Meals On Wheels You figure out what omen this carries for Washingtonians at the millennium’s eve: A cab driver picks up a fare heading to Washington Hospital Center. In the passenger seat, the driver carries a foam tray filled with a mix of cooked carrots and green beans, pita bread, and a huge leg of lamb, half-eaten. Which is interesting, because the hack doesn’t have any teeth. “Gotta go easy on my gums, ’cause gums is all I got,” she says, holding up the portion like Fred Flintstone. “And this ain’t gonna help me with my phone bill.” She takes big, blissful chomps as her cheeks puff. “They want me to pay $60….I thought it was gonna be $25,” she explains. Once she pulls into the hospital’s parking lot, she shoves a few more string beans in her mouth with her fingers. “That’s sooo goood!” she says. “I’ll get me some of that again….I don’t care—they can come and turn the phone off!”

Reporting by Bradford McKee, Michael Schaffer, Elissa Silverman, and Erik Wemple.

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