The Hook Dodges A Bullet – Barely!

Trust me, it will make sense soon.

First though, a short explanation: many of the guests I come in contact with think my job is one best-suited for a simpleton. Do you know how often I’ve heard, “So what are you planning to do when you finish school? ” or “How long do you plan n doing this for? You won’t be doing this forever, right?”

I should mention that despite my receding hairline I actually appear quite young; this is just one of the biological gifts nature saw fit to bestow upon me. Any others are unfit for publication. At least in this forum! At any rate, there is more to being a bellman than loading and unloading a luggage cart.

  • Next to the valet drivers and doorman, the bellman is stationed at your vacation’s Ground Zero, so to speak. We help shape your perception of the hotel – and we get the brunt of the frustration you sometimes develop while traveling.
  • On the way out, we get to hear all about your trip – good and bad – and sometimes you have A LOT to say, let me tell you! In this day and age, listening is a lost art. Trust me.
  • We are the “Go-To Guys” for the Front Desk. Which, quite frankly, means we get to deliver keys and vouchers to the really angry guests who have spent some very tense minutes on the phone with some poor clerk who know better than to show up at the room afterwards!

And finally, we get to be all things to all people. To many guests we are expected to be ….

  • Bartenders. Guests always seem to want booze on midnight shifts after the liquor stores have closed, of course!
  • Pimps. Seriously.
  • Security. And believe me, you I’m next to useless in a physical confrontation;  I’m no Batman, to say the least!
  • Valet, Room Service, Housekeeping, you name it, I’ve done it.

I think its time for a point, don’t you?

I mentioned loading and unloading a bell cart for a reason; many guests seem to think loading a cart is a no-brainer. Not so. It can take considerable skill to make 25 bags of varying size and shape fit safely and securely on a brass bell cart.

But I recently ran into a family of seven who were convinced they had everything “under control” when it came to transporting their bags. They gently shoved me out of the way and began to load their cart in a most ill-conceived manner. Honestly, it looked like God threw up all over their cart, there were so many bits and pieces wildly assembled haphazardly!

The mother was especially reckless, whipping items all over like a nine-year-old boy on a steady diet of bags of sugar and Red Bull. Her crowning achievement was placing two extra large containers of Arizona Iced Tea at the peak of her luggage mountain. Of course, the load began to shift….

THE HOOK: Careful miss, those big jugs are going to cause you to tip over!

Did I mention the mom-in-question was well-endowed, to say the least? I only mention it because the entire room became deathly quiet after my verbal faux pas  and everyone adopted this “deer in the headlights” look… Everyone except Mom, that is.

She got this strangle gleam in her eyes and that’s when things got… Weird.

ARIZONA MOMMA: Okay, we’re done here, everyone downstairs! I’ll stay here with Robert….

FLUSTERED DAD: But dear, why don’t we all leave at once?

ARIZONA MOMMA: (In a stern, slightly demonic tone) I said, I’ll stay here with Robert and you can take the kids down! I’ll check the room one last time. That okay with you?

Defeated – for probably the hundredth time – he bowed his head, gathered his confused brood and headed out. The spineless bugger left me on my own with his obviously frustrated wife.

A FREE MARRIAGE TIP FROM THE HOOK:

If you haven’t paid much attention to your wife in an unusually long time, do NOT leave her alone with someone who does! Granted, you may not realize just how starved for attention your spouse is, so here’s a clue: if she’s read the Fifty Shades of Grey series – especially more than once – you’re in trouble…

So I’m alone in a room with a woman who I’m guessing hasn’t been hit on since child #5 and she’s fidgeting around, as though she’s waiting for… something. Finally, I heard the elevator door open and close – the door always remains propped open while I’m on a call – and she relaxed. I wish the same could be said of me.

THE HOOK: (growing more nervous by the minute) Do you have everything, miss? Is there anything else you need?

I really am an idiot sometimes…

ARIZONA MOMMA: Thank you for everything, Robert. (her constant use of my name stood out for some reason)  I’m just checking to see if I have everything, I’m a mess right now…

THE HOOK: You have five kids! Who wouldn’t be a little discombobulated? But you’re doing fine. So are we good?

