Sunday, December 20, 2009

All About Priority


Norine was a small woman, petite and dressed to run even though it was cold out. Her demeanor was perky...that annoying kind of perky that makes you want to start yanking ponytails while cackling "I just killed a cute little puppy".



Ever so luckily, I was at the right hand computer that day. This may not mean much to you, but the right hand computer is the one who's counter top is partially obscured by some fake snowy pine branches and other Christmas paraphernalia. This means that when a guest...Norine...comes up to take on a receptionist in an intense battle of verbal skillz, she'll go to the computer on the left, where sat my illustrious co-worker. This co-worker is different than "greengirl" who dealt with spoon man in happy naivete. This is the battle-hardened warrior of the front desk. With steel for her eyes, we'll call her graygirl.





Norine's perkiness soon revealed itself as in reality a forced cheeriness designed to get her what she wanted.






Namely, a different room.




"When I checked in, you told me that first floor was all that was available then, and I still don't like it. I'm not comfortable there" she said. Obvious in her statement was that she checked in before official check in time, and even when told it would have to be first floor, went ahead and checked in. Now you want to complain about it? Get in line, Norine, get in line.




Graygirl: I can check, but I'll need to see if housekeeping has time to clean your room




Norine: What?! I just put my stuff on the bed! I didn't do anything!




Graygirl: Nonetheless, I'll need to check.




Norine: *grumbles and complains*


While Graygirl is checking with housekeeping, Norine does something that annoying people do but don't seem to realize. (or if they do, they don't care) She continues to make her case for moving rooms while Graygirl is trying to do something about it.


It's like she doesn't trust that it won't get done unless she constantly affirms the fact she deserves it.


Which actually doesn't do anything but make her annoying.


Sample from the bombarding verbiage:


"Well, there's people that haven't checked in yet, can't I have one of their room? After all, we're all part of the same group so we should have equal priority."


"And I'm with the people who are paying for the rooms, so I should have priority over them!"


It was like she had just learned the word priority and somehow got points for every time she managed to use it in a sentence.


And if I may remind you Norine, you didn't seem to care when you checked in...


"I'm not comfortable on the first floor"


This statement in it of itself isn't the issue, it's that she neglected to continue. In my experience, if people aren't comfortable to the point they need to move, they aren't hesitant in the least in telling you why. In fact, they fall over themselves telling you why because it's so important to them. It's kind of like the "where do the girls go?" man. First I'll need to finish his story though.


When we left off, I was wiping my hand increasingly on my pants to get the feel of clammy off.


The next day, he comes up the the front desk.


Him: My room smells like paint...did you just paint in there? I need to move.


Me: We did paint rather recently for our renovations. I can definitely move you, and I apologize for the smell. (I begin to make keys for him)


Him: Oh! Well, I don't need to switch now...maybe tomorrow morning...


Me: ??!! Okay...


It's obvious what was happening here. Any ideas class? Ah, the young lady in the back!


"He was just trying to see if you remembered."


Exactly. If the paint was enough of a problem that he "needed" to move, he would need to do it right away--not wait a day or too. He must have been trying to gauge my reaction, and I hopefully convinced him it was all a symptom of his boozy, liver-failure-inducing mind.


Point being, it's not hard for me to figure out if your words are being used for purposes other that what is explicitly stated.


And a self important sham has no priority.





Wednesday, December 16, 2009

...check out my good friend lifeshighwaygame.blogspot.com

why?

b/c not only should you look at the comments and see what i posted, you should read her blog!!

new one tomorrow, of course

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Today's Scenario

Today's scenario: you are warm and cozy in a tasty-soft bed...and the alarm clock rings. Never mind you set it for a quarter to six and went to sleep murmuring "I WILL get up when my alarm goes off", you reach out and bap it. Now the little feet will depress...here's where something magical occurs. Snooze.

Some people only wake up once a day. I woke up over 6 times this morning. Imagine what the can do to someones psyche! So when I finally DID get up (6:20) and had to leave (6:30), I still had time to throw on my clothes and walk the mile to my destination. My point? Timed sleeping in. I have yet to discuss this concept with my roommate, but I'm sure she'll be fine with it.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Please Don't Put That in Your Mouth

The day after Thanksgiving, it was like magic. Wreaths tacked onto walls, fake poinsettia trees set out, garlands hung, then falling, then hung again....


For the love of it all, please wait until at least December before hanging anything!


The one decoration I do greet with open arms every year is what replaces our little pebble bowl.


The pebble bowl is...hard to describe. (lemme go find a pic I think I have on facebook) Ok, here you go:
Kinda small, I know, but the best I could do. It is a green leaf shaped dish with little gray/black polished pebbles in it. Kind of attractive in a quirky sort of way.





When Christmas comes, the pebble dish is replaced by the bowl of small ornaments. It looks similar to this ... though the ornaments are smaller than these.
Here's what happens:

Person walks by. Little bowl of bright red things catches their eye. There's that little hitch in their stride as they pause to see if they are....edible.

Yup, that's right.

They look surprisingly like little chocolates. Upon occasion, someone will actually pick one up. It's rather hilarious.

Conversation heard today:

Man: (exhibits action described above) Oh! I thought they were chocolates!
Daughter: Me too! Every time I walk by, I think they are and I check....
Me: (Smiles while thinking success!!)

When one of the owners was in putting all the decorations up, she was going to put the little bowl of multi-colored bead strings on the table in front of reception, but I convinced her to put the ornaments there instead--leaving out personal gratification (and downright glee) as a justifiable reason. Instead, I used the following example:

There I was, MMOB** and a mother and her daughter were passing through the lobby. The daughter proceeds to pick up the little ornaments and begin hanging them by their little wires on her backpack. "Ma'am?" I say, polite in that little way I have, "Ma'am? Your daughter seems to be taking the little ornaments."

She turns and gets a load of little Jenny decimating the ornament population. "Jenny!" she says, with mild enthusiasm, "Don't take those!" She turns back to the desk in time to miss completely Jenny's absolute rejection of her words evidenced by the theft of another ornament. "She's still taking them" I say apologetically to the mother who's child obviously never listens.

MOJ (mother of Jenny) goes and drags Jenny away from the temptations. She makes as if to leave.

One problem though.

"M'am?" I say, "I'll need those back." I point to the 6 or so ornaments dangling from the mesh pocket of her backpack. MOJ bend to try to take them off, but Jenny has crimped those wire hanger-thingys down pretty good. She manages to get one of them off, then looks up at me. "They're stuck. Can't she just..."

Me: Let me see what I can do (I start prying them off. I know what she wanted me to say: Oh, she can just keep them. U-uh)

I finally get them all off and back in their dish where they belong. About 10 minutes later, Jenny comes back. She saunters over to the dish, and then turns to check if I'm watching her. She sees that I am, but still starts to take one. I walk over. "You can't take that" I say. "Why not?" she asks. She honestly seems to have no idea. "They're not yours. It would be stealing." She looks at me uncomprehendingly (she's about 6 or 7) and starts to reach for it again. "No." I say. She puts it back and leaves.

Strange.

And just to finish this off, I (just now!!) saw some guy do the walk-by...and then actually pick one up and then almost trip over his own feet in an effort to return it when he realized it wasn't chocolate.

Then the quick look to see if anybody noticed.

This is a message for all of you. Ready?

Someone always notices.

And they're laughing at you.


**Minding My Own Business

Friday, December 11, 2009

A Card For the Season


It’s that time of year when Americans everywhere dig deep into their card boxes for their address book to address their 2 boxes of brand new sparkly assorted design Christmas cards. And discover…yup, 3 boxes from previous years. Now there are 5 boxes lined up, enough cards that if all sent will cost almost $50 in postage, besides the fact that, in order to use them all in time before next year, each house listed in said address book will receive roughly 3.5 cards.

