Catchin' a Buzz

Whatever happened to “Taxicab Confessions?”

We realize we might be showing our age here, so for the unacquainted: “Taxicab Confessions” was a late-night, hidden camera TV show that aired on HBO in the late 1990s. Basically, passengers – usually under the influence of some substance – were secretly recorded as they cruised the streets of New York City.

As one TV critic put it: “What we got was a carnival of humanity passing through the back seats of cabs, usually en route to some regrettable late-night destination. (Passengers) would spill their guts to the chatty cab drivers, ultimately revealing a whole bunch of truths about themselves. A lot of those truths were dark or f***** up or twisted.”

Ah yes, how we miss those stories. Like the guy who told his driver about a time he and his girlfriend got in a fight at a restaurant, and his girlfriend ended up bringing her cheeseburger and soup into the bathroom and ate it there. Or the one woman who tried to seduce her female cab driver, promising her husband would never find out. Or the dude who asked his lady friend, “Are we going to sleep together on our first date?” then looked at the cab driver knowingly and said, “I think we are.” The couple then started making out and almost spilled their White Castle.

“Taxicab Confessions” may be gone, but the good news is, Durango’s Buzz Bus is back, offering free rides to the inebriated on Friday and Saturday nights in an attempt to cut down on drunk driving.

Years ago, the City of Durango operated the Buzz Bus, but that service shut down in 2015. Recently, however, The Hive purchased a 14-passenger bus and resurrected the late-night offering, free of charge (feel free to tip the volunteer drivers). Now, you can hitch a ride anytime between 9 p.m. and 2:30 a.m. and not have to worry about a DUI.

“There’s definitely been some super busy nights, but also some off nights,” Kelsie Borland, executive director of The Hive, said. “I think we just need to get the word out more.”

Drinking and driving is certainly an issue in Durango. In 2021, for example, there were 240 DUI arrests, according to the Durango Police Department. Yes, we have cabs as well as Uber/Lyft, but now you can get home safe at no cost (the Buzz Buss is funded by the city as well as local donors).

 So, all you drinkers and would-be drivers have no excuse now. And, at the same time, you can offer your deepest confessions.

 “We definitely pick up fun, rowdy people,” Borland said. “We recently picked up a guy tripping on acid. And we didn’t know what to do with him because he didn’t know what to do with himself.”

 Ultimately, the guy stayed on the bus all night, where he said he felt safest.

 “That’s what the Hive does,” Borland said. “We embrace those in need.”

Need a ride? Call 970-508-0445.

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