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By Randee Dawn

We're all tired at the end of our working day, but sometimes giving just a little extra effort turns out to be worth it.

That's what a New York City cab driver learned last year when he picked up one more fare, even though his shift had just ended. He was a lucky guy: Tom Hanks slid into the back seat!

Not that he knew who he'd picked up at first. As the cabbie related, "He gets in the car all excited, all animated, and he's talking about all these things. But he's got his cap pulled down way over his eyes, so I can't see who it is."

The unnamed driver's story appears next to an Instagram photo that was posted on Humans of NY's page Monday. HONY is a long-running website of candid images and brief stories about Gotham's residents that spawned a book in 2013. 

As the cabbie continued, "[P]retty soon I start to recognize his voice. And when we get to a light, I turn to him and I look him in the eye, and I scream 'WIIIIIIILLLSSSSSOOOOOOON!!!' And that really got him. He started laughing hard."

A single line pulled from Hanks' 2000 "Castaway" film, and the two bonded. Hanks started calling his driver "Mr. Ferrari" after the baseball cap he was wearing; eventually the driver landed an invitation to Hanks' Broadway show, "Lucky Guy," where he got to meet his former fare backstage.

"[H]e walks in and screams: 'Mr. Ferrari!'" recalled the cab driver. "Can you believe that story? And you wanna know the craziest thing? The name of his show was 'Lucky Guy.' How crazy is that? Cause that was me. A lucky guy!"

Turns out there's one member of the TODAY family who was able to independently verify that this happened: Hoda Kotb noted Tuesday that she had also ridden in that particular taxi cab, and the driver showed her the picture that turned up on Instagram. "We took a picture together," she added. "It was like a whole situation!"

"It's a small world," added Matt Lauer.

Of course, this particular taxi driver wasn't the first to have a successful brush with Hanks: The actor's co-star in last year's "Captain Phillips," Barkhad Abdi, landed his first Hollywood role in the film (and an Oscar nomination) after leaving his job as a cabbie.

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