So…the smart and parsimonious person will think (roughly) “I will send cards to everyone, and just not buy new cards next year, and then send the same cards out. But, because I am smart, I will make a list of who received what card so that they don’t get the same one next year. Brilliant!!”

Uh huh. Brilliant deduction Sherlock. Brilliant that is, except that when it come to anything involving a time span longer than our next paycheck, we notoriously have the brain of a goldfish. Oh look…a wall, I’ll turn around…oh look, a wall, I’ll turn around….

And after going through the address book and realizing that Aunt Skanky died 3 years ago and so can’t possibly live at 145 Walters, writing a personalized note on the first 5 cards and then abandoning it on the rest from writers cramp, and then suddenly recognizing the fact that the puppy-dog-in-the-stocking- card looks so familiar because that’s the only design you sent last year, you come to a startling conclusion. If you have the brain of a goldfish, it came from somewhere. In fact, it’s likely genetic. Which means there is a strong chance that if you can’t remember what you sent, they won’t either. Cheers!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Pumpkin Post

OK.

In yesterday's post, I hearkened back to a year ago when I wa
xed eloquently (and rather whine-ily and self righteously) about people who leave their pumpkins out to melt in progressively drooping and moldy stages throughout the year.

Today, I have come to 'fess up. I threw stones...because I had not yet committed my pumpkin crime. Now I submit myself to be pelted with seeds and other innards in my contriteness.

This is Larry.
I bought Larry at the local pumpkin patch (Safeway).
I defaced and carved into Larry, removing his innards and a face that (likely) mirrored the sadistic look on mine while eviscerating him.

But hey. Pumpkins don't have feelings, right? Even ones named Larry.

I took it inside because I was having a thought.


Yup.

Would she fit? I mean, here's this pumpkin...and a kitten...it was the most natural and normal thing in the world!!

And she liked it. Uhuh *noddnodd* She would have stayed in there had I let her. Look how happy she is!

And yup, Larry looked amazing on our little patch of gravel outside the front door.

And lit, Larry was even more lovely!


So.

Time passed.

A lot of time.

Like, in pumpkin years, a lifetime.

To put it bluntly, Larry had died when no one was really paying attention, and the gnats had started to spring forth from his moldy pulp. The gnats would swarm the passerby. (my advice? Breathe out dear roomies!)

I didn't want to believe that Larry had died. We had become so close in those...few....days?

Or more possibly, once I admitted he was dead, I would have to actually do work to get rid of him. (One can only recall the Christmas tree...I rest my case)

Sooo...I avoided the slow splooshy spreading of his gourd-corpse.

And this isn't the worst he got, I am ashamed to say. He was *wince* kinda *wince* one with the stones.

But hey! That poor plant needed fertilization, by golly! I was only doing my environmentally friendly green recycling Al Gore tree hugging thing.

At least that's what I told my roomies.

And now you.

Other than that, my lips are sealed. In fact... here.

These are my lips, completely sealed from telling the tru--

*ahem* From repeating filthy lies perpetrated by the roommate who actually used a shovel that fateful day. So here's a shout out to you...Thanks Em!

So I'd like to know...how late have you left out/left up holiday decorations?

Pumpkins!


Below is something I wrote last year around this time. This was before I had created my blog. After you have read this, you will be prepared for tomorrow's post...

(hang on...vroom!! Back in time!!)

I’d like to start with a question…when was Halloween? (and you all say…why, it was the 31st of October!) And then I say…what day is it today? (and YOU say…well, it’s November 26th.) Very good! That puts almost a month between the official jack-o-lantern day and today.

So I simply MUST ask the question…why do I still enjoy the *pleasure* of viewing these timeless orange gourds where ‘ere I walk? It would indeed be a pleasure…if they still had some semblance of the happy shape we love and adore, but they have been transformed into piles of black and orange *moving* sludge. And I do say moving, because a rotting pumpkin seems to breed its OWN little swarm of insects, no matter what Fransesco Redi says.

There are two ways to get to my apartment door. About three doors down, there is the stealth pumpkin. You cannot see this pumpkin until it is too late to hold your breath…it sits in a recessed doorway. The exhibitionist pumpkin sits at the very end of the walk on the corner, so a person can enjoy it for their entire journey. It might have been more than one pumpkin at one point, but now it sits like burnt squash on a bed of leaves. Yum! The trick here is to breathe normally until you think you’re in range, then stop. But it changes daily…so beware.

Route number two goes by people’s patio walls. There is only one here, but so disturbing I try not to look. This pumpkin began on the 6-foot high wall of the patio…perfect to watch collapse on itself at eye level. Until one day, it wasn’t there anymore. I was happy. There was actually a smile on my face. Until I passed the edge and saw the streak of pumpkin blood slimed down the side of the wall with a yucky pumpkin splat on the ground.

I don’t understand. Is it laziness? Possibly. (I have waited too late at times and had to use a shovel) Is it interest, so that one can post a video like the link I have below? (nope…there’s at most 5 on YouTube, and there are more pumpkins than that) Or it might me, that in this world of concrete, postage stamp lawns, and a sincere desire to be GREEN, people want their own little compost heap. Now they can say “I’m doing my part for the environment.” I’m sorry to break it to you folks…it’s concrete. It won’t go anywhere.

Here you can watch a pumpkin melt :P
http://youtube.com/watch?v=GUKRzyDMyfA&feature=related

Sunday, December 6, 2009

In a Pot

To begins today's post, I must first ask for the forgiveness of my little sister.

Lorlor?

I'm sorry.



Ooookaaay. Now that we've got that out of the way, let's get on with it.



I was reading the Reader's Digest for the current year, and there was an article called "What Mall Santas Don't Want You to Know". In the article, one Santa shared that, when bouncing sticky toddlers on their velveteen laps taking gift requests that boys were direct. "I want a pogo stick and a remote control airplane." The girls, on the other hand, had a need to explain:



"I want pony 'cause ponies are just so gosh darn cute! And then we could go for rides in the country with my frilly white nightgown flowing majestically behind me and I would call him Twitterpat, and he would be mine. And he would be my Twitterpat."



With this in mind, I post a portion of the Lorlor's recently released Christmas list:




  • house plant (must survive on little sun/water, be VERY hard to kill .... like if the Terminator was a house plant...)

  • stickers(you CAN'T go wrong with stickers)

  • front bike light (I have a Bell brand one, but don't feel like it does a very good job... maybe because I dropped it and put it back together with Elmer's glue)

  • pot (medium to large, a good size for making soup and the lot)

Although it's true "you can't go wrong with stickers", I find the explanation of the front bike light akin to the little girl wondering why the frog she dunked in boiling water to kill the germs isn't moving.


Then I see pot.


She wants pot!


My poor leetle seester I send off to college and she's already past alcohol and into drugs! And she wants a medium to large amou--


Oh. Wait. Cooking pot. Heh heh heh. Then I look back up at the top of the list. She wants a houseplant. Presumably in a pot. Weeds are plants. Weeds are called pot. And I assume you could make pot soup... (in a pot...)


*ahem*


Not that I have all sorts of experience with that noble substance. (Reduces nausea! Cures Headaches! Fixes Insomnia! It's Like Magic! Oh. And it can get you fired from your job too...)


There I was, sitting outside a movie theater waiting for my roommate (minding my own business...duh) and this dude came up a bit behind me. I turned around to keep him in sight; you can never be too careful you know.


He smiled at me and the following happened:


Him: Are those dreadlocks?


Me: No....just curly hair that isn't particularly styled...(ie, I wasn't concerned with being presentable and had just patted at it till it resembled less horns and more general confusion)


Him: Oh. I was hoping they were dreadlocks.


Me: (smile. silence.)


