Granny and Her Cab Company

Granny, that’s what they call her. Not only because she is a loveable old lady but because it’s the only name anyone knows for her. She knows that her name is Zelda Feinman but keeps that secret because it’s very hard to run a background check having only the name Granny to work with.

Forty years ago Granny drove a cab although the younger drivers kid her that she must have driven a horse and buggy. She and her husband were the best drivers in the city and soon had saved so much money that they not only bought their cabs but purchased controlling shares of the cab company itself.

Granny’s husband died of a heart attack only two years after they had become part owners of the company. In the vicious fight for control of the company with the other owners that followed Granny showed the tough no-nonsense business acumen that has since brought her company to the top of the pile. In a masterful use of innuendo and outright lying, Granny turned the other owners against each other and in the chaos bought the company out from under them.

Many of the drivers in the company were fiercely loyal to Granny from her days as a hack and when the ousted owners attempted to take back the company using strong-arm tactics they rallied to the old woman’s defense. Fierce clashes such as had not been seen since the early days of the American Labor Unions flared between the cabbies and the hired men of their former bosses. In the end, Granny and her cabbies overcame these odds and returned the company to its position as one of the best independent companies in the city.

Granny runs her company more like a family although this does not mean she is ever lacking in the business department. Her drivers all are treated as if they were her kin. She knows everyone on a first name basis and has close ties with all their families. Potential workers are interviewed more for their ability to fit into this familial organization than for their ability to recite the shortest route between points A and B.

Granny is a small woman of indeterminant age, although most agree that she must be at least 80 years old. She dresses either in comfortable sundresses or in the latest most fashionable power suit dependant on her mood and the occasion. Her eyes are clear and penetrating with a slight twinkle of amusement always evident. Her face is lined yet attractive. She has thick silver-gray hair that she usually wears pulled back in a ponytail tied low on her neck. Her hair reaches to just past her shoulders when unbound. Granny is very healthy and active for a woman of her age and is often mistaken for being 20 to 30 years younger than she is.

Granny’s one hot button is liars. If a person lies to her and is caught she can be very vindictive. People who are honest with Granny will gain a quick friend who will give them the shirt off of her back. When crossed she may react in varied ways dependant on the level of betrayal she feels. Her reaction to a betrayer may range from merely requesting that person to leave her presence to actual physical violence.

Granny, however, is not a naturally violent person. She has only struck another person twice in her life. Her loyal drivers however often have no such compunction and have been known to “explain” to a person exactly how he wronged their boss.

Granny and her employees are fierce supporters of the underdog. Her company has had an ongoing battle with street gangs and the mob in an effort to protect the small businesses and residents of her turf. Some say that this just makes her yet another gang controlling a neighborhood for power and profit but Granny sees it as a good citizen protecting her own.

All of the cab drivers in her company receive small arms training and are proficient with pistols. Granny ensures that each of her cabbies is armed in case of trouble. Granny herself is no slouch in this department and has been known to keep a mini-uzi in her desk, “just in case”.

The clashes with the criminal element range from anonymous tips to the police and organization of citizen’s groups to outright warfare. Granny and her drivers form a very good intelligence-gathering unit. They talk with people of all calibers and see everything that happens on the streets. Smart cops and detectives often seek out her employees for tips.

The headquarters and garage for the cab company is in a depressed portion of the city. A converted warehouse is their base of operations. Granny’s company boasts 50 cabs and 100 drivers which allows her to have a presence on the streets twenty-four hours a day.

All drivers are employees of her company. She does not take on independent drivers. The drivers have incentive to remain loyal to the company as Granny offers benefits on par with large companies and guarantees her drivers a certain wage level if tips and fares are low.

Union organizers and those attempting to convince her drivers to become independent are often met with polite rejection or outright derision by the cabbies.

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