Empty Days

Thursday, March 31, 2005



Last days.

Wednesday was grueling - I did twice as many calls as usual and was basically flat dead by the end of the day. Today I was even more dead and was super-slow as a result - which caused huge hysterics from the dispatcher. He threw a tantrum at me over the radio (scene: I am coasted at some sidewalk full of university students, in my radio a loud voice is yelling all sorts of insane things, I am listening peacefully as a fire-truck is passing by with deafening sirens, etc etc etc). This dispatch-insanity obviously ruined the day for me in terms of work (the rhythm was all wrong and bad, and I ran over some jay-walker because of this - but at low speed:), I had to clear this whole thing out by going down to the office and talking this shit out with the bunch of them.

But I was rewarded by things that happened outside of work. For instance I certainly liked the not-so-coincidental coincidence of finding myself alone in the elevator with the general-manager of the Canadiens hockey-team - the great Bob Gainey. I remember the guy from watching hockey in my teen years in the 80's - he's been the captain of the team most of his life. In any case, it was a pleasant surprise and we had a brief chat. A bit surreal on the whole - it's always awkward to meet famous people because you feel like you know more about them than you ought to, while they know nothing of you - so you're at some sort of unfair advantage in terms of personal mystery. In any case I tried to be as polite and unintrusive as possible: I was happy to see the guy and showed as much, but I didn't attempt to make too much of this meeting. A brief chit-chat and off I went to my delivery duties.

Another pleasant experience was finally finding a moment of peace and sitting down at some terrasse in the hot spring sun with a cup of coffee (very good and very cheap - a rare and lucky combination these days).

Either way, I definitely like being a messenger. But not 5 days a week and not with a neurotic dispatcher. I will have to see if it's possible to find a good work environment or if it's always stressed-out and screwed-up by nature. So far 99% of my problems came from inside the main-office rather than from traffic on the street or clients. It's unpleasant to work in a place where all the problems come from inside and as if behind one's back. By the way, I could care less about nasty clients - they should worry what might happen to their packages if they try to act up - ho ho ho :)

Another advantage of working at this job - it gets me out of my isolation and provides an opportunity to mix in with the world without giving in to it. Meeting people fleetingly is pleasant enough (it certainly reminded me of my bike-trip last summer). It's also pleasant to glide along in sping breeze and take in whatever passes by. Either way, it was never really about money - and never should be, really.

*

Another thing I definitely find pretty funny and slightly ridiculous about bike-couriers is their snobbishness. I can't believe these guys - they're so conceited! It's unclear to me what this attitude thing is based on but when I read some things on the internet coming from just such types I can see how they may imagine themselves as terribly special etc. I guess there is a bit of the "lone-cowboy" syndrom here. Either way, the romantic aspect is not what catches my fancy - it's the outdoors aspect and biking for me. I don't like those office-towers, those secretaries, those envelops - it's all bullshit. I like seeing people though and I like the riding. But I don't think I have the natural energy to be a high-performance bike-courier (those guys and gals do push-pedal a lot) and getting in top-shape can hardly become a priority for me. In fact, I just love seeing those older homeless-type guys doing their courier bit - there's something wonderful about them, a resilience that is fully devoid of arrogance of the young "marginal" athletes out there. That's more in my line - even though I certainly don't look anything like that.

My motto: destitution and independence. (in heraldics this would read as "destitutio et libertas":)

*

I am already sorry I'll be out of this job next week. I'll start looking for another opportunity soon I think. Although I should start looking for another appartment first? Indeed...





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