Him: 'Cause if they were dreadlocks, I figured you would know where I could get some weed.


Me: (confused. silence.)


Him: Do you know where I could get some weed?


Me: No...sorry....(not entirely sure why I apologized....maybe my hotel persona wanting to help someone get what they wanted..)


Him: Oh, ok. Thanks anyway.


So, gentle beings, does anyone have the idea behind the "dreadlocks for weed" campaign? Is this just a stereotype, or does it actually have basis in fact?


I was actually hoping someone would offer me some. I have hoped for this all my life. My dream, if you will.


Why you ask?


Fourth Grade. When all young children receive beautiful red pencils that say "Don't Do Drugs!" to be whittled down to the even more alluring "Do Drugs!".


I want to make Mrs. Morris proud and say "No!"


Talk about indoctrination :D

Friday, December 4, 2009

Bartering For Tips

I always enjoy bartending. The people you meet….the drinks you mix…the money you make…from tips.

I’m pretty good at chatting with people; they tend to like me. This comes in very handy when it comes to getting paid in (almost) direct proportion to how well you can chat someone up. This might sound to some a little unsavory, but consider:

The drinks are free; they aren’t paying for them anyway.

Our normal cliental aren’t ones to drink alone. They want someone to chat with, to make them feel more comfortable. That is where I come in.

Tipping is really the payment for non-corporeal services. Every time you go to a restaurant, get your hair cut, or get a drink at the bar, you pay set rates for the product you get. The tip is to pay for the thoughtfulness of the server going beyond what they had to; giving you that smile, the bartender remembering you to actually see if you want something else. The hairdresser for letting you talk about your life and acting like she’s actually interested.

But here’s the thing with me. As long as you’re not an incredible boor, I am interested.

At least, I want to know more. I have figured this is just a basic quest for knowledge. I like to know things, to find things out. This is why all these stories exist in the first place. Recall the conversation I had with the coworker upon the conclusion of the artist? (you come to my room and I paint you reeel good). I’ll refresh your memory: “RedGirl, you’ve got to stop getting into conversations with these people. One day, it's going to get you into trouble.”

I will admit she had a point, but where’s the fun in safety like that? That’s right, not a whole lot. Plus, I've already seen the trouble that comes, and in most instances, is tot-ally worth it. The point is, people can tell that I really am interested. They don’t realize why I’m interested (ie, not in them personally, but stuff people have to tell me in general), just that I am. This means my harvest is rife with juicy personal details.

But every now and again, I get someone I don’t know what to do with.

Let’s call her Lorna.

Lorna is an older woman with skinny bird legs, but with enough up top to weigh normally for her height. Upon this woman, put eye-searingly short pink shorts. Now place in sun for 50ish years and let bake to a golden brown. Yes folks, she makes the person who invented tanning wants to put a legal limit on the darkest you can get and still apply that adjective to yourself.

Not only did she bring up the two “death topics” (religion and politics) in a badgering fashion with my only other tipping person, but she had a tendency to ignore the current line of conversations with a completely random question. You need an example you say? Of course I will oblige you!

Current conversation is with the man about his sons and where they were attending various colleges and how they were considering the college where I live. At the smallest possible lull (more of a pause to draw breath, really), she says in a loud voice straight at him “What do you think of the bill the senate passed last week?”

Man: Pretends to watch the football game on TV and therefore *didn’t* hear what she said.

Lorna: swivels head to me, making it clear the question is now all mine.

Me: doesn’t want to get into that, makes some weak laughter. “heh heh….well, I know I should read the news more. I’m afraid I don’t know anything about that.” Unspoken…and I don’t want you to tell me about it either...

Fast forward to the next evening. I am again doing double duty--bar and front desk. As I pour her the *first* drink, she yanks out a plastic bag and sets it on the bar. Out of the bag, Lorna pulls a small tray-like object with tall sides. It is filled with vegetables and covered with plastic wrap.

Lorna: I want you to have this.

Me: Um...it's lovely!

Lorna: I thought the colors were pretty. I got them from the (local organic grocery store) for you.

Me: Thank you...what kinds of peppers are those? (trying to think of what...to think)

Lorna: Oh I don't know. I just picked them for the colors.


Then she pulls out another bag. This one is from Borders.

Lorna: I bought some books on their bargain rack. Look at this cookbook! (hands me cookbook)

Me: (I take it, leaf through it trying to think of something nice to say) It has some nice lamb recipes...

Lorna: Do you want it?

Me: (aack!) Well, I--

Lorna: Oh, take it. I want you to have it!

Me: I couldn't (I'm not a fan of "southern cooking" in general...too much fried food)

Lorna: I insist!

Me: Okaay...


So. Point here. I (as is my usual custom) tell the story around the workplace. One person's response "Maybe you'll get a fruit basket tonight! Hahahaha!"

Yeah. Thanks.

But that did bring to mind the thought of putting out a list of what acceptable tender is for tipping. So far, my list includes:

Chickens
Pounds of Whole Bean coffee (no flavored please, French Roast preferred)
Coupons for free taxi rides
Border's Gift card
Folding chair
Thick homemade quilt
Vodo Bunny
Actual MONEY

*Sigh*
We shall see I suppose.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Women Behaving....Like Cougers!

Hmm...why am I feeling so prolific today? Posting what will probably be 4 posts in 24 hours?

It might be because my famfam came to visit today and I had the most epic cal zone.

Possibly because I feel free tomorrow, and don't have a (scheduled) shift.

Even more likely, I got 2 yards entered on Life's Highway Game and got a whopping 2 points--SQUEE!! (my first points ever...mostly for lack of trying)

Or maybe it's because I have a new regular that I look forward to sharing with you all frequently: Leopard Lady.

Leopard Lady was just going to be a nice add-on to the previous post; a way of introducing her because I just *know* there will be future snippits. But then the rest of the evening happened.

So now, in order to do my true duty to all you faithful readers, I shall start from the beginning :)

A couple of weeks ago, a woman in leopard-print checked in; now to be further known as Millie. She was blond, classy looking, around 50/55, and loaded with that sort of chunky jewelry you can tell is expensive. Problem was, she already seemed kinda out of it. As in tipsy.

As in drunk. ....though older. and more blond.

Which was strange...considering she hadn't been to our free bar yet. But OK. What evs. Let's call the 30-year-old bartender "Dave". Dave wants to be a pilot, and it getting his hours in. Poor Dave was actually excited to have a hopefully well tipping evening (bartenders work for min. wage + tips). Once Millie showed up though, it didn't matter.

She was smitten with Dave.

And I mean smitten.

As far as I, Redgirl, could tell; they were having a perfectly happy conversation for those two hours. But as Dave began leaving the bar, Millie followed him.

Dave: I'm clocking out...

Millie: OK.. (follows)

Dave: (uuuh....not quite what I meant....)


So, from a co-worker who witnessed it (Greengirl, actually) and Dave himself, I know know what happened. Millie followed him out while he clocked out. She followed him back *into* the bar when he returned the key. Then followed him back out to the parking lot. Then put her hand on his arm to *steady herself*. Then attempted to follow him down to his car.

I'm not sure how he lost her.

If you happen to be reading this, "Dave", I'd like to know ;P

Dave later told me that she had had but two white wines....not nearly enough to do any damage. Her condition appears to be Millie-as-lightweight + Millie-already-drunk = Millie-more-drunk.


Fast-forward to this weekend:

She has been in the hotel Saturday night, but it was too crowded (see previous post) for any real goodies. I see her approach the door with her arms full of bags.

Her: Oh! I forgot my car keys

Me: Not a problem. You can leave your stuff her and grab them. I'll keep an eye on it.

Her: Thanks! (then sees Dave walking up to clock in...makes detour towards front door again) Hey..!

