Friday, September 14, 2012

The Innkeeper: A Coin for thy Thoughts

I'm the proverbial "Innkeeper". I'm the wench with the wild hair who takes a gold coin from dusty travelers on sweaty horses so they can spend the night on a straw matt at the back of the tavern. (At least this is one way to look at it.)

#1...I need four, at least *4*, basic pieces of information to create a reservation or check you in:  your name, your street address, your zip code, and your telephone number. (I also need your credit card, but that's another issue, another page on the computer.)  Telling me, "I've stayed here before, you should have this information", is not one of these four pieces of necessities which I need.  You are not as memorable as you seem to think you are, and arguing with me over the fact that I should remember you takes much longer than just giving me the requested information, as would diving into the bowels of the computer to retrieve this data. I've probably checked in hundreds of people since your last visit, and my brain is not wasting its limited space and functionality on automatic recall of information that is not pertinent to my life. 

#2...Don't get angry at me when your credit card is declined-- I haven't been using it.  It's not my fault that you are low on funds.  I also cannot give you a room until you either a) give me another credit card to an account that carries enough money to pay for your purchase, or b) give me cash.  I'm selling hotel rooms, if you don't pay for one, you don't get one.

#3...Male guests:  Female employees of a hotel are hired to check you into the hotel, to make your reservation, and to make sure you're comfortable and the hotel is secure.  Female employees of a hotel are not hired to be your verbal punching bag.  Although it's not emphasized publicly, in most hotels, mine included, female employees will be justified in telling you to take a hike if you become abusive and obnoxious.

I had a gentleman come in the other night, give me his name, and stand there smiling expectantly. I say, "Yes? Do you have a reservation?" He says, "No", still smiling. I say, "You need a room?" He says, "Well, L. (former employee) usually just has it ready for me." -- You Have Got To Be Kidding.  I say, with a sweet smile on my face, "Well, I'm not L."  (I'm actually thinking: fucktard.)  He seemed a little let down when we had to go through the usual process.

Four words a hotel desk clerk dreads most:  "We need a plunger."

Just a note:  For most people, stamping your feet and throwing a hissy fit to get what you wanted when you were a kid didn't work. It still doesn't.  And for that special few who managed to pull this crap off successfully then...that was then, this is now.



Thursday, September 6, 2012

Divorce in the 21st Century

From personal experience (divorced more than once), I can tell you that the woman is most often labeled as the villain in this scenario, no matter what the circumstances of the break-up happen to be.  If the husband is having an affair, it's usually justified by popular speculation that the wife is neglecting him.

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People are really thrown for a loop when there is a divorce without the customary affair, cheating, histrionics, and usual drama.  It almost makes them angry, maybe because they aren't able to neatly categorize the situation in their mind.

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Couples are friends with other couples.  Once a 'Couple' is separated and becomes singular, they no longer fit the criteria of what's acceptable for friendship within the world of Pairs.  Apparently it causes some sort of disruption in the social aspect of things.  I'm not sure.  But if a friendship is maintained between a 'Couple' and a 'Non-Couple', it usually only entails one party, and this is usually the man...this has been my experience over the course of four divorces.  I'm not sure why this is so, still working on this one.  Maybe trying to emotionally compartmentalize how both non-couple people could fit into the scenario is just too difficult or confusing.  As I said, I haven't figured this one out yet.

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An odd observation:  Single women seem to be viewed as more of a threat than single men.

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Women who are in the midst of a divorce are often viewed as evil-- remember, I have plenty of experience here.  I've wondered why this is and have come to the conclusion that it's probably because women who decide to take charge of their own lives (i.e. Strong Women) are stereotypically viewed as some sort of a threat in our society.  (Egads, the Little Woman is making her own money, taking care of her own space, and making her own independent decisions...what will she be doing next?!)

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In the face of a divorce, men will gather their bank accounts and material wealth tightly about them like an old mother hen carefully tucking her chicks safely beneath her ample feathered butt.  As quaint as this may sound, it's not very sanitary, and there are a surprising number of women who won't go there...me among them.

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Once in a while, in the midst of a divorce, friends and family may be called upon for an 'Intervention'.  This is usually instigated by one member of the Former Couple, the one who doesn't want the divorce.  It's amazing how many people can be sucked into this sort of thing without having all the facts, without being aware of the private dynamics of the relationship, and without taking into account the various reasons the divorce has been instigated in the first place.  They come racing in like movie heroes on galloping white horses, coming to what they think of as The Rescue, totally oblivious to the fact that the curtain has descended, the movie is over.  The End.

Quite frankly, marriage is a private personal contract between two people and the breaking of this contract is also a private personal decision.