Tuesday, December 30, 2008

it was all a dream...

do you see what im seeing?! that was just last week. now, if you're lucky you'll see some snow on the ground but i doubt it. we hit the mid-50's on saturday and the snow just disappeared. we are now hovering around the mid-30's and the sun is shinning...wtf?! they say global warming is a myth...silly people. anyway, the weather has turned in our favor but the work has turned also. it's a slow start to the week. maybe it's because we have a full crew now instead of people calling in...maybe it's cause the work gets done quicker when you're able to pedal? maybe...well, it's the end of the year and the transition into january has always been known as a slow period...

car dispatch...i've been in this business since '79. it's always slow at the end of the year.

j.dot...well, we're always busy at the end and start of the months. maybe january will bring us some good work?

...i have faith in january and the famous start of the tax season. every messenger knows that the tax season is the time to make loot. the weather is nasty and the work is plentiful. well...thats not always the case...sometimes the work is slow but it's supposed to be the busiest time for the courier industry. as far as the weather goes...well, that's always bad...ha! that being said, if the farmers almanac is correct, which so far it's right on point, then this winter should be ok. it'll have it's ups and downs but from the sound of things...the ups win out this time around...

After a mostly mild November, snow at Thanksgiving will signal the coming of a very cold period, especially in the west. Temperatures will seesaw from January through March. Precipitation will generally be below normal, with above-normal snowfall in the southwest and below-normal snowfall in most other parts of the region. The coldest periods will occur in December, early and mid-January, and in early and mid-February. The snowiest periods will be in early and mid-December, early to mid-January, early February, and early March.

April and May will have above-normal temperatures and below-normal precipitation, with hot temperatures in mid-May.

Summer temperatures will be near or slightly above normal, on average, with below-normal rainfall. The hottest temperatures will occur in early and mid-June and mid-July.

September and October will be cooler and drier than normal.

warm weather in april?! holy sh*t! usually chicago doesn't get nice weather till june. this is good news for my crew. soon we'll be enjoying some watermelon and 90 degree weather...peace.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

merry christmas...

work on monday was rough. it was about 6 degrees all day and with the windchill it was in the negatives. i don't know how our crew does it but thank God for them. we weren't really busy but not many came out to play. i don't blame those that decided to take a breather from this weather. no matter what excuses they had...i don't blame them for not showing up. now...as far as our soldiers that did come out and play...well, yesterday was a great day for them.

we were running a bit behind because we were short staffed but that didn't matter. this time around the name of the game was get the work done and just keep moving. the minute i sat down and the first biker checked in with me i began to load them up. our paging system was down for the 302nd time this year...ha! so, i had to give most, if not all, the jobs verbally.

6721...two-one, at the mart holding one.

j.dot...cool, got a pen and paper out?

6721...umm, ok...go!

j.dot...ok, you're at the mart holding an east madison. let's see...go grab a 25 eash washington, 11 east adams, 21 south clark, on your way to drop stop by 1 south wacker for three more and while you double down for the tower drops stop by 71 wack and scoop up one more. soooo, lets see...thats 1, 2, 3, 7...cool, 7 picks. call me every three drops.

...all day it was like this and the work was not slowing down. our crew was just rocking. it was so cold out that they booked it all day to stay warm. not only because if you move faster the more body heat you will generate but because if you move faster the quicker you will be indoors somewhere else...ha! seriously, thank you to my crew...all day was hectic but they all got the work done. these next few days this week will be kind of slow. chirstmas eve is one day away. today may or may not be busy...who knows but what i do know is that i will have a good crew.

happy holidays to all messengers everywhere...

btw...i stole the drawings above from my good friend damara. she's probably the fastest lady messenger i've had the pleasure of working with. sorry forty-five...ha! check out more of her work here and don't be scared to purchase some of her work here...peace.

Friday, December 19, 2008

ups going on two wheels...

thank you rachel for the heads up...

apparently ups will begin a bicycle delivery program...wtf?! how cool is that?! why did it take this long?

from bikeportland.org...

Shipping giant United Parcel Service (UPS) will add a new weapon to its arsenal in the holiday shipping battle this year — bicycles.

Jeff Grant, the company’s workforce planning manager for the Oregon district (that includes Vancouver, WA), says UPS plans to hire 28 bike delivery employees this season. In the Portland metro area, Grant says eight riders will be hired.

I spoke with Grant via phone yesterday. He said the main impetus for the bike delivery program was to save money.

“For every three bikes we use for deliveries, we save an average of 17 gallons of fuel per day (compared to one truck). That’s about $50 in savings.” Across the entire district, Grant says for every three bikes used during the holiday season, UPS will save $38,000 in vehicle operation and upkeep costs.

UPS has purchased a fleet of mountain bikes outfitted with a 200 pound capacity trailer (with a cover for rain of course) and a set of lights. All bike delivery staff will be uniformed and helmets are required.

Before hitting the road, Grant says each rider will undergo a paid orientation and training session. The custom-tailored training will focus on operating the bicycle and trailer safely. “We realize the riders will be experienced already,” says Grant, “but have they ever pulled 200 pounds? Do they know the safe following distance in wet weather?”

According to Grant, he’ll ask delivery staff to deliver about 25-50 packages per day, compared to 150 stops a day for a normal “package car”.

Grant added an interesting historical note to this story: UPS started delivering by bike in Seattle (where they were founded) over 100 years ago. Today, the company once again uses bikes for deliveries up in Seattle and Grant said it went so well they’ve decided to expand the program.

UPS is looking to hire bike delivery people in Vancouver (WA), Portland, Salem, Corvallis, Eugene, and Medford. If you’re interested, call Maria Mason at (503) 978-7409 or email mariamason(at)ups(dot)com.

o.man...i really hope this program works out and it sticks. can you imagine if it goes nationwide and internationally? too cool...on another note, im about to head to work and there's at least two inches of snow that has fallen already...ha! ride safe out there and stay warm...peace.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

is started early...

yesterday was quite a day. it started off not too cold...well, for chicago standards. sh*t...even i decided to bike in. Lord knows if i have an opportunity to not bike i'll take it. the mistake i made was not knowing that the weather would make a dramatic change in the afternoon. i believe the snow started hitting the streets around eleven or so...not really sure cause im locked up inside. either way...once it started it did not stop.

i had a choice...take public transportation home and leave my bike at work or just man-up and try and remember how to bike in these conditions. i finally got up to leave at 1815 from base. i was gonna make it a game time decision but i had a mini-dilemma on my hands. 6718 and 6721 were standing in the dock...not so much waiting for me but instead waiting for each other to roll out in the madness. i had the both of them stay late with me along with a few others but these two i had them bring packages back to base. 6721 had the honor of carrying a huge box on his back while 18 had the honor of coming in later than twenty-one. i'll get back to them in a minute...my mini-dilemma was this, should i bike or take public transportation? i had almost made up my mind but i couldn't look like a little b*tch in front of my crew. especially not these two. two of our rockstars out there. so...i man'd up. walked to milwaukee and took that north to western and then north for a few blocks. it sucked...

i gotta give it to our crew out there. they really did a great job. we weren't busy but we were steady enough to not give too much stand-by...well, beyond the usual, stay warm stand-by's. our crew was even helping the car board doing some distance and weight runs. how they did it? i have no idea...i feel like if i was still out there i would be saying no to every delivery. i did have a couple guys disappear on me once the snow started hitting. that hurt our percentage a little cause i could have used them, especially late in the game but don't really blame them. the weather was nasty.

the name of the game late in the day was pull, pull, pull. why? cause cars where not going anywhere. sure it was hard to bike and stay balanced but you could still manage your way through traffic. cars were not going anywhere so our crew had to pull deliveries out to dish off to drivers. the news was reporting delays of 3 or 4 hours going and coming from everywhere. i gotta give it to our drivers also...the weather was not fun for them also. i know, i know, they are in a warm car so it's different but i still have to give them respect for toughing it out and still working late. i never got to say goodnight to 6758 when i left and he still had one more delivery to bring to base. i'm usually good about such things but yesterday i got caught up on how the hell i was gonna bike in this. im sure he's fine with me not saying anything im just saying is all...

yesterday was crazy but its only the beginning. it started early and we still have a long winter ahead of us. thank you to all my crew who tough'd it out with me. much love and respect...peace.

