Does the pedicab driver rub between his fingers the well-worn rosary dangling from the handlebars of his pedicab before every trip? Did the pedicab driver himself paint the word “Amigo” on the rear of the seatback and if so, did he intend it to contain any level of satire?
What is the cost, in U.S. dollars, of the pedicab? What is the relative purchasing power of this amount in America? Could one buy, for instance, a Darth Vader wall clock as might be installed in a doctors’ office, capable of spouting Star Wars quotes on the hour and half-hour much to the amusement of patients and receptionists alike?
What is the cost, in U.S. dollars, of repairing a broken pedicab chassis? Is the welding for the chassis under any kind of warranty?
Where might a pedicab driver obtain such a cowboy hat? Has the pedicab driver seen a John Wayne flick, and if so, did he consider the proverbial American cowboy to be some kind of fancy pompous jerk? If he has not seen a John Wayne flick, what is the connotation of a cowboy hat in the mind of the pedicab driver? Or is it simply pragmatic given the tropical sun?
How many times has the pedicab driver entered the grocery “Wilmars” where he waits for passengers from dawn till dusk? Does the pedicab driver feel a healthy competition toward other pedicab drivers?
Among pedicab drivers, is there a socially mediated hierarchy akin to caste stratification dictated by a system of mutually agreed upon aesthetics manifested in one’s pedicab, as in the Buick right on down to the Pinto?
If a pedicab driver were to save part of his daily earnings for a year, say 3 pesos a day, how many years would it take to own his pedicab instead of renting it at 40 pesos a day?
In a geographic location in which the average yearly rainfall exceeds X or Y or Z millimetres, can one realistically save money for a rainy day?
When the pedicab driver comes home from work, does he greet his wife–assuming for the moment that she is a stay-at-home type–with affection?
Has anyone ever written a love story about a pedicab driver and if so, did the pedicab driver in the story profess his love on bended knee with ebullient gestures and learned phrases, and did his damsel blush and swoon, and would it have been more true-to-life and cinema-verite if the story had not ended happily or tragically but in some gray middle ground where life plods along, day by day?
What might make a pedicab driver abandon his pedicab to sit on the corner in the early dusk, watching the people go this way and that? What might make a foreigner sit down next to him, also in the early dusk? What percentage of the pedicab driver’s passengers make conversation with him en route to their destinations? What is the usual tone of voice taken toward the pedicab driver? Has the pedicab driver ever enjoyed a serious political discussion with one of his passengers? Has the pedicab driver ever heard the phrase, “Luke, I am your father”?
At what level of education did the pedicab driver leave school? Do Filipino boys dream–as American boys do of becoming garbage collectors and/or dump truck operators and/or forklift operators–of becoming pedicab drivers?
What would the pedicab driver think of someone who tried to write about him by imitating the highly idiosyncratic style of a famous writer, namely Donald Barthelme? If the pedicab driver knew the word “derivative”, would he consider it apt in such an instance?
How many times has the pedicab driver forgotten to rub between his fingers the well-worn rosary dangling from the handlebars?
How can one tell if a foreign passenger knows the appropriate fare? Is it immoral to ask for more than the going rate from a foreigner? After all, isn’t there no fixed rate for a trip?
If a human being sleeps within the space of a rectangular prism of welded steel which is at its broadest point approximately half the length of an average human body fully extended, what is the condition of said human’s twelve thoraic vertebrae after 365 days? After 5,234 days?
If a foreigner in the neighborhood rents a room in a boarding house, is he by definition wealthy? Has he ever slept all night in a pedicab? Has the foreigner ever felt what is like to beg for money?
My darling Maria Fatima Jane Bulalao de Ascuncion, your father thinks me a mindless human wheel-turner, but imagine the possibilities: the open road, driving into the sunset, a pedicab driver cutting a sharp profile in his genuine rawhide cowboy hat, a little lace fringe decorating the roof of his “Amigo” pedicab, and his girl, wearing her finest Sunday jeans…what do you think?
What would be the nature of a collision that could cause the axle of a pedicab to separate from the wheel? Would there have to be a passenger or passengers in the pedicab at the moment of impact?
Was the pedicab driver already a pedicab driver when his first child was born? His fifth? Does his family really eat nothing but rice and dried fish?
Even if one has made bad choices in the past, even if one has neglected his studies, even if one has no motivation or self-determination, should such a one get the proverbial what is coming to one?
If the pedicab driver were to get back on his pedicab the following day and the foreigner saw him, would the foreigner think the pedicab driver had been lying and harbor contempt? If so, would it have still been worth it?