And Now, A Brief Word From The Hook…

Sheryl Crow sang that “a change will do you good” and people proclaimed her a brilliant singer/songwriter.

Sheryl Crow also dated Lance Armstrong.

Sheryl Crow may be an idiot.

Or not.

Either way, I know one thing: a change does not do The Hook good, to say the least.

Somewhere along the way, three days back, my mojo took a hit and the pain has spread from my addled brain to my wallet. I’ll explain, but first, an explanation: when a bellman returns from a call and informs his colleagues that he was “stiffed”, he isn’t referring to a sexual act but rather an insult of the highest order.

When a guest neglects to bestow a gratuity upon a bellman, we refer to the act as stiffing the bellman. It is the greatest insult one can hurl at a service worker.For the last three days, my record has reflected the universe’s hatred for me.

  • DAY 1: Four stiffs.
  • DAY 2: Three stiffs.
  • Day 3: Two stiffs.

Nine stiffs in three days is the equivalent of crossing a train wreck containing nothing but puppies with the maiden voyage of the Titanic. As further proof of the madness that enveloped my life, I offer this: a group of horny, drunken bachelorottes actually gave five dollars to deliver their booze and sex toys, but a family of four – all of them sober and perfectly polite – stiffed me.

The universe is a strange place, my friends.

But somehow – don’t ask me how – I managed to break the hex placed upon me by some unknown enemy and my Sunday began with a twenty-dollar tip and just progressed from there.

Free at last, The Hook is free at last.

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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68 Responses to And Now, A Brief Word From The Hook…

  1. wherethedaytakesme says:

    Glad it’s going up for you. 🙂

  2. Jennifer says:

    Stiffs? Dead bodies. And when I visit, you’ll have to remind me Not to stiff you… Glad things are looking up.

  3. twindaddy says:

    You win some, you lose some. Customers suck. But not all of them.

  4. I am a former waiter (and a damn good one!). It’s a bitch some times when a great deal of your livelihood depends on the kindness (etiquette) of others. Glad to see some good cheese goin’ your way.

  5. denmother says:

    Were you the sex toy, and if so, next time demand a little more than $5 to make up for the sober stiffs!

  6. rebecca2000 says:

    Rude people. I always tip.

  7. renxkyoko says:

    The polite family is actually stingy and a tightwad. My friend, who works as a waitress has noticed that too. The singles are more free with their pocketbooks. I guess it makes sense… just a little bit.

  8. I’d tip you at least twenty just for being awesome, never mind the bags! 🙂

  9. I can’t afford to go to a place with a bellman, sorry. But if I could, I wouldn’t stiff you. Great story. I like the pacing in your work, very fast, very smart.

  10. I love the drunk people. Most of the time they forget how much they spent, so they keep tipping you.

  11. mairedubhtx says:

    I just don’t understand how people can “stiff” service people when they KNOW (don’t tell me they don’t) that service personnel depend on tips. They tip in restaurants (supposedly) and hair salons (I hope). Why not valets and bellmen? I don’t get it. Well, I’m glad things have started to look up for you with the $20 tip. Let’s hope it continues.

  12. The pros and cons of tipping:
    We were in one of our favourite eating places. The manager was away. The mice were at play. The service was not up to its normal quality. The mice kept playing. The meal was its usual quality however, the experience was not….
    As you know, my dear Hook, here in Oz we are not expected to tip… (Service person’s wages are not high (in most cases), though the tip quotient is ‘built in’.) If this was not the case, might our experience have been different..!?! Perhaps, though I am more in favour of a ‘built-in’ factor, rather than a dependence upon ‘the dance’….

  13. Combat Babe says:

    You know, reading your blog makes me feel like I haven’t really lived. I have never been in a hotel that had a bellman. I’d probably stiff you because I never carry cash. It might be similar to the scene in Pretty Woman. (I am a very good tipper otherwise)

  14. Sandee says:

    Glad to finally get to hear the Bellman’s story. I will be ever mindful of this.

