Friday, June 10, 2011

Chronological list of offenders

1. June 10, 2011 -- Ginny Prior, Reporter/Columnist, Bay Area News Group (“Take the case of the Alameda cabbie...”)

[Ginny is the current President of the Bay Area Travel Writers Association, of which I am a member in semi-reasonable standing -- and while I did not ask her advance permission, I figured she would be okay about being my first ‘bustee.’ On July 8, the last item in her column started with the word “Crabby...”]

2. June 15, 2011 -- Erin Sherbert, SF Weekly blogger (“...cabbies are pissed off...”)

3. June 21, 2011 -- Trey Bundy and the Bay Citizen -- “As San Francisco cabbies hollered and raised signs...”

[NOTE: As of June 22, Trey Bundy has become the first media person to “play along” -- he posted a fun little piece on the CDADL on the Bay Citizen site. He has also seen the light and sworn off the c-word. Our first convert.]

4. June 22, 2011 -- Michael Cabanatuan, San Francisco Chronicle “On the steps of City Hall, cabbies carrying ‘On Strike’ signs...”

5. June 23, 2011 -- Taylor Friedman, SF Weekly (“Some cabbies drove by and honked...”)

[Note: Taylor says that she never uses the c-word in print or in her own speech, but it sometimes gets inserted into her stories during the editing process. So she’s not even a convert -- she’s an ally.]

6. June 28, 2011 -- Casey Miner, Producer, KALW “Crosscurrents“ (“But not all cabbies buy it...”)

[Over a friendly cup of coffee today, Ms. Miner and I talked about all sorts of things, including cab driving, including the c-word, and she promised to take the CDADL sensitivities to heart.]

7. July 6, 2011 -- Chris Filippi, KCBS -- “Clark said cabbies are upset over a new 5 percent fee...

8. July 19, 2011 -- Mike Aldax, Examiner Staff Writer -- “Police have been hunting three thugs who pistol-whipped a 66-year-old cabbie twice during the early-morning heist

[Mike Aldax and the Examiner are proving to be unrepentant serial offenders. I wish I could report otherwise, and I will if and when I can!] [Update: See item #9.]

[Update, Sept 19, 2011: Harumph! We’ve got backsliders among us: “A suspect has been arrested in connection to more than a half-dozen armed robberies of cabbies...”]

9. August 18, 2011 -- Rob Nagle, Examiner Web Editor -- “the crook pulled out a gun and demanded the cabbie’s money..."

[Received a good-natured and lightning-fast response from Mr. Nagle: “I appreciate you bringing this to our attention. We will do our best to repent and reform.” He asked if the socalled word h-a-c-k was considered acceptable, and after a quick poll of the entire CDADL membership -- “Boo-hiss!” was the deafening response -- I responded in the negative.]

10. September 11, 2011 -- Willie Brown, Columnist, San Francisco Chronicle -- “A cabbie pointed out the other day that...”

[Willie Brown should know better -- not only is he a former San Francisco Mayor, he’s also a former San Francisco Yellow Cab driver!]

11. September 18, 2011 -- Audie Cornish, NPR’s “Weekend Edition Sunday” -- (“the Crown Victoria...workhorse of cabbies and cops...”

[In a story entilted “Crown Vic Faces a Holiday Ending,” Ms. Cornish not only used the c-word, but the closing words of her piece were perhaps equally as grating on my eardrums. After twenty years of driving a 10-mpg Crown Victoria, I five years ago switched to (and am in love with) a 45-mpg Prius. On Sunday, Ms. Cornish closed her piece by saying “...a Prius just doesn’t seem to cut it...” I’m not sure if that’s a case of adding insult to injury, or injury to insult, or both to both, or what! In any case, the CDADL is no longer a local phenomenon -- we’ve gone national...]

12. January 23, 2012 -- Justin Berton, San Francisco Chronicle -- “It had been an up and down day, for the 49ers and for Glauberman, who discovered that the tickets he purchased on Craigslist were counterfeit when he stepped up to Candlestick's turnstiles. He and a friend asked a cabbie to take them to the closest place showing the game because they didn't want to miss one snap.

13. February 17, 2012 -- Patricia Patton, -- in an article entitled “San Francisco Greens Its Taxi Fleet,” Ms. Patton first lands a left jab -- “New York City cabbies resisted...” -- and then a right hook: “San Francisco raised funds to buy hybrid taxis by increasing daily rental fees for cabbies...” Oof...! And Ooooff!

14. March 9, 2012 -- Jeff Morganteen, Reporter, Stamford Advocate (Stamford, Connecticut) -- In an article entitled “Darien banker pleads not guilty to hate crime charge,” an article which is largely respectful of taxicab drivers, Morganteen tells the story of an (admittedly) inebriated NY banker who is charged with the hate-crime stabbing of a New York City taxicab driver. Morganteen, the reporter (we won’t stoop to calling him a “newsie” or a “wordie”), held out until he was almost one-third of the way through his story before dropping his first c-bomb. He initially kept his article restrained, even dignified, opting four times in a row to use either “taxi driver” or “driver,” but then on his fifth chance Morganteen -- or perhaps his editor -- crumbled. I’m inclined to blame the editor, since Morganteen wrote an article that was otherwise quite fair. In any case, well, someone finally gave in to the devil: ”The cabbie woke up Jennings between exits 10 and 11 on Interstate 95...” I should note that the article (by my rough tally) contained 25 uses of either “taxi driver” or “driver” and only two c-bombs. So, all-in-all, it could have been a lot worse. I should perhaps also note that the scene of the crime is the New York City metropolitan area, an area where the c-bomb is still commonly used -- even, I am told, in quite sophisticated circles. It’s possible that Morganteen or his editor are, unfortunately, not surrounded by the most desirable role models. Still, a bust is a bust. Book him, Dan-o!

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