Things are starting to get ugly out there…. and in here!
By “out there” I mean the world-wide web we here at WordPress call our second home. The internet allows the common man to be a demigod of sorts. He can communicate his thoughts, feelings and opinions across great distances in an instant. All with the “click” of a mouse.
He can also wreak fiery vengeance on a stranger he feels has done him wrong.
And how does he accomplish his mission? He takes to the web and releases an electronic scream for all to hear. I’m referring to TripAdvisor.com, “a travel website that assists customers in gathering travel information, posting reviews and opinions of travel-related content and engaging in interactive travel forums.”
Or so the spin doctors would have you believe. Truthfully, TripAdvisor is a forum for any douche with a bone to pick with hotel employees they feel have treated them unfairly. I know what you’re thinking “The Hook got publicly nailed to the electronic cross, so he’s pissed!”
Well, I am pissed, but not for the reason you think. In the past year two of my closest colleagues have found themselves “outed” on TripAdvisor. Their accusers, who are permitted to remain anonymous, as cowards prefer, referred to them by name in order to further a personal agenda.
Obviously the desired outcome is termination of the employee, not an improvement in service. If an individual wants to report an issue with an establishment – which is their right – they should contact the hotel in question, identify themselves, and see what develops from there. Hotels, and their workers, need to be held accountable for their actions, without question. But it needs to be a fair fight.
We now return you to your regularly scheduled edition of You’ve Been Hooked!
“I Need To Pay More Taxes?”
It was a crazy morning, so we were briefly overwhelmed and I was a bit behind in my duties.
JEWISH MOTHER: FINALLY! We’ve been waiting!
THE HOOK: My apologies. We’ve been very busy. Do you need me to call for your car?
JEWISH FATHER: I self-parked! I need to pay more taxes?
Valet parking is $25 compared to $20 for self-parking.
THE HOOK: (Holding my tongue. For once!) Okay, let’s get you loaded up, folks.
They had waaay more than my cart’s capacity, so I was busy taking stock of the task ahead of me when Father decided to take a swing at me. Metaphorically, of course.
JF: It is such a stereotype that you should keep us waiting! Have other people been waiting as long?
THE HOOK: Almost every guest we’ve helped this morning has been Jewish, sir. The fact that I’ve kept you waiting is no more of a stereotype than the fact you’re upset at the thought of paying five dollars more for parking!
That brought him down to Earth.
I returned to my duties and he started to assist me.
JF: If you think this is bad, wait until you see me pack the car!
THE HOOK: I don’t think this is too bad, sir. I just hope I can fit everything on my cart. I’m grateful you took the service.
JF: You’re welcome!
And he slapped me on the back as though we were buddies! Fifteen minutes later, his cart was unloaded and he had the unenviable task of fitting three kids, a whiny wife and ten bags into a Yukon!
And my pocket was heavier to the tune of ten dollars.
Its interesting how these things work out; the individuals I clash with seem to develop a grudging respect for my willingness to draw a line in the sand and face them like an equal. My attitude setting turned out to be accurate as my next two calls were also Jewish families.
The next Jewish father was convinced two-dollars Canadian was a small fortune.
JF 2: You don’t have to thank me for that, my friend!
My last Jewish Father needed change – for a five-dollar bill. My response was to simply say “That’s all right, sir.”, and walk away. He wasn’t finished with me, though.
JF 3: (To my back) Sir, I asked you for four dollars change!
THE HOOK: (Turning around, slowly) I heard you, sir, and while I do have change, you can just give that to the Valet driver.
And so he did. Or at least, he tried.
UNIDENTIFIED VALET DRIVER: I don’t have change! For a five-dollar bill?
Admit it, you thought I was bad, right?
- Dissed hotel claims TripAdvisor plays dirty (overheadbin.msnbc.msn.com)
- Tennessee hotel sues TripAdvisor for being declared ‘dirtiest in US’ (telegraph.co.uk)
- Hotel faces ruin after TripAdvisor red-flags it over a ‘fake’ review (thenextweb.com)
- Probe into TripAdvisor reviews (mirror.co.uk)