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MAX FiNEBERGSaton the running-board and the late July heat sat on his shoulders. The heat, that afternoon, sat on everything; it was a damp and steaming burden tin the city of New York. The air was faintly hazy but the sun beat wickedly through it. Hot light glanced from the shiny top of Max Fine-berg's taxicab and beat back from the glass of windows across the street. Mr. Fineberg, his head sagging against the support of his hands, was worried and afraid. He wished he were somewhere else, doing something else. He wished somebody would tell him how he was going to make the next payment on his shiny cab and that he knew how Rose was feeling in the hospital and that his, until recently, instructor in economics at C.C.N.Y. would explain what a cab driver was to do with a dollar fifteen on the clock after ten hours of hacking and with the day almost done. Hack the rest of the night was, Max supposed, the answer to that last one, and, to begin with, go somewhere else for customers. The present idea wasn't, clearly, working out, although it had seemed a good one two hours ago. He had wondered why none of the other hackers had thought of parking here, at the last stop of a bus line on which buses ran infrequently and where hot men and women might be expected to pay the difference for a quick ride to the nearest subway. He didn't wonder any longer; the answer was 'no men and women,' or at least none with cab fare. He had better, he decided, get along back to the subway station where there was, at the least, animation.
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