Making money waiting in line for someone else

You can make a living waiting in line for others.

- Adonis Porch, 29, hadn't spent a night indoors since Monday. "I've been up for the past couple of days because I've had other lines that I had to do," he said.

Adonis is a professional line-sitter. At 6:45 a.m. on Thanksgiving, Fox 5 found him lying inside a sleeping bag on the sidewalk along 6th Avenue. A family from Long Island contracted Adonis and a couple of coworkers (at $25 an hour, per seat) to save them spots against the barricade from which to watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. For this job, Adonis curled up on the sidewalk at 4 a.m.

"Same Ole Line Dude, singular," Same Ole Line Dudes founder Robert Samuel said.

Robert founded Same Ole Line Dude -- the name forms the acronym S.O.L.D. -- three years ago.

"I lost my job at AT&T in the winter of 2012," he said. "I was on unemployment and kind of depressed for much of the year."

Robert posted an ad on Craigslist offering to wait for an iPhone 5. He made more than $300 and a company was born. Today, Robert oversees 30 same ole line dudes who wait in an average of a line a day all year round.

"Cronuts is our most popular and most consistent [line]," Robert said.

If the customer prefers, the dudes offer to purchase the ticket, sandwich or device and then deliver it. But in many lines -- like the one in which we met Adonis on Thanksgiving -- the customer must arrive to claim his spot from the same ole dude. This can make others waiting for themselves grumpy. Sneakerheads prove especially irritable.

"If you don't talk to 'em about it," Adonis said.

"We do visas," Robert said. "We do passports."

And they do them in all kinds of weather.

"Garbage bag," Adonis said, describing his outfit in the rain, "line the inside of the garbage bag with a blanket."

"We've waited in line for Santa Claus portraits," Robert said.

To pass the hours -- five of them for Adonis on Thanksgiving -- the dudes rely on their smartphones.

"Netflix, Hulu, Pandora," Robert said.

On Thanksgiving, after many episodes of many shows and -- for some -- a long outdoor nap in the dwindling darkness along 6th Avenue, the Berger Family arrives just before 9 a.m. to pay the dudes, claim their seats and watch the parade.

"We pretty much just got up an hour ago," 13-year-old Ryan Berger said.

"We do brunch reservations," Robert said.

And with Black Friday, a lineup of holiday shows and an influx of out-of-towners looming, the Same Ole Line Dudes look forward to a lot of lines in the months ahead.

"This is the perfect storm for line-sitting," Robert said.
 

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