Jimmy Failla, an author, sometimes cabbie and horrible human being, released a “shock video” on Monday showing him driving around the city in his cab trying to pick people up while a 14-foot Burmese python lays coiled in the back seat. Failla is using the video to promote his new book, ” Follow That Car!: A Cabbie’s Guide to Conquering Fears, Achieving Dreams, and Finding a Public Restroom.”
He starts off the video with the snake in plain sight to potential customers and later changes his tactic to releasing the snake once the passengers are already in his moving cab. Predictably, shrieks and cursing are rampant.
The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) has denounced Failla’s actions. The TLC’s spokesman, Allan Fromberg, told Gothamist, “This was monumentally poor judgment on the driver’s part, and we are clearly going to actively question this person’s suitability to continue holding a TLC license.”
PETA has also been enraged by the video. Colleen O’Brien, senior director of communications at PETA, said, “Snakes are remarkable yet frequently misunderstood animals who have an acute sense of hearing. Being bombarded by shrieking passengers, slamming car doors, and threats of violence is extremely stressful for them. If Mr. Failla’s publicist insisted on contributing to the misconception that these living, feeling beings are ‘frightening,’ surely a rubber snake tucked underneath the seat would have garnered similar—and certainly safer—reactions from unsuspecting passengers.”