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Uber Driver Speaks Out

‘Buzz Ride’ was no fun for Chicago driver-author

Jul. 25, 2017
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Most Uber drivers don’t ply their trade in a Mercedes and, one suspects, most are hard up for cash, not trolling for research. P.M. White, unusual on both counts, assesses his experience driving Chicago under the Uber hashtag in Buzz Ride: Driven to Disruption—Memoirs of an Uber Driver (Lake Claremont Press). 

Buzz Ride’s timing couldn’t be better, with stories of dysfunction and disruption within this proud-to-be disruptive company. The author, a financial analyst, doesn’t investigate the sordid culture of Uber Inc. or the manic arrogance of its departed CEO, but focuses on the riders he ferried across town—many of them treating his car like their basement rec home and him as a servant from the feudal age. However, the casualness of Uber’s hiring practices also raised his eyebrow slightly. Apparently, any jerk with a four-door car, a driver’s license and a clean rap sheet can drive for Uber. The 10-minute online tutorial is no sweat. 

White’s “three-month experiment” in driving left a bitter taste in his mouth, especially as he pondered whether his Millennial passengers were uniquely contemptible or if the moral compass of his own Late Boomer generation really pointed true north.

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