kottke.org posts about Dexter Benjamin

Bike messenger with one legFeb 17 2014

Not sure if he's still out there or not, but Dexter Benjamin has been a bike messenger in NYC for more than 20 years, navigating his bike around the city on only one leg. He lost the leg pushing a boy out of traffic in his native Trinidad. Here's a 2006 interview with Benjamin:

And from the NY Times in 2005, a brief profile.

He came to New York to participate in a marathon, decided to stay, and before long was leaning on a crutch and panhandling in Grand Central Terminal. He spent many nights sleeping in a shelter, and more than one dawn wondering who would stoop to steal a one-legged man's shoe.

Another Trinidad native, Steve Alexis, eventually hired him as a messenger. "He could walk with crutches," Mr. Alexis says. "I figure if he rides a bike, that's even better."

After learning to shift his weight for proper balance, Mr. Benjamin was soon darting through Manhattan streets in a triumphal blur. "I love their reaction when I pass them," he says of others. "They're seeing something impossible."

(thx, porter)

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