a taxi driver, you can only be at peace 2 weeks after all of your actions in any given day. Then he starts complaining about Singaporeans. He said, “That’s why taxi driving in Singapore is so bad! Nobody would understand you! Singaporeans only know how to demand, demand, demand! Nobody would understand your position! They’ll blame you if anything happens, but nothing if nothing happens!”

I thought he was exceedingly rude for saying this, considering that he thought I was a Singaporean. But seriously, what the heck does he expect? A cookie?! Sympathy? A shoulder to cry on? Then he started regurgitating about how bad his day had been so far. He forgot to do this and that, he dropped his handphone into a body of water, blah blah, blah blah, blah blah.

Anyway, he was an old man. Probably he had gone through a lot of bad things. So I just “uh-huh”ed him throughout his sob stories. I’m a nice guy, you know. A polite one too. (Well, those, and I thought that if I just kept “uh-huh”ing him in the most bored tone I could muster probably he’d get the hint and STFU, you know.)

If there’s a course on How To Effectively Convey Boredom out there, I want to sign up. Because instead of shutting up, he started to lecture me about life. Oh man. I am of two minds about getting lectured about life by old people. Some of them, like my Dad, really have pearls of wisdom to share, mainly gained from working hard, going places, meeting people, and achieving big things. Whiners and losers seldom have anything meaningful to share.

Just like this guy. He spouted off a string of one useless thing after another:

1. “Everybody has his own reason for doing things” (well thanks Captain Obvious, if he hadn’t had any reason he wouldn’t have done that in the first place, would he? Moron.)

2. “If anything happens to you, just blame yourself” (Whatever makes you happy.)

3. “If you blame a person, that means you’re blaming God, because God is his Creator” (Hookay. I’m not blaming God that an insufferable creature such as you exist. I’m not blaming God that I had the misfortune of stepping into a cab driven by you. It’s all my fault. Yesss.)

4. “If 5 people come into your house to rob you…” (WTF is he cursing me now?)

5. “One may want to rape your wife…” (I’m wondering at this time whether he used to be a robber or a robbee)

6. “Two may want to rape your daughters…” (Was this idiot really a management consultant like he claimed?)

7. “One may want to chop off your head…” (Now _I_ want to chop off _his_ head.)

8. “Oh, but usually only one will rape the women” (Speaking from personal experience or what?!)

9. “But other robbers may rob because his Mom is sick and he needs money” (Getting more and more personal aren’t we?)

10. “Society is like your hand. You understand? It’s got 5 fingers, it needs 5 fingers to work, but all fingers are different. Just like us. You understand?” (Dude, you’ve lived for all these pathetic 65 years and _this_ is the deepest you can tell a 30-year old guy?)

Please, if any of you readers find me doing this 35 years later, please, give me a solid punch to my solar plexus so I’ll realize my mistakes and repent.


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