Dave: Hi.... (he grabs key to clock in)

Millie: I've got to put some stuff in the car...follows him, though hands are empty. (I'm imagining a scene where she sees her car and makes a bit deal about how she "didn't know" she'd "forgotten her car keys".)

Bar starts up. Dave acts normal. Millie flirts with him. Chick Millie has met the day before with a Milwaukee accent (Iris) is now fast friends with her. New woman (Lindsay) is there with her two adult children...but only *she* is taking a place in the convo.

The following seeped through from Iris: "I just can't live with college boys...I can't be the cougar on campus."

Heh heh heh.

Millie has to leave for some party or other. Finally, Dave ends up leaving (his shift is over).

While he is gone, both Iris and Lindsay have an intense discussion. They both agree that while Dave is young enough to be their son, that he is is cute, attractive, desirable, worth taking up on if "certain offers were presented" and just downright sexy.

'Twas all I, Redgirl, could do not to laugh.

Millie literally jogs in her heels back in the bar.

Millie: Did he go clock out?

Iris: (Lindsay is over with her kids) Yup, he ran out at 7:15...

Millie: Darn (she has missed him...and is sad) He ran...?

Iris: Yes, he ran for his girl. The one he talked about liking.

Millie: Did he propose??!!! (alarm, shock)

Iris: Last night, he told me he was halfway there...--he's smitten

Millie: Oh, I see. While, you should be at least glad you notice these things


They both end up taking it out to a bar in the nearby area. I have alerted "Dave" to the dangers in his situation. Have urged him to take out Cougar insurance.

He would if he could find a place they were selling the kind he needed.


:D

KK...so it seems like no one is able to identify the show playing...Look closely! It's Dr. Who in his second face! Click on the picture! Examine his clothing! Make a hypothesis!

And no, there are quite a few more rabbits/hares/bunny-wunnies/jackrabbits than 3.

Drifting Tidbits


I'm sitting here at my desk, MMOBAU (minding my own business as usual...soon I'll have to come up with a list of personal acronyms), and the bar is certainly lively tonight!


Last night, it was full of the college home team families along with the opposing families all in town for a game. So loud that I just imagined a war was taking place, and as long as it didn't spill out into accorded neutral territory, I would assume there was a treaty in place. As I sat there reading my tasty Dick Francis Novel, a woman came up:


"How can you READ in this?"


I just replied I was used to it. And so I am.


But on nights like this, when I forget a book, blogs are still sitting annoyingly on yesterday's post, and the shakespeare troupe refuses to check in when I want them to, I cast my ears about for the sounds of the evening.


Mother to her 3-4 year old son: Austin, so do you have girly parts? (she's not joking folks..she was being kinda mean)

Austin: uuuhh...?

Mother: you know, girly parts. Do you have any?



Hehehe. I fear for today's youth. No boy has "girly parts" unless:
A)
Tranny!
B) Klinefelter's Syndrome (XXY)
C) A Delusional Schitzophrenic**
D) and...um...every guy. b/c the X chromosome is technically "girly" and we all have them >:D

**such that a female believes she is a male...thus a male having "girly parts"


But anyway. Moving on.


Before I tell you about women behaving badly, I'd like to share about a man. A man who *thought* he was being smarmily manipulative. I'll give him smarmy, but the question remains, if you know someone is trying to manipulate you, can you really say that they are then?


So, I'm just sitting at my desk, MMOBAU and reveling in the relative silence, and a man comes up.


Him: I need plates, forks and knives...like for take out. (pauses...maybe sees something in my face...) It would really mean a lot to me .... and my wife...we have a room here...on the third floor (Like I care *where* his room is)


Me: I have sporks in the back...but you're welcome to see if there's any plates and cutlery set out in the breakfast room.... (The restaurant should have provided you with those)


**Well, I meant him to "check the breakfast room for things left out". Instead, he grabs my poor maintenance man and gives him the entire sob story. I can't exactly holler out "Only what's out! Don't get him anything special!", so while my guy is checking, I hear the following phone conversation:


"Honey, I'm not mad at you. (pause) Look, I took care of it. I took care of everything. (pause) Can you just grab the wine and pull out the plug? (huh?) Yeah, just pull the plug out so it can air--oh. Cork. (rofl) I just want you to know I'm not mad-- (pause) I'm waiting for the silverware!!!"


Apparently, he gets what he wants, then comes over to me to let me know that "that man" should get a raise.


Huh?


Get a raise for catering to your crazy whims? I think not...


Kay, so I think lengthwise, I need to post the women version separately.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Time to Get Down and Dirty: Inside-Out Girls

Ok Folks!

Prepare yourselves. Things are about to get skanky.

What flavor of skanky you ask?

Trollop flavored!

Let's get down to business (It's business tiiime!!).....*ahem*


It was the Friday before Halloween...anticipation in the air...candy in little chillin's pockets as they swarmed the down town area.

I hate having to dodge pedestrians with my bike.

I get to work and find out that today is "businesses hand candy out to kids" day. Great. At this point in my life, I'm not really liking the idea of kids so much. And I was in a bad mood. That is my excuse for the following exchange:

Me: It's candy day? Ug.

(male co-worker, boss, and lady from accounting are all standing there looking at me)

Boss: Yes. You get to hand it out (smirks)

Me: Great. Tweeny tweakers. I'm just gonna shove the bowl in their face and say 'take your candy and beat it, little b*st*rds'

Co-Worker: Woah...someone's not ready for work today

(they all laugh at me)

Me: Grrrr (leaves to go change)

I change out, pants, shirt, tie, and vest. I pop back in, smile flashing. Lady-from-accounting's kid is now there, in costume.

Me: Hi! You must be after my trick-or-treat bowl! (he nods dumbly) Well aren't you just the most precious thing! Here you are!

(They are all laughing at me...*sniff*)

Me: (after the kid runs out) See? All I do is put the tie on and happiness springs forth unfettered from my mouth. It's a magic tie.

In my defense, Spoon Man was due to arrive the following day, so I was a bit trepidatious. I was also training the new night auditor in day procedures. I do not normally train. We had an arrivals list of epic proportions. I would not get to read my book.

But the magic tie hides it all.

The first team of high school girl's water polo checked in. We'll call them "Mountain High". They were tired and relatively quiet, and each took ONE piece of the candy sitting out. Then Valley High water polo showed up.

Or should I say, Valley High and parents showed up. And like cicadas, my lobby filled with screeching, scantily clad banshees who promptly finished off the candy. They were still in their water polo swimsuits...which is not really appropriate for a hotel lobby. But OK. I'll let it pass.

They left (thank goodness) and I went back to training. Mainly by pointing after them saying "See that? THAT's why the Annex building is nice. And that's why I put them there."

Her: *nods comprehendingly*

The parents were easily identifiable by their matching sweatshirts. I'm going to choose orange and white as Valley High's colors. The parents are mostly in the main building.

Then.

Valley High comes back (after changing). I'm going to paint a picture for you now. Close your eyes.

Wait.

Don't

Pretend you are closing your eyes. Imagine an average high school student. Attractive. Athletic....*Developed* lol. (because they are it seems like these days) Now put her in short running shorts. Now put on a basic t-shirt with Valley High Water Polo emblazoned on it.

Got it? Good.

Now put panties of your choosing over the top of those shorts....the scantier the better. And put a brassiere on top of the shirt fastened very firmly. And as for the rules...it has to be as risque as possible.

I give you....the Skanky Trollop!


It was worse than you can imagine. Trust me on this. Aaand. Each girl had a piece of paper written on hotel stationary that read "inside out!".

I guess it was some bizarre Halloween costume. I was just waiting until their parents saw them.

But their parents seemed proud of their little Skanky Trollops.

I mean, I know that I, myself, tend towards more modesty than mainstream society does. I recognize this, so I have my personal line that I won't cross, but am in no way judging those who are a little less modest or revealing.

