Disclaimer: I am neither handy nor handsome.
However, as inept as I am with a tool – with one exception, of course – I understand the importance of following a code of honor. Where am I going with this, you ask?
Well, because you’re nice folks, I’ll dispense with the suspense and tell you.
As you may or not be aware the hotel is under construction. although truthfully, that term is rendered null and void by one apparent, horrible truth: our construction company appears to have zero interest in actually finishing the job they began last year.
So I guess you could say we’re under the rumor of construction.
In fact, I contend they are working in reverse; that is to say, I believe they are tearing the hotel down, brick by brick, rather than expanding it.
The most popular question of the summer isn’t “Seriously, they call you ‘The Hook’ even though you have both hands?”, it’s “When are they going to finish the renovations/construction?”
“The official date is two weeks from never, folks. Or whenever management realizes they’re being taken for a ride.”
You see, in the hospitality industry there are line workers who subscribe to the “Us vs. Them.” theory of conduct. They treat their guests/customers with respect, but they never cross that line.
I hate “Us vs. Them”.
A few minutes with me and my guests realize that although I wear a uniform and a name tag, I’m as “Us” as they come.
“Trust me, folks,” is the beginning of a speech I’ve recited thousands of time this year, “no one is more put out by all of the signs, barriers and holes in the walls all around us than me. You get to go home in a few days. I’ll be here long after you’ve gone, staring at the same construction workers slowly “working’ on the same areas. They mean well, but at this point it’s painfully clear they have no intention of going anywhere.”
I wouldn’t have dreamed of speaking ill of our construction company a few months ago, but they’ve exhausted any good will they may been entitled to after issuing their fiftieth delay notice.
The work gloves are off.
The desire to create, to build, to retrieve thoughts and images from our consciousness and share them with the world is hardwired into our DNA and has been ever since our ancestors began scribbling on cave walls. We need to build structures that reach for the heavens in order to satisfy our biological imperatives.
That having been said, we need to do so while respecting the lives of others. A family that scrimps and saves all year long is entitled to a worry-free vacation; the last thing Dad wants to see when he pulls onto a hotel’s valet deck is a wall of plywood separating construction areas from his car. And Mom could do without having to shield her underage daughters from a wall of leering, knuckle-dragging construction workers lined up for lunch on the corner.
I respect the construction industry and the many hard-working individuals who toil thanklessly to build this world the rest of us take for granted, but when a goofball in a hardhat circles the same car three times to get a good look at my guests’ teenage daughters, I cry foul.
(Granted, both girls were graduates of the Miley Cyrus School of Jail-bait Warriors, but that’s no excuse.)
My point is this: the hotel’s owners have entered into a binding contract with the company in question to expand and improve our property. Originally, this contract had an end date, but that appears to have been ignored. How do I know this? The construction company took one of my department’s outside storage areas and built an office for themselves.
They’ve established a nest. They’re not going anywhere anytime soon.
A wise man once advised that closing with a joke is always the best policy. Fortunately, my life itself is a series of humorous tales, so here we go…
A few hours ago I arrived at a corner room on the 49th floor where I was greeted by a frat boy archetype who referred to me as “Boss Man!” The bed in this suite is located directly across from the door, so I was instantly greeted by sight that, by all rights, should have been considered strange by my standards.
Here’s an interesting fact about my standards: I don’t have any.
Laid out on the bed was a young blonde girl, no older than twenty, dressed as a Catholic school girl. A cardboard sign with the words “Naughty Girl” scrawled in black magic marker hung from her willowy neck. I made every effort to avoid the naughty elephant in the hotel room, but as I left, her partner followed me into the hall.
“Here you go, Boss Man.” he beamed as he slipped an American five-dollar note into my open uniform jacket pocket. “You like that?” he queried, his head cocked back to the room “Back there, that was my idea!”
“Yeah? And what is your role in this little daytime cable drama?” I queried back.
