‘I’m entitled to know why taxi drivers seem to think so little of me’

Ross O’Carroll-Kelly: Honor’s blackmailing skills come out after using Sorcha’s MyTaxi app

Sorcha says that the most random thing happened to her the other night.

I’m there, “You didn’t have that dream again, did you? The one where you and Mary Robinson are dressed as superheroes and you’re beating up people who put non-recyclable items into their green bins?”

“I’ve had that dream twice in five years,” she goes, “and I’m sorry I ever told you about it.”

“So what was it then, if it wasn’t your Green Avengers dream?”


“Well, I was in a taxi and I was chatting to the driver.”

“I don’t know why you do that.”

“Because, Ross, I’m a sociable person. Anyway, he was talking about how the traffic on the Leopardstown Road is about 10 times worse since they replaced the roundabout with traffic lights.”

“Yeah, no, edge of your seat stuff, that.”

"But it was when I was getting out of the cor that he said the strangest thing? He said I seemed like a very nice person – ."

“Hey, you stayed awake for his roundabout story.”

“ – and he couldn’t understand how I had such a low rating on the MyTaxi app.”

Okay, now she has my attention.

Taxi drivers tend to bring out the worst side of my personality

I’m like, “Er, what are you talking about, Sorcha?”

“I have an average one-stor customer rating,” she goes.

I’m there, “And what’s that a score out of?” because I’ve always been a glass-half-full kind of goy.

She goes, “It’s one stor out of five, Ross.”

“I’m only asking because if it was one stor out of three . . .”

“It would still be the lowest rating that it’s possible to get.”

The reason I’m so keen to get her to see it from a positive angle is because her one-stor rating is almost certainly down to me, given that I’ve been using her account for the past six months and taxi drivers tend to bring out the worst side of my personality.

I go, “What kind of world are we living in where people working in the service industry get to mork customers out of five? The best thing you can do now, Sorcha, is put it out of your head and move on with your life.”

“I’m not putting it out of my head,” she goes. “As a matter of fact, the following morning, I made a Data Access Subject Request.”

“A what’s-that-now?”

“All citizens have the right to access their personal data, Ross. I’m entitled to know why taxi drivers seem to think so little of me, especially given how much I tip.”

“Maybe they just hate you because you live in a beautiful gaff. I’ve sensed a bit of tude from one or two myself over the years.”

“Well, I’m legally entitled to read any comments that they may have made about me.”

It’s at that point that Honor arrives into the kitchen for her breakfast. She goes, “What’s all this talk about legal entitlements?”

Sorcha’s there, “I’ve made a Data Access Subject Request, Honor, to try to find out why I’m so unpopular with taxi drivers. As a matter of fact, I’m going to check the post box now.”

Sorcha walks out of the kitchen and I end up just pacing the floor, while Honor goes, “Oh my God, why does it kill her so much to not be popular?”

I’m there going, “You don’t understand, Honor. I could be in serious trouble here.”

And she’s like, “Okay, let’s see what they’ve been saying about her.”

I suddenly stop pacing. Honor is sitting at the table and in front of her is a stack of paper as thick as the Argos catalogue.

I’m there, “Where did you get that?”

She goes, “I go to the post box first thing every morning to filter out anything I don’t want you or her to read.”

"So you've been using her MyTaxi account as well, have you?"

"No, I've been driving your cor, remember? But I was curious as to what this might be. Okay, let's read these comments, will we?"

“They’re probably all exaggerated.”

“Customer spent the entire journey querying the route I was taking, basically accusing me of ripping him off. He also clicked his fingers twice every time he thought of something to say to me and referred to me throughout the journey as ‘my man’ .”

“Told you. That doesn’t sound like me.”

“Customer was rude and obnoxious . . . Customer was abusive when I failed to drive through orange traffic lights for him . . . Customer kept me waiting outside the pub for 20 minutes then insisted I stop seven times on the way home.”

"I was looking for Hunky Dorys. They were actually for your mother."

“Customer refused request that he exit the car via the kerbside door, insisted on opening the roadside door and a passing bus ripped the door off.”

“I paid for the door. That’s poor from him bringing that up. I’m disappointed with that one. Very poor.”

I'll leave you to it, Dad. I still want that thousand euros, by the way

"Customer was obnoxious . . . Customer was obnoxious . . . Customer was drunk and obnoxious . . . Customer insisted on shouting at other road users even though he wasn't driving."

“That’s people on the Stillorgan dualler doing 30 Ks per hour but hogging the inside lane because they’re going to be turning right when they reach Enniscorthy. That’s always got me worked up.”

“Oh my God, look at this one! Customer was rude and obnoxious, as was his fellow passenger, who continued to put on nail polish even when requested to stop. Who was this fellow passenger, Dad?”

“Er, it was actually Oisinn. He was putting it on for a joke.”

"That's funny because it says here that she later spilled nail polish all over the back seat, then got out of the taxi without saying anything."

“Honor, what are you going to do with that file?”

“What do you think I’m going to do with it? I’m going to blackmail you?”

“How much?”

“A thousand euros.”

I sigh. I’m there, “Okay, fine,” because I was half-expecting her to say two.

Sorcha steps back into the kitchen. “Nothing in the post,” she goes.

I’m there, “Like I said, you should just let it go, Babes.”

“No, it’s fine,” she goes, holding up her phone, “because they’ve emailed me the information anyway.”

Honor stands up from the table. She goes, “I’ll leave you to it, Dad. I still want that thousand euros, by the way.”