But these girls showed no decorum in dress, attitude or behavior.

So they leave. Mountain High comes up to get something, and I hear one of the girls say to her teammate "Did you see that other team? So classy...."

I turned towards her: "I couldn't agree more" and then we all laughed. See, even their contemporaries thought it just a bit too far out there...

The evening progresses. I don't see much more of Mountain High....but Valley High makes up for it. The took my bar chairs out and began having "rolling contests" on my marble floor.

Me: Put the chairs back in the bar

Them: Huh?

Me: The chairs need to go back in the bar...NOW

Them: Why?

Me: Safety concerns (I love it! So vague...)

Them: What if we don't?

Me: I will send someone to kick you out of the bar


Strangely enough, following that, they all wanted to be my friend. (Can anyone say....desperate for an authority figure in their life?) One of the mothers had witnessed part of this, and seemed proud that her daughter "was a rebel...I bet you can tell where she gets it!" *simper*

Later, when one of the girls ran through my lobby with a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc under her arm giggling wildly, I didn't care. It's not my job to babysit. I was just .... disgusted. I asked myself why they would turn out that way...little brats....skanky trollops. Then I heard chanting in the breakfast room. All of their parents were getting as drunk as possible as quickly as possible, to the point that a bottle of beer exploded and my GM was forced to intervene.

I realized. They couldn't help it. It was in their genes.

They need to work on their street smarts though...when I called the room check in for a parent (who wanted to go to a bar rather than keep an eye on them), they told me the truth. "Oh, there's EIGHT of us in here!" Me: "Thanks!" Thinking: you should have lied....

Because apparently, we're all friends now.

Guurkgleluurk


Picture Blog

So. Mel did this thingy where she tried to take 10 pictures a day...or something to that effect. I thought to give it a try. Of course, considering my subject matter, I have to be careful about anything too identifying. (murdered in my sleep and all), so I've got some without pesky road signs and town names.



Problem is...many of these pictures inspire little anecdotes...snippets if you will. I will attempt to limit my ramblings and give an insight on the landscape of Friday.



Part of my bike route home from work. Rarely will I come this way in the light...






















Rabbits!! I love rabbits :)


But wait. There's more rabbits...















This brings up the task I have for you. After examining the third picture, I want you to count the rabbits and submit your number in the comments.


Mmmm....happy giggle :)







I really like the lighting on this....when the sun makes the earth both light and dark at the same time. With some unfortunate timing, developers decided to do something with the undeveloped land to the south. They finished with some awesome pits.....and then it rained. Big time. Then a flock of ducks moved in. Then a gaggle of geese moved it and kicked the ducks out. I think it's safe to say production will be stalled until next year sometime.








So, the fact that I can't look straight at the sun has always been an annoyance to me. Much like the mysterious object behind the curtain, I am sure that the sun must be magnificent, fully of vitality, and hot. It's this last one that ends up being the problem for my weak little retinas. Digital cameras are the next best thing.






My trusty steed











Points to anyone who can correctly identify show, season, and episode:





The bane of my existence:











The other bane:



Notice the evil shadow it casts on the wall...reminding me I have to iron my work shirts not later but now!!





But this makes it all worthwhile. Dick Francis!! Yummmmm.....


















Well, now that I have bored you all with pictures, I think you deserve a sneak peek at what's destined for tomorrow's postings.



We have the Inside-Out Girls, the Pumpkin Post, and maybe a quick foray into some special bar guests. I leave you with a tidbit :P



Overheard at Borders: "So for her birthday, he bought a pole and installed it at the foot of their bed. She said she'd been taking classes...."

Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Return of Spoon Man: A Short Story



If you need refreshing about Spoon Man, go here and here.

Once upon a time, there was a girl. Her name was Redgirl, and she worked at a hotel. Redgirl had figured out through experience to mind her own business, but this was through rueful incidents of the sort that a person might consume flies that enter a mouth left ajar for too long.

She always sought to put them behind her, but with one guest, this was difficult.

For, you see, Spoon Man kept coming back.

Much like the infamous "Cat in the Hat", Spoon Man always came back. May hap not the very next day, but he certainly wouldn't stay away. Could it have been her girlish charms? Redgirl didn't know, but if she had reasonable belief in that regard, she would have dragged a dull steak knife dipped in acid across each blushing cheek.

As it happened, Redgirl would check the list of reservations coming in for any sign of Spoon Man. She would type in "Man, Spoon", and would be relieved each time when nothing would pop up. Unfortunately, the reason for this was that Spoon Man didn't usually make a reservation ahead of time. He just roared in on his smokin' motorcycle (which he knew Redgirl admired and thought made him look like a stud) and walked in with the words "Do you have any rooms available for tonight?"

One fateful Friday afternoon, the hotel was almost full. Redgirl was working with her coworker, Greengirl. People were checking in right and left; they were very busy. All of the sudden out of the corner of her very perceptive eyes, Redgirl caught sight of a figure....the figure of Spoon Man!!

She grabbed the next guest almost physically to help them, leaving Greengirl at his mercy.

Redgirl had told Greengirl of the man and his wily, spooning ways, but realized now that she had neglected to tell her the real-world name. Luckily, several other guests came in, so Redgirl was able to stay very busy-looking. Greengirl seemed to take her time checking Spoon Man in, and Redgirl's dearest hope was that her line would continue to stay long until Spoon Man was safely checked in....hopefully to the Annex Wing.

Redgirl kept getting the chills. The reason? Spoon Man kept looking at her. Except when he needed to look at Greengirl for basic politeness's sake or to sign paperwork, he kept looking at our poor heroine. Redgirl was careful not to make eye contact, but he kept looking at her. Finally, she heard Greengirl give him a room...in the main building. She wasn't happy, but maybe he would go away now.

Redgirl did chortle silently to herself that the suite he normally liked to get when he came was unavailable. Ha! she thought, take THAT man who just walks in! Try making a reservation next time!

It was almost as if Spoon Man could hear Redgirl's thoughts. He asked Greengirl if she could make him a reservation for a specific room. Greengirl was a little new, so Redgirl kept an ear out. When Spoon Man mentioned the room number, Greengirl seemed unsure, but Redgirl knew what he was talking about. He wanted to reserve "his" suite for a certain night.

Halloween night.

She clarified to Greengirl what room he wanted, carefully avoiding eye contact with Spoon Man. She could not help but call to mind last year's Halloween, when Spoon Man had appeared with feathers, face paint, and an inadmissible apology.

Unfortunately, if the miner won't go to the mine, the mine is gonna come and get the miner. Or, to clarify, if Redgirl wouldn't notice Spoon Man, Spoon Man was going to make her.


"Hi Redgirl, how are you?" Spoon Man said, with enough volume to avoid being ignored.


Redgirl didn't falter, but it was a close thing. She was with another guest, but knew that in such a social situation, a direct look was called for, as well as the niceties of inane greetings. "Doing pretty good...you?" she replied, carefully keeping her eyes from batting alluringly in his direction. She flashed a practiced smile.


He was still staring at her, his eyes seeming to bore into her very soul. "Good."


Redgirl gave him a small smile and nodded. This was in effort to show that yes, she was glad that he was doing well. Even though secretly, she was hoping he would get hit by a lumber lorry as soon as he left and die a slow, painful, squished-to death. Was that too strong? She pondered, "No," she thought to herself, "That's about right. And then dump some acid on him too. That should do it."


As he walked away (could that be? swaying his hips seductively? No. Please no.), Redgirl hissed over to Greengirl, "What room did you give him?"


Greengirl gave the number of a nice quiet room on the third floor that Redgirl was holding back for any guests that specifically asked for something quiet. Curses!!! But the damage was done, Redgirl knew she would just have to live with it.


