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  1. #1
    Just Say WU!
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    columbus ohio. work for messengers.

    i haven't done the job. i'm in grad school now, but i don't like it. i'm from columbus. i've met some of you. is there work, and are there decent companies?
    ben

  2. #2
    Senior Member morbot's Avatar
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    according to www.messengers.org, try contacting Personal Courier Service at pcscolumbus@yahoo.com

    it also lists these guys as being individual messenger contacts
    Phillip Hoffman - ph26@concentreic.net
    Sal Birtchrum- sal@trackbike.com

    i have no idea how old this information is

  3. #3
    All Things Go s2sxiii's Avatar
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    ben -- there's a guy on the boards who goes by the handle pedex -- he runs his own, one man service down here. Try pm'ing him.
    NO! It is the FARGATE! It is not some other kind of gate from a movie or TV show that I've never seen! Notice that it has a wheelchair and a pink mohawk? We're not getting sued!

  4. #4
    roll'em high shants's Avatar
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    my understanding is that the work is pretty slim and that it's not easy to make a lot of money. it can certainly be done, naturally, but you really have to do it because that's what you want to do, not because you want to make money.

    some sammich shops and such around town have been known to hire people for bike deliveries. that might be a better bet. garbage-ass pay, but steady.

  5. #5
    none for me, thanks. zempf's Avatar
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    I talked to a dude on a ride once who said he was doing bike deliveries for Pita Pit on campus, so that's one angle. I don't think downtown is big enough to support too many messengers, though.

  6. #6
    roll'em high shants's Avatar
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    yeah, that's mike. another kid i know works for a sammich place downtown.

  7. #7
    Just Say WU!
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    thanks all

  8. #8
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    Actually, the Pita Pit guy was probably John. He was my date to the prom.

  9. #9
    none for me, thanks. zempf's Avatar
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    Yeah, that's the guy I was thinking of. I'm bad with names, everyone's "that dude" to me for like a month after I meet them.

  10. #10
    Just Say WU!
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    can you live on the pay? i.e. pay rent, buy beer? (obviously my priorities) i've waited tables and the money ain't too bad, but i'd kinda prefer to get paid to ride my bike.

  11. #11
    Just Say WU!
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    i love that the statistics page for messengers.org lists the cost of a pint of beer (three dollars in columbus) as a vital statistic

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by morbot
    according to www.messengers.org, try contacting Personal Courier Service at pcscolumbus@yahoo.com

    it also lists these guys as being individual messenger contacts
    Phillip Hoffman - ph26@concentreic.net
    Sal Birtchrum- sal@trackbike.com

    i have no idea how old this information is
    That info is long since expired, those guys havent been around in ages.

    PCS is still around, thats Bogdan,Kevin the original owner went out of business after about a year.Dunno if that email addy is correct or not.

    The messenger business in general is getting pretty tough, its contracting in size right now, but alot of that here in columbus is because of us independents, we are more efficient and willing to work harder than the others,so now that there's 7 indie's riding around things have been consolidated quite a bit.Plus a few of the indie's work together and trade work, so its kinda like a loosely run co-op sometimes, im the only indie that doesnt do this.

    Rainbow Express is almost always hiring, be aware they have a habit of bouncing commission checks occasionally, theyve been sued over it before, their turnover rate is almost 100% per year, working for them if you make $200-250/wk your doing good.Archive is not hiring, if you wanna work for them you gotta know someone that rides for them and be patient.Best courier has 1 1/2 messengers at the moment and they arent hiring either.The rest are indie's like me, and none of them are hiring.

    I may take on a part timer in the afternoons here soon, but its nothing definite, I wont hire someone w/o experience.Id really like to hire 3-4 car drivers, thats where the $$ is, getting a cut of someone else's work.

    yes you can live ok here on $1000/month, you wont be plush comfortable, but its doable, cost of living is pretty cheap here.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by zempf
    I talked to a dude on a ride once who said he was doing bike deliveries for Pita Pit on campus, so that's one angle. I don't think downtown is big enough to support too many messengers, though.
    There's about 25 of us currently, about 10 are part timers though, used to be about 40 messengers here a few years ago.

    To be honest, most are kids, and a few of us are full time pro's, as in this is what we do and have no plans of changing, if you stick with it and apply yourself you can make decent $$, but it is tough work to get customers on your own, but being hamstringed by a commission rate and working thru another company that has issues makes it tough too.There's no reall good way to just jump in and start riding right now, the food angle is actually a decent one, I do it on occasion.

    Campus itself presents lots of opportunities if you know who to talk to and how to do it, I may expand there, its part of my delivery area now, I plan on working on getting some scheduled runs in/out of there if I can.Medical specimens are good bike runs really, central processing(lab at OSU) presents a really good business opportunity if you know how to go about it.The car companies can easily be undercut in price, their drivers arent making much if anything off the specimen runs as it is, Best charges $5.80-$8.00 to run something across town to OSU's lab, driver gets 50-60% of that, plus it takes awhile to get in and out of there, parking at OSU sucks bad.

  14. #14
    Just Say WU!
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    i worked as a campus car courier for a while, for OSU (before i got my bs), and that wasn't so bad...the thing is, i want to do respectable, honorable work. i don't want to just be someone's delivery boy. i have skills, knowledge. i'm in grad school for biomedical science (neuroscience) now, but i don't see the point other than the cash from the gov't. i can cook, and whatever the verb for doing mechanical work is, and grow things...i just want to be able to live and do something I enjoy doing and feel good about.

  15. #15
    roll'em high shants's Avatar
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    i wonder how many of you kids i actually know. i cannot imagine that there are too many "bike" types that i haven't met. hrmm

  16. #16
    72 & Sunny adamkell's Avatar
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    I think there's a contradiction or two in there that warrant close inspection.

