So far this year I have been spared the irritation of using a helper. I can't stand dealing with them. So much to the point where every morning in November usually consists of me checking the manning board (I'm unassigned) for routes that don't have an "H" written next to them. You see.....in November volume goes up but not enough to be using the amount of helpers we always use but corporate cutes routes just so they can. So, many routes are trashed in regards to load quality and dispatch quality. That combined with having to use helpers changes my method of how I chose a route each day. Instead of trying to land my favorite routes or a split route with the areas I prefer in a decent truck I will settle for something less if it doesn't have a helper that day. Typically I end up using a helper at least once or twice a week once helpers are hired but this year I have yet to use one. It's been awesome. But I'm sure that will stop after Black Friday. Maybe even on Black Friday. I look forward to it about as much as I look forward to getting a boil on my ass. Here's why.... They are usually more trouble than they are worth. In order to get maximum use out of a helper you typically must be in dense residential areas for the majority of the day and must be able to pick them up and drop them off without losing too much time during the drive to and from the meet point. On most routes it's hard to coordinate a meet time/place that will let you pick the helper up on trace. Let alone drop them off on trace. These factors alone negate what little time (if any depending on your helper, load quality, etc.) you save on route with the helper. I've tried everything I can within following the methods to get more done in less time but it doesn't help. I'm not even going to bother getting into the stupidity of having to use a helper board. There are types of helpers that annoy me....... 1) Degenerates: Every year the helpers get worse. They are mostly either young and lazy rejects or older degenerate types. Or a mix of both. And they always have a story about why they were unemployed leading up to applying for seasonal help at UPS. So many have the same story about how their previous employer "screwed me" but as the hours or days goes by (if you keep the same helper) and they continue telling their stories you start to get the truth either by reading between the lines or from them directly when they start to open up to you a little more. It's funny how in the beginning they claim they were screwed but in the end the truth was that they got fired for being lazy and/or incompetent or just up and quit for various arbitrary and childish reasons. And then they start complaining about having too many kids and being in debt. 2) Drama Queens: ALL of the helpers above have various problems outside of work that they can't shut up about (in between texting on their phone and bugging me about getting hired permanently at UPS) such as VARIOUS issues with the spouse, ex-wife, in-laws, ex in-laws, girlfriend, baby's momma, siblings, friends, neighbors, etc.. And when I said VARIOUS I meant with some, or all, of the people I just listed. It never ceases to amaze me how f***ed up these people's lives are. It's easy to see after reading between the lines thats it's usually all of their own doing. 3) Saggers: Why would anyone with even a half functioning brain show up to their first day of being a helper trying to sag their pants? Watching a helper hold their pants up while they are walking or running (or should I say waddling?) from and to the truck used to make me laugh when I first started driving. Now it pisses me off. Especially when I'm already putting up with characteristics from the first two categories. Whenever I get one of those clowns they are never my helper for a second day. I can't really avoid the other two categories but ditching a sagger is easy. There are plenty of good helpers out there. If they don't fall into any of those categories then then that only leaves me with the problems that everyone deals with regardless of their helper. Such as losing time to pick them up/drop them off, crappy loads, 40 stops with the same SPA number, etc.. I like the helpers that are here to make extra money for whatever reason. Most of the ones that are retired from another career and are here for Christmas money are great helpers 99% of the time. A small percentage of young helpers that were raised well and truly want to work are good helpers. Some start out slow (and occasionally too fast) but have good attitudes and are easily and willing to learn. All of these different types of good helpers have different reasons for being here but the one thing they always have in common is a good attitude. The problem is that they are getting harder and harder to find.