Redgirl turned to Greengirl. "Greengirl....that was Spoon Man."


Greengirl looked horrified. "He was creepy. And old!"


"I know." Redgirl gave a little shiver. "Did you see how he kept staring at me? Ugg."


She nodded and curled her lip in disgust. "Yeah...that was just wrong."


Redgirl sighed. "And because you put him in the main building, we'll get to see him anytime he goes anywhere."


Most guests, Redgirl didn't mind seeing go back and forth across her lobby. The Scottish people with lovely accents...check. The handsome men's soccer team in their cute manly jerseys...check. That nice young lawyer from the south without a wedding ring...check check. Spoon Man?

Uh...not so much.


Redgirl saw him twice more that evening, once by himself, and once with a from-a-box-redhead draped over his arm. Which he then introduced to Redgirl with a twinkle in his eye. It wasn't great, but at least it wasn't the elderly man and his young "personal assistant". Plus, the months hadn't been kind to Spoon Man. His hair had thinned, and he had gained quite a bit of weight.


Redgirl knew she should feel sorry for a man trying so hard to hang on to his youth, slip through his fingers though it may.


But she didn't.


She couldn't.


Once a Spoon Man, always a Spoon Man.


No going back. No second chances.


Redgirl grimly circled the 31st on her calendar. She would be ready.


Hehehehe. Heh. Well, if he does anything tomorrow, I'll let y'all know....



I was chatting with one of the owner's sons and told him the story. He laughed and pointed to me and said it was because I was wearing such revealing clothing and it was driving Spoon Man to distraction. I wear black dress pants, a men's white collared long sleeve shirt, a tie, and a black vest. Oh. And black shoes. I responded that perhaps the neckline was too low....and I should talk to my boss about turtlenecks. Gack!

What Really Happened to the Red Scarf...


Today's post *snicker* is the tale *snicker* of the *snicker* red scarf. (sorry, it's really hard to control myself on this subject lol) If you haven't been reading for the last month or so, or haven't read through the archives, shame on you!

This once, though, I shall be nice and provide the link. Before scrolling down to *this* post, read the all about Team Egypt here, here, and finally, here.

So. I had just gotten off shift the other day, and I tarried for a while at the front desk, seeing as it was our night auditor's last shift. She and I get on rather well, and we began to reminisce. I made some disparaging comment or other on the subject of the red scarf.

Me: I wonder what happened to it.

Her: Oh, well that would be me...

Me: You know?!?! (I might have jumped up and down and clapped my hands in glee here...*cough* just on behalf of lifeshighway of course, I was only mildly interested.)

I am proud to say that the mystery of the scarf was a conspiracy! Our security dude was out cleaning up the pool area, and found that scurvy scarf. He brought it up to the the desk.

Him: I found this out by the pool

Her: ...what do you want me to do with it?

Him: Ida know.

Her: Put it there for now (points at desk corner)

Sometime later that night:

Her: (thinking) I do like a clean desk...ack. Stupid scarf. Oh look! A trash can! **swoosh**fmph**

Him: (takes all the trash cans out to the dumpster)

Fast forward a few hours to morning

Scarf-Man: (frantic) My scarf! My scarf!

Her: (oops...) I don't know what you're talking about

Him: Ask the night people!!

Her: I'm all over that (or words to the droll effect)

Her: (calls night guy) Dude, we never saw the scarf. We never touched the scarf. There IS no scarf. Comprende? (or words to that effect)

Needless to say, I am happy to find out WRH (what really happened), but a little disillusioned with WAH (what actually happened) but glad that I can share.

To be honest, if I had to pick one guest for that to happen to....

Friday, October 23, 2009

Ah, Projector-Man; When Will We Learn?



There you are, sitting at a mid-to upscale restaurant. You place your napkin on the table after dabbing daintily at you lips. Great food! You open your purse to discover....no





No wallet.





Or try this:





You're on the bus, riding towards class. You've got your laptop, all your notes for your presentation....even jokes memorized. As a guest presenter during your normal class, you know you're good to go. You get to class 15 minutes early to set up....and realize you picked up your roommates computer instead, which looks remarkably similar to your own. Your new word of the day is "lack".





As in lacking all things.





Now that I've got you where I want you, lets get on to tonight's little story.





"Mitch" is a man, smooth of word and short of height. (I can say that because I'm short) I know to expect him because my General Manager has alerted me that people coming to his meeting will be asking for a "Petunia Room" location. I am to direct them to the "Ponderosa Room", as Mitch had informed them that was where they were going.





Smirk, chuckle...no harm done.





Mitch can't get the projector to work. As I am stuck at the front desk, I can't exactly building-hop, so I draw him a picture of the button he should look for. (I looked for a picture to show all of you in case you don't know, but nothing was clear enough)





He calls back, frustration is mounting. "Isn't there anyone here who knows about this kind of stuff??!!"





I'm done hearing from Mitch. If his computer is capable, it would be so easy to push the dang butoon, make him look the fool, then make my glorious exit. I grab my maintenance guy and ask if he would mind watching the desk. He agrees, so I hotfoot it over there.





And his computer is entirely devoid of the button needed.





The projector is plugged in, but the computer doesn't recognize it.





I go through all the hardware options available for that laptop, and "projector" isn't among them. Then we get following conversation:





Me: Have you used this computer with a projector before?





Him: I used one last year...it worked fine!





(keep in mind, several of the people he was presenting for were in attendance already)





Me: But was it this computer or another one?





Him: It was a different one





Me: (seriously? then why are we having this conversation? why then are you telling me that it worked before and attempting to use that as proof ?) Well, this computer doesn't appear to be capable of supporting a projector.





Him: (upset) Well is there something I can download...?





(I look up his computer on the net paired with keywords like "projector" and the only thing I find is a lady saying she couldn't use the projector without buying an adaptor.)





Me: Sorry sir, there's nothing I can do.





Hahahahahaha.





But now, on to the juicy part.





My general manager happened to still be on property, so I alerted her to the fact that Mitch's computer wouldn't use the projector. She laughed.





Her: I told him to make sure he had all the cables and etc. He also knew that we wouldn't have anyone here to help him with it.





Me: Do tell...





Her: In fact...he seemed to take it for granted he would get to use it. It's usually extra. Last time he came, he never paid. He said he would come up and take care of it, but skipped out





Me: (gasp!) If you had told me, I'd have gotten a credit card before I unlocked the room for him!





Her: Don't worry, he's got another event booked with us. If he skips out, we'll hit him with it then.








So, for the rest of the night, I waited for Mitch to return.





And waited.





Waited some more.









Wiley devil. I just hope the projector's still in the room.





I'll update when I know more...but until then, I have a special update coming soon for "Life's Highway Game"...yup, that's it. I found out what really happened to the scarf.





If you haven't checked out her blog, do so NOW! lifeshighwaygame.blogspot.com.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

I Don't Want to Screw You, But I Will if You Make Me (pt. 2)


So, the previous post established that when it comes to assigning rooms, I use my superior (yes, that's what I said) knowledge to give you the closest thing to your requirements as I am able.

Sometimes though, you finicky traveler you, you undermine my decision and cause me to have less than sunshine feelings for you. In this case, what I "am able" to do for you may and will fall to a different level than if you had just minded your own business and let me mind mine. To illustrate, I offer the Gaines (names changed to prevent lynching) for your reading pleasure.

Me: (to self) Hmm...we are very full tonight. I think I shall assign rooms now rather than later. *peruses the arrivals list* Oi, look here! The Gaines would like a suite if it becomes available...and it is! I can move them out of the double queen into a suite and cancel the second reservation that would require them to move rooms! *pats self on back in a self-satisfied manner* I am such a good Front Desk person!! *basks in self-congratulatory smugness*

Enter Stage Right: Gaines Family (Mr. Gaines, Mrs. Gaines, and Miss Gaines-daughter) The family carries with them several large suitcases...they are here for 3 weeks. Mr. Gaines approaches the counter where Front Desk Clerk (FDC) is doing check-ins.

