In the second installment of my bike blogger “old school zine style” interview (where I send people questions) we travel to London and meet Bill Chidley, otherwise known as Buffalo Bill.
(image from original printed zine back in 1991)
Bill’s has been writing the Moving Target Zine blog for years, long before it was the chic thing to do. The tagline for his site is: “The worlds most useless messenger zine.” Seems like a bit of self-deprecating humor, because this site has been quite fascinating and full of great articles on roller races, the lifestyle of couriers and bike culture in the London area.
Here is my interview:
Where you reside?
What bikes do you own?
4: Merckx Corsa Extra, Surly Long Haul Tourer, Gitane Piste and an extensively vandalised Bridgeston RB-1 which I use for polo and running around.
How long have you had your blog?
About 4 years. Moving Target was originally a print zine, and was first published in 1988.
What got you started writing it?
I started writing so long ago, I can’t really remember why!
What kind of people read your blog?
Messengers and other urban cyclists.
Has it changed?
It was mostly about messenger stuff, but it’s become more broadly based. I have a lot of information on the continuing problems of cyclists killed by trucks/lorries/HGVs.
Were you ever a messenger? What companies and what was it like?
Yeah, I was a full-time messenger for 14 years. I worked for a few different companies, and there is a heap of stories about my experiences, and memories, in a section called ‘messenger stories’.
Have you gotten involved in competitive cycling in any way?
Yeah, I have raced. I started with time-trials, then road races, alleycats (I helped start the alleycat scene here in London in 1994), messenger champs (I helped organised the 2nd World Champs, and the 2003 Europeans), roller-racing (I helped re-start roller-racing in London) cyclo-sportives, track, MTB races, Audax, polo…
What is the bike scene like where you live?
What were some memorable stories on your blog?
Too many to list, but I am most proud of the ‘messenger heroes’ series, and some of longer activist pieces I have written.
What kind of comments do you get on your blog?
The two most commented pieces are on the fakenger thing, and I wrote a piece speculating about who was/is the fastest messenger in London which attracted a lot of comments too.
Future goals for the blog?
More quality, less quantity.
Bill’s Flickr page, with lots of amazing photos of past courier events.
Here are a few of Bill’s contributions:
article from movingtargetzine written as a correction to a recent Financial Times story which got its numbers wrong. I originally posted that article but Bill was kind enough to show me the error.
an article form the Guardian from April 2008 which Bill wrote.