In the second edition of our Casual DBiker blog series we want to put the facts on the table. That sounds like it’s getting kinda serious you say? Biking is not exactly rocket science, right? The truth though is: being a bike messenger is one of the hardest jobs there are, whether you’re a professional or just casual biker.
Fortunately the job is also one of the best jobs there are . We would recommend you all the job of casual bike messenger right away, but you have to know what you’re letting yourself in for if you want to be a successful Casual Biker at DBike.
Riding around all day, none of that mundane office life, more fresh air than you can shake a stick at, planning your day as your own boss… That’s what being a bike messenger is all about. But then: Rain. Or snow. Or both. And wind. And a flat tyre. Yes, the tyre that you already had to change once at the beginning of the week… And now you’re running late. And those 15 kilo in your bag somehow feel like 150 kilo today. That’s also the kind of fun that makes up the daily life of a bike messenger.
To enjoy being a casual biker at DBike – and we want happy DBikers! – you need to keep a cool head. The cars turning right at the traffic lights that only see you in the very last second even though you have right of way. How can it be that 50% of the population somehow still didn’t learn it’s usually better to look if something’s coming before you whip open your car door parked next to a bike lane? The poor overworked DHL guys who tend to park right over the bike path to get as close as possible to their delivery address in the hope of gaining any additional seconds. (On the topic of things on bike lanes, we could go on forever about it but you can save yourself from that ordeal and take a look at this nice collection).
The list of things that wind you up as a bike messenger is actually endless. You will be shouted at all day – bikers are of course on principle always the ones in the wrong. And don’t even think about trying to protest your innocence – this will only confirm that you are obviously one of these crazy militant bikers everyone always talks about, who think the streets belong to them.
And we have to be honest, the job is also dangerous: In a current series from stern magazine entitled „Seeing and understanding“ you can read some pretty sobering numbers: in 2014 there were 63,351 minorly injured and 14,516 seriously injured bikers reported in Germany alone. As you can see it’s not exactly like running a library.
Working – or rather living – as a bike messenger is so much more than the few frustrations and dangerous situations you encounter. For some it’s a way of life. Ignore the abuse shouted to you by our friends on four wheels. I would be raging too if I was sitting in traffic for 27% of my journey every day. Throw them a random smile back, easy as that – it will confuse the hell out of them. Of course there are also those who employ other tactics, for example shouting to the car driver as they ride past that his taillight is broken. But that is of course not an official DBike recommendation….
If you think you are cut out for the job we can promise you, you can take a whole lot more back home with you at the end of the day than the few insults you receive from frustrated car drivers. Download the DBike Messenger app and take a look or get in touch with us to find out more.
To close, here our one for the road: Infographic “Why Cycling Makes You Happy”