Back in a previous life, when I used to virtually live in hotels – sometimes literally so – it became exceedingly apparent that these were strange little places. There were some omnipresent highlights; like meticulously clean bathrooms and that feeling of dropping onto a perfectly made bed for the first time. More often than not, though, hotels proved to be home to a maddening collection of offenses by both staff and fellow travelers alike. These are the worst of those transgressions.
The Eternal Check-In
When I made a reservation, I gave you my name, address, email, phone number, and all my credit card info. I presume that somewhere in the complex workings of innkeeping, you reserved a room in some fashion for me at that same time.
A handful of hotels seem to acknowledge this, and allow me to check in to their establishment with little more than a swipe of my credit card through a kiosk. At most of them, though, the process is more like this :
“Hi, I’m checking in. Last name is Tanktronic.”
“Ok, great, can I have an ID and form of payment?”
This is followed by my presenting of the requested items within five seconds…and a front desk associate frantically typing on their keyboard for twenty fucking minutes.
What are you typing back there? For what reason on God’s Green Earth do you need to type more than entering my name and pressing Enter? I’ve already given you every relevant piece of data about myself and my stay before I even got here, and you’re now back there transcribing War and Peace before giving me my damn key card.
Without question, this is the most mystifying and egregious offense a hotel can commit – and they do so every time I visit. Every. Fucking. Time.
Look, if check-out is Noon and check-in is 4:00pm, I’m going to assume that is the case not so the hotel staff can have an Eyes Wide Shut orgy on the property without interruption, but rather so that the rooms can be cleaned between departing and arriving guests.
So why, then, is the maid whose shrillness of voice is surpassed only by dubiousness of employment legality screaming “HOUSEKEEPING!” at me from the other side of the door at nine in the fucking morning? Oh, and for as loud as they can scream, their hearing ability is fucking atrocious – I have been in bed screaming “NOT NOW! NO THANK YOU!” only to hear that dreaded swipe. click. of the door being opened at the end of the hallway.
Listen, fucking hotel people, if I didn’t ask for a wake-up call, I sure as shit don’t want someone pounding on my door and screaming at me more than one goddamn minute before checkout time. Stop it – before I find out where the hotel manager lives, wait for their next vacation day, and ring the shit out of their doorbell at 7:00am screaming “HOUSEKEEPING!” on their porch.
Clusters of Granola and Fucks
I’m not quite sure who to blame more for the painful experience that is the utilization of the free continental breakfast the hotel offers.
On one hand, the hotel puts in literally the least amount of effort possible to honor their promise: they throw out a spread of pre-packaged breakfast items loaded up with more preservatives than an Egyptian pharaoh onto a badly undersized counter in an equally undersized room, stack some Styrofoam and plastic wares in the corner, and employ one hopelessly overwhelmed lady in her late sixties to manage it all.
On the other hand, the room quickly fills with slap-dicks that are rude, inconsiderate pricks in their everyday lives – only now they have the added rationalization for being uncivil that comes with feeling like they’re at home. Take the kind of asshole that won’t let you in to traffic when a lane suddenly disappears, give him the comfort of being in his pajamas with unbrushed teeth, and you have a new level of asshole that will absolutely NOT step five inches to the right while they’re waiting for their toast to pop out so you can reach the milk.
Either way, it’s a dreadful scene that makes you want to just wait for lunch.
The Long, Narrow Meeting Room
One transgression that is undoubtedly the fault of my fellow guests, though, is the obnoxiously loud and long Hallway Conversation. Listen, ass, any conversation in a hotel hallway at a decibel level north of a whisper should last ten seconds tops, and consist solely of future plans centering on when and where in the hotel you will meet later. That’s it.
If you need to further elaborate with your shitty low-level-management colleague why you need to put in additional work on the Penske file tonight, then walk your ass down to their room or meet in one of the many public spaces afforded to you downstairs for this exact purpose.
That, or be cognizant that about two dozen people are trying to work, fuck, or sleep on the other side of those razor-thin doors lining the hallway you’re shouting down, and shut the fuck up.