I was running late for lunch with ATH today so I decided to book a cab. I had uninstalled my taxi app before going to Ireland and haven’t reinstalled it since I got back.
(I am also the last person in this country who does not use Uber for two reasons:
1) I’ve got to create an account and enter all my details, so signing up for Uber is a calculated move rather than something you do when you’ve been on the roadside for 20 minutes waiting for a cab or given up on your typical misguided optimism that you will get to the centre of town via bus-MRT-walk in half an hour.
2) It gets charged to my card and who’s got money in her bank account these days? Yep, not me. Heh.)
Instead of reinstalling my old taxi app, I decided to install Grabtaxi. I’d never used it before, I figured what the hey, give it a go. My impression of Grabtaxi was that it was merely a pool of the various taxi operators and whoever happens to be close/convenient takes my request. Survival of the fittest. But among taxi operators, not randos with a car a la Uber.
So imagine my surprise when a private car turned up for me. I guess Grabtaxi has gone the way of Uber now then? I got in, and All The Thoughts proceeded to fill up my head. Upon seeing a taxi on the road, I began to feel guilty that I was giving money to a schmuck with a car who is already wealthy enough to own a bloody car in this country who just happened to be going the same way I wanted to go, instead of a hardworking “taxi uncle” (what we endearingly call our taxi drivers here) whose actual livelihood is driving a taxi. Who has to pay commission + tax to the taxi operator for every job they do, plus pay an exorbitant monthly rental of the cab. (Grabtaxi takes a commission too, but less, and no tax, so the driver earns more.)
ATH laughed when I told him of my ethical dilemma and called me a softie. He said I should not feel guilty at all, that that’s the way it goes. It is, I know, but I can’t stop feeling bad that I deprived a legit taxi driver of $14 today.
I’ve been in a self-destructive mood these days. I want to experience freefall so I’ve been fighting the urge to jump off a cliff. JT said to me yesterday, “Don’t come crying to me when your heart is broken.”
I should feel more of an ethical dilemma about this than the taxi thing, but I will pick and choose my own ethics, thanks. I’m just playing with fire cuz I like the heat, you know?