Lots of updates!

 

Hey mess family!

It has been ages since we posted anything on here and thats about to change! Going forward I am going to endeavour to post wayyyyy more often on here, everything from upcoming events to issues that affect us as a community.

In order to make this more exciting I would like to reach out to the community as a whole and ask for submissions. If you have a race coming up please shoot me an email with the info you’d like shared along with any artwork and Ill post it straight away! If you attended a race, or event and want to write a few lines about how rad it was please do so and send it along and I’ll make sure to share it. The same goes for any topic that you think needs to be shared or talked about…send it in!

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So much has happened in and to our global mess fam in the past year…. we have sadly lost an unprecedented number of our friends recently and if there is one thing to take away from these terrible losses is the strength of the bond we all share. I have seen a huge outpouring of love and support for those close to the ones we have lost. This is one of the things that makes our family so damn special. Lets continue to be there for each other, in good times and in tough times.
Ride In Peace

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WBMA Logo

There have been some really amazing developments this year too… like the founding of the WBMA, ~Womens Bike Messenger Association!! The idea was born in Melbourne during  CMWC this year and the WBMA had its first official meeting at Denver NACCC! There was a huge turn out of amazing, strong and empowered women and I am proud to stand beside them!  The WBMA gives us an incredible opportunity to combine our voices and really be heard and to make a difference in our community.

If you’d like to join the WBMA please email:
wbma-international@googlegroups.com

or get in touch through the Facebook Group

In case you were questioning if a group like this is really necessary you just need to check out the tasteless and sexist post made by Chrome Industries yesterday on their Instagram account, and the incredibly well thought out and articulated response from the WBMA.   THIS is one of the many reasons that the WBMA is so welcomed and needed.

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CMWC melbourne Logo

CMWC MELBOURNE

* I am hoping that someone more eloquent than me will step up and do a more in-depth report on CMWC but I can briefly say that it was an amazing time!

The Pre-Event in Sydney was so much fun! We saw all the sites during some super fun alleycats and rides. Team Footdown and Team scavenger hunts saw us divided into “gangs” Yabos, Westies and Bogans, complete with gang shirts,quickly turned into cut off flannels!

The group ride was, for lack of a better word, EPIC!.  We were prepared for “gentle rolling hills along the coast” What we got was intense, pedal grinding climbs and sometimes terrifying descents along the headlands of the east coast of Australia.  The (dead) wildlife was plentiful as were the amazing views. We biked through 5 or 6 national parks and camped in a couple.  The food and beer was free and plentiful for the whole group ride ensuring that many “bonnets were popped” around the campfire each night.

We finally pulled into Melbourne on a chilly morning about 5am and were met by a crew of locals and those out of towners who had already arrived directly to Melbourne.   We all dropped our bags at our respective housing spots and headed to the Brunswick Velodrome for some exciting track racing and my introduction to Track Cross(?).

As I sit here and reminisce about the whole trip I am slightly amazed at how much it is all one big happy blur! Might have been all the Coopers!!   The Main Race took place in a beautiful part of the city right along the harbour and from all accounts was a great and well run race. There was a large vendor area where bike business shared their products and services. The BMEF/LCEF had a booth and thanks to the support of our large community we raised a couple thousand dollars for the Funds. <3

Another exciting development that came out of discussions at the Open Forum was the desire to create a Pacific Rim Championships in addition to the NACCC, ECMC, and CMWC. This new CMC would include Australia, and NewZealand as well as Singapore, Malaysia, China, Indonesia, Taiwan, Japan, Philippines South Korea, etc…  There are so many countries that are home to many bike messengers that are just not aware of our global mess family and we are trying to change that.

ecmc milan

ECMC Milan

*please send in any pics/words about ECMC!

The ECMC in Milan was preceded by an absolutely mind-blowing pre-event and group ride from Basel, Switzerland. We were treated to 3 days and nights of good food and fun times on our bikes.  The Swiss really know how to organize and if you’ve ever had the pleasure of attending a Swiss organized messenger event you may have a slight idea of how incredible the pre-event and group ride was!  The ride was fully supported and myself and Mischka along with anyone and everyone we asked to help, ensured that there was enough food each meal to feed 120+ starving messengers.  Highlights of the trip included a fun night in Zurich, being hosted by an amazing family at a farm in the country, camping in the freezing rain in Andermatt, the ride over the Gottard Pass that saw temperatures below freezing before a 60km decent into Locarno where the temperatures were above 30c (90f)  and of course the pilgrimage to see Madona Del Ghisallo the patron Saint of Italian cycling

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After paying our respects we headed downhill into Milano! And what a welcome it was! The Italians showed us lots of love and reuniting with our messfam was, as always, bellissimo!

