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Portland Cab Adventures

Random observations and stories from driving a cab around Portland.

Taxi Story: Sweeter Than a Bottle of Sprite

  • Paul Gerald
  • April 13, 2017
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One day I got a call to one of these funny streets that get bisected by the interstate, so the 9100 block is west of it and the 9200 block is east of it. I always guess wrong on that, then wind up circling through neighborhoods, cursing, and – in this case – going down…

Taxi Story: Air Hockey Dude

  • Paul Gerald
  • December 18, 2016
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I picked up a dude at a local tavern. I can almost guarantee if I named it, especially if I said where it was, you’d know it. I can also guarantee you’ve never been in. Perhaps wondered. Well, I can tell you. It’s a local tavern, which is to say it’s just like every other…

Taxi Story: Ladd’s Level III

  • Paul Gerald
  • October 26, 2015
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One of the phrases I hear most when I tell people I drive a taxi is “interesting characters.” And it’s true, I get a lot of them: nuts, cranks, drunks, hookers, johns … all sorts. And then there was probably the all-timer, the Ladd’s Addition Level III guy. But we’ll get to that. He comes…

Taxi Stories: Sometimes you just don’t want to know …

  • Paul Gerald
  • October 16, 2015
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Often I make small talk with my passengers: How’s your day going, what are you up to, what line of work are you in, etc. And sometimes I don’t. Here are three times I didn’t say a word after “Where are you headed?” I pick up a guy, 4:45 a.m., at the EconoLodge, MLK and Columbia….

Taxi Story: The Lottery Winner

  • Paul Gerald
  • September 23, 2015
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Sometimes these taxi stories are sweet, sometimes they’re ordinary, sometimes annoying, and sometimes they just make you cringe. This was a cringer. Picked up a guy at this lottery and video poker place by Mall 205. He clearly had a buzz working, was big and loud, and immediately announced, “Dude, I just won about 500…

Taxi Story: Angry Phone Dude, Diverted

  • Paul Gerald
  • September 2, 2015
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There’s all sorts of weird stuff that goes on when you drive a taxi. I took one guy, around 5 a.m., from a motel in North Portland to another motel in North Portland — for about a minute — and then for cigarettes, and then to a Walmart that wasn’t open yet. He said he…

Taxi Story: The Sweet Old Lady

  • Paul Gerald
  • September 2, 2015
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One of the more common types of trips I get when driving a cab is the sweet little old lady. I take her home from the grocery store, I take her to medical appointments, I take her back to the assisted living place. There’s one, a blind lady, that I take to church. Not only…