His face underwent a transformation as he pondered my question. It obviously hadn’t occurred to him to return the favor to his lover.
“I mean, she’s the naughty school girl. Are you going to be a monsignor, administering a much-needed round of… discipline? Or in keeping with the school girl motif, you could be a member of One Direction.”
“Oh yeah! I’d like that!” rang out from the room.
His face turned again, but this time, I don’t think he was happy.
“Well, I have to go. Have fun!”
You have to know when to leave the stage, folks.
Hook, the stories are unbelievable. Love them!
I love writing about them, Professor! Your praise does wonders for my ego. Thank you.
The professor is honored!
“Bless me Father for I have sinned….”
I’m just sayin’…
Sounds like my summer of construction hell, that is supposedly complete despite the fact that the drywall seams in the ceiling are clear as day! A blind man would have smoothed them out better, and yet they call in COMPLETE!
Construction workers will tear you down, Tiffany….
Hang in there!
So many good lines, I don’t know where to start.
I’m sure you are both hand and handsome 😉
I have no choice but to believe you, Jennifer; you’re pretty smart.
Wow, you think on your feet — the man should definitely get into character, too. Fair’s fair!
It is indeed, Brenda. Thanks for weighing in.
Well who wouldn’t want to be a member of One Direction?
I’m going to pretend I didn’t read that, Cutter…..
Disclaimer – I believe you are both handy and handsome
I congratulate you on your good taste. Thanks, Daile!
Good thing he didn’t ask you to join in! Ahaha I love how you left the guy not smiling! I can’t believe the things you see ha! Do you need me to go kick some construction @$$?
Too bad the contract didn’t have an early finish bonus…wait, that would be called efficiency. Nevermind.
That was pretty darn clever, wasn’t it?
Hi, sorry I haven’t been around much lately, I scaled back a bit on my blog reading over the summer!
I’ve never believed construction worker deadlines, ever since I saw The Moneypit back in the 80s!
Never apologize for being absent, my friend; I’m pretty horrible at maintaining blogging friendships and so I completely understand!
So basically coming to your hotel gets me a castle made with plywood, that is protected by an army of randy builders that are willing to rough me up like a little school girl.
And you are not around to watch that.
What a shock.
I’ll leave a light on….
And put the kettle on..
Construction industry is -I fear- the same everywhere! The Swiss use their deadlines to set their watch mechanisms! 😆
The other story, I think needs no comment – speaks for itself!!
Happy Thursday, Robert!
Thanks, Marina! You make every day better!
Now we know where Brittany Spears went. She’s in Niagara Falls Canada folks!
I should have taken a better look….
Some people DELIGHT in chaos I however share your view! I would be climbing walls watching these “people” Behaving so poorly especially round women. Like they have never seen one before! YUCK!
I just don’t get it, Jasmine.
I don’t either. I can’t show up for a job and HALF work. It’s just not in me. I know that sounds corny but… I just don’t have that make up!
Renovation seem to never end, don’t they?
Duuuuuuuuuuuude. Construction always seem to cause massive amount of stress and yeah nobody wants construction workers leering at them, but then again some are so into their Carl’s Jr. hamburger they have eyes for no one else.
My favorite laugh out loud line … “Here’s an interesting fact about my standards: I don’t have any.”
Why follow a set of rules you’re only going to compromise anyway?
“…a nest…” ROFLMBO!!!! You’re probably right — find the queen and take her out!!!
I totally understand your pain, Hook. Hopefully you have friends on the bell staff and at the front desk — I always found it therapeutic to vent with them (plus the front desk clerks might tell you some shit you missed when you were on a run)!
I guess it’s probably even more therapeutic to have a blog. I wish I had one when I worked third shift — oh, the horror (the pictures would have been EPIC!)!! You are out here telling people how they really are, and maybe some of them are listening and learning!! 🙂
Thanks for another awesome post, Mr. Hookey. You never fail to entertain ❤
I just wish I could apply my abilities to book writin’…
I don’t get all these people that let you