• This is a Yellow Cab; my grandfather’s car was marked Flash and, later, American United.

My grandfather’s decision to work as an independent taxi driver was also, I suspect, a show of respect for the Chicago cab companies he refused to work for. Anyone who knew him would attest that no one could have been his boss: he was too stubborn, argumentative, and skeptical of anyone else’s way of doing things. He had a habit of telling other people how to spend their money—which was great if you were looking for business advice, but aggravating if you weren’t. Thankfully, there were enough men around who appreciated his way with money enough that he could indulge his habit without being too belligerent about it. I remember as a kid following him around the city and visiting the long-standing small businesses that still welcomed him. And when he ran out of adults to advise, he’d lecture me, usually over a corned beef sandwich at one of the delis where the Jewish drivers used to hang out.