Monday, December 15, 2008

think warm thoughts...

just finished checking the weather update and it's six degrees right now...wtf?! they are expecting a high of 17 or so. you throw in the wind chill factor and it feels like 0 degrees or in the negatives. good luck to any and all out there today and the rest of this winter...not going to be pretty.

all that being said...i have a mini-cure for the situation at hand. tonight chris dilts will be hanging up the pics from the naccc's over at goldstar(1755 W. Division). if it's too cold for you cats to make it today don't forget that they will be up the month of december and maybe longer(?). also...tonight is round two of the irosprints. check out hipsternascar for details...madisons?!?! everyone and their mama should come out for this...best way to stay warm is to keep moving...even if it is on a stationary bike.

you guys can thank me later for planning out your monday...peace.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

long week...

it was a rough week here in chicago. we either had snow, rain, cold weather, wind, and sometimes all of it smashed together. i felt bad for the crew and said thank you to them as i let them go home at the end of the day. as a result from the weather our work has finally picked up a bit but because of the weather our crew has slowed up. our on-time is hurting a bit but the work is still getting done and thats all that counts. well...it's not all that counts but you cats get the idea...

manager...how's it looking today?

j.dot...not bad. we have a full crew.

manager...yeah but is the work getting delivered on time.

j.dot...umm, not really. our guys are running slow out there. this weather is really kicking them in the a$$. i think it's taking a toll on them.

6731 is as dependable as they come. i have never ever heard him ask for a break...well, beyond needing time to fix a flat or something to that effect. the other day he finally broke down and just requested a few minutes off the bike. i knew then something was wrong out there. 1168 who has been working for 15 some odd years out there is one of my late guys. i had him hustling all over the place late and was trying to set him up for his nightly pick up. he calls me...


j.dot...what up?

1168...can you see if you can get someone to cover my night mail? i don't think i can make it. it's not that i can't but this weather is a bit much. it's raining non-stop now and the weather dropped. i just can't take it right now.

...i completely understood and dished the work off to one of our drivers. late at night and this weather it's hard to hold on to our crew. i have a select few that stay with me late but 6706 and 6758 are both in finals week for school and holding on to them has not been easy. sh*t...i completely forgot 6706 still had school when he calls me that he would turn in his p.o.d.'s after his final that was going to start in 3 minutes. all i could do was apologize and wish him luck. since i mentioned 6706 i might as well tell you cats that the poor guy had like 4 flats yesterday and still stuck it out. it was about 16 degrees all day and thats not counting the wind chill factor. i give the man mad love for sticking it out with me. i gave him the option of calling it quits cause Lord knows i would have been so frustrated that i probably would have given up.

i got 6717, 6664, and 6718 to stick around with me on different nights. these cats are usually the first one's in so that means they are the first one out but, like i said, it's hard getting cats to stick around that i had to stretch these soldiers out. again...all i could do was thank them. i keep saying "all i could do" but honestly, i don't forget who rocks out for me. when they want days off...no problem. when they want a moment to rest even if we are busy...no problem. when the work is there...it's all theirs. it's not that i won't spread the love as me and scott usually do but the cats that helped me out when i needed it definitely get some extra affection...ha!

seriously...thank you to everyone who came out to play this past week. i know it wasn't easy. i know im the one sitting in a chair and you cats are the ones doing the hard work. i deal with a different kind of stress but i remember how physically and mentally draining the bike could be. it's just the start of the winter...lets see what happens the rest of the way...peace.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

i like pictures...

when you get a chance...starting monday, christopher dilts will have pictures up at the goldstar from the 2008 naccc's. the man is good at what he does and im constantly stealing pics from him. there isn't a specific opening night but the pics will be up on monday and will last the month of december. don't forget...monday is a good day to visit goldstar...is it 2$ or 3$ drafts? either way...thats a cheap guiness draft...ha! i work down the street so i definitely will pass by. come check out your mug, people you know, or...just some great pics. thanks chris for the heads up.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

start saving up...

thank you moving target for the heads up...

check out the site...cmwc2009. no details yet but the flyer is nice and im sure this will be an event most of us will be talking about for years to come. im gonna start saving up now...peace.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

good job...

as some of you know...the first stage of the irosprint series took place last night at the cobra lounge. i was there for at least 6 or 7 minutes but certain circumstances didn't allow me to stick around. im bummed because it looks like it was a great time...

dude looks intense as hell...

andrew's game face...


once again...chris dilts takes some great pics for us who could not be there. check out more pics from the night here. also...don't forget, this is just the first stage. team beer'd has more to come.

here we go again...

it's that time of year. the time when we lose some and others prove that they are one of us...wait, am i still considered one of us? anyway, on monday december 1st messengers woke up to the beautiful chicago weather...as some of you know...that day was tame in comparison to the "broken record" day...

if you look close you can see the sears tower...tallest building in chicago just behind the middle post. stay dry and stay warm out there...peace.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

only one way in...

some people may or may not know that president-elect obama has his transition headquarters located at 230 south dearborn. there's been an increase in security because of it...not a big deal. messengers are used to dealing with security so this is just an extra annoying step but a very understandable annoying step.

well...we have a client call in a package going to one of the people on the team obama is building. pretty exciting...right?! i send 1168 to take care of the situation...not because he's good or is a vet and knows how things work but because he's a block away from the pick...ha! he gets to the drop and...


j.dot...what up?

1168...this package is undeliverable.

j.dot...umm, okaaay. want to tell me more info?

1168...well, this man at security, also known as the fbi has graciously notified me that the only way this is getting up to those floors is through the united states postal service.

j.dot...ok. i'll give the client a call and let them know it's coming back to them.

...the package goes from being a one-way to being a round trip. more money for the messenger. as a side note, it's good to see that the president-elect and his crew have faith in the u.s.p.s...especially in chicago. our mail in the city is known as some of the worst mailing facilities in the nation...ha!

1168...you should have seen the fbi agent. the man looked like urlacher but bigger.


why should i?

we were sort of busy on the car board but the bike board was lacking a bit of work...i decided to see if we could help them out. not a big deal...we do stuff like that all the time. the car board cleans up and the bikers make more loot. it's a win-win...sort of. anyway, i notice an order says...one piece at eleven pounds. it's coming out of 190 south lasalle and going to 230 south clark...too easy, right? it's only a couple blocks. i call up twenty-one. he's always down for car work and i know the man can handle boxes...


j.dot...what up?

