In The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series, author Douglas Adams recommended a towel — always take a towel. I carry a small one in my knapsack along with a spare diaper (not for me), identification documents, an adapter cord to hook my Mac computer up to a projector, computer, and an array of cords.
None of these would help if I was about to barf in a taxi, although a bigger towel may.
The New York Post reports that a Manhattan (not in Kansas) mom became worried sick when her 6-year-old son vomited in the back seat of a taxi — and then even more upset when the crabby cabby called the cops after she refused to pay a whopping $120 cleaning surcharge.
Shamie Cuthbert, 29, said she and son Jacob hopped in the cab near Lincoln Center on Saturday night and were heading home to Washington Heights when the boy said he wasn’t feeling well and threw up.
"I leaned over into the front of the cab and said [to the driver], ‘As soon as we get home, my husband will come down with cleaning products, and I will clean everything up,’ " Cuthbert told The Post.
"I expected [the cabby] to be polite about it. Instead, he went sort of crazy and screamed, ‘This isn’t right! You need to give me $120, or I can’t use my cab! I am going to lose a lot of money today!’ " the stunned mom said.
She said cabby Nahidul Islam, 33, dialed 911 as soon as he pulled up at their building.
As they waited for the cops, Cuthbert began scrubbing the seat with the Seventh Generation cleanser, paper towels and Febreze that her husband had brought down.
"[Islam] was standing there angrily smoking a cigarette while I cleaned the cab," she said. "The mess wasn’t atrocious, and when I was done, it was much cleaner than when we got there."
Police arrived, and an officer informed the driver he could make no demand for $120.
The cabby did not receive a ticket over the incident.
Islam told The Post that Cuthbert merely pushed the mess around and that it would cost $120 to pay a crew of "Mexican cleaners" in Queens who specialize in removing vomit from taxis.
If a New York cab can have video-display advertisements in the back, maybe they can invest in some barf bags – like on airplanes.