1. Sunday, August 28, 2016

    uber had a bonus for certain drivers this weekend 

    east hollywood

    pretty sure they could see from my diminished rides that i have been happily driving more and more for Lyft so they gave me a bonus challenge for this weekend: do 12 trips and get a bonus of $80.

    Ask any driver and he would gladly accept a $6.66 tip for each ride, which is what this amounted to.

    On Friday my real job let us out at 1pm so my goal on Friday was to do 7 rides (you always need to do one or two extra rides on your bonus weeks in case some bean counter wants to steal one of your beans) which meant Saturday I would need to do 7 (since Sunday is the Lord’s)

    Friday was easy. At 2pm-5pm I was one of the few guys out there so I was busy. I could have done 12 easy but I needed to get back to Hollywood to get to the Cubs game. So I did 7.

    Last night i got out there around 7pm. I wanted to catch some people going out to dinner, which are usually ppl i dont like driving cuz im jealz. Also the sun was setting so it wouldnt be too hot. And I figured I might be able to get home in time for some Netflix.

    All I need is 7.

    First ride, pick up this couple and they ask me to do the one thing I hate doing when I’m trying to hit a number “hi, could you make two stops, first me and then him?”

    When you’re not trying to reach a goal the two stops are close together, when you’re trying to knock out as many trips as possible the two are soooo far away. Murphys Law. Whatever.

    It looked like they had met on a blind date or Tinder or something and he was so not into her. 7:15pm and the night was already over? Yikes. So I didn’t say a word and let them sweat it out.

    “So you’re on Instagram and not even talking to me?” she asked, smiling, trying to be happy.

    “Pretty much,” he said, young handsome, being a dick.

    Dropped her off near Sunset Pho, took him to the other side of Silver Lake. Coulda been worse. Didn’t say a word to him the whole time. 13 minutes total.

    Six more.

    Right away I get a pretty young lady near the Silver Lake 360 Whole Foods. Shes going downtown, naturally. But she’s nice. Little Southern Accent. The roads are empty but the freeway’s packed. Waze tells me to go through Elysian Park. Fine. She tells me she has lived in Silver Lake for about a year but never ever ever goes to downtown. I was like, live a little, baby.

    We’re heading to Perch where exactly two years ago today Leah, Lindsay and Amber and I all went for a lovely dinner and drinks.

    leah amber and lindsay16 minutes and we’re there. This night is gonna be great. OR SO I THINK.

    Right by Perch I get dinged again. Awesome. Bonus, here I come! Young lady wants to go to Little Tokyo. Baby, who DOESNT wanna go to Little Tokyo. Totally forgettable conversation. Who cares. 6 minutes. DONE. Four more.

    Get pinged again. A Select call (double the money). Thanks God! Get to the place. Busy street. People are honking. No one around. So I call. The guy says, we’re on Shaeffer Street. Aint no Shaeffer street in DTLA. Who knows what the guy is all about. Sounds like a freak. I ask for his address. I put it into Waze. Waze says, “this guy is a prankster, hang up.” I hang up, cancel him. Click the Wrong Address button and I get $7.50 because the dude didnt do it right. Sweet. Thanks!

    So I drive around Little Tokyo and all the asian hipsters trying to get into that one noodle place thats over priced. I drive down Broadway, LA Live, anywhere I can. Nothing. Nothing for like a half hour. People are either in or DTLA is now packed with toooo many Ubers.

    I drive to screwed up parts of town. Parts no Uber driver would be caught dead. But I aint ever gonna die. I’m gonna keep driving forever. With my arthrightous gloves on, my little bottles of water, and my extra battery cord that snakes back into the rear seats.

    I dare you to ping me Skid Row. East LA where are you?

    Finally a dude at the only grocery store in DTLA wants a ride to his loft. Him and his groceries. Perfecto! Five minute ride.

    And this is where Uber drivers think the fix is in when it comes to bonuses. Some say Uber will stop sending calls our way when we are getting close. I think that’s insane. Their tech is so buggy,  how could they put a formulae in there so perfect so as to block drivers and make them stay on the road longer than they want simply to keep the surge rates down?

    But alas, it was an HOUR before I got another call. And im driving around DTLA, Echo Park, anywhere.

    Then the ping comes in. Weird guy in KTown. White dude. First thing he asks me is if I am a comedian.

    “Have I told you any jokes yet?” I ask

    “Nope.” he says.

    “Do I amuse you?” I say.

    Guy admits that he’s stoned and is on a Tinder date. He’s a weird guy. He’s going to a bar in Echo Park because he says he doesn’t know of any bars for white male dudes in Koreatown.

    I say, you’re doing the right thing by going to Echo Park.

    Drop him off. Pray that he doesn’t murder his date. And get a teen leaving a party who wants to go to Silver Lake, a place he has lived his whole life he tells me. Before we get to his house he asks me to drop him off at his high school. Perfectly normal looking clean cut white kid who wants to study stem cells in college.

    If you are about to tag up your school, I didn’t see it, I joke.

    I’m so close to my house and I am exactly on my number. But the rules of Uber, you have to go over or they’ll screw you.

    Get an Uber Select ping at Blossom, my favorite Pho place. Beautiful brown princess of a girl gets in. Wants to go up in the hilly hills of Beverly Hills.

    I turn on jazz.

    She bats her lashes

    And slowly falls asleep there as we wind our way down Sunset then Fountain

    and then up to my dumb little goal.