6721...alright, first of all i've been here for like 28 minutes. the messenger center people are rookies and didn't know what to do. second of all, when i finally was escorted up the 1 piece turned into 3 pieces. not only that...there's no way this is 11 pounds. it's more like 100 pounds. umm...i got them, i'll carry them over...

j.dot...what?! umm...you sure you're good? i'll switch it all up for you. i got you on the time and weight and stuff. it's up to you.

...he ends up carrying about 100 pounds to it's destination. when he gets there they notify him that the company moved to another building another block away...wtf?! i know it's just one more block but carrying 100 pounds cannot be fun. so now i have to get him the add stop charge...wrong address means more loot. this order is beginning to shape up pretty profitable for the messenger but he's working alot for the money.

we call up the people sending the order out to notify them of everything...the waiting, the weight, and the wrong address. then the old "why should i pay for car service if you sent a biker?" argument breaks out. this is not good. the client is angry that they are being charged for a car service...completely understandable but...well, it's the way it goes.

first off...the biker still needs to be paid for doing the job. are we gonna charge a bike rate for a 100 pound package?! hell no!! thats ridiculous. what if the client calls in a bike order but the bike board is slammed so we get a driver to take care of a few orders? do we then switch the bike rate to a car rate because we sent a car?! nope. also, if thats the case...the bike board would never help the car board and there's no way we as a whole would hit our numbers/percentages.

it took some convincing but in the end the client understood and the packages were delivered safely. our drivers are good but i've always trusted my crew of bikers to get the job done better and more efficiently. im glad twenty-one got the job done and more importantly...got paid.

Monday, November 24, 2008


i was not in attendance...i apologize. most cats know that i usually say i'll show up and then bounce but i honestly did want to make it to this race in particular. even in my absence the organizers were able to put on a great race...

words from brean...

i counted 48 racers who returned to the finish at adam's garage (thanks again to adam and the cuttin' crew!). a few more people stopped by the party and donated food and money. we raised $90 for the track cats and donated $748.52 worth of food to sister mary of the gospel. she said that god was happy about that, and that all you kids are good people.

the winner of the coveted dan mariner most generous award: padraic spent $56.58. he wins a sweet backpack and $56.58. another person spent $87.42 but didn't go to all the stores.

kevin clark won the race part, in a photo finish with adam h. whiskey chris(what a good guy) came in at third overall. allison p. and christina p. took fourth and fifth overall, and first and second women. emily w. showed her love of active transportation by seizing third place in the women's category.

race report from the winner...

I wont say I was nervous about Cranksgiving as much as I was apprehensive. I hadn't done an alleycat in almost a year. I had actually written the race off before I even started – I just wanted to do my part by donating some food and having a little fun. I rolled up to Navy Pier and saw Andrew right away. I proclaimed my disinterest in the race to him. We started talking about 'cross racing the next day and that made it worse. But, when I got to the line I felt better. I even had a premonition of where the 1st checkpoint Brean was to send us would be. He confirmed my suspicions and said GO! At that point all bets were off.

kevin of team half acre...photo by treesquirrel...

I really didn't want to be too much of a jerk or too unsafe, but I did ride the wrong way down Illinois until McClurg. There I took N. Water under everything and popped up at Kinzie and State. The first store was my old Dominick's at Roosevelt and Canal, so I pushed south on State and made my 2nd "move," which was to ride west in the eastbound bikelane on Roosevelt. This helped me with my left onto Canal and it's also where I converged with a bunch of the other leaders.

Then came my first miscue. There's a gate at the southeastern most point of the parking lot, but it was locked! I hustled back and was in and out pretty fast after that. Upon leaving I saw kids hopping the (tall) gate. Whatever. Once I was south on Canal I thought I was by myself. I kinda eased up on pushing it into the wind here, but by the time I was east on 26th someone had my wheel.

I pulled Adam into the next checkpoint at 35th and King. We both got the same stuff and exited at the same time. Up to this point we were able to leave our bikes in the watch of Salvation Army ringers. I guess he was "bribing" some of them, but I wasn't able to pick up on that at the time.

He and I rode together north on the Drive till it became Cermak to a right on Clark. There we were able to go under Roosevelt and we would take that to Harrison and under the Congress via Franklin. We also had a tailwind at this time and we were cooking. Over the river on Randolph. A half block of Milwaukee on an angle. Fulton, then north on Des Plaines and we were at that new Jewel on top of the Kinzie "hill."

This is were things shook up. There was no one from the Salvation Army (too close to HQ just up the block?). I locked up here but Adam did not. We were both able to get through fast as it was not crowded at all, but by the time I had unlocked and was rolling on Milwaukee towards Ashland he was out of sight.

I was only caught up on MKE at the Augusta off-ramp. When I got to the "Wicker Park Jewel" Adam was there trying to convince a store employee not to let me in via the exit only door. I freelocked here but he had taken his bike in the store with him again. We had to get cookies and there were conveniently located Cakesters right by the self-checkout! (Un-breakable and delicious?) We both got the same things but he was out well before me. He also left his gloves at checkout and I kindly returned them to him (what a guy)! But, I had to take the chain off and put it back around my waist while he sped off.

I was able to catch both the Milwaukee and Division lights when I was south on Ashland, so that helped. By the time I was west on Chicago I could faintly see him. This is where I started gunning it. This is also where I'm pretty sure I ran the only red of the night at Damen. It must've just turned against my favor so I gritted my teeth and "excused" my way across. To get back up and spinning hurt the legs a little, but he and I arrived at the final store at the same time.

Again, Adam decided to forgo locking; leaving his badass LOOK leaning against a wall at Chicago and Western. "To each their own," I thought. I locked up and was able to locate the necessary item before him. At the counter I declared that it was going to be a "sprint for the finish and he agreed," but… because his bike was (thankfully) still there right outside the door and I still had to unlock mine, he was off and getting away.

I gave whatever I had left getting south to Grand as fast as I could. I wasn't going to make the light so I swerved left thorough the liquor store parking lot on the corner. Then I leaned into a hard right onto Oakley and a left for the finish on Hubbard. I wasn't expecting to see Adam in front of me there but I did. He got to the front of the building at least a hundred yards in front of me but was confused as to where the door was. This is where I swept in and opened it first; providing Brean w/ my manifest and opening my bag to display the food items.

adam of team beer'd...

I have to give Adam props; that was a great race. I think his bike is a bit nicer than mine (the wheels are for sure). I would've locked that sh*t up every time! But enough about the race. The real story should be about how Brean and Val and others organized a race for a good and tangible cause (nuns were at the party). And to all the others that came out just to give something back. And to how this proves I could've been one of the greatest messengers ever! Just kidding… don't hate me!

how the hell did you people let a sox fan win?! this is outrageous!! not only that...he isn't even a messenger...wtf?!!

all kidding aside, good job to everyone who was there. good job to the race organizers brean and val. from what it sounds like...the whole event was a huge success and even better...it was fun. don't forget...the december irosprints are coming up and thats for a good cause also...messengers!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

some good people...

well...after posting all the sillyness with the hit-n-run i get a some good news...first, i might be able to get my hands on a bike for phillip. the man needs to get back on the street and make his loot. second...there's an irosprints(goldsprints) series for the month of december and it benefits the bicycle emergency fund...

