Thursday, October 22, 2009
Back Seat Driver
A little while ago, I came up with this idea. It was during the really hype time of all of these celebrity meltdown headlines. Pop stars getting wasted and flashing their crotches to the camera and everybody checking into rehab. I was constantly seeing all these undeserving teenagers acting foolish in public, these were the type of kids you would make a point of not sitting next to on the school bus. Total burnouts, and here they were, getting driven around in limousines and catered to at their every whim. My idea was to get a job as a chauffer and drive them around to all the wrong parties and create all these hilarious situations. If they said, go to the hot new Hollywood club, I’d take them to a high school dance where they’d be mobbed by teenybopper fans.
I located a limousine company that catered mostly to celebrities and I was on my way. While I was walking in to apply for the job, there was a man in the office that was complaining about how the limo company had misused his credit card number and he wanted it fixed now. He was throwing a fit and the staff was so embarrassed, you could see how bummed they were. The louder the man got, the more control he had over the situation. The company agreed to give the man a years free service just to get him out of there, in hopes that he wouldn’t report them. At that moment, being a chauffer and pulling pranks on celebrities was about the last thing on my mind. Without even thinking about it, I instantly found myself at the same desk, face to face with the same lady, yelling just as loudly, “This exact thing happened to me, and I demand satisfaction!” They took my information and I was out the door with a years free limo service.
After that there wasn’t a location in my world that didn’t require first class transportation. I’d wake up every morning and hit the speed dial on my cell phone; “I’m going to need a limo here by noon today, got some grocery shopping to do”. The best was wondering what the driver was doing the whole time he was parked, while five of my friends and I were skating a spot. Usually the drivers were so psyched to be doing something exciting they didn’t even mind when asked to help haul the generator and lights into the trunk. I even had a driver monitor the pause button on a tri-pod shot once. There were times when there’d be a chauffer who was too cool to help us break into a school, and I never did get any of them to ram into a fence, to create a pole jam for me.
Nevertheless, It was a good year. Every party I went to, I ended up leaving with five or six extra people than I came with. After the year was up, I tried calling and making the same complaint, talking about how I’m a valued customer, but they said that they’d been more than generous and honored their commitment to me and all that. The free rides ended and I was back behind the wheel of my rusted Volkswagen. Now that it’s over, I keep thinking of amusing situations where having a car and driver would have been perfect. I really didn’t use the irony to its full potential. As I look back on that year, it seems like it went by so quickly, I sometimes wonder if it really happened at all.