What do you think of when you hear the word “taxi”?
I think of film noir and Humphrey Bogart. I think of Peter Lorre, Marlene Dietrich, and Robert de Niro in The Godfather. I hear the squeal of tires, a whistle, and wet streets under their headlights. “Taxis” are good for movies and pop songs.
A taxi is much more. It’s a measure of convenience. It’s an indispensable piece of public transportation infrastructure that we rely on everyday to get from place to place. It’s like a bus, but with doors. It’s an indispensable piece of our lives.
In other words, it’s not just a movie or pop song. It is what it is.
But my taxi driver doesn’t see it that way. I got into a cab in New York City the other day and talked with him about his job as a NYC taxi driver.
“A taxi is a taxi,” he said. “It’s just a cab.”
“But what do you think of when you hear the word ‘taxi,'” I asked. “A movie, maybe?” He shook his head and frowned. “No, I’m not thinking about movies.”