Short Film Goes Behind the Wheel with Female Cab Drivers


Diana Diroy’s ten minute film, What’s A Girl Doing Here? goes behind the wheel with female cab drivers in New York City. There are 46,000 taxis in the city, and a mere 170 of them are driven by women. One driver, Elena Tenchikova, divulges that she once had a little girl in her cab who asked her mother, “What’s a girl doing here?” The mother explained that Tenchikova as driving the taxi; the little girl argued, “but boys drive cabs.” Tenchikova is a full-time student who drives three or four days a week — but the shifts are so long, a mere three days of work amounts to almost 40 hours of work. Meanwhile, she’s getting a masters degree in urban policy and administration. Another driver, Shonna Valeska, is a photographer who finds driving a cab to be a “real learning experience.”

According to Diroy, Tenchikova is still driving, but Valeska quit after ten months to focus on her photography (she most recently shot her fourth book cover for Ann Coulter). But Valeska hopes to make a documentary about the taxi industry someday.

[Sociological Images,]

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