The Case of the Cursed Taxicab

The driver of cab No. 666 in San Francisco wants to have its number changed and have the vehicle exorcised. Scott Simon explains why the man's fears aren't totally unfounded.


This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon.

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The San Francisco Taxi Commission voted to give the devil his due or at least let him keep his medallion. They voted to keep taxicab number 666 in operation even though the driver who has it wants it changed. And he's even had his cab exorcised.

666 is considered to be a sinister set of digits by some. They trace it back to a passage in the Book of Revelations that may identify it as the number of a man who does Satan's work.

San Francisco Taxi 666 didn't dispel the superstition when it caught fire on Good Friday some years ago.

Jordanna Thigpen, deputy taxi commissioner, says no other number causes an administrative burden like this. The taxi commissioner has voted down the change, saying that precedent would be bad, but they have to get rid of number 13 or 1313 or maybe just Barry Bond's home-run total.

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