I finally called it quits with doing dispatch duty on Saturday nights. I was the only driver in the fleet that did 2 shifts a week with the phone. The other drivers typically take over dispatch about 6:00pm and then give it up at 2:00am, passing the phone to me for the "graveyard" hours. When it was my two nights, I would take the phone at 7:00pm and have it plugged into my ear from then until 5:00am to 7:00am. I just can't do two nights back-to-back any more. Also, too many drivers, both day holdovers and new night drivers are getting a free ride and not sharing the duties. Enough is enough. A lot of drivers are going to be in for a surprise. If they won't accept their fare share of the work load then the rest of us (who dispatch) are going to quit giving them calls.
"Pull your own weight or get the hell off our turf."
MONEY DON't MEAN SHIT
Earlier this summer I posted about a guy who didn't have the cash to pay for a fare. When I took him back to an ATM machine, he went pyscho on me, finally tearing a $20 bill in half and throwing it in my face. People do tend to do weird things when "Maggie" makes an appearance.
Well, this dudes name is Mike and he is very rich. He is buiding a custom home on 6 acres of land somewhere on Mau'i. He is also a cheap-ass SOB who enjoys fucking with people in service industry jobs. Almost every driver has had a problem with him not paying for his ride. He like bullying people. That is not a smart move when you get me on the phone. He has threatened to have me fired. Told me that if he didn't have a cab "RIGHT NOW" that he would kick my ass. Blah-blah-blah. I refuse to pick him up, as do the majority of the night crew, but a couple of the lady drivers are impressed with $$-$$ and think that he will "take care of them" down the road. He has reached the point that he now has other people call for him to request a ride. I guess he thinks we are too dumb to figure out his strategy. He believes that throwing a few $20 bills around will compensate for his attitude. He actually gave another driver $20 to pass on to me this past Friday. When she gave it to me, I took it and laughed. "What does Mike expect this to buy?"
She shrugged, laughed, "I don't know. With you, probably nothing."
UPS AND DOWNS
One of the hotels had a equipment malfunction the other night. About 3:00am a security officer entered one of the elevators. He didn't press any buttons. The doors closed and the elevator started moving and then stopped, between floors. No indicator light was operating and he didn't know what floors he was stuck between. His two-way radio wouldn't function within that steel encasement and he had to activate the alarm bell. Took about an hour to get him out. Thank goodness it was a staff member and not a guest.
If I pick up a fare who refuses to pay, I can call the cops and have him arrested. But what do you do when it is a corporate client that always seems to be short of funds when you cover their ass and then go to get paid? Speedi-Shuttle does an even higher volume of business with Royal than I was aware of. Mostly during the dayshift hours. We cover runs that they can't seem to do. We apparently do this 3-6 times a day. The day drivers never have a problem about getting paid. They just drop their fare and then go to the Speedi-Shuttle counter in baggage claim at the airport.
Night shift drivers don't experience the same courtesy. I picked up two American Airline pilots last night from the Mau'i Coast. Make the drop and go to get paid. This is a 50/50 chance. When they don't have cash, you are told to come back the next day. This is tough, since I am "off" for the next two days and the roundtrip from my house to the airport burns about 5 gallons in gas, which is about $18 (my "take" on that run is only $19.40). If you do not present your receipt for payment in a timely manner they will refuse to pay. I got so mad about this last night that I actually slugged the front of their counter. Those of us who work the dark hours are getting very frustrated with this situation and a few alternatives have been discussed among ourselfs. I don't think the owner of Royal would appreciate any of them but they will be exercised in the near future. My favorite, and the one least likely to be implemented, is to accept the run and then not dispatch a cab. When Speedi-Shuttle gives us the angry callback wondering why the flight crew wasn't picked up, we'll just tell them "So sorry. Have them come back tomorrow and we'll pick them up then."
Oh, TMR (The Mad Russian) Alex said he would stop by the Speedi-Shuttle counter today and collect my money for me.
Good Morning, Hawai'i
Sunset over Lana'i
"Let's all be careful out there!"