IRO Sprints - Cobra Lounge- Mondays in December 2008 from Matthew on Vimeo.
six main facts about the irosprints...

1) Each night will have slightly different rules, but the rules will
not be different enough to affect your time
2) On one night there will be team relays, 2v2.
3) On one night there will be a guitarist playing speed metal while you race.
4) There will be a frame given away to the overall fastest time, male and female.
5) There will be a tournament each night for the other prizes.\
6) all proceeds go to benefit the Bicycle Messenger Emergency fund

this will hopefully bring some fun to these cold winter days. have i mentioned it's been getting really, really cold here in chicago? high 30's is no cake walk...peace.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

some info...

alright...i posted a couple days ago about a messenger getting hit. although i have spoken to the people that work for the company the details are still somewhat uncertain. he did show up to work yesterday...is he walking? yes. is he ok? nope. he's walking around with a mask covering his mouth cause it's pretty f*cked up and he's a bit embarrassed by it...understandable.

his name is phillip jordan. super cool cat. i can't remember if he started when i was still messengering or if he came in as i transitioned into dispatch. what i do remember is that the man is cool people. always was upbeat and nothing got him down. i remember dispatching him and watching the man get faster and faster. he would show up every day and just work. never complained. im sure there were times he did want to but it never showed and he never did. like i said...always upbeat. even now, after the accident he shows up to his base, and although still hurting, tries to figure out a way to come back to work...wtf?!

not sure if he only needs wheels or a bike but i will do my best to provide him with the loot to get what he needs to get back out there. he never road anything fancy or crazy expensive...always comfortable beater bikes. im sure i/we can dig something up for him. if anyone has anything laying around...hit me up...jcs@juliosaravia.com. he's about 5'9" or so.

like i said...im still shady on the details but i know it happened on lower wacker involving a cab and a limo...both were gone after the accident. hit-n-run at it's finest...f*ck! even then...phillip is upbeat...peace.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

cranksgiving '08...

details from brean...

If you're not familiar with this race, it takes place the weekend before Thanksgiving. There's no registration fee, but you're going to need to bring cash with you, because the checkpoints are all grocery stores. At these grocery stores, you're going to have to leave your bike outside, run in, and purchase a specified food item. A bag & a lock is absolutely essential! Once you've collected all of the food items and have finished the race, we do a group ride to drop off all of our donations. Keep all of your receipts, because I'm going to check them to make sure you made it to each of the checkpoints.

God willing, we will again be donating our food to Fraternite Notre Dame, a society of charitable french nuns who help needy people in Chicagao and around the world. The nuns really appreciate our donations and rely upon them to plan and make their holiday meals for those in need.

Therefore, food must be brought back in useable and presentable condition. I am reall strict about this.

Also, you must have receipts. I pick stores that time stamp and itemize their receipts, and I check them all. No stealing.

No working with others, eiither. This is an individual event. You must go in and buy your own stuff, and you may not have someone watching your bike.

a normal bag should do for the minimum amount. i work with Sister Mary of the Gospel in putting together a menu that is manageable. i also try to give the racers a vegan option.

i am trying to make it so that you will be able to drop off food at the afterparty or to the sisters. i am not yet sure if they will be meeting us with a van at the afterparty or at another location.

i consider cranksgiving to be a true alleycat (it was designed by tone, a messenger in new york, in the 90's to be an alleycat event in which messengers could feel good about giving. as the number of messengers declined, tone opened up the event to "civilians.") so, in keeping with that spirit, you will not know the distance of the race. it will be a mystery even as you start the race. but don't worry. it will be between 3 and 53 miles long.

even though cranksgiving is not focused on messengers anymore, you are still going to have to think and act like a messenger. you will have to plan your route on the go, you will have to think fast while you deal with clueless people (and you should be polite as possible), and you will have to be safe --messengers know their limits or they don't last long.

it's a real race, but you don't have to be overly competitive in it. it's for charity. you are doing good by participating. winning should be third on the list of priorities (safety, charity, winning). the prizes aren't that great, anyway. look at the flyer --do you see any sponsors?

but, within the bounds of safety and charity, be as competitive as you feel safe with. here's a story: at the 2005 cranksgiving, andy white came in first, and i followed seconds later, with ken coming in a few seconds behind me. then ken handed andy the sack of potatoes he had dropped while unlocking his bike. if ken hadn't stopped to pick up the potatoes, andy would have been dq'd, and ken would probably have beaten me and won the whole thing.

don't be ken.

see you cats there...rain, shine, or hungover...peace.

Friday, November 14, 2008

shady on the details...

yesterday a messenger from standard courier got hit. not sure on the details as to how or what happened. from what i hear is that he was involved in a hit-n-run with a limo on lower wacker. not sure how true that is...what is true is that the man is in the hospital. what hospital? still waiting to hear on that. from my understanding the accident was a bit more serious than expected...the messengers face is messed up. not sure what that means either but i know it's not good. there was blood everywhere and apparently he may have broken vertabrea...holy sh*t!!

i don't know the messengers number but his name is phillip. lets keep him in our prayers and as soon as i hear anything i'll let everyone know...peace.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

keep it to yourself...

it was already after 1700 when we heard a city board messenger call...meaning driver...

driver...man. i just got hit by a biker.

car dispatch...what?!

driver...not me personally but this biker just scrapped the side of my car and took my mirror off.

...the first thought i had was maybe it was another case of biker versus driver and the biker took his frustrations out. this wasn't the case. the biker was a food delivery messenger working late. no big deal except for the fact that he was apparently riding like a maniac. i know, i know...i just got done posting about how messengers ride crazy cause of specific circumstances but i just didn't think the same would go for food delivery...unless im wrong? i would imagine that taking it light would be better so that food doesn't get ruined...again, i might be wrong so please, don't hesitate to correct me. also, this story comes from one of our drivers...he's a good guy but not sure how exaggerated the story may or may not be.

in any case...they discussed this story the next day when the driver came into base to fill out a report with HR. no big deal...it was crazy to hear that he got over $1700.oo in damage to his car by a bike...wtf?! btw, the biker was fine according to the driver. obviously hurt but ok..."he was just sitting there stunned more than anything". they go on and on...

driver...i don't get it. some of these guys are quick to want to get life over with.

car dispatch...yeah. some of them ride crazy. just gotta be careful.

driver...i know. what am i supposed to do. these guys can get hurt or even die.

car dispatch...some of them do.

...then, one of the suburban dispatchers says, right under his breath..."not enough". wtf?!?! i could not believe the man just said that. i wanted to get up and just start beating on him till my hands went numb and then start kicking him till i couldn't walk. i turn around and look at him...

j.dot...what did you just say?

sub.dispatch...(with a smirk on his face)oh, did i say that out loud?

j.dot...you did. do me a favor, keep those type of comments to yourself.