Mr. G: I'd like to check in

FDC: Certainly sir. (pulls up res.) It appears we were able to get you in the suite for the entire length of time, so you will not have to switch rooms after all! May I see your credit card and ID?

Mr. G: Can I see the room first?

FDC: (remains unruffled at this annoying request) I'm sorry sir, but I don't have anyone available to take you up. If you find anything out of place, you can just call me when you get up there.

FDC checks in the Gaines, they leave the lobby stage left. After about 45 minutes, they return from stage left.

Mr. G: Do you have any other rooms? The sofa bed is too soft!

FDC: Too soft? (audience can tell she wants to laugh, but is able to contain herself) What did you have in mind?

Mr. G: Well, earlier we were in a double queen for the first few nights. We'd like to go back to that.

FDC: (Unfortunately, FDC has made another reservation in the meantime...a reservation for the double queen she just moved them out of. Audience can see her thinking frantically) Well sir, when you reserved your room initially, you requested that if the suite became available for the entire length of your stay, to be moved. After moving you, that particular room was booked.

Mr G: Well, can I see it?

FDC: Even if you moved into that room, you would have to move out again in 1-2 days.

Mr G: (to Mrs. G) What do you think?

Mrs G: (to Mr. G) It might be worth it...

FDC: (sees that the desired result is not what she has hoped for) The room is actually not available tonight. You can check back in the morning and see if it is available

Mr G: I want to see the room

Audience has been made aware through a program insert that the hotel is full tonight, with one double queen kept for emergencies. This room is in the dreaded auxiliary building and has no balcony. FDC does not intend to do the room switching game tonight, there is too much else on her plate.

FDC: The room that you would get is not available

Mr. G: If I could see something similar...?

FDC: Sir, we are full tonight. I don't have rooms set aside just for showing purposes.

Mr. G: But we'd like to move!

FDC: Even if I were to move you now, I wouldn't be able to save your entire stay in that room, because of this weekend, in which no double queens are available. You might lose the last two weeks of your reservation.

FDC knows that if she fiddles around for an hour or so, she could probably figure something out, but the Gaines family isn't listening to her. She has given them what they said they wanted, and they are now changing their minds. FDC's mental breakdown should start here...gradual, but obviously taking place.

Mr. G: (to Mrs. G) Would it be worth it?

Mrs. G: (to Mr. G) It might be...but you would want to see the room.

FDC: (audience can see this is not the desired reaction FDC was hoping for) But sir, like I said, you can check in the morning to see if the room has opened up.

Mr. G: But we want to move tonight.

FDC: I can't move you tonight.

In order not to irritate the audience, it is necessary to cut out the exiting and returning of the Gaines family no less than 3 times throughout the evening, using a total of 45 minutes of FDC's valuable blogging time in an attempt to move. FDC knows if she moves them to the only double queen left, that they will not only want to move back, but will complain of the noise profusely. She is thoroughly disgusted with the Gaines family. They do not leave her alone. They won't listen to her when she says she can't move them. Finally, she comes up with a plan. Audience can tell FDC is hanging from the rope of her sanity that is slowly fraying...pop! pop! pop! as the Mr. Gaines takes a rusty hacksaw to the length above her. She doesn't want to look down, but does. There are crocodiles down there. Salt water ones. Vicious. Time is short-as are her teeth after she has been grinding them together all evening.

FDC: Sir! The only room I have with 2 queen sized beds is in a different building. Although renovated as well, it is different, and has no balcony. It is nothing like what you would get and would not benefit you in the slightest to either see it or move in to it. If you really need a room change that badly, you need to check in the morning. I have nothing left to say on the subject.

Mr. Gaines seems to understand (finally) and he nods, gathers his brood and exits stage right for dinner. FDC is obviously relieved and we see her go into the back room. The stage rotates, and the audience can see her throw her arms in the air and yell AAAAAAHHHHHRRRRGGGG. We see her compose herself, and go back up to the desk. Disaster has been averted.


Seriously though, this was the most frustrating thing imaginable. And they kept. coming. BACK. Wouldn't leave me alone.

Aaarg.

Lesson Learned
I know now to put my foot down at the very beginning. Say exactly what I mean and what I'm going to do. In this case, if I'm not willing to move them, just say I have no rooms, but that if a room becomes available tomorrow, then they can check then to see it. Something in what I said obviously led them to have a glimmer of hope. I must crush this glimmer before it gets away from me.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

If You Won't Trust Me to Do My Job, Don't Blame Me When You Screw Yourself (pt. 1)


The aforementioned, long awaited post =)


So there I am, lounging behind the desk as the clock creeps misgivingly towards the 11th hour. My pineapples on farmville being harvested, I have used more precious minutes planting tomatoes and aloe vera (a 12 hour harvest time!!). Then I remember.


Crap!


I haven't assigned rooms yet for tomorrow! Special requests get assigned ahead of time, like those who want a quieter room. One arrival, a "Ms. Sharpe" wants one such. I use my judgement and assign her streetside in the main building as opposed to poolside in our axillary wing. We have a train, and many people find it easier to deal with street noise (a relatively quiet street) than the Freight 419 coming RIGHT THROUGH their ROOM at 3:30 in the morning. Also, the main building for some reason just feels more *upscale*.


The day dawns bright and early---ish (1:30pm) and I crawl out of bed and dash to work. In due time, Ms. Sharpe checks in. 5 minutes after she leaves for her room, she comes back....and she's not happy.


I shall recount:


Sharpe: I asked for a quiet room...mine is on the street!


Me: Well Ma'am, we have no more rooms in this building facing pool side; though if you're willing to move to the other wing...(I do NOT mention the train. No way.)


Sharpe: Oh, I'll take that.


She leaves, and I cross my fingers waiting for her to come back up. You see, this had happened once before. A couple and their child were first placed in the larger building, requested a room change, got it it, and then came back:


Them: That room isn't as nice as the first one you put us in


Me: (resolutely NOT saying "I know, dingbat, that's why I didn't put you out there, or, alternately, **insert title here**) Yes sir, the auxiliary wing is not yet fully renovated


Them: Well....we'd like to move back...


Me: **pointed, wall-eyed stare**


Them: **keep looking at me...a definite sheepish cast to their wistful expressions** We didn't realize there was a difference between the two buildings...we've never been out there before..


Me: I don't normally do this...but I suppose I could make an exception (they stay here a lot)


Them: Thank you so much! We really appreciate it! (you'd better...)


So you see...I could see the way this could go. I put her in a good room, she decides to move. After moving, she decides that the original pasture was greener after all.


Well nuh uh. Not going to do it. Nope. I put my foot down. Sink my heels in. In fact, I've already decided on options for what I will say if she comes back;


A) ....suck-uuhh!!


B) Hahahahahaha...hehehehehe.....*hiccup*


C) If you won't trust me to do my job, don't blame me when you screw yourself


D) I'm very sorry ma'am...but someone requested room XXXX; it is no longer available.


Keeping the sucky economy in mind, I realistically decide on answer D. Even though answer D was "less than completely truthful". To make myself feel better, I probably would have just gone with "I'm sorry Ma'am, but Room XXX is no longer available" and just leave out the reasons.


I mean honestly folks, this is my job. I am paid money for this job. The money I am paid is contingent on the fact that when the guest asks for a nice, quiet room, it is my job to know what the best room fitting that criterion may be. If you decide that you truly know better than I, well then--depending on my mood--why shouldn't I let you try?


And what? That didn't work out for you?


