Wednesday, July 2, 2008

the working cyclist

I haven't posted here in a month or two, which is too long. I was busy moving across the continent is all. But anyway I'm in New York now and I want to chronicle if anything interesting happens.

I got a job as a messenger last week. --Everyone I've told has been surprised. How did you do that, you don't even know your way around? And it's true, I don't know my way around, but I didn't tell the courier company that. I think they just needed bodies. I mean, I walked in and got hired the same day. Also I don't think it pays that much. Not to mention it's dangerous.

And after a week and a half now I feel I'm finding a bit of a groove. Navigating my way around a little better and learning tricks to save time. Today I had "direct rush." from somewhere around W 25 or so to 161 6th Ave. I knocked it out right away, and when the dispatcher called to give me another delivery going that way he was surprised that I had already dropped the first one off and said something like "man, you're good." --So that was kind of nice.

I admit I was a bit naive when I first started. I would do things like figure out which streets were one-way east, and which were one-way west, and then I'd circle the block to make deliveries. Yeah, that M.O. lasted about two days. --You have to sometimes go the wrong way, or you'd never get anything done. It's not a first option, but it can be perfectly safe, as long as you don't forget that you're going the wrong way.
The cops here don't give a rip, either. You can run red lights all day long, they don't care. In Portland, the police have nothing to do, so they waste time harassing cyclists. If you run a red light, the whole town would have a fit. There would be a huge discussion on, or the shift email list. Don't believe me? Here's an example. In Manhattan, the police have bigger fish to fry. --I don't mean to talk trash about Portland. I love Portland, but that's just the way things are.

Also, for a while I was trying to imitate a NY accent. --Just for fun. But then today some guy said, "Where's your accent from? Is that Polish?" I think from now on I'll just talk like a normal Oregonian.

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