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I hope I don’t sound too petty with this, but I am pretty fed up with being the designated taxi cab for all my friends whenever we go out or if they just need a ride some place. They never offer me any gas money and always seem to put me on their clock. I hate to be rude, but enough is enough already! Any suggestions on how to get them to stop asking me for rides?
The Last Straw
Dear The Last Straw,
I really wish I could give you a nice way of telling your peeps to stop asking you to burn up your fuel, but the reality of it is the word “no,” generally tends to hurt people’s feelings because that’s simply not what they want to hear. Besides, how nice do you feel when they regulate the use of your car, gas and time and expect you to operate on their schedule and terms? I’m not going to tell you to be mean. Instead I’m going to tell you to be honest. Gas now-a-days has surpassed $4.00 per gallon (if you’re lucky). In some states and countries, it’s damn near double that amount. You have every reason to be annoyed when your friends don’t take this into consideration. Hell, that’s probably why their asses don’t have cars. That’s one less expense for them to pay.
If you think about it, what would they do if you stopped chauffeuring them around town? I’ll tell you what they’d do. They’d either catch a bus (which is not free) or a cab (which is so not free unless they’re cab hopping…and then they run the risk of paying with their lives, especially if they’re catching a cab in the hood or the Hispanic part of town) or they’d sprout wings. And let’s face it, if they sprouted wings they wouldn’t have a need to ask you for a ride because A) they’d be able to fly, B) would be getting paid some major bones from the media or some side show for being the only human(s) on the planet who have wings and/or C) be locked up in a cage somewhere because the government would be too busy conducting some kind of scientific experiments on them. Let me be the first to say I’d happily pay you some gas money if you’d take me to see that!
All jokes aside, if you keep on giving in and giving them what they want without getting anything in return, then you look like the fool with no spine. Being spineless is not a good look for anyone. Make their asses walk! Whether it’s extra hot, extra cold or extra rainy outside, I promise you they would much rather pay for a ride than mess up their fresh kicks or even fresher hair weaves. They’ll also think twice before asking you anything because your expression of the word “no,” will remind them that you just may not be into it. You don’t owe anyone anything. They owe you, remember? If you don’t want to charge them for the gas, charge them for the mileage. $.51 per mile sounds about right. In fact, give them the option – $.51 per mile, a flat rate per passenger fee (consider the changes in zones like a real taxi cab driver would) or the cost of at least two gallons of gas for the total ride, depending of course, on where they’re asking you to take them.
I learned a long time ago to treat myself as a business and I’m going to advise you to do the same thing. Doing so has helped me to conduct myself and my actions a little more professionally, economically, and smartly and has also exuded a higher demand of respect and consideration from those around me. I also bought a couple of tee-shirts that reads: HELL NO; BACK UP OFF ME, SLIM; and ASK ME ANYTHING AND I’LL SMEAR SUPER GLUE ALL OVER YOUR ASHY FOOT HEELS!
Charging your folks for a ride or simply telling them “no,” may seemingly hurt them, but they’ll get over it. However for you, in the end hurt never felt so good.