...after that we didn't speak another word to each other. sh*t, even the next day we didn't. i wonder what today will bring. im sure it'll blow over but im still kinda pissed off at him for the comment. im all for joking around but the man was being serious and that f*cking smirk just made me want to beat the living sh*t out of him. i damn near walked outside to smart smoking again. luckily i went to my other bad habbit and pounded a diet pop...ha!

like i said...im sure everything will be fine, just a bit annoyed by the statement is all. also, don't applaud the no smoking thing...sure i have a month and 2 days under my belt but it's also about the 9th time i quit this year. f*ck...now i feel like smoking...peace.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

random thought...

when i used to work as a bicycle messenger i would do my best to get the work done quick. blaze through lights, hop on curbs, break through alleys, ignore stop signs, and so on...i know, i know, what are you thinking? well, i was only thinking...i need this package off so i can get more work. more work equals more money...after all, this bizz is all about commission. sure, there are companies that pay hourly but not many...even then, it's sorta like getting paid salary. they can work you as hard as they want and you'll still just make the same amount of loot daily. it works out on slow days but on busy days...commission is the sh*t!

anyway, back to the thought i want to get to. flying through the city it is inevitable that you will piss-off quite a few people. whether it's a cab, bus, pedestrian, and so on. cuttin' cars and near accidents will happen...well, accidents happen as well. even though cats are flying through city traffic i would say that most of the accidents caused are 70/30...70 being pedestrians. obviously this is just my opinion and im sure others will disagree but im ok with that...ha!

that being said, i remember one of my main fears was stepping off the elevator and just before getting a signature for a delivery, the cat i just pissed off for cutting off is coming in. does that make sense? my crew is flying through traffic making people angry but those very same people that are getting angry are the ones requesting deliveries. many, many people complain about messengers being dangerous and inconsiderate. what about the clients? we have a half-hour delivery service. messengers have to deal with security and freight elevators at buildings. then you want these cats to obey the traffic laws yet make the packages on time?! thats not how it works...many/most clients call up wanting packages delivered "yesterday". maybe they're putting in a bid, maybe they need to make a filling deadline, maybe the rent check is do at exactly 1300 and no later, maybe...well, you get the idea.

clients constantly call to request our fastest service cause they goofed up. then they take off to lunch and while at lunch they almost get run over by a messenger. they get angry as hell forgetting that they just placed an order to be delivered "NOW"...not good. im not saying any of this has actually happened to me or anyone in my crew it was just a random thought i had. the fastest service is the most expensive service but can be difficult to be delivered in the time frame if the laws were obeyed. i never, ever tell my crew to disobey the laws to get sh*t done...thats on them. i also make sure to let them know that although i need a package delivered quick...packages do not outweigh life. that being said, most cats hear the words "solo"(our fastest half-hour service) and they blaze...why? one...cause it pays. two...cause the quicker you run it the quicker you clean up with the possibility of having more solos coming your way.

not only that...it's considered good customer service to rock out the packages fast. the faster you are the more work the company will dish out...the problem with that is that then they expect the same fast service all the time. then you run into variables...weather, traffic, and so on. it's impossible to provide the exact same service 100% of the time. too many intangibles for that noise. you mess up once and you run the risk of of losing the account...sh*t, many, many clients call threatening to use other services. guess what people...they have the same problems we deal with. some clients demand a service reduction if the package is about 2 or 5 minutes late...wtf?! you have got to be kidding...my soldier just road his as* off and put him/herself in danger for you to downgrade the package? silly clients.

it's crazy when you think about it...traffic laws cannot be obeyed all while trying to make enough to get through another week and, most importantly, while trying to get the job done on time...ha! all im saying is next time you're in the downtown area think twice before snapping off at messengers...they are just doing their job...even if it means breaking the law. ride hard and ride safe...remember, no package is worth it...peace.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

black president...

november 4th, 2008 was a long, long, long day. i had to make my way into work earlier than usual cause the other bike dispatcher took the day off. it is/was a big day for american politics...presidential election. there were two ways i figured the day would go...either it will be busy as hell from the get go and then die around 1500 or it would just be dead all day. again, the reason for either one of these scenarios would be because history was about to be made.

i show up to work and there is no work. 18 out of 20 messengers decided to show up on a super slooooow day. companies throughout chicago have taken the day off or are closing early to give people a chance to attend the madness at grant park or at least witness history via television. so now what do i do? i dish out work one at a time...can't really load cats up with doubles or sets cause i have to spread the love. i could tell cats were getting pissed...i don't blame them. as usual i try my best to spread the love all while anxious to get out of work...i was one of many that was able to get my hands on tickets to the event.

i start letting cats go home around 1400 and little by little im left with just a handful of riders...honestly, even that was way too many. the managers at work started freaking out cause cars would not be allowed in the loop area...how are we supposed to pull or drop packages after 1500?! well, i have messengers out there until six so we're covered till then but then i call one of your riders who i let go home early...

j.dot...seventeen, seventeen.

6717...hey, whats up?

j.dot...yo, can you do us a favor? we need someone to stay super late because of the rally. they'll start paying hourly after 1800...you in?

6717...yup, let me see if i can get someone to cover my shift at my other job.

...many thank you's to 17 for coming out from six to midnight. i know, i know...it was paying hourly and worth it but still can be very annoying. on another note...

november 4th, 2008...

i made it to the event of my lifetime...i felt honored and proud to be present while history was happening. today at work when 6758 checked in i apologized to him...

j.dot...yo kid. sorry for abandoning you yesterday. i had tickets to see obama and was getting anxious to go.

6752...o.man.it's cool. we have barrack obama and thats all the matters.

...i couldn't say it better myself...peace.

Monday, November 3, 2008

novermber 4th, 2008...

...tomorrow is gonna be crazy. streets will be shut down and companies will be closing early. security is at an all time high...work will be bananas. i'll report how tomorrow's events affect dispatching and my crew but for now this is just a friendly reminder...don't forget to vote!!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


well, i got word of this video from a couple of my messengers...thanks twenty-one! there's a few cameo's from chicago's soldiers. it's no surprise that dre got the biggest interview...he loves to talk...ha! 6646 is in the background with the yellow shirt, beard, and no helmet!?! silly four-six. also, i remember emily from cbf telling us about this story ways back but never saw it...looking good lady. anywhoo, ride safe people...peace.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

buses, tables, and prank calls...

the day was going fine. we were kinda busy but everything was flowing just about right. i had a couple runs on the west end of the loop but i knew 6721 was around the area and the man is good so i wasn't too worried. i noticed he was taking a bit longer than i had expected...i usually can tell how messengers are flowing. you work with these cats long enough you know how long deliveries take them and you begin to realize how much you can push them. 6721 is one of those cats that i can load up and call in between drops to reload.

i started to wonder what was going on...building delay, stop to take a breather, got hit? i call him but no response...i tried a few times but nothing. well, what do i do? im not out there and not sure exactly what route he is taking so i can' tell cats to check on him...i decide to wait it out. im sure everything is fine and i'll hear from him soon enough.

a few minutes go by and i get the call...


j.dot...yoooooo, what up?

6721...im sorry im taking forever. this bus almost hit me. it pushed me all the way to the curb and i had to jump off the bike. im a bit shook up...i just needed a minute.

j.dot...o.man.umm...do you need longer? i understand if you do.

6721...naw, i think im ok now. the lady didn't even apologize. she said she honked her horn and that should have been enough.

j.dot...that sucks kid. like i said, if you need more time just let me know.