    Good luck.

  17. #17
    Just Say WU!
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    don't be secretive, adam, say what you see.

    shants...i only rode a fixie for about three months before i left columbus for ann arbor and grad school, before that, no one would have noticed my beautiful green/blue fade trek xc i rode on the olentangy trails...

  18. #18
    72 & Sunny adamkell's Avatar
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    Sorry, I didn't mean for that to seem snide. I was pressed for time. But here's what I was talking about:

    i worked as a campus car courier for a while, for OSU (before i got my bs), and that wasn't so bad...the thing is, i want to do respectable, honorable work.
    ...this says that couriering (or specifically _car_ couriering?) is not honorable work.


    i don't want to just be someone's delivery boy.
    ...you don't want to work as a courier.


    i have skills, knowledge. i'm in grad school for biomedical science (neuroscience) now, but i don't see the point other than the cash from the gov't.
    ...so you'd use your skills to help people -- sounds honorable.


    i can cook, and whatever the verb for doing mechanical work is, and grow things...i just want to be able to live and do something I enjoy doing and feel good about.
    ...so what _do_ you want to do? The honorable (should feel good about) option seems to be the career that'd follow your grad studies. But you said you don't see the point of that. And this, of course, is all in the context of looking for a courier job. It's all a little bit confusing to me.

    And I really was sincerely wishing you good luck.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Abuckeye99
    i worked as a campus car courier for a while, for OSU (before i got my bs), and that wasn't so bad...the thing is, i want to do respectable, honorable work. i don't want to just be someone's delivery boy. i have skills, knowledge. i'm in grad school for biomedical science (neuroscience) now, but i don't see the point other than the cash from the gov't. i can cook, and whatever the verb for doing mechanical work is, and grow things...i just want to be able to live and do something I enjoy doing and feel good about.

    Well, I think I can understand some of that, Im the oldest messenger downtown, I have a BS in EET from DeVry from many years ago that never interested me as a job or profession.As far as being someone's delivery boy, well, like it or not, almost everyone is someone else's lackey in some form or fashion.The one thing about messenger work is that its tougher than many think, straight deliveries are one thing, court filings are something else.Plus it just takes a long time to get know everything you need to know.I know some messengers here that still after years of work have no clue why the addressing system is the way it is and how to use it effectively.Couple that with generally bad pay(by most people's standards) and the fact that its relentless hard work I can see why many dont care for it. If you wanna make $$ doing it you have to hustle, day in and day out no matter what, there are no excuses, mistakes can cost you your life, your health,your business, everything, at the very least maybe some customers.My reputation with my clients and who they do business with isnt something that can be bought, it comes from years of hard work and gallons of sweat, without out it, im not going to survive.Its a very cut throat unforgiving business, the fittest truly do survive, and to me thats one of its appeals, its pure, there's very little BS in what I do.Good fulltime long term messengers are very very rare, we are literally disappearing.Right now columbus has about 15 fulltime long term pro's, and I dont see that changing much,if anything it will get smaller, in a city of 1.1 million people it shows just how tough it is.A few of the indie's now are already saying they are not planning on riding it out indefinitely, it can take 2 years or more to learn the job,takes months to get into good enough shape to handle the physical workload if you want to be good at it too.When I left Best Courier I was doing 32-35 runs per day 5 days a week and riding about 300miles/wk, it took me over a year to get into good enough shape to handle that, my replacement is doing half that even after a year,although I have taken a chunk of his work away from him too.Messenger work is what you make of it, most folks just dont want to work very hard, there is work for those that want it and are persistent enough.I used to have issues with how I felt about getting other companies clients, I dont anymore, its part of business.Many of the other messengers wont talk about this kind of thing, but trust me, for the right amount of $$, they will not even hesitate to take food off someone else's plate, it happens all the time.For those that want to do it, give it a shot, just be patient and work your azz off, in time it will pay off if you stick with it,im not going anywhere.

  20. #20
    Just Say WU!
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    yeah adam you're right on...

    the car courier (mailroom boy) job was quite a few years ago...i didn't mind doing that job.

    i guess i implied that delivering pitas wasn't a worthwhile use of time and energy. if one can be gainfully employed doing so, then do so. and if you can get paid for riding your bike??! then that's what i was inquiring about.

    as for my schoolin'? i'm tired of school. i got into this to learn about the mind, not how to submit nsra grants and to kill rats. another year, and i'll get my masters, and another four years and i'll get my phd and seven years and i'll have a decent job and
    maybe five or ten years after that i'll have tenure...but by then i don't expect tenure to exist.

    i don't mean to say science is wrong, i just want to work. like, sweat. be a farmer or sailor, or pirate or something. i do kinda like cities, so if i can be a member of the pulse of the city, i dig it.

    thank you for the good wishes

  21. #21
    Senior Member bg4533's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shants
    i wonder how many of you kids i actually know. i cannot imagine that there are too many "bike" types that i haven't met. hrmm
    I don't think we've met. I know very few of the "bike" type though. I had no idea there were so many people from Columbus at Bikeforums now.

  22. #22
    none for me, thanks. zempf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shants
    i wonder how many of you kids i actually know. i cannot imagine that there are too many "bike" types that i haven't met. hrmm
    Eh, I dunno if I'd qualify as a bike type, but I've been going out to the Monday night rides for a few months now. If you're there, I'm Mike -- the guy in glasses riding the black/gold POS Huffy (!) road bike that's just finishing its reincarnation as a slightly less POS single speed/fixed. Soon I will rip off the stickers & repaint it & never tell anyone of its sordid past of Huffy-dom.

  23. #23
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    I'll give you a hint...shants is the jammy jam.

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