A Conversation Between An Uber Passenger And His 87-Year-Old Driver, Ruth Kleinberg


Passenger: Hiya.

Ruth: Good evening, young man. So handsome.

Passenger: Ehhh, thanks.

** The smell of mothballs sits in the air **

Ruth: Okay, let me put on my glasses and get out the map.

Passenger: Can’t you just use your phone?

Ruth: Hehe, funny boy making jokes already. Phones make calls. They don’t give directions. I’m quicker than you think you whippersnapper.

Passenger: Right… I could just…

Ruth: No, no, Sunset and Douglas, found it. Isn’t that where the nickel laundromat is?

Passenger: Yeah, it could be. I’m in a bit of a hurry. Could we go?

Ruth: Of course, of course. You kids these days. Always in such a hurry.

Passenger: Yeah, well..

** Passenger checks time on Apple Watch. Ruth drives into traffic without looking **

Passenger: So, how long have you been driving for Uber?

Ruth: Pardon me? You’ll need to speak up.

Passenger: HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN AN UBER DRIVER?

Ruth: No, no, I don’t know Ben Gruber. Would you like a Werther’s Original?

Passenger: What’s that?

Ruth: I think it’s one of those Ferraguars or whatcha-ma-call-it cars. Very expensive. James Coburn used to drive one. So handsome that Coburn.

Passenger: No, not the car. What’s a Werther’s Original?

Ruth: Well, I sure hope he drove the original. He certainly had the money.

** A gramophone sits in the passenger seat playing Louis Prima **

Passenger: Soo… I hear Uber doesn’t take very good care of it’s drivers.

Ruth: Yes, yes. Did you know that when I was a little girl I worked in the orchards picking oranges? I got paid 2 cents everyday. I saved that money to buy this Prius.

Passenger: No, I didn’t know that. Wow.

** Passenger looks at Iphone **

Ruth: That Jimmy Carter sure was a nice man. Not very bright, but very sweet.

Passenger: Fuuuccckk, watch out!!!

** Ruth drives through a red light **

Ruth: What’s that you say young man?

Passenger: You know, I think I’ll just get out here.

Ruth: No, no we’ll get you to your date on time. Are you meeting your wife?

Passenger: No, I’m actually not married.

Ruth: WHAT? Such a nice, handsome boy like yourself. You should really get married already. Me and my Gerome were married for 47 years. Bless his soul. Pastrami sandwich.

Passenger: Pastrami sandwich?

Ruth: Choked on a pastrami sandwich at Langer’s. Very sad, but that Gerome never chewed his food. I always told him to slow down. Ehh, Liebe Himmel, men and they’re eating.

Passenger: Sorry to hear that. So, do you only drive for Uber?

Ruth: Yes, I’ve been an Uber Driver for over fifty years now.

Passenger: Uhh, okay. You know I can really walk the rest of the way.

Ruth: I have a granddaughter that’s about your age. Maybe you two should go to the skating rink why not. Would you like her number?

Passenger: You know, that’s okay. I’m not really seeing anyone right now.

Ruth: HAHA, you and me both sonny. Without these glasses, I’m as blind as a goose. Wanna see?

** Ruth hands him her glasses **

Passenger: Jesus, can you even see the road?

Ruth: Silly boy and his jokes again. I got a regular Mickey Rooney in the back seat. This is a Prius Smart car. It practically drives itself. Look.

** Ruth takes her hands off the steering wheel and changes the Gramophone record **

Passenger: Oh fuck, fuck, fuck. Drive the fucking car.

** Car swerves back and forth, barely missing a semi **

Ruth: That Louis Prima was quite the crooner. You know, I had an affair with Wayne Newton?

Passenger: WATCH OUT!!!

** The Prius tears through a trash can and sends trash flying **

Ruth: Yep, I was quite the tart back in the day. Still am.

** Ruth turns and winks at the passenger **

Passenger: Stop. The. Fucking. Car. NOW!

Ruth: Okay, okay young man. This isn’t your stop, ya know?

Passenger: I don’t give a fuck, just let me out.

Ruth: Alrighty, here we go. Thank you so much. You’re such a nice young man.

Passenger: Whatever. Crazy fucking bat.

** Passenger storms away **

Ruth: Bye, now sonny. Have a wonderful evening at the soda pop and please give me a 5 star review.

** Ruth drives away **

Ruth: Fucking prick.