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Why I Like Being a Messenger - Part 2
8.04.06 by Buffalo Bill

I am not really a bicycle messenger, not anymore. But I was once. In fact, I reckon I did a solid 10 years on the road, on and off between 1986 and 2000. Anyway, over the last 6 months I have been doing the odd day here and there for Metro.

But that looks likely to end soon, which is a shame, because I still really enjoy riding my bike and getting paid for it. Today I was riding around trying to take in all the things that I like about being a bicycle messenger, but the pleasure of riding fixie kept blotting all the other joys out. My fixie is a pile of junk, literally, and the last time I rode it for work, the front brake really didn’t work and the sprocket kept unthreading, which meant I was effectively riding without a reliable means of stopping.

Selim's fixie pic: Selim

What a muppet!

But last night I sorted out my brake, and flipped the hub to the 16 side and today I was a big beast of the fixed-wheel jungle. I had forgotten how much fun a fixie can be. Ok, so riding up Carlton Hill into the wind wasn’t much fun but the rest of the time, I was well on top of the gear, and was rolling rolling rolling.

Cutting back through traffic is so much easier on a fixie; you can adjust your speed to match the traffic around you without effort, and even in the wet, the fixie grips the road much better than a free-wheel.

And it’s just fun fun fun, corners, traffic, pedestrians, police, nothing seemed to be a problem on the fixie. Damn, I am going to miss being paid to ride a bike!

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