Introducing Ben, the Newest Surly Slave
Hi there. My name is Ben Oliver. Since I’m the newest employee of Surly I thought I’d write an introduction for everyone to read so when you talk to me on the phone you’ll know what to say to really hurt my feelings. Really, I’m not particularly spruced up about writing an introduction about myself since I’m so boring, but ever since I started working at Surly the number one question I have been asked is “Bro! How’d you land that sweet sweet Surly job?!” While my official title here is “Lower than Whale Shit in the Ocean,” (at least that’s what it says on my business cards) my day to day tasks will be mainly Customer Service related. I may or may not answer the phone when you call and I may or may not write you an email back in response to the email that you write us. I will never just send you an unsolicited email to ask how you are doing. That’s your Mom’s deal and it’s all she has keeping her going.
I don’t really have a good answer to the question of how I got this job, but just because you woke up unsure of how you got someplace doesn’t mean you didn’t end up there because of choices you made the previous evening. In a lot of ways, I couldn’t have ended up anywhere else. My options are very limited in life because I do not fit the traditional definition of the word, “Talented.” Also, I just really like bikes and of all the totally awesome memories I have of good times partying on bicycles, I was on a Surly. Who wouldn’t want to throw themselves against the Mill like Conan for the same people that helped facilitate all of those good times?
I’ve worked in bike shops my entire adult life, spent many years on the road working for some professional cycling teams, and I just wanted to work for Surly that entire time because I thought they seemed pretty cool. I finally realized you won’t get hit by a train if you aren’t standing on the tracks so that’s what I did, metaphorically speaking of course. Now, I don’t condone anyone standing on train tracks despite how fun and interesting that can be, and if you can manage to not sleep on any park benches or ever get punched in the face, I’d recommend that too, but sadly that is no metaphor. I guess the takeaway here is that if you can dream it, surely you can do it. Just keep at it, Slugger…. And above all else, have fun getting wherever you end up. But also, you should at least try to be an astronaut first.