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Jimmy John's Bike Delivery Continues in Snow, but 'Not as Freakishly Fast'

By Alisa Hauser | February 18, 2014 6:40am
 Wicker Park's Jimmy John's at 1557 N. Milwaukee Ave.
Snow Day at Wicker Park Jimmy John's
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WICKER PARK — If you need some inspiration for doing anything in the snow, a local bike courier — and Jimmy John's delivery man —  has some motivational words.

"You get on your bike and just do it. You don't think about it," said Andy MacQueen, a bike courier for Jimmy John's at 1557 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Wicker Park.

Starting at 11 a.m. and continuing throughout Monday's wacky weather, MacQueen and fellow Jimmy John's bike courier David Drake rode their bikes nonstop in a heavy snow that stuck to their faces, lodged in their eyebrows and helped them get what Drake has been calling "sympathy tips."

Drake, who carted 15 sandwich orders in the snow in the first two hours of his shift Monday, said he was receiving $1 or $2 more per order on average.

MacQueen also said the tips were good Monday. Although he didn't usually pay attention to how many other bikes were traveling around him, he said he saw "just five or 10" other cyclists during two hours of riding along Wicker Park's Milwaukee Avenue, sometimes dubbed "Hipster Highway" for its heavy amount of bike traffic in better conditions.

MacQueen, who has been delivering sandwiches by bike for franchise owner Scott Bielaski for almost two years, said he estimated bike traffic among commuters could be down as much as 80 percent because of the heavy snow.

Inside Jimmy John's, Bielaski said the snow means deliveries "might not be as freakishly fast as usual" and were running at least five minutes behind.

"Safety first. I'd rather make a call to a customer that their sandwich is late than call a mother and say, 'Your kid is in the hospital,'" Bielaski said.

"I know it's weird to say that as a business owner, but it's just a sandwich," Bielaski added.