Taxi Tales: V-Day in Sandpoint

By Louie de Palma
Reader Road Warrior

It’s February, which means only one thing. It’s time to face the music of that dreaded holiday we all know is coming.

Presidents’ Day.

That’s right: the one day a year we Americans honor the first few presidents remember, condemn the last few we remember and completely ignore the middle ones no one remembers. If I had a dollar for every president no one remembered, I’d have an unknown amount of money because I have no idea how many presidents there are. Pay me in Susan B. Anthony dollars, because no one knows who that lady was either. Shout out to Sacagawea for being both known and on currency.

Sacagawea was a pretty outdoorsy lady. She sort of had to be. It was in her job description. Sandpoint also has a lot of pretty outdoorsy ladies and dudes. That’s great, especially if you’re skipping Presidents’ Day for the less popular February holiday, Valentines’ Day.

If you’re a couple who moved here together or met in high school, I’m sure Valentine’s Day is a breeze. It probably feels more like Tax Day or Christmas—it’s more or less obligatory. Or perhaps it is super romantic and filled with vibrant, textured, pleasant memories that completely confirm your choice of life partner. Anything is possible, I suppose.

But for the rest of the locals who have been here a while, Valentine’s Day can be more awkward than Saturdays on the SSA soccer field in terms of bumping into exes.

The restaurant selection is limited in a small town, making it extra easy for me to watch cab fares get anxious about bumping into an ex or exes while with their new partner. This leads to awkward block circling and ultimately increased meter rates for you, my dear customers. I offer you a solution.

I can go inside and scout for you. Simply give me a description of the person and I’ll sketch him or her on the spot like a police station sketch artist. Then I’ll check out the restaurant and see if your ex or any other person you don’t want to see is in there, for the price of the time on the meter. It’s a great deal.

Of course, there are restrictions. You must be specific. You can’t tell me to go in and look for a dude with a description like, “He’s outdoorsy-looking with varying degrees of stubble to beard, and a hat on or possibly carharts or jeans or maybe flannel.” That’s everyone. Same deal for women. It would be like asking me to go into the Banff Film Festival to find the person in a blue or black Patagonia jacket and hiking boots.

Given the right description, we can almost guarantee you safe Valentine’s Day trip—safer than Sacagawea navigated the wilds—and hopefully more memorable than any middle president. Plus, it costs less than the price of a pocket-full of Susan B. Anthonys. Please call ahead to reserve. Hopefully we don’t double book you with an ex in the car. Happy holidays.

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