Pandemic Times…

The Coronavirus pandemic has wreaked absolute havoc on many American citizens. It has penetrated the privileged bubble many of us have benefited from our entire lives. It has caused me to question the validity of mainstream media. It’s pretty crazy when the crap Alex Jones is spewing seems more credible than CNN and the rest of the mainstream media. 

My pampered ass has been forced to make many life adjustments, and I’m beginning to realize that it may not be all bad. I find myself feeling more grateful than ever before because of the freedoms I’ve enjoyed up until this point. It’s rather funny how we often don’t appreciate what we have until it’s too late. 

Delivering for Uber eats has been both interesting and confusing. The Uber app was updated to accommodate no contact deliveries to keep the customers and drivers safe from contracting or spreading the virus. The most significant new feature added to the app was that drivers must now take a picture of the food when making the drop. I thought this sounded great. I fell in love with no-contact deliveries and had no issues for the first two weeks or so. Before the pandemic, I’d achieved Diamond driver status. Allow me to explain what that means. Uber has a points system for its food delivery drivers called Uber Eats pro. It’s a simple concept. Every successful delivery made between the hours of 11 am, and 2 pm earns the driver 3 points. Distributions made between 5-9 pm are worth 6 points, and any delivery made outside of those times equals 1. Every driver gets placed into 1 of 4 tiers based on how many points they accumulate each month -0-99 is green, 100-299  is Gold, 300-599 is platinum, and anything above 600 is Diamond. In addition to earning points, you must maintain a 95% satisfaction rate in order to maintain your status. So, if I earn more than 600 points in the month of May I’ll have Diamond status through the end of June. Then, if I only earn 400 points in June, I’d have platinum status through the end of July and so on. Each tier level qualifies a driver for certain perks from Uber, which are constantly changing. The only benefit that I qualify for and actually use is they give me 5% cashback on gas purchases as long as I use my Uber debit card.

Give me that thumbs up!!

I had no problems maintaining a 100 percent satisfaction rate before the pandemic hit. The rating system is easy enough, each restaurant can give a driver a thumbs up or a thumbs down. Each customer can do the same. A total of 6 thumbs down from any party could cost a driver his/her status. As I said earlier, I had no issues for the first 2 weeks or so. Then, I suddenly got 3 thumbs downs over a 2-day span. Now, I’m wondering what the problem could be??

I was forced to do a mental review of all the deliveries I’d made and I couldn’t come up with a logical explanation. So, I concluded that there must be issues with this whole no-contact delivery system. Such as, what if the customer enters the wrong address into the app? I’ve never placed a food order through Uber, so I can only speculate here, but I was under the impression that the Uber app actually knows where a person is when an order is placed. In addition to that, I always thought the app would question the address if it differed from the location the order was being placed at. If these things aren’t available within the app they should certainly be added. Have I been leaving orders on random doorsteps assuming I was in the proper location? Before no contact deliveries became a thing I was forced to wait for the customer and hand the order directly to them. While this was frustrating at times (like when somebody that placed an order within the last 20 minutes refuses to answer their door) it takes all of the guesswork out.

The address mix up could have accounted for 1 or 2 thumbs downs over a two day period, but I think it’s highly unlikely I received all 3 for the same issue. Another reason I think I may have suddenly gotten 3 thumbs downs also has to be blamed on the no-contact deliveries. I figure that since people rarely pay attention to what’s actually going on in their lives that my customers just weren’t paying attention to their phones. I know that may seem crazy, but nothing surprises me anymore. Since these customers may not have been paying attention to their phones they probably had no idea when I actually delivered the food. What I’m saying is the food may have been sitting on their front porch for more than a half-hour. I know there’s nothing that would piss me off more than paying extra to have food delivered only to find it a soggy mess by the time I got around to eating it.

And the final reason I think I may have suddenly gotten 3 thumbs downs also has to do with the no contact deliveries. The picture feature that was added to the app must be flawed. I assumed that when I’m taking these photos the customers are receiving an immediate message letting them know where I placed the food. But, what if the messages are delayed? I also feel like a stalker having to take these pictures. The reason is that the picture never registers on the first attempt. I have to take the picture like 4-5 times in order to get the app to accept it. I’ll literally take a picture… tell the app the order is complete…  and walk halfway back to my car before the app notifies me the picture didn’t register. So I have to walk back to the front porch and take another photo. Am I getting thumbs downed for looking like an obsessed freak who can’t get enough pictures? I can only wonder.

In addition to the shit show that is no-contact deliveries, Uber is forcing us to wear a face mask. Ordinarily, I wouldn’t complain about something like that, but they didn’t require us to wear masks during the first month of the pandemic. It was after my state began to lif the restrictions that had been placed when Uber made us aware of this mask policy. Uber must watch CNN because this makes no sense whatsoever. Seems like they’re just trying to “look good” to appease all the folks that think COVID 19 is a massive crisis. I’m of the belief that the coronavirus was blown way out of proportion by the media and the masks shouldn’t be necessary. And they damn sure shouldn’t be forcing everyone to wear them. I could see having to wear a mask if my area had a huge COVID problem, but the numbers are continuing to decline in my area. I’m just hoping these masks aren’t the “NEW NORMAl” they keep talking about. It’s really hard to breathe when it’s 95 degrees outside and you have to put a mask on your face to boot.

At the end of the day, I’m really glad that I have a job to complain about. Well, delivering food isn’t really a job, it’s just a really easy way to make cold hard cash, but you know what I mean. I’ve come to realize that doing what’s best for society might not always fit into my agenda, but that’s ok. Maybe I had it coming. And even though I don’t think COVID is as dangerous others do, I’m still taking all the necessary precautions in order to be as safe as possible. Because it’s better to be safe than sorry. I pray that the American people will come to appreciate all the freedoms we’ve enjoyed before this pandemic hit. I’m also hoping we can find a way to hold our elected officials accountable and do a better job of serving the people instead of leveraging EVERYTHING for some sort of political gain.

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One thought on “Pandemic Times…

  1. This pandemic has totally brought us to our limits… on the other hand, we have realized how we’ve taken things that truly matter for granted… perhaps we’d come out of it as better people..

    I am an expat in Saudi Arabia, and we too, have been dependent on food deliveries… it’s unfortunate that uber eats had to terminate their service in the Kingdom. We dont know why, but they did 🙁

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