I met many colorful personalities while driving a taxi. I never knew who or what would get into my taxi. That’s an understatement, trust me.
It was early evening on a spirited Halloween. Business was booming and I had no time for a lunch break. On this particular night, the bars were in full swing and party-goers were out in full force.
I received a call on my computer. The pick-up address was a local residence. It was getting dark and children were wandering the neighborhoods.
I pulled up to the house and didn’t see anyone outside. I waited a minute or two. Nothing. I honked the horn a few times, announcing my arrival.
Then it happened…..
The front door of the house slowly opened, and a strange spectacle appeared.
He was wearing a silky white dress, high heels, and a wig with long, red locks. His make-up was meticulously layered. If it weren’t for his five o’clock shadow, he could have passed for a woman.
Nevertheless, this vision of loveliness was not a man. This semi-sensual spectacle was, by all accounts, a woman.
He seductively strolled over to my taxi and I opened the door for him,…..uh,…..her.
He had a slinky gait, not because of his sexiness. No, it was because the drinking had already begun.
He sloppily asked, “Will this ride be expensive?” I couldn’t resist having some fun. Matter-of-factly, I said, “No, not at all. In fact, tonight I’m having a two-for-one special. Two people get to ride for the price of one!”
He looked at me, slightly puzzled. I just smiled.
Unfortunately, my humor went over his head as he got into the back seat. We set off to our destination, a Halloween party in the neighboring city.
Eventually, the silence was broken when he spoke to me in an exaggerated female voice. He had completely transformed from a man to a woman.
A slightly inebriated woman.
The sultry siren quizzed me. “Do you know who I am?”
I was fighting the urge to burst out laughing.
“No. Who are you supposed to be?”
The distressed damsel shrieked. “What?! You don’t know?! Surely, you must know who I am!”
I perked up in my seat. “Oh! Oh! I know! I know!” Using my best impersonation skills, I jumped into character.
In my most seductive Mae West voice, I said, “Come on up and see me some time.” The finicky feline looked at me with disgust. I confidently asked, “Is that it? That’s got to be it!”
She spit at me. “No, no, no! That’s not it! You’re not even close!”
I should have received an Oscar for that impression, but I wasn’t giving up. “Okay. Give me a minute.” I feigned sadness, as though I had just misplaced the winning lottery ticket.
I thought for a moment. “Okay, I’ve got it!” This has to be it!” I sang in a slow, deliberate, whisper. “Happy-Birthday-Mister-President, Happy-Birthday-to-you!”
I grinned and nodded my head in approval. Marilyn Monroe would have given me a standing ovation for that one.
The diva lashed out at me. “No, no, no!” She shook her head, as if she had a migraine.
Slightly slurring, she confidently proclaimed, “Silly boy, don’t you know?! I’m Ginger! I’m Ginger Grant!”
( Ginger Grant was a character in the television sitcom Gilligan’s Island, most notably portrayed by actress Tina Louise. )
I played along. “Well, it’s nice to meet you, Ginger. I’m Bobby. I wondered who you were supposed to be.”
The seductress cackled, and snapped at me.
“Oh, Bobby, you naughty boy! I’m not supposed to be anyone! I’m really her! I am Ginger Grant!”
I apologized. “Oh, yes. Of course.”
She rearranged her dress. Her wig was crooked, but she didn’t care. I asked the movie star a delicate question. “So, how old are you now?”
Suddenly, you could hear a pin drop.
Ginger snapped at me in a forced falsetto. “Why, Bobby! A lady never tells, and a gentleman never asks!”
“Oh, yeah. Sorry, I forgot.”
We arrived to the party, she paid the fare and got out of the cab.
I bid her good night and she answered, “Thanks, you too.”
I didn’t miss a beat. “Oh! If you see the President in there, don’t forget to sing Happy Birthday!”
Ginger stomped off.
All I could hear was her screaming. “I’m Ginger, damn it!…..I’m Ginger Grant!”
Gee. I hope she didn’t tell anyone at the party to come up and see her some time.