...he decided to keep rocking and after the jitters went away he as back to his usual self. it sucks...our soldiers constantly have to deal with buses or cabs or just cars in general that don't realize that their vehicle is much bigger and more dangerous than a bicycle. it always amazes me how many messengers deal with near injury/death and just continue to rock as if it didn't happen.

the same day i had 6706 head over to 1 south wack to help the car board...it was slowing down a bit and the order said it was one piece at 11 pounds. 11 pounds?! thats nothing...i know 6706 can handle that noise.

6706...o-6, o-6

j.dot...what up kid?

6706...yo maaan, this thing is a table. umm...it's got wheels though and the drop is just up the street. i can take it if you want?

j.dot...umm, well...the car board is slammed. well, if you promise me that the table wont be damaged and you'll be careful i say take it.

6706...no problem. the table doesn't look like it's in great shape anyway.

...i told him to put it on his back anyway but i doubt he did. although, i should state that i've given the man all kinds of heavy sh*t and he's rocked it without hesitation and/or problems. again, im amazed the stuff messengers deliver sometimes. in no way should he or anyone else be delivering tables or printer size boxes via bicycle but if the money is right...these cats will do the job.

one last thing...lately we've been getting hit with a prank caller. it's no big deal cause the cat only talks to the ladies. something about he'll wear an apron, cook, clean, and do anything they want. if he misbehaves they can spank him. i thought it was quite funny...disturbing but funny. i know everyone at the base appreciated the call...you know, as long as the cat doesn't show up to work it's funny...ha!

sometimes, people in general amaze me...the things that they will do or say...i know, i said one last thing but i'll leave you cats with this...it snowed in certain parts of the chicagoland area...SNOWED!! wtf?! here we go...peace.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


yup...i called in sick today. it's that time of year...flu and colds hit everyone, especially in our office conditions. im sure scott was able to take care of business in my absence. i hope when i wake up in the morning all i have is a soar throat so that i am able to get back to work. the pocket is running kinda thin...ha! anyway, i don't have anything to report but i did get a hello from a familiar face. o.b.1. has dropped me a line and has sent us yet another video all the way from colombia...

i've always enjoyed his vids...simon, he's in columbia. how come you can't get your hands on a track bike? silly venezuela.

smack in the middle there's a nice trick portion. anyway, o.b.1. are you cats flying up and down the express way?!?! holy sh*t! always good to hear from you...peace.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

what to do...


j.dot...what-up, what-up?

6752...is it slow right now?

j.dot...yeah but i was just about to call you. why? whats up?

6752...umm, nothing really. just wanted to go do some early voting.

...it's a double edge sword for me. i want the man to vote cause it's one of the most important elections of my life but i also want to give him this round trip to put cash in his pocket. i/we decide voting can wait a few minutes...i send him the r/t and as soon as he's done we're still slow enough for him to do his american duty...ha! seriously folks...there's exactly two weeks left...it doesn't matter who you vote for as long as you do...

image from hipster nascar...he's got all the proper links.

well...i guess it matters a little bit. vote obama...peace.

Saturday, October 18, 2008


do you cats have any idea how hard it is to get people to interview?! it's like pulling teeth. i was planning on doing an interview once a month but that didn't quite work out. thats right...im looking at you forty. i forgot that the only thing messengers are fast at is delivering packages and drinking...ha! just jazzin' people...don't take that one to heart. anyway, this last interview forty-one radios me...

1141...im finished with your little questions. umm, they're all one word answers...(slight laugh), actually the questions are kinda boring.

j.dot...it doesn't matter bro. just let me get it. it's not a big deal.

...kinda boring?!! actually, they are kinda boring. im not good at this interview sh*t. i should start asking questions like..."who's the hottest receptionist?" or something like that. anyway, if any of you cats have suggestions that would be great. now, without further bitching...i present to you...1141...

1.why did you decide to messenger?

needed a job. liked to ride!

2.when did you start? has the time been off/on or straight?


3.what bike did you start on? what do you ride today?

trek road bike...kona cross bike.

4.you've seen many come and go, any stick out in your mind?

vince & gumbis(i can't understand the mans writting...ha! i'll find out what the names are).

5.what your greatest day messengering? worst?

all pretty much the same!

6.if you weren't messengering what would you be doing?

"you want fries with that!"

7.you've been around for a while, what kind of changes have you seen for this industry?

less paper, more technology! tighter security! post 9-11.

8.what kind of changes would you like to see?

more benefits!

9.if you had only one drink...what would it be?

root beerfloat

10.advice for rookies?

don't get killed!

...there you have it. a man of very, very, very few words. i would have thought it would be the opposite the way he talks on the radio(that joke is for scott). gotta say, the answers make alot of sense. i wish i had a picture of him but not only is he a man of few words but he's also very shy...awww! hey, forty-one, whats with the quotation marks after all the answers? i ask but don't expect the answwer...the man is ol'school and doesn't believe in computers...o.man, im a jerk!

anyway, he's been around for 15 years and knows his sh*t. he's our main city board biker...we could run him anywhere in the city. he's also a giant man so i hope my sillyness hasn't offended him cause the last thing i need is forty-one angry at me. well, thank you forty-one...although short, your input is actually right on...peace.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

only the strong...

well, the weather is changing. it rained today. it was cold today. it was busy today. we had one cat come in to apply today...wtf?! he's been around for a minute and probably understands that messengers that show up to apply in this weather usually get hired. as for our crew...they did their thing. hustling from package to package as if it wasn't cold and wet out. i know most of them will tough it out this year but i always wonder who will stay and who will go. who will decide...this is the last year. as long as we stay busy most cats will stay and play.

thank you to all our crew today...we got our as*es handed to us. work all over the city on a crappy day. then again, i should have known...most busy days are crappy weather wise...peace.

no love...

yet again the car board gets all the love. we have guests come in and as they make their way into our office they immediately notice that the bike board has run 88 and 89% in the past couple of days and the city board has run 92 and 95%. now what they don't see is that monday was a holiday so some cats took the day off and some cats left early leaving me to handle the late rush with half-a-crew. even scott left me...in all fairness we had no idea it would all of a sudden pick up. he wouldn't leave unless we were super slow...unlike me(ha!).

i was left to deal with solo after solo cause companies were trying to get last minute deliveries done before other companies closed. one company in particular called in 16 solo's...this means 16 orders that all have to be done in a half hour...wtf?! i call up five-two cause he's holding a hat trick headed north. i dish him 3 solos going in his direction. 6721 is cleaning up around cityfront so i tell him to hustle over the river to pick-up five going southwest...the solos are popping out of 233 north michigan. im running out of options when 6718 calls me at the mart holding a jackson. i run him all the way across for a set of five going right where his jackson is headed...i didnt feel so bad running him across cause at least they are solos and they are going with the one he's holding. 6731 is holding a mart around 20 mich...perfect..."go grab the rest headed towards the apparel center". right next door to the mart...voila.

when it flows right it feels soooo good. not all the packages made it on time but it sure was close. the day we got 89% well, there were over 750 orders on that day with over 350 orders on the bike board...oh yeah, almost forgot, on both days we helped the car board.

as usual i always thank my crew for the hustle. especially on the days when i run them wild. i know its not me out there and the least i can do is thank them for hustling. i also know that good dispatching makes the day flow just right...ha! look at me...making myself look good again...peace.

Saturday, October 11, 2008


why do messengers have to shave? seriously. san francisco has 15 minute runs?! holy sh*t! there's no way we could do that. it's funny how clients want work done fast but at the same time messengers are supposed to obey traffic laws.