I couldn’t get out of there fast enough! But this lady was determined to keep me around.

ARIZONA MOMMA: Do you have kids? (she wasn’t waiting for an answer) They drain you. He never pays attention to me anymore –

THE HOOK: He’s paid attention to you at least five times in the last few years…

My humor didn’t even make a dent.

ARIZONA MOMMA: What makes you think they’re all his?

Its funny how some people will just bare their souls to perfect strangers. Its also funny how some people will start to move slowly towards their bellman with the same look The Coyote gives the Road Runner! Actually, it isn’t funny when it does happen. I responded by simply asking her a question as I moved towards the door, quickly.

THE HOOK: Just out of curiosity, have you read Fifty Shades of Grey?

ARIZONA MOMMA: I love those books!

Long story short, I got out of there in one piece, kept the elevator chit-chat to a minimum – normally I’d ride the service cars, but I wanted this over with fast – and I managed to snag a sizable tip, to boot! Flustered Dad looked relieved when we appeared downstairs right away, and then dismayed when she handed me a wad of cash!

Oh well, you can’t please everyone…

I’ve sold fifteen copies, do I qualify for any best-seller lists?

About The Hook

Husband. Father. Bellman. Author of The Bellman Chronicles. Reader of comic books and observer and chronicler of the human condition. And to my wife's eternal dismay, a mere mortal and non-vampire. I'm often told I look like your uncle, cousin, etc. If I wore a hat, I'd hang it on a hat rack in my home in Niagara Falls, Canada. You can call me The Hook, everyone else does.
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87 Responses to The Hook Dodges A Bullet – Barely!

  1. raisingdaisy says:

    You’re on MY bestseller list, Hook! LOL! Unfortunately, that won’t get you reviewed by the New York Times or a check big enough to retire on…. But congrats on your sales! I think it’s great!

    I don’t know where some of these people get their “cojones”….seriously…. If she was angling for a quickie, maybe she can write “Thirty Seconds of Grey”. 😉

  2. Do they let bellmen wear track shoes? Sounds like you must be as quick on your feet as with your wit to handle the witless when there’s no witness!

  3. jumpingpolarbear says:

    Don’t underestimate your fighting and “security” ability. I’m sure the Hook is a guy you don’t want to see angry ;).

  4. You actually asked her if she read 50 Shades… Hilarious.
    I could totally see your eyes bugging out of your head as she crossed into TMI (Too Much Info) territory.
    Robert, you silver-tongued devil you. Hahaha.

  5. Reblogged this on The Wandering Mind and commented:
    Is it wrong that I laughed until I had a tear in my eye while reading this? Serious, check out The Hook’s blog & get his book!

  6. mj monaghan says:

    My Hook friend, this was truly amusing, and I felt your pain. What an awkward situation that only The Hook, with a capital ‘H’, could handle so deftly! 🙂

  7. wherethedaytakesme says:

    Oh my! lol, the characters you encounter.

  8. Anna says:

    Oh sweet Jesus, you really did dodge a bullet. If it was me, I’d probably have screamed and launched myself out of the window! I’m also very impressed by how you can stack bags like that, I’m rubbish at balancing stuff and I always seem to drop spoons in bins for some reason. Why did I just mention that? Hmm. Anyway, people quick to judge how difficult a job is are more likely the ones who have never experienced it themselves… I’d just ignore them. Or launch yourself out of a window.

  9. jlheuer says:

    All I can say is run! or get yourself a riding crop. Btw, did the cartload of bags make it down safely?

  10. Ink Pastries says:

    I’m a massage therapist. I can’t tell you how many bullets I’ve dodged!

  11. meanwhilein3 says:

    Haha, great read for my afternoon ! thank you 😉

  12. Jo Bryant says:

    What i want to know is what was VampireLover’s piece of advice to you after you related this to her. I am sure she had more than one snippet of wisdom…

  13. J Roycroft says:

    Alright Hook, I’ve shared your blog with my 53 Facebook friends, must of who are family. They need to know that I actually do have a life outside of complaining and reading political crap. So I’m introducing them to you, one of my favorite bloggers.

