|Like this, but less attractive|
Here's the thing about when your driver has to come a long way to get you: it's usually not good. We aren't paid for the time and distance that it took to get to you. It's just unpaid miles and minutes, and a good chunk of the time, the passenger will cancel on the way, and make the trip pointless. It's a big reason why, frankly, I avoid a lot of suburban driving, despite being easier on my car, and frequently good if you catch long rides.
But usually, there's one saving grace to it all: a happy passenger, because they know that it's a rare and good service to get someone where they are.
The ping comes in from 12 minutes and 5 miles away in Fremont, a nice enough suburb. I take the request and make my way to a pizza place, where an annoyed woman and her male companion are waiting. They get in, I offer my usual service, and my Jedi mind trick of offering a breath mint to draw out the knuckleheads works yet again.
"No, I don't need a goddamned breath mint," she says, as angry as you will find a person in paradisical California. Then, "Effin' miracle."
The ride is, I'm not kidding, 3 minutes and 0.7 miles down the road. The entire time, the woman is irate about the length of her wait, while the guy is trying to calm her down. She's convinced that since this ride is usually less time, I've personally delivered poor service by coming from 12 minutes away. On a holiday, while plenty of surge pricing is going on in Oakland and elsewhere.
"Are you gonna ask him?" I try to explain to her that the system simply sends the closest driver at all times, but she's having none of it, then finally resolves with, "So I guess *I'm* the b****."
Note: this is a grown woman, likely in her 30s. Not a petulant teen. Also, not looking like she couldn't walk 0.7 miles, rather than wait 15 minutes for a ride.
I drop them off, bask in the glow of my $3.75 for 15 minutes and six miles of driving, and rest easy in the knowledge that, thanks to the 2-star rating that I fired off as soon as they were out of eyeshot, that I'd never get to agree with her again...