Uber Alles:

The tales of the Geneva Shore Report Uber driver.

I don’t do dogs. Not in my personal life, and not in my car. Uber doesn’t care if you do dogs. But dogs are a mess, with saliva, hair and the rest of the potential, and not ruling out biting the driver, I might add. If I drove dogs, then they’d be those ‘yippy’ little things that might take a nip out of my shoulder or maybe an ankle if I got out with them around. Which I would not, if I took dogs, which I don’t. But I take money, and people can make my life philosophically hard with money.

I got this ride, and it was a good one. From a place up there in the heights of Lake Geneva, if you drive as far north on Center as you can. Nice places up there that most people don’t know about. On a clear cool day, you can see Elkhorn, for whatever that’s worth. Anyway, the ride’s a woman. I get there and the deal’s all done through Uber and the credit card and all. The ride is into Milwaukee. To some beach community there that’s supposed to be nice, if you can believe that in Milwaukee, and I’ve never been there. Got it on Map Quest though. She comes out with a dog. I say no. I give her the whole nine yards about dogs, but she can’t hear me, or makes believe she can’t because I’m talking through a one inch slit at the top of my window. I forget to lock the doors. She gets in the back and brings Bradley in with her. They sit there, the dog being one of those giant sheep things with hair growing down so I can’t see his intent to bite me through the stringy mess.

“Bradley’s named after Omar Bradley,” the woman says, knowingly. Great, I think, a Muslim dog. Just what I need. The woman holds out a crisp one hundred dollar bill when I try to complain some more. I tell her no, but I take the bill to check it out to see if it’s genuine. God, I hate hundred dollar bills. I can’t let go of them. They’ve got epoxy or quick glue on them, or something. I can’t give the hundred back, and I can’t take the dog. The hundred’s the last amount I need to get my real Uber ride out of the car doctor. I try to argue against the dog but both the woman and the dog look back at me saying, without saying, “are you done?” I’m done.

I drive them to Milwaukee. The dog sticks its head between the front seats of my friend’s car that I’m illegally using as an Uber vehicle. I glance down and see the dog’s eyes looking back at me. I have to pet him. Gingerly, with one hand while driving. There’s got to be a Wisconsin ordinance against that somewhere in the vehicle code. “Tell him your problems, he speaks English,” the woman says from right behind me where I can’t see her. “Right,” I think. But 43 is a long run to Milwaukee, and the radio doesn’t work in my friend’s car.

I tell the dog my problems with my car, with my apartment and with my rather lonely life. The dog encourages me. I run on and on until we get there. The woman and the dog get out. The dog sort of mewls at me once, and then leaves quietly through the back door. “What did he say?” I ask the woman, as she signs the screen and walks away. “He says you need to get a dog,” over her shoulder. The dog looks back at me before walking away to join her. Bradley could be right.

It was that kind of a day.

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