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Thursday, October 26, 2006


The blog is still officially on hold, but here is Another Taxi Story

I don't think my wife has heard this story. Do me a favor and don't mention it to her.

I got a call to pick up at an address on Iniakuk Avenue. Iniakuk is a nondescript, gravelled street located about a mile outside the city limits. Iniakuk is just like most rural roads in the area. The forest comes right to the ditch on both sides, and most of the homes are set back from the road with a wide screen of trees. I would guess that most homes in the area are on 1 acre lots.

It was night, and dark (the midnight sun had been gone for a while). As I drove down Iniakuk I met two State Troopers, in two different cars, driving very slowly. I thought that was rather odd. Two troopers on the same residential street, driving as if they were looking for something. A few moments later, as I was wondering who they could be looking for, a guy jumped out of the bushes right in front of me and started flagging me down. He literally jumped out of the bushes just a couple yards in front of the car. He was wearing dark clothes and I had to slam on the brakes and swerve to avoid hitting him.

He jumped into the cab. My heart was in my throat. I checked my mirror. The tail lights of the troopers were getting pretty far away.

"Uhhhhh.... Did you call a cab?"

"Yeah, yeah. I called from (such and such an address)."

The address he gave me was the address I was supposed to pick up, even though that particular address was still quite far away. I moved around a little bit, just to feel if my firearms were where they were supposed to be. (I normally carry two.) As I was executing a perfect fifteen point turn on this dark, narrow street, and while he was watching me back up in his rearview mirror I managed to secretly transfer my North American Arms mini-revolver into my breast pocket for easier access.

"So where do you need to go?"

He told me, but something was not right about the way he said it. It felt as though he had called a cab without a destination in mind. It would be an understatement to say that I was feeling very uneasy at this point.

Before we got back to the main road it was clear that the guy was schizophrenic. He wasn't a scary schizophrenic, he was more of a goofy schizophrenic. We were back on the main road in a minute or two and by then my adrenalin had gone down significantly, although I was keeping a close eye on the guy.

I forget what he said, but he continually talked on various schizophrenic-conspiracy-tangents for the entire ride, including how the police were out to get him, and about some stripper who was stealing all his money. The stories were so different, but so intertwined in his mind that only another schizo could follow what he was saying. Even Dick Cheney and the FBI were involved. I would occasionally insert an "Uh huh," or "I don't know," when is seemed he was waiting for a response.

I dropped him off, he paid me, and that was it.

But there was still the matter of two State Troopers on Iniakuk who were driving as if they were looking for something. I figured I had better check to make sure the troopers weren't looking for him, so I stopped at a gas station and called.

The dispatcher denied that there had been any troopers on Iniakuk or anywhere near that area recently, much less two of them. She thought that maybe I had seen the University Police force. No, they were definitely State Troopers. She put me on hold to check.

Nope. According to the dispatcher neither the State Troopers nor the University Police had been on Iniakuk recently. But. Just. In. Case. They. Had. Been. She thought I had better give them the address where I dropped the guy off.

No dice lady. If you aren't looking for him you don't need his address. Let me just slip into the gas station bathroom to dispose of my shorts, and you can read about it on my blog.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

The are two types of taxi calls that cause the driver the most headaches; 1) The police are calling for the cab; and 2) Someone, who is not getting into the cab, says, "Here's $20, take them somewhere else."

All I could do was shake my head when I pulled up to the house at 4 a.m. and saw a cop and another fellow escorting a young lady to my cab. The guy handed me $20 and said, "Take her somewhere else."

"Where do you need to go?"


"Do you want to ride with the officer?"


I looked at her in the rearview mirror for several seconds until she crossed her arms, slouched down in the seat, looked out the window at the cop, looked back at me and said (with fake politeness), "Can we stop and get some cigarettes on the way…………. Please?"

So we left. I asked her where she wanted to stop for cigarettes.

“It doesn’t matter,” she said curtly.

“Airport Way Texaco?”

“Where evar.”

After we had driven a few blocks and she had a chance to cool off I asked where exactly she wanted to go on Airport Way.


“You’re gonna be walking to Airport Way if you yell at me again.”

“Just get me to Airport Way. You don’t need to know my address. I don't need anyone telling the police where I live.”

Yes, she actually said that, and believe it or not, I have dealt with this situation many times. Usually dopers will give you an address halfway down the block, or they will say, "Take me to the corner of 3rd and Main." Many people involved with drugs don't want the cab company to have a written record of their activity, just in case those records are subpeonaed. But if they are particularly stupid, or stoned, they will want you to take them somewhere, but don't want to tell you where. I can usually work around it and get them close to their desired destination.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with Fairbanks, Airport Way is by far the longest street in town. It stretches over 5 miles from the Airport in the west, to Ft. Wainwright at the edge of town in the east. It is also a main east-west artery with businesses and houses running its entire length.

In the three minutes it took to get to Texaco she passed out in the back seat.

“Wake up. We’re at Texaco.”

“What are we doing here?”

“You said you needed cigarettes.”


There are only a couple places to buy cigarettes at night at that end of town. Safeway, and 2 gas stations. Texaco is the only one right on the way, and is on Airport Way.

“Where did you want to buy cigarettes?”


“We are on Airport Way. Where on Airport Way do you need to go?”

“God damn you’re a stupid fucker. How many times do I need to tell you, I live on Airport Way, and I'm not telling you my address, 'cause I don't want the cops to know where I live.”

“Do you live at Fairview Manor?”

“Fuck no.”

“Do you want me to go this way or that way?”

“I waaaaaaant to get cigarettes, and for you to take me home.”

"Go in and get some cigarettes."

"Listen fucker, just take me somewhere to get cigarettes. Somewhere close to my house."

"Where is your house."

"Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck. How many times do I need to tell you....... Look. Just get me to Airport Way and I can walk from there.”

Her cell phone rang. She answered it. She only talked for 30 seconds or so, but she managed to get in the whole story of how her evening went and how everyone but her was acting stupid… all night long. The conversation abruptly ended when she asked the other person to give her a ride home.

“Well?” I asked.

“Well what?”

“Where to from here?”

“Ya’ know what? If you don't know how to get to Airport Fucking Way, fuck it. How long have you been driving a cab anyway? I'm going to call your boss and tell him what a stupid asshole you are. I can walk to Airport Way from here. How far is it?”

“Ummmmmmmm. Only a couple blocks.”

"How much do I owe you?”

“That dude you were with paid for the trip.”


“Don’t worry. He paid for it already.”

“Fuck him. I don’t want to owe that fucker nothin’. I got money.”

I figured it was better for her to give her money to me instead of crack dealer... so I waited for her to pay. And waited. And waited. I kept encouraging her to leave, but she just bristled.

She was rooting around her purse, swearing, wondering where her money was. It was clear that she wasn’t going to get out without paying me. So I waited. And waited some more. I tried to encourage her to get out a few more times and she just swore at me. She checked her pockets and started swearing some more.

“Do you have a quarter? I need to go in and call my friend. They’ll pay for the ride. I know they will.”

“Sure. Take two quarters.” I couldn’t give her the quarters fast enough. I knew she would remember at any second that she was holding a cell phone in her other hand. Luckily she took the quarters, got out of the cab, and became Texaco’s problem.

I drove off before she had time to close the door.

I did feel a small pang of guilt, though. Before I left the parking lot I ran in and told the Texaco attendant that if she gave him any problem at all to call the police. The police had dealt with her once already that night and would probably be quite perturbed if they had to deal with her again.

"You're not leaving her here?"

"Yeah. I am."

"She's 86ed from here."

"Well, I guess she's walking then."

"I guess she is."

She was calling the attendant a "stupid fucker" as I drove off.

Monday, October 23, 2006


When all else fails... Ask.

I've been reading on various threads that people are finding Shear Panic in their local Barnes and Noble store. I've been in our local store several times and have come up with bupkis, and by bupkis I mean the latest official Monopoly variants, and box store party games.

Well there it is again. Someone found Shear Panic at their local B&N. In frustration I called. The guy I talked to had his hands on the game and set it aside for me inside 30 seconds. Wooooo Hoooo.

Friday, October 20, 2006


And they told us it was going to be a Mexican Restaurant

Had some time on my hands today. Did a Blogger search (on the upper left-hand corner of this page) for Fairbanks, Alaska, hoping to find some new local blogs.

I found something much more interesting. Words for an introduction fail me, allow me to just copy and paste:

From Salon.com

There over 800 prison camps in the United States, all fully operational and ready to receive prisoners. They are all staffed and even surrounded by full-time guards, but they are all empty. These camps are to be operated by FEMA should martial law need to be implemented in the United States and all it would take is a presidential signature on a proclamation and the attorney general's signature on a warrant to which a list of names is attached. . . Currently, the largest of these facilities is just outside of Fairbanks, Alaska. The Alaskan facility is a massive mental health facility and can hold thousands of people.

http://blogs.salon.com/0002255/2006/08/19.html#a1383 (near the bottom of the page).

1. Perhaps this facility is disguised as a WalMart?

2. Where do I go to apply for a job at an empty prison?

Edit: Just another thought on the subject.

If there are already more than 800 of these prisons already in operation, construction must have started under Clinton.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Game night at the Boys and Girls club was frickin' great this week.

I showed up about an hour earlier than I usually do. There were many more kids there than usual and about 15 wanted to play. The kids ranged in age from 6 years old to middle school age. Of course I was not prepared for that many participants. Luckily I brought a new game with me that night, Bamboleo. I just had the kids form a line and take turns taking pieces off the board until someone caused the board to crash. Bamboleo went over surprisingly well for such a large group. All the kids were involved offering advice as to which pieces should be removed, and the best method to remove them. I have brought Villa Paletti with me from time to time, but I doubt most of the kids had ever seen a dexterity game like Bamboleo before.

The crowd thinned out fairly quickly as parents arrived to pick up their children, and as soon as we were down to eight kids I brought out Pitch Car. You would have thought I had brought in a PS4. Only 2 or 3 of the kids had ever played Pitch Car, and all the newbies were all taken with the game. I mean they thought it was the best thing since candy. The Pitch Car commotion drew the attention of several other kids and soon we had to split into teams to accommodate everyone.

Note: Pitch Car with teams of elementary aged children doesn't work very well.

At that point I broke out Hamster Rolle for the overflow crowd. Hamster Rolle was another hit. Too bad it only accommodates four players.

After that we had a Bamboleo tournament, and finished the night with more Pitch Car.

Quote heard 40,000 times that evening: Concerning the Bamboleo box cover, "Hey! There's a naked guy!"

I think I will leave the Bamboleo box at home from now on.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006


A Real Lady's Man

Overheard in the taxi:

My old lady is pissed. She won't even talk to me. I was going to charm her by taking her out for dinner, then I realized it was cheaper to get drunk and find a hooker.

Saturday, October 07, 2006



I realize it has almost been a month since I posted anything.

With the exception of a single weekend in the last couple months, games have been few and far between. More importantly my work schedule is killing my family life. When I do have time to write I can't get motivated to do so.

If I can't finagle my way down to a 40 hour work week, or work out a schedule that allows me more time with my family I will have to find a new job. Until then this blog is officially on hold.

Thank you for reading. I hope to regain a semi-normal family life in the near future. Maybe a couple weeks after that I'll find the motivation to resume writing.


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