...if you watch closely you'll see a guest appearance from joey love.

ok...so i know most of you probably have seen these videos but they're new to me and i thought they were funny. "the greek" is a funny dude. f*cking ladies on the 15th floor...come on! give me a break. did you guys hear the rates?! holy sh*t...messenger were rich as f*ck back in the day? the x-men are a badass crew...joey love migrated to chicago and still is the best cling-on i have ever seen. i saw that dude hook off of one skitch going west and then right into another going north...that sh*t was bananas. the dispatcher dude is funny as hell to...we're not all jaded the way he is...wait, we might be?

oh yeah...thank you messmedia.org for keeping these vids up for us to view. after watching them...maybe messengering isn't just a job?

in the end...

friday was much different than thursday was. the crew all came out to play. even two-nine who sometimes doesn't show up and when he does he shows up at ten, one, two, well...you get where im going with that one, showed up bright and early around 8ish. it was nice to have everyone especially cause we had a pretty busy day on our hands. it wasn't an insanely busy day but it was steady...i love steady. keeps the crew moving and prevents me from looking at my fantasy football page for the 23rd time in a day.

the weather was great, the work flowed, we were even able to help out the car board and give our guys some of that loot. oh yeah, today, oct. 11th, 2008 is my birthday. we celebrated yesterday which is another reason why yesterday was so nice. also, friday is payday and the start of the weekend. things could not have gone better to kick off my b-day celebration.

well, enough about me(ha!)...i invited some messengers to come out and join me in celebration. i even told 5-8 who i have only known now for about two weeks or so to come thru...im glad i did. the man is a rookie and it was cool talking to him about the job. he has no idea what an alley-cat is, no idea that there are national messenger championships let alone, world messenger championships. he literally just views this job as...well, a job. huh?!

he goes to school on the far northwest side of chicago and bikes in right after school. he's a late start but will stay late with me. he also has class at night on certain days so he bikes in from school...works...then bikes back to school. holy sh*t! thats dedication. he wants to get faster so that he can make more money. he notices cats are starting to say hello to him but doesn't really think much of it...it's cool. he's lost his radio, keys, and had a bike stolen already but he's still needs a job so he keeps trucking. i should state that his keys and radio were found.

it's refreshing to talk to a cat like this because in the end this is just a job. sure it's one of the more dangerous jobs out there but it's still just a job. it's a means to an end. all my bitching and moaning about cats not showing up, irate customers, angry bosses, and stuff like that is just part of the job. i asked him why he decided to messenger which is something i ask alot of cats and he simply responds..."i just needed a job". he's not pissed off at the world...yet. i've seen many come in with this mentality...let's see how long it holds up. if this industry comes close to breaking him im going to try and remind him that this is just a job...peace.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

what about the dispatcher?

well...as you may or may not know, today was bike messenger appreciation day. our company set up a basket with apples, candy, chocolate, and silly stuff like that for the cats that came to work. not much but a nice gesture. i punched in and made my way to my desk and logged into my computer.

everything seemed ok until i logged on to the bike board...wtf?!! work all over the place with the first page of work slowly making itself red. whats red? red is bad...very bad. it doesn't quite mean that it's late but it definitely doesn't mean we have a great chance of making the package on time. turns out that most of the crew decided to take messenger appreciation day as a holiday. from 8 to 11 or so we had about 4 cats...thats right FOUR! the car board was asking us for helpers and all we did was laugh at them. do you people know how big chicago is?! you can't cover the damn city with only four bikers. thats just ridiculous.

well, there we were, patiently sitting and waiting for our riders to show up. minutes turned into hours and nothing. thank God we at least had four cats to work with...at about 9ish i got a call from 6706...

6706...o-6, o-6.

j.dot...yo, what up? good morning.

6706...hey, im good to go at the thompson center. i just finished being appreciated.

...after he called me i was hoping the rest of the crew was taking advantage of the breakfast cdot set up for the bike messengers of chicago. that wasn't the case. o-6 took advantage of it but the rest...well, they f*cked us over. turns out bike messenger appreciation day = f*ck your dispatcher as hard as possible day. slowly the calls started coming in..."where's my package? when are they going to pick up my package? whats going on today?" we had no answers except to let everyone know that we were short staffed today.

well, we did what we could with the soldiers that showed up to play in traffic. slowly they started showing up but only because management started calling them at home...ha! i didn't tell them to call them but they knew we were in trouble if we didn't. im glad they did. by 1400 we finally leveled out. work slowed up again and instead of it being crazy it was just steady. we were even able to help the car board out a bit.

sometimes i love my crew but today wasn't one of those days. today the love/hate struggle with messengers continued. i won't forget the cats that showed up to help. i also won't forget the cats that showed up late or didn't show up. it doesn't make any sense...it was beautiful out. not too hot, not too cold, sun shinning, and, well, perfect. i should have known by the weather that something was wrong. for now i leave you today...not with my usual "peace" but with...

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

now thats appreciation...

it's official...from the mayor himself...

click on pic to enlarge...

sure they have a nice breakfast set up but somehow a cold brew after work always tasted better...

Why? Because 10-9 is the radio code for “please repeat” and messengers should be appreciated for their year-round work.

Bike messenger appreciation will start with free breakfast from 8 to 9 a.m. at the Thompson Center courtesy of Mayor Daley and the City of Chicago. The Chicagoland Bicycle Federation will host a happy hour after work at Mother Hubbard’s (State/Hubbard) where the first 150 messengers who show their company ID will receive a free beer.

Spread the word to any messengers you know about these events and that you appreciate their work!

thank you cbf but lets hope my crew doesn't get too happy...we still have to work on friday...peace.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

old news...new...

well, i talked about an anti-dooring campaign that chicago had started a while back. well...they are trying to make another run with a new and improved sticker to spread the news about looking out for cyclist...

once again i must thank the cbf and especially chris ege(spelling?) for the heads up on this. i posted it and saw the stickers throughout chicago and was wondering if it would continue. it's cool to know that it has. thank you to any and all for this campaign...for more info visit their site at anti-dooring.org. remember people, keep two eyes on the road at all times. especially in the downtown areas...my soldiers are out there trying to make a living...peace.

Monday, October 6, 2008

bike messenger appreciation day...

you know...every year i feel like it happens on a different date. sh*t...i thought this was in the summer...is there more than one? in any case...cdot have put together a nice breakfast for chicago messengers...

...so far it looks like it's shaping up to be nice messenger appreciation day. you know, weather wise...lets hope that keeps up. i hope our crew knows how much me and scott look out for them and appreciate all their work on a daily basis. sh*t...i wouldn't have a job without you cats out there. you guys are truly "the wind beneath our wings"...

In messenger radio code, 10/9 means repeat the message. This week, 10/9 meant the start of Messenger Courier Appreciation Week, a time to recognize the contributions of a group that more often than not is criticized for its traffic-dodging, stoplight-running and pedestrian-frightening ways.

...the rest of the article could be found at messmedia. btw...you take your chances saying "happy messenger day" to messengers. some will say thank you. some will look at you funny. some will tell you to f*ck off. in my opinion...just give them a dollar to show your appreciation...ha!

thank you to steve vance and emily willobee(did i spell your name right?) for the heads up on the breakfast and their hard work at the chicago bike federation...peace.

