IN MEMORIAM: The Florida operator was beloved industry-wide and shared a wealth of experience and advice over the years.
Today will begin a three week long mini-series about marriage proposals going wrong in the back of a limousine. I have learned men who charter a limousine for the purpose of proposing marriage are generally not on stable ground to begin with, and somehow think the glamour and allure of a limousine will be the magic ticket that lands the object of their desire.
For the record: I never saw one single successful engagement in the back of a limo in my 25-year career.
I once picked up a man at his apartment in a limousine on a warm day in Spring. I was instructed to drive to a seedy trailer park in a scuzzy part of town. Upon arrival, I offered to go to the trailer door and escort his guest to the car. She was stunned he got a limo in the middle of a weekday.
He instructed me to "just drive." You know how we hate that instruction. He left the partition down so I could hear their conversation. After driving for a while, I noticed the guy had taken a knee in the back of the limo. I heard him say, "After the last few months of dating you, I realize no one has made me as happy in my life as you have. Because of this, I have decided I would like to spend the rest of my life with you. Will you marry me?”
Silence. I mean, a very, very, awkwardly long silence. I assumed she was choked up and unable to answer. Upon regaining her composure, I heard her response loud and clear. She asked him, “Are you out of your f---ing mind? YOU are my FRIEND. I don't like you like THAT! You have ruined our friendship. You stupid f---ing idiot!"
With that, she directed me to take her home immediately. I did as she asked. We drove to her trailer in silence. Upon dropping her off, I asked him what he would like to do with his remaining three hours of prepaid limo service. He said, "just drive." I watched him take the lid off the vodka decanter and start swigging it like a sailor.
I felt horrible for him. I did what a good chauffeur would do and called a girl I knew. She shared a house with four other girls (all smoking hot) who worked as cocktail waitresses by night. I explained my passenger's situation as low volume and discreet as I could (it was legal to use a cell phone when driving back in the day) and asked if they might like to ride around in a limo for three hours. They of course said, yes!
I asked Mr. Broken Heart if he would like some female company for the rest of his prepaid time. He said, yes! I drove over to the girls house and loaded them up. I whispered to them as they got in not to drink the vodka! I got a $200 tip.
All ended well.
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