We were treated to a party at the famous, historical Velodromo Vigorelli! It was built in 1935 and although it no longer hosts track events it is still open and hosts other sporting events. What a beautiful piece of history!

The food was phenomenal as was the espresso.  Everyone suddenly “spoke” italian….basically we all just faked a fun Italian accent and spoke in the only Italian words we knew…. “Espresso! Fussili! Linguini!”  You get the picture!

The Open Forum saw Copenhagen, Prague and Vienna put in exuberant bids to host ECMC 2016 and in the end Copenhagen won!   I will be sure to post more info as it comes in but keep your summer travel calendar wide open as there are plans to have 4-5 weeks of Pre-event->ECMC Copenhagen->Post-event->Pre-event Cologne->CMWC Paris!

 

Denver NACCC logo

DENVER NACCC

*if someone wants to write something up about NACCC this year, that would be fantastic.

The Mile High City certainly showed us a great time! The weather was perfect, the beer and weed were plentiful as was the amazing riding.  There was only a small crew of organizers in Denver but that didn’t stop them from throwing an incredible and well planned out NACCC.  The qualifiers were held in an industrial area that had very little traffic and everything went off without a hitch.  There was some issue with the number of ladies put through to the finals which was rectified when brought to the attention of the organizers.  After the results of who would go through to the finals were announced it was also announced that the Finals would be held in open traffic around the city of Denver.  This created quite a bit of controversy and this topic is one that I think will be discussed more in the near future. (If someone could write something up on this… great!)   After much discussion and a small protest/moment of silence the race got underway. It was a gruelling 4 hours in sweltering heat at a 5,280 ft or 1,610 m elevation.   In the end Kelly Pennington from Montreal and Austin Horse from NYC were crowned the 2015 NACCC Champions! Congrats to you both!

This years Open Forum had Baltimore, LA and Milwaukee all putting in bids to host NACCC 2017. We used the ballot system of voting again this CMC and it went smoothly again. Many people expressed their appreciation for the newer system as it allowed them to vote with their heart and not due to peer pressure.   The system is a simple one and only has 2 requirements of voters..

1) you must be a working or ex messenger to vote 

2) you must have attended a NACCC either this year or last year

The voting is open from the end of the first Open Forum and concludes at the beginning of the Awards Ceremony on Sunday night. You must submit your ballot containing your name, race number and the city you’d like to vote for. If you are attending the event but did not register you must come and see me and Ill simply add your name to the list of voters. You DO NOT need to be registered in order to cast a vote.  I do my best over the weekend to find each and every person and ensure that they have cast a vote but the onus lies with you to find me -not a hard task!- and submit your ballot.  The system is very transparent and accountable. Each vote is cross checked with a master list and in the event of any concern to do with the voting, each vote can be verified.  As always we are open to suggestions and are eager to discuss any improvements.

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Lastly a quick update on the BMEF..

Each year we receive more and more requests for assistance from the BMEF and this year is no exception. We have paid out over $10,000 this year to messengers who were injured on the job.  Annual fundraisers like MAYDAY, and The MarioKart Krit are crucial to the ongoing ability for the BMEF to help when needed.  Please consider throwing a BMEF fundraiser in your city. Every dollar helps!  It can be a race, a poker night, a movie night, a band show, etc! Get creative!
The BMEF is also selling merchandise to help raise both funds and awareness. We currently have available:
Tshirts -$20

Hoodies-$40

Caps-$15

Jerseys-$80

Koozies-$5

Patches (white or black)-$5

AssSaver Fender $5

If you would like to order any BMEF merchandise please send me an email here or hit me up on Facebook here and Ill get you all set up!  You can also “like” us on Facebook here and check out our website here

 

Thats all for now but please get in touch with me and let me know what you’d like to see more of on here!  Share pics, words, fliers etc.

See you soon!

~Leah

 

 

MAYDAY 5 Was a HUGE Success!!

The last cheques have come in, the coin has been rolled and counted and the grand total is finally in!

This year was the 5th annual MAYDAY race to benefit the BMEF . We were hoping to raise the most money to date and we did! We raised $7065!!! 

This brings our 5 year total funds donated to the BMEF to $20,906.84!!

A huge thank you to everyone that has made the trip to Toronto to support MAYDAY!!

Another big thanks goes to all the awesome locals that race, party, drink, provide floor space, dj equipment, food, party spaces, and anything else that our guests might need to make their weekend awesome.

A third heartfelt thanks goes to the hugely supportive sponsors who together donated over $10,000 in prizes just this year alone!

And the biggest thanks of all goes to the incredible folks that I organize this with, Emily, Mark, Kevin, Jimmy, and Sunny.  You guys and gals stepped up when needed, gave up sleep and sanity to make this happen and I look forward to doing it all again next year!

