Left in an NYC Cab: Forgotten Odds and Ends

Monday, May 19, 2014

taxi, cab, taxi logo The iconic NYC taxi has a new logo. The 'T' inside the black circle has replaced the word "taxi." (Caitlyn Kim/WNYC)

Jim Fanelli, reporter, talks about odd items left behind in NYC cabs, ranging from $20,000 worth of gold bars to a dog named BooBoo.

Some of the Items Left in Cabs (via DNAinfo)

  • A $30,000 emerald-cut center stone ring with diamonds 
  • A wedding veil
  • “Game of Thrones” shot glasses 
  • A beer pong table
  • $15,000 worth of fertility drugs 
  • A TASER gun resembling a flashlight 
  • A vinyl pouch containing $75,000 worth of jewelry, including two Cartier watches, an antique fob, diamond earrings and pearls 
  • A 1968 Hofner bass guitar 
  • A violin made by 18th Century Italian master Johannes Antonius Marchi
  • Two $10,000 saxophones


Jim Fanelli

Comments [11]

Shawn Kalkstein from Stamford, CT

The year was 1965 or 66. We were young marrieds, SO young, and on our first trip abroad, in Greece; and this memory never feels to embarrass me in retrospect. It rankles STILL whenever I think about it:

At the very end of our trip, laden with bags, luggage, confusion and---STUFF!, we got in a cab and left for the airport. Time was growing short. We jumped out of the cab and soon, there we were, standing on line at the ticket counter---when suddenly the cab driver (to whom we had been speaking, practicing our minimal knowledge of Greek) appeared IN THE AIRPORT, BESIDE US. Wreathed in smiles, he was carrying---my CAMERA BAG!

You can imagine how profusely, how EFFUSIVELY, I thanked him, over and over! He had SAVED MY LIFE! (That camera bag contained several Nikons, my wallet, my PASSPORT---absolutely EVERYTHING I could never have done ANYTHING without!)

But so young, so inexperienced, it NEVER OCCURRED TO ME TO REWARD HIM! I must have seemed like "The Ugly American," with an impenetrable sense of "entitlement," who felt he deserved service from others---but simply never thought of doing anything in return...

May. 19 2014 11:39 AM

I was acting in a film once and this happened:

" It's a jungle out there. That's how the makers of the Tim Allen movie "Jungle2Jungle" must be feeling as they search for six reels of film with a value of at least $100,000 left behind in a New York taxicab. The missing footage represents a day's worth of shooting known as "dailies.

" It was shot Tuesday at a Tribeca loft and includes 35 to 40 minutes of undeveloped film featuring Allen, Martin Short and Lolita Davidovich, the movie's stars. "This is unprocessed film," said the movie's spokesman, Doug Taylor. "If someone opens the cans, we're in trouble.

" Dailies for "Jungle2Jungle" are usually sent by messenger to Technicolor. The film makers then look at the raw footage the next day. In this case, a "Jungle2Jungle" production assistant was taking the reels to Technicolor's midtown offices by cab when he stopped for another errand. Though he told the driver to wait, the cab drove off with the reels. The assistant, other sources said, has been fired.

Read more:

May. 19 2014 11:38 AM
The Truth from Becky

I want to just once get into the CASH CAB!!

May. 19 2014 11:17 AM
Jan from Brooklyn

I once found a camera in the cab.

Initially I thought I'd find party photos or some other frivolous images on the camera, but after snooping through the pictures I saw a bunch of brand new baby photos.

After seeing the significance of the picture on the camera, I knew I had to get this camera back to the parents/owners of the camera, I kept looking through the images, until I finally found a picture of the father at a conference where he had a name tag. I zoomed into his name tag and luckily I could clearly read his name. Then after some googling, I found his email address. Shortly after I sent him an email, I got a response and we arranged to meet to return the camera. After handing him the camera he told me that he hadn't yet downloaded or saved the baby pictures and that they were the only picture they had from the baby's birth.

May. 19 2014 11:13 AM
Peri from Manhattan

I left a 3000 camera that belonged to my friend. We are independent filmmakers. My mom was very sick and I was very spaced out. I could not track the cabbie, but the camera was luckily insured.

May. 19 2014 11:09 AM
Daniel from Manhattan

Note that a large number of NY cabbies are Moslem and that honesty is a very important value in Islam, something not every one of us here are aware of.

May. 19 2014 11:09 AM
The Truth from Becky

How do you NOT grab a violin, bass guitar, saxophone any package of that size when getting out of the cab??!! A. It should be on your lap the entire time! SMH

May. 19 2014 11:07 AM

In my case, what I left in the cab was the cab driver himself - but not for long, because of what else I left there! Some years ago, I was moving out of my Manhattan office and took a rare, for me, cab to my apartment in Williamsburg. I asked the cab driver about his unusual [to me] name, and that led to a conversation about how to say "son of" in various languages. We hit it off so well that by the time we got to my apartment, we exchanged numbers...and I forgot to take one of the items I'd put in the trunk. Soon after, I got a call from the driver telling me he'd found it; he brought it back the next day and we ended up going out. Six months later we were married. He told me that if it hadn't been for the item I left in the trunk, he probably wouldn't have called, because he thought I was just being polite.

May. 19 2014 11:07 AM

no, a really, really slow news day.

May. 19 2014 11:05 AM
Kristen from Manhattan

A few years ago late one night, my brand new phone slipped out of my coat pocket in a cab. I didn't realize my phone was missing until I woke up in the morning. Feeling little hope about the state of affairs I figured I'd at least try calling my phone. Turns out a very nice lady went out of her way to not only keep my phone charged, she called some key contacts (Mom, Dad, and other recent calls) to alert them she had my phone safe in her office. She was a very nice real estate agent in Brooklyn and I got my phone back! I have since paid back this same act of kindness 3 times over. :)

May. 19 2014 11:05 AM
Susan from Upper West Side

After an exhausting day on a busy Friday evening I was asked to teach a class in Brooklyn at the last minute - actually begged to teach the class.

I must have been really out of it because I accepted the "I'll pay for the cab" without thinking that the subway would be much faster at that time of day. The cab driver did NOT want to go to Brooklyn and we were stuck in traffic and started arguing. (Amazingly neither of us swore despite it being a very heated argument.) I searched in my purse for a pen to take down his number because he was refusing to go to Brooklyn but couldn't find one. So I gave up and got out of the cab, forgetting that I had taken my wallet out in the process of searching for the pen. The second that I shut the door, the traffic that had been at a standstill (we had only traveled half a block) finally started to move.

Although I reported the loss, I figured my wallet and the money were gone. Three months later, long after I cancelled the credit cards and got the new license, he returned to the wallet to the super of my building. Every last penny was in the wallet.

May. 19 2014 10:09 AM

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