I picked up someone last night that I had in my cab a couple days ago. He sorta recognized me, but he was drunk and I had gotten my hair cut and colored earlier in the day. I didn’t need to tell him that my hair was different, he mentioned it before I did after I told him I had given him a ride before. He remembered the “kick-ass Paul Simon song” I played and how he had demanded that I turn it up, but then how I told him, “Say please.”
He asked if I had a boyfriend. I told him yes and he looked crestfallen. “Why, were you planning on hitting on me?” Why so transparent, Drunkboy?
un-sunny: Okay, repeat after me people: “I’d….
I get this line once in a while in my cab. I got a gentler version of it from Drunkboy: “I’d date you, if you didn’t have a boyfriend.”
Despite how drunk he was, I saw some redeeming qualities in him. I gently told him that his phrasing was basically doing a couple of things for me. 1) It was taking choice away from me, and 2) it was putting himself above me and he was basically deigning to look down and take pity on this poor girl and do me the honor of a relationship. I said that if he wanted to date me, he should say something along the lines of, “would you like to date?” or “I would totally like to date you if you’re interested!” It would make things more inclusive.
He took it with some good seriousness. He didn’t get defensive, he didn’t deflect or brush off what I was saying. He wanted a little discourse and he was being pretty damn civil about it. While he DID mention he was getting out of a 10 year marriage and tried once or twice to squeeze some empathy and/or comfort from me, I kept it professional and detached. He also tried once to use this break up as an excuse for not knowing how to speak to women.
This ride actually gave me a little hope that if I keep speaking up, sometimes I’ll get through to people. I’ve been feeling a lot of fatigue about these sorts of things lately. I was thinking about it a little last night. My normal line for people when they start to commiserate about the drunk-people-hours of working is, “It takes a lot of patience.” Now I just think it’s less patience and more a lack of any energy to get angry when I have every right to be.