Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Being subscribed to a lot a bicycle blogs, I got inspired to update
ours with what I did on Sunday. I came up with plan Saturday night and
decided I would take a few pics and let you guys know how I spent my
Once a year in Chicago, we have this thing called Bike the Drive. The
local bicycle advocacy group gets the city to shut down one of
Chicago's largest roads and allows BICYCLES ONLY on it for a few
hours. It’s pretty cool because you never get a chance to ride on
Lakeshore Drive during the year unless you’re really fast and not
afraid of getting run over by speeding Beemers.
I decided to get up early (9:00 am- hey I was out late the night
before, working!) and ride my pedicab down to the park to see all the
vendors and bicycles. From there I rode up to the train station in
hopes of getting people who took the train into Chicago to see the
Chicago Blackhawks play the Detroit Red Wings, and then from there
over to the United Center to work the game.
I grabbed my cab, my peanut butter and chocolate bagel for breakfast,
and starteded my day. I rode down town to Grant park and right inside-
that’s big for me, because usually they kick us Pedi-cabers out of the
park- but today, what could they say!? I headed straight for the Clif
Bar tent- I figured I would sweet talk the girls working into giving a
bunch of the Mini Clif Bars by saying I had to work all day...I was
bummed to see that there were no Mini Clif bars this year. They were
cutting up regular ones into small pieces. Damn- seems the economy has
taken it's toll on everyone.
I surveyed the park looking for vendors to meet, and see about getting
some products to review on the site- but honestly was disappointed
that no major companies had a booth there. I mean, come on! SHRAM,
you're based in Chicago...I mean Schwinn was there last year. One of
the problems might have been when I checked on getting a booth for One
Less Car- their fee was $1300...ouch! To the bike federation's credit,
they offered to work something out with me, but I dropped the ball. I
sat in the park for awhile, talked to a few people when they asked
about my cab, and then decided it was time to work.
I rode up to the train station and parked outside amid the buses and
cabs- it was too hectic, so I moved off to the side and figured I
would catch people as they started to walk toward the United Center,
being easy to spot because they were all wearing Blackhawks jerseys!
To my surprise there were hardly any people heading to the game- I
mean a few here and there, and my offer of “20 bucks to the game”
wasn’t even acknowledged -even though it was at least a $30.00 ride! I
sat there for too long and decided to cut my losses and head closer to
the game and hope for few rides in. I stopped to say hi to a fellow
pedi-cabber and we got a double ride up! I got $15.00- not too bad. I
was heading back to see if I could get another ride when I was flagged
down by 4 people. I decided to take all 4- they piled in and away we
went. They gave me $15.00, so now I was up to $30.00. The game was
about to start.
I was hungry and wanted to watch it, so I headed home, locked up my
cab, grabbed a slice of pizza, and watched the Blackhawks totally fall
apart. Halfway through the third period I went back down to work. As
soon is a got there I got ride- $8.00. then another that I didn’t know
the street. He said it was only a few blocks and offered $10.00. I
knew better, but took it anyway and got screwed. I rode way too far
for $10.00. Luckily I got two more nice riders- one for $20.00 and one
for $25.00. I snagged one last ride almost to my house for $15.00.
Once again I should have asked for more, but in this economy you take
what you can get. After that I was done.
I parked my cab, went home, took some vitamins, and went over to my
girlfriends. So the day broke down like this: I rode maybe 15 miles
total. I made $108, and according to my heart rate monitor I burned
So there you go- that’s what trying to make a living riding my bike looks like!