  15. I work at a seasonal resort and by the end of July we go from the Hospitality industry to the Hostility industry.

  16. I hope things continue to look up for you, Hook! I think a lot of people don’t realize they should tip. What do you think? I think people are confused. I hope more tips are coming your way.

    • The Hook says:

      I realize some people simply don’t consider tipping, but how can anyone in this day and age truly not understand the concept?
      I’m sure my dry spell was a blip on my radar – I hope!

  17. Kim says:

    LOL… You said “stiff”… a lot

  18. I’m planning a trip to Niagara…and I will find you and I will tip!! FYI…I travel with A LOT of luggage!! But I’m boring…no sex toys to be delivered to the room.
    I also will expect the bellman to know the best local wine recommendations!!!
    BTW..anything back on the email?

    • The Hook says:

      I’d be honored to take your hard-earned money, Jessica! I’d earn it, I’m sure. I’ll be sure to brush up on my local wines…
      Nothing back on the e-mail yet, but these things take time, so there’s hope, right?

  19. List of X says:

    That’s the huge drawback of politeness, people think that a “Thank you” is a sufficient reward.

  20. susielindau says:

    The Hex has been lifted! Yay Hook! I reminded my daughter to tip when she won that trip to NYC! Training starts early…

  21. MissFourEyes says:

    The universe is a strange place indeed. But I’m glad the hex is gone!

  22. giselzitrone says:

    Gruß und eine gute Woche.Gislinde

  23. Val says:

    Happy to hear the tipping has resumed, Hook!
    Out of curiosity, amongst your colleagues, what is the record for ‘stiffs’ in one day (that anyone would admit to)?

  24. The universe is strange my friend! Drink XX!!

  25. Sounds like you got whacked by the same forces that jabbed a finger in Super Bowl’s eye by pulling the plug on the power. Evil electric impulses surging across the country? Solar flares blazing amok? Early warning signal for that approaching Asteroid 2012 DA14 headed for earth 2/15/13?
    Feeling better since you say the hex has been broken….fingers crossed. (but you do have the contact info for some Super Heroes? They might glare sinister-like at guests to “remind” them of their manners if necessary in the future?)
    Hope today is a winner for ya’

  26. mizqui says:

    Darn stiffs! I’m glad you’re back on top. Ow! 🙂

  27. Kozo says:

    I used to think Sheryl Crow was so intelligent, until she started dating Armstrong, but I just chalked that up to jealousy. Glad someone else saw the same thing. Sounds like a got “stiffed” in a different way by the bachelorettes. 🙂

  28. El Guapo says:

    Wow, thanks Hook – you’ve got me in some great company up there!
    Maybe the stiffers just want the immortality that will come from being in your next book?

  29. raisingdaisy says:

    Wow you really were on a bad streak for a while there Hook! I’m glad it’s over and you rebounded with a BANG! What’s up with those idiot people not tipping you? I’ll never understand human uber-stupidity.

  30. jlheuer says:

    If they are brought up and taught to tip they will tip. My husband made sure my son knew about tipping and even had him figure out how much we should tip when we were out to eat. He is now 26, not making a ton of money, but always tips.

  31. I prefer to get stiffed in the morning,,,oh wait you didn’t mean that kind of stiff right??
    My bad.

  32. I have overtipped people SO hard while trashed. It’s a thing.

    Proud of it too. 🙂

  33. Glad the hex broke! I feel like all people should have to work in service industries so they understand what it’s like for us when people stiff or are rude, etc!

  34. TBM says:

    I thought of you today. I was walking by a hotel and this family was in the process of carrying out all of their “luggage” out to their car. It was chaos. Bags, coolers, and I don’t know what. Don’t know how you put up with it.

  35. Well I sure wouldn’t stiff ya Hook…

    …wait, that just sounds wrong. But I kinda like it…

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