Monday, February 16, 2009

A Man Needs To Know His Place In The World: Mine Is 112th

I'm lucky that my employer endorses bicycle commuting. Each year they participate as a Gold Sponsor in the Omaha Corporate Cycling Challenge, and also encourages employees to bike commute to work in the lead up to the group ride with participation in the Activate Omaha's Bicycle Commuter Challenge.

Additionally, they provide excellent bike parking facilities with two large wave style racks capable of locking up 20 or more bike in an area protected from direct sun, snow and rain, under the watchful eye of a security camera. Inside my employer's fitness center is a locker room with showers and temporary lockers to use while working out or just showering. For a fee of $12 a quarter, I can rent a small locker that I can use as my own.

A locker would be nice for me to store my toiletries, like a hair brush, razor, deodorant, and the like rather than having to transport them in my commuter bag each day. I could also leave a pair of dress shoes at work to further reduce the amount of items that I have to carry in my pannier. I'd also be able to leave my bike clothes and shoes in the locker rather than to pack them up to my desk.

The only drawback is that there is a shortage of rental lockers. Last week I spoke with the fitness center staff about renting a locker and found that there is a considerable waiting list. My name went on the end of a list 112 men deep (I presume the lady's lockers are in a similar state).

Fortunately, the management of the fitness center has adopted a policy that keeps things fair. In order to rent a locker, and to remain a locker renter, one must use the fitness center 25 (or maybe it was 20) times per quarter. If, at the end of a quarter, someone who currently rents a locker, or someone who is on the waiting list for a locker, has not met the minimum usage, they forfeit their locker, or their place in line. This policy prevents people from renting a locker that they seldom use and allows daily users (like bike commuters) to have a fair shot at getting a locker.

The fitness center staff wasn't able to estimate when a locker would be available for me, but I figure being 112th in line is better than not being in line at all.

Image credit: Marshall Brain


brady said...

I agree that when it comes to supporting an active lifestyle, UP is among the best employers.

As for a locker rental, it took six years before I was #1 on the list. Take heart, though, the first five were before the new policy went in effect.

Scott Redd said...

I just inquired again about my position in the queue. After about a year, I am now 101 out of 109 men on the waiting list. Sheesh!