  14. Woman says:

    That will make your day all better. I know it will.

    If you can manage to fit that much luggage on a bell cart, you must be fine at doing puzzles Mister The Hook!!!

  15. Jennifer says:

    Funny post as usual. But enough of that, I’ve just downloaded your book for on the go reading!! The hard copy will be coming my way soon aswell. You think I’m gonna share this one… I started reading and had to force myself to stop or I would get nothing done. Tonight though, bring it on, my boys just won’t get what I’m giggling at. 😀

  16. Yikes! You handled that with panache, as usual.

  17. Glad you made it out alive! 😉

  18. leah says:

    I would have turned 50 shades of red and died on the spot. You are grace under pressure.

  19. Jeannie says:

    You survived yet another close call!
    (I’m one of the fifteen! 🙂 You’ll sell more I betcha! Great stories!)

  20. twindaddy says:

    Quite a classy woman you almost had.

  21. And I have ONE of those fifteen copies. Now, come on readers!!! Quit being such a tightwad and order his book! I haven’t gotten too far since I’m always on the computer, but so far, I am LOVING EVERY MINUTE OF IT!!!

    Now, get that little piece of plastic out and order the freakin’ book!

  22. Jo Bryant says:

    Hook,
    Go and read this then go TAG the book…noticed there are no tags…this article explains why that is important
    http://muffin.wow-womenonwriting.com/2012/08/selling-books-whats-tags-got-to-do-with.html
    See Hook…we women…we know stuff…important stuff.
    😉

  23. Jo Bryant says:

    Then go read this as well…interesting thought about your tags and that of well known authors
    http://blog.marketingtipsforauthors.com/2011/05/how-to-use-tags-to-help-sell-books-or-e.html

  24. Marian Green says:

    Poor lusty thing. : ) I bet she pounced on the bartender next.

  25. TBM says:

    I’m not sure I would have been able to carry on a conversation with the woman. I wonder how you do it all of the time. On a positive side, it keeps the rest of us entertained.

  26. legionwriter says:

    I had a similar experience with a housewife after cleaning up a sewer backup in her house. Weird. Gross. Uncomfortable. All befitting.

  27. Val says:

    Your scariest post yet, Hook!

  28. mairedubhtx says:

    You meet the strangest people.

  29. I think I was the lady with the five kids, oh, wait, I haven’t been to a hotel room since prom night. Guess it wasn’t me after all.

  30. On our vacation we were the biggest family there, wherever we went! But hey, at least I know we’ve never got it “under control” LOL

  31. THE HOOK: He’s paid attention to you at least five times in the last few years…
    Bwahaha!

    You are much, much quicker on your toes than I am. (As it happens, I am quite slow on your toes.)

  32. Hilarious encounter handled with wit and aplomb. I encountered situations similar to this back in my younger days in the service industry. People seem to think that you are ready and willing to “service” them in other ways. 🙂

  33. “what makes you think they’re all his?” – Run! Run! Run for your life!

  34. giselzitrone says:

    Ein lieber Gruss mal mein Freund, und dir mal einen schönen glücklichen Tag wünschen von mir Gislinde.

  35. Eric Murtaugh says:

    I don’t know who to feel more sorry for, you or the flustered dad. The crap that guy probably puts up with…

  36. I would say that worked out in the best way it could. They lady left and you got a big tip. Sounds like another job well done. — My advice would be to never use the words “your jugs” again.

  37. The Guat says:

    Big jugs … ha! you’re killing me here. Too funny. I wish I would have been there to see everyone’s face. And then “What makes you think they’re all his?” HA! Cracking me up today. Thanks for the laugh. 🙂

  38. Thanks for letting me camp out in your blog for a little while today. I had a great time and tried to leave my campsite as good as when I arrived. I’ll be back!

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