Please like our facebook page so that we can keep you in the loop on the happenings for MAYDAY 6!   Mark it on your calendars! May 1-3 2015!

~Leah

 

Call out for topics of discussion at the Open Forums in Mexico City CMWC

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Hey everyone,

CMWC is just around the corner so this is a call out for any and all topics that you’d like to discuss at the open forums in Mexico City. I want to get a solid idea of what should be on the agenda this year.  This discussion is also taking place on the messenger mailing list as well as on Facebook here at the IFBMA fb group.

As points get listed and talked about on Facebook and on the mailing list I will also post them here.

TOPICS SUBMITTED SO FAR:

Steph from London has submitted this:

OPEN FORUM AGENDA CMWC MEXICO
PROPOSAL FOR A CHANGE TO THE VOTING SYSTEM OF CMWCs

I have spoken to quite a few people who feel the system is not as good as it could be.

From what i know, the issue has been brought up before and apparently, nothing has been done about it because no one was bothered to do something about it but i could be wrong and there could be other reasons.

Having the 1st open forum at the beginning of the event is fine..people just arrive, they are fresh and ready to listen..so once the agenda has been brought up and discussed, get the bidding cities to do their thing..bidding cities should have some materials that people can look at through the event so whoever wasn’t at the 1st open forum can catch up and people can look through the materials over the weekend.
The 2nd forum should ideally be on Sunday. On Monday,most people are either gone or too fucked to attend so it doesn’t make sense to vote then.
It could be argued that people who are serious about voting should arrange their trip to stay until then but the reality is that people don’t/can’t stay on Monday (especially if the CMWC is in Europe, countries are closer, people head back Sunday night/Monday morning) so we should accommodate that and have the second open forum on Sunday…
The time when the main race finals are done and before the prize giving, when people are chilling and before the big party, would be ideal to get the bidding cities on stage again and remind people it’s time to vote and give them a deadline to do so.

Depending on logistics, there could be a couple of volunteers manning a ballot box for a few hours at the end of the day so participants have plenty of time to vote. Make it simple, give your rider’s name/number, one ballot paper, write the city you’re voting for and cast your vote.
We need to make sure this is done thoroughly so have a list of all registered participants and once they have voted, cross their names.
During the prize giving, someone would be counting the votes..IFBMA council members maybe, as organisers will be fairly busy and the winning city would be announced once the prize giving is over and before the party start.

People would be told in advance (ie on the website of the next CMWC organiser if this proposal goes through) that the voting system has changed and what it involves.

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Scooter (Scott Vercoe) from Melbourne, Australia  posted the following on fb:

CMWC Voting System.

It was 10 years ago I put in a bid for Sydney and took the Worlds out of the traditional Europe/North America cycle and was on the IFBMA council. I still think the way we did it back then can’t be beat.

2 years out from the year you plan to host CMWC you put in a proposal to host the worlds. Everyone can put in a proposal. This is done at the 2nd open forum of that years CMWC.

1 year out, intending host cities’ bids are voted on. This is done at the first open forum of that year. Cities can only present a bid if they had put in a proposal the year before.

The biggest advantage of this way is that you can vote for the hosting city in the first open forum.

The first thing that happens at any committee meeting is urgent business. And if voting for host cities isn’t the urgent business of an open forum at a CMWC, I don’t what is.

This also allows for everyone to celebrate the winning city throughout the event.

Trying to vote for host cities at the 2nd open forum where everyone is bent out of shape after racing and partying doesn’t make any sense to me. In my experience, only the keen ones attend the 2nd open forum. And with this system you can have it on a Monday.

I don’t think the IFBMA can start telling host cities when they need to hold an open forum. It’s dangerous ground in mandating a schedule for a CMWC.

That’s my thoughts. I’m gonna go check that the lids on my bottles of back in my day rants haven’t shaken loose.

Keep it real, kids. 
Scooter

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 From Matteo in Milan: 

It would be interesting if we allowed the cities that wish to apply for the CMWC to send via email 1 month before the start of their event a detailed presentation of the event, enablaling those who wish to read the presentation the possibility to download it.

It would also be useful to assign a point system to the presentations, thus facilitating those who vote.

Obviously these presentations will be used during the open forum.

Matteo

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From Andy Zalen in DC 

My idea:

 Keep the initial Open Forum, but forget the 2nd one altogether.

 Instead, at the start of the Awards Ceremony, all bidding cities get up and
 make one last, brief presentation to win over undecided voters. All
 registered participants get a numbered ballot slip (same as their race
 number) in their registration packet. A ballot box is made available
 beginning at the end of the initial Open Forum until the end of the Awards
 Ceremony – people have until then to cast their vote. Or more specifically,
 make it say, 15 minutes after the final presentations, so that the votes
 can be tallied and announced by the end of the Awards Ceremony (votes may
 be tallied as they are cast during the weekend, so that it doesn’t all have
 to get counted at the Awards Ceremony). No proxy votes, just one available
 vote per attendee that they have to personally submit.

