In an experiment to discover what the rideshare business is about, one middle-aged business man takes it upon himself to tackle the dangers and excitement of becoming a rideshare driver.
As night falls on the streets of Chicago, a prestigious middle-aged businessman, author Pat White, transforms into Patrick the rideshare guy. He braves the street in his too nice Mercedes Benz which makes him stick out like a sore thumb in Chicago, one of the most violent cities in America. Readers live White’s experiences with him from the dangerous to the erotic or outright unbelievable as he picks up eccentric riders looking for alcohol, sex, advice, and more.
The debauchery of White’s rideshare experience is both entertaining and terrifying. It’s interesting to witness how people are so trusting in his car, willing to discuss topics that are highly personal. Not necessarily directly with White, but to where White can easily eavesdrop. It makes one realize how the rideshare driver – or taxi driver – gets treated as if invisible the majority or the time. When White is not viewed as invisible, however, several passengers also treat him as if he were a lesser human. Which is no better. This book really makes one feel sympathy for all the rideshare/taxi drivers burning the midnight oil for a crowd of people who take advantage of how lucky they are.
It’s terrifying to see just how dangerous rideshare driving can be, especially in Chicago. With no unionization of workers, security, or protection from his work, he has to self-protect. White takes it upon himself to not just become a rideshare driver, but also a kind of badass survivor of the streets. This book isn’t merely a series of anecdotes. Rather it’s a story of a man who becomes one with his city. He almost craves the danger as much as he fears it. It is scary yet exciting to see how White transforms through his rideshare experience.
White is a poetic writer, clearly experienced with his use of the English language. He really sets the tone and feel for his piece with the language he uses. The stories White tells are exciting enough in their own respect, but White’s innate cleverness and strong voice in the writing is what sells it. Moreover, the structure of his memoir is tight and easy to follow. For instance, his ability to connect the music playing on his ipod during the course of each rideshare experience is a particularly notable motif he uses. It aides the structure of his memoir by adding a nice button to the end of each story. His writing style and structure really makes one keep turning pages for more.
BUZZ RIDE shows the good and bad of humanity as it takes readers on an exciting nocturnal journey full of wit, humor, and suspense.