Friday, October 3, 2008

i don't want trouble but...

this story is pretty good. at least i think so. anywhoo, this doesn't have to do anything with bicycles but it does pertain to messengers. we received a call for a car run...pick up in fond du lac, wisconsin or somewhere way up there. i don't remember the actual place but it's probably best. well...it's a cash call and it's paying very good money. the man agrees to the price and now we have to figure out how the hell we're going to get a driver to go all the way there. i guess it isn't hard but you have to be willing to lose the driver for the rest of the day cause it's a long a$$ drive.

they call up 6518 and give him the news. he gladly accepts it because he knows the pay will be worth it. cool...no big deal. he heads out for the pick up but it's getting really late in the day. calls begin to go back and forth with the person who placed the the order. he wanted the package to come to our base and he would pick it up around 3am or so. not a big deal because there's someone at the building at any given hour...we're a 24hr, 365 days a year, operation. time goes on and a few more phone calls begin to take place...this time, it wasn't the man who placed the order on the other line.

the dispatcher on staff at the time had no idea what was happening. she was under the impression that this order was like any other pain in the butt cash order...ugh! well, come to find out...the people that were calling the base to check on this order were part of a national law enforcement agency...i rather not say which one but while on my honeymoon i saw a shirt that said...Female Body Inspector(*wink-wink*). well, it turns out they thought the actual person who placed the order would be the one showing up to pick up the package. when they saw that it was one of our guys they immediately called our company to see what we were doing with it and where it was going. they didn't question the driver...instead they kept the whole thing going as if nothing was happening.

well...some of them showed up to the base to get more details. they sat inside with our dispatcher telling her that this whole thing was part of some sting operation to bust a credit fraud thief for some sh*t. while they sat in the office talking to the dispatcher there were others following the package down from wisconsin. our driver had no idea...

agent...can i ask you something?


agent...is it common for your drivers to get off the highway?

dispatcher...what? sure? you know, sometimes they need a bite to eat, they get sleepy and want some coffee, they need to use the bathroom, they need gas...there's a bunch of reasons, why?

...they were tailing our driver the entire way all while keeping communication with the cat that was at base with our dispatcher. holy sh*t!! this is the type of sillyness you see on t.v...how exciting?!?! anyway, the agents want our dispatcher to see if she could get the man who placed the call to come to our base sooner rather than later. she calls him and notifies him that the building will shut down at midnight and it would be in his best interest to come and get the package. he argued that he was told he come and get it whenever but the dispatcher quickly convinced him that he was given the wrong info.

well...time goes by and the driver pulls up. the package is at base and the man is coming to get his order. the agents want the dispatcher to keep him busy inside the building while they tag the car...wtf?! what the hell is she supposed to do? offer the man coffee? anyway, she takes her time with the receipt for the cash call but the agents don't do a very good job or something goes wrong. they are under the impression that the person who has arrived to pick up the package isn't who they want but somehow the dispatcher convinces them that it is. so now...she gets him to come back inside while they set up...he comes out and they all run and arrest the guy.

dispatcher...i felt so bad. the kid was so stupid. there's no way he was older than 25...wtf is he thinking? ugh...it was exciting. the agents asked me how im so good at this and i said, "i watch alot of csi".

God i love t.v...peace.

Monday, September 29, 2008

cold + rain = no show...

i usually come in about an hour after the other bike dispatcher shows up. some days cats will call me right away and sometimes it takes a while for them to check in with me. not a big deal...we're both very capable of handling the board. today...well, there weren't many bikers to share.

why? maybe it was cause the bears played the sunday night game? maybe people are trying to get a jump on playoff tickets to watch my cubbies play? maybe personal emergencies? maybe...well, lets face it...it was raining and cold. who the f*ck wants to work in that?! we had about 14 cats check in but it is a deceiving 14. 2 are rookies...1 of them isn't soooo much a rookie but he's new to our company and from the looks of things, not the fastest. 1 cat shows up late cause of school. 3 are walkers so they don't play a huge role in helping clear the board up quick and efficient. have you been doing the math? that leaves us with 9 to 10 cats to work with on a cold and rainy day.

funny thing about these days...the staff gets low and the work starts to pile up. clients call in solo after solo(fastest service). i didn't have time to give cats time to relax. it wasn't till about 1615 or so that i was able to say..."stand by". thank you to all my crew that did show up to help us out. i know it wasn't easy today but me and scott don't forget the cats that show up to play. the days of summer have left us. cold days ahead and trying to keep a crew happy gets hard. sure there's work but first you have to convince yourself that working in a rainy cold day is worth doing. as 1168 puts it...

"it can only get worse before it gets better"...peace.

Sunday, September 28, 2008


i've passed out a few here and there but now you can get some at yojimbo's...

wait...does anyone even want any? oh wells...peace.

Friday, September 26, 2008

that sucks...

well...the week was kind of slow. it had it's moments...mainly cause cats have been showing up randomly and not as scheduled. it sucks for us, meaning the dispatchers, cause we have to clean up the board but without a proper crew even ten runs seems like alot. eh...it happens from time to time and with work being slow i understand cats not really wanting to show up to work. actually, it's funny how it works sometimes...some cats won't show cause they need a day off for when it's busy and sometimes they don't show cause of how slow it's been and they need a day off to just think sh*t out.

the point of this post wasn't really to complain but i figure i would throw some in just cause i still belong to the messenger community and if there is something we're good at it's complaining. that being said, i got a call from 6646 the other day...


j.dot...what up?

6646...man, you won't believe the last half-hour or so i just had. i don't know what happened. for now, let me get you these p.o.d.'s

j.dot...so, what happened?

6646...first this man almost doored me and we got into a yelling match. he threatened to kill me or something. then as im coming into the alley for 135 this construction worker pulls me off my bike, literally. he points up to the air at something saying i should be careful but when i look i don't see anything. anyway, my phone fell and fucked up for a minute.

...honestly, what do i tell him? poor kid. i laugh because...well, it was funny when he told me the story and i reacted. i did ask him if he would like some time to chill cause i don't want a biker out there all pissed at the world and stuff. thats when most accidents happen or when cats get banned from buildings for taking their anger out on some security guard...not good.

today i got a call from 6706 around 1500...i think. anyway, all i hear is, "i got doored"...sh*t! here's one of my good guys from the crew going down. not that there not all good but this cat is pretty damn fast...

6706...yeah, im ok but i have to take care of this.

j.dot...you sure your ok? umm...well, how's the bike?

6706...the wheel is a taco but yeah, im good.

j.dot...alright, get all the info. i believe you get 24 hrs to make a report of an accident. so take care of that and make sure you get an estimate. then call up the person who hit you and call them up and see if they want you to file with the insurance or if they rather pay out of pocket.

...i try to do my best to tell cats what to do but ultimately it's up to them. the main reason i tell cats what moves to make is cause after an accident they're probably not thinking straight...rightfully so. he tells me he's going to jump on the bus and take care of his bike situation...if he can. i hear from him later that all is well...sort of. bike is still down but he's ticking and still ok and the bike can be prepared...no damage to frame which is always good. new wheel and fork or some sh*t...im sure everything will be fine with the whole situation. as long as cats walk away from accidents it's always a good day.

eh...actually, it still kind of sucks...peace.