 To take that idea even further, the ballots could be accompanied with the
 Open Forum agenda items which need to be decided on. This addendum could be
 created at or after the Open Forum and distributed later that evening
 and/or during the course of the rest of the event. Again – only one ballot
 per racer. So often the Open Forums get bogged down in heated debate. If we
 eliminated the need to come up with “the answers” – voting on the issues,
 voting on if we should vote, etc. – the Open Forums would just be about
 raising the questions and concerns, and offering possible solutions.
 Perhaps this would make the Open Forum run smoother and more efficiently,
 and we could be more satisfied we gave all attendees a fair and equal
 chance to exercise their opinions.

 I’m pretty sure we abandoned the consensus method soon after Buffalo Bill
 stopped attending, but I don’t know if the by-laws were ever amended to
 reflect this. It’s been a straight majority rules vote for many years now.

 I am also pretty sure that the by-laws were amended to allow for the IFBMA
 council to take decisions amongst themselves on certain matters during the  year, outside of an actual CMWC. If not, there must be a provision for
 this, in the case that some timely issue comes up that needs to be
 addressed before the next Championships.

 I have some other ideas but that’s all for now.

 AZ

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 From Bega in DC

On several occasions, the 2nd open forum has been scheduled for sunday
but on at least some of those occasions hasn’t successfully happened
for various reasons such as lack of organization or lack of interest
or people being already drunk or the finals ran late and the forum was
scheduled for a time when the bunny hop was still going on and thats
not really fair. and thus the forum has been suddenly moved to some
other unplanned time and location. it is my belief that if it is
scheduled for sunday, it should happen for real on sunday.

its not really supposed to be a “vote”. its supposed to be a consensus
(which is not the same thing as a unanimous decision – consensus means
that no one wishes to block the decision which means everyone accepts
the “vote” not necessarily agrees with it – it rarely happens after
only one vote). at least as recently as chicago, a motion was made to
change it from consensus to a straight vote but that proposal was
tabled and has been tabled at at least 3 open forums that i remember.
i would suggest that it has gained more headway recently, and at least
a couple of times, the vote has been taken this way as a single vote,
not necessarily for the worse at those forums. truthfully if at least
most people walk away thinking it was at least somewhat fair, youve
done at least somewhat of a good job.

proxies should be eliminated. whenever you have the forum, people who
want to participate should show up. at different forums, proxies have
been treated differently with little if any consistency.  proxies dont
function in a consensus format. they barely work in a voting format.
they cause controversy and breed uninformed and uncaring voters.

im really excited to see people having these sorts of conversations.
ive always personally believed that having the conversation is more
important than the final decisions.


Shawn “bega” Blumenfeld

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Please discuss! and if you have anything you’d like to have talked about at the Open Forums please post on fb, on the messenger mailing list, or send me an email to leah@bicyclemessenger.org and I’ll get it up for everyone to see. 🙂

Only 3 1/2 weeks until the pre-event in Guadalajara, and the big ride to CMWC 2014 cmwcmexicologo

Hope to see everyone there!

Leah

 

 

 

 

MAYDAY 5

The first weekend in May 2014 marks the 5th anniversary of MAYDAY in Toronto. This event began as a small fundraiser for the BMEF (Bicycle Messenger Emergency Fund) and quickly grew into the largest single supporter of the BMEF.  As a direct result of the money raised at MAYDAY, the BMEF was able to raise the amount of assistance paid out to an injured messenger from $300 to $500. To date MAYDAY has raised over $14,000 for the fund and hopes to surpass the $20,000 mark this year!

The organizers have gathered together thousands of dollars in prizes from some really amazing sponsors (AllCity, Abus, Bern, Bikurious, Cogswell Bicycles, Coupe Bizzare, Cycle Solutions, Detroit Bikes, Hoopdriver, Knog, LaBicicletta, My Little Bike Shop, Nice Rack, Passage Tattoo, Regal Bicycle, SendIt, Sweet Petes, The Bike Joint, Trash Bags, UML, Vans, Velocity, and more!) Most of those prizes are to be raffled off in the new format raffle this year! There are great parties each night, lots of delicious food  and the best part is that the whole weekend is a fundraiser so you can still feel good about yourself on monday morning when you wake up with no underwear, a drawing of a penis on your forehead and no money in your pockets….because hey, it was all for charity!

If you’re coming in from out of town there are crash spots available! Just message us on the fb group or email leahhollinsworth@gmail.com

For more info you can check out the Facebook event here:

https://www.facebook.com/events/649322915104108/?fref=ts

And to donate directly to the BMEF please click here 

SEE YOU SOON!!