I'm so terribly sorry, but I did do my best by you. And, of course, I'm even more sorry that the room in question was taken by the couple after you that did trust me to do my job.


Next post: I Don't Want to Screw You, But I Will if You Make Me (pt. 2)

Friday, September 18, 2009

Bonus!!!


Hey y'all!


Bonus feature before I unveil the afore mentioned post :-)


2 phrases overheard: (you know I love these)


In the bar:

"he rode over 6 miles on his spiderman bicycle!"

Oh yay!

That is thrilling!

Tho, I think we all hope she is referring to a child....


At the front desk (to a coworker referring to calling a taxi)


Her: I can't

Co-Worker: Why?

Her: Because I'm scared


Yeah.....so if you don't want to do things yourself, pretend you're scared. It worked for her.

In the Homeless Shelter Resource Center from one "client" to another:

"I am a vampire. I am going to eat you."

Yup. Do we I think this is "Twilight initiated? Not sure yet. Though I *do* plan a blog following what my flatmate and I intend to for the opening of "New Moon", though I do believe you'll have to wait.


LOL


uh huh....it's that good :)



And finally......Creepy guy update!!


Remember the guy from CVS who approached me in the parking lot?


I saw him again.


It's been about 2 months. I haven't gone to CVS; afraid that I'll run in to him. Well, tonight I was hitting up Safeway for groceries, and he walked by.


"Hey, haven't see you in a while!!!"

"Yeah...Hi!"


And he was gone. So maybe I over aged him. Maybe he's 35. I still don't want him.



Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Three Stages of Wheedling pt.B


Last post, I introduced the topic of wheedlers. I neglected to include Webster's take on the word:


wheedle: to endeavor to influence (a person) by smooth, flattering, or beguiling words or acts


Yup, I think that sums it up. Though my guys throw in a bit of intimidation...so not a perfect fit.


Earlier this week, (as some of you might know) we had one very rainy night. Rained about half an inch. Felt like a lot more, but still. The next day, I pop into the local homeless shelter for my regularly scheduled shift. My supervisor was out, but one of the other division heads was in to keep a handle on things.


I popped out back to grab a sleeping bag for someone from the shed. I gave him one. And to the other guy who saw I was giving out sleeping bags. Then went back out when a woman saw us coming in with sleeping bags. She follows me, and another guy's head pops in the entrance. "You got sleeping bags? I need one...."


So I give the woman one.


Her: I don't know, It's kind of big....(kinda peers behind me, looking for something better)

Me: (holds out a red one) It's that one of this one.

Her: I just don't like it...

Me: (looks at guy who also wanted one) If you don't want it, give it to him, but that's what I've got.

Her: I'll take it


Later on....


Her: I'm going to (nearby town). Can you store it for me?

Me: We don't store things. (Is our name "We-Store-it-so-U-don't-have-to"? No! It's a homeless shelter and resource center!)

Her: Oh. Can you save it for me?

Me:.......no.

Her: Oh. Well I guess I'll just try to get one when I come back.


I spoke with the supervisor of which 2 points emerged:


  1. Someone else was going to ask, so rather than putting it back in the shed, stash it in the back office. This prevents the "oooh, she's going to the shed. I need one TOO!!"

  2. We weren't going to give out anymore. People were getting all excited because of one rainy day and the season hadn't even started. When nasty weather did hit, we needed to have some left. Plus, my boss wasn't there, and neither of us were sure of sleeping-bag-dispersal policies she had

Another woman comes in, wants a sleeping bag:


Me: I've got one in the back room here you can have. (give it to her....it's not new, but in great condition)


Her: It isn't new....did someone use this?


Me: I hadn't gotten a chance to put it in the back yet (technically true..)


Her: I thought there were nicer ones in the shed


Me: (really? I mean REALLY? It's free!) That's what I've got. If you don't want it....(I start to take it back)


Her: Nono! I'll take it....I guess....



So, we are now officially out.


In light of that, take it away David! (David is a tall thin man in a big straw hat)


David: I heard you were giving away sleeping bags


Me: I'm sorry sir, we don't have any more to give away today


David: What do you mean? Today?


Me: We've given quite a few away this morning, and aren't able to give any more away today. Perhaps tomorrow-


David: (comes closer...towers. I don't stand up. Why? to play the height game? I'm so short I've largely gotten over that.) What, so you just give away your quota, and then you stop? That's ridiculous!


Me: (well, yeah....) I'm not authorized to give any away at this time.


David: I'm sleeping on benches in the rain! I need a sleeping bag.


Me: I'm sorry sir. (forecast looks clear tonight though :)


David: Who runs this place!? I'm taking this straight to the city counsel! When I started this place in 1975.....(rambles on)


Me: (oh please....If half the people who say that lined up, they'd be through the door and being run over by the train every half hour) I'll look for a business card n-


David: This is an outrage. I put this together to help people! I want their business card! I'm taking this to the City Council!


Me: I can't seem to find a-


David: (getting in my personal space) Just get me that business card!


By this time, I'm getting really annoyed. He keeps interrupting me. He's just repeating himself.


Me: Sir? (he ignores me) Sir! I've told you I'm-


David: I'm not mad at you! I just want a card!


Me: I've told you I'm looking. (he starts to talk. I ignore him) I can't seem to locate one sir. Will a post-it do?


David: Yes! Just get me the number! (I hand him a post-it) This doesn't have a name! I want a name! (I put down the director's name. "Peter Jones". I figure, as director, this is part of his job) Peter Jones!! I should have known! I've done his landscaping.....


huh?


The odd thing was, after he'd gotten what he wanted, he tried to make small talk with me...maybe to leave a good impression? Too late, I already knew he was a few bottles short of a 6-pack.


Ok. Analyze time!


After this last incident, I realized that there was a pattern.


Stage One: The SquwakSquwak Stage. Person approaches, doesn't like answer. Thinks that if they can just go on about it, like a small child bleating for treats at a grocery store, Mommy will finally give in. Opponent will attempt to give various reasons why you should change your mind. Be firm!


Stage Two: The Guilt Trip Stage. This one doesn't last very long. Opponent doesn't usually have to resort to this, but they've judged that stage one is ineffectual and making them look bad. Opponent will attempt to make you feel guilty; like you aren't doing your job and that you are a bad person for this. Unfortunately for them, they secretly know you have nothing to feel guilty about, so they don't spend a lot of time here and won't throw anything truly heinous at you. Keep this in mind when combating stage two.


Stage Three: Intimidation Stage. Opponent wasn't giving his all for the guilt trip and decides to intimidate you as a last ditch effort. Phrases such as "Get me your manager" and "I'm friends with the owner" are common here. Opponent might also try to use height and/or breadth. Keep in mind that if they really were an important person, they would have brought it up first, rather than coming up with it now. Also, a lot of important people are actually nice and rarely torment people for an afternoon's pass time. For the "manager" line, you can use the following tip. This is something you need to be doing the entire process:


Use "aggressive politeness" as I call it. You can say "sir" or "ma'am" a lot, as it shows respect while allowing you more time to think of what you're going to say. Rephrase often instead of offering new information. In stage one, they really aren't listening to you anyway. They just want you to change your mind. Reasons mean nothing. With Sleeping Bag Man, it would have been a Bad Thing to offer the info that we had sleeping bags at all. To keep from slipping up, rephrase!


Most importantly, don't take too much crap.


They won't respect you. At some point, you might need to have the following exchange:


You: Sir, I've told you what I'm able to do. Why are you angry with me?


Them: I'm not angry at you!! (this will be loud) You didn't do anything!


You: Sir, there's only me here. Nobody else. So I have to assume you're angry at me. If that's not the case, please stop yelling.



Stay tuned for the upcoming post:


"If You Won't Trust Me to Do My Job, Don't Blame Me When You Screw Yourself"