Friday, May 11, 2012

You may be a bike messenger if...

1. your day involves dashing into various print shops to pick up fliers, posters, and banners and then transporting them across town on your bicycle.
2. you find yourself hurtling downtown in rush hour traffic on a Friday afternoon to get to the UPS Store to pick up that last, critical package before the shop closes for the day.
3. you treat red lights as stop signs. (Hopefully the metropolitan police department does not follow this blog. Though if that is the case, officers, please look into ticketing those SUVs that regularly park in the 15th Street bike lane.)

No, don't worry, I have not acquired yet another job -- I still only have six. Today's bike-courier-like schedule was due to the final day of rushing around to get everything ready for tomorrow's opening day at the Columbia Heights farmers' market.

The guys at the UPS Store were pretty impressed as I described how I planned to transport the 3 three-foot by six-foot banners back home on my bike. "That's a real woman there. I wouldn't even know how to get something like that on a bike. You're really going to put that on your bicycle?? You know, I think she's calling us out." Yes, sir, maybe a little bit. I could try and make some kind of quiver out of a cardboard tube and my scarf and sling it over my shoulder, but no need to get too crazy: really, you just need a couple of panniers and some bungee cords. I always travel with a few extra bungee cords these days. (Oh, if only they saw the gear I hauled around the country for more than a year....) It's not that hard. For heaven's sake, the banners even roll up.

I made it home safely and had a beer on the back patio and did a little early evening gardening to celebrate. I'd have taken a victory lap if my legs weren't spent from the uphill ride back. In truth I could never be a bike messenger. I mean for starters, I wear a helmet. And I look with disdain upon death traps (aka fixed-gear bicycles). And I don't go the wrong way down one-way streets. And that swerving in and out of traffic? That's not me. See? I'd never make it as a messenger. Better stick to being a short haul trucker. And a teacher. And a writer. And a curriculum developer. And an outreach specialist. And a distribution manager....

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