Min Jae Kim is the fastest delivery rider at the Kar Chinese Restaurant on Nassau Street.
That used to bother some of the other riders. One old guy, who now works at a place several blocks to the east, once yelled:
“You’re not even Chinese!”
“I think there was more to it,” Kim explains, “but I’m not fluent.
“I was the first Korean to work here so they weren’t sure about me,” Kim continues. “It took some time, but now we are great friends.”
Hours spent huddled on a cold sidewalk in Manhattan will break through any barriers.
“We’re all just workers,” Kim says. “They thought I was trying to show them up by being fast on a bicycle, but I’m just trying to do a good job.”
Some gifts helped to completely win over the others.
“I went to Yankee Stadium,” Kim explains. “They were giving away hats and I was able to pick up enough for everyone.
“That really made me one of the guys,” Kim continues. “We all wear Yankee hats so that makes us teammates.”
But they are still competitors.
“Yeah,” Kim says. “They would all love to beat me, but they can’t. I make the deliveries north of Chambers Street because nobody is faster.”
The other riders nod, but Zhe Huang issues a warning:
“You may be the fastest, but I’m getting faster so you’d better watch out.”
The others laugh and howl.
Kim winks and drops a challenge:
“To Fulton Street and back.”
They both turn their hats backwards.