Dreams from My Uber Drivers

Capital Campus | William McNamara | February 25, 2016

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It’s something every college student has feelings about. Like Netflix, Chipotle, and cover letters.

While we generally tend to think of Uber only as a service that gets us from point A to point B (and it is), there are also very real people behind the wheel.

I fairly regularly chat up my Uber Drivers. Sure it may annoy the drunkards next to me, but any opportunity to talk with people outside the AU bubble is one I embrace with open arms.

The question I’ve been asking them recently is this:

“If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be?” 

Of course this is a question people aren’t used to getting, but it’s something I wonder. I think what a person would change says a lot about who they are, and the type of experience they’ve had. So in many varying states of sobriety I’d ask this question, and record their answers:

Most of them got political.

Mosan: “Are you high man? Oh you’re serious? I don’t know. It’s fucked up that people can’t get into this country. My parents were immigrants. When you think about, y’alls great great grandparents were immigrants. I don’t know, man.”

Jason: “The environment. These oil companies are destroying the earth and nobody does anything about it. It’s criminal.”

Adam: “It’s too hard to find a job. I got laid off in 2008 and this is my job now. I have a degree from Berkeley and this is my job.”

Akimbe: “Stop the killing. Everybody is killing each other. It’s so sad. It’s so sad.”

Mohammad: “I’d really like it if my son could go to college for free. I hope he gets a scholarship because if he doesn’t, I don’t know what I’ll do.”

Some of them just got real:

Dema: “I AM GLAD YOU ASKED SWEETHEART! You gotta tell all your friends to stop puking in my damn car. It’s nasty and I aint cleaning that shit up.”

Patrick: “Is your friend okay? Need me to stop?”

And then there were the ones that just want the world to be a better place

Sayeed: “I don’t know man. Nothing that anybody does really affects me. I just really like seeing people happy. So, be happy I guess.”

Aziz: “Music, my friend. The world needs better music.”

Aman: “Oof, tough question. I tell you what, you go out in the world and do what makes you happy. If you love what you do and the people you do it with. You’ll make the world better. And I’ll be happy.”

Man, that’s what I like to hear. It’s so nice to talk to someone someone not angry about something, even when he has every right to be.

But my favorite part about all of these answers is how happy they seemed that one of their clients cared what they think (well except for Dema, she probs didn’t give a fuck). I can’t remember the last time somebody asked me what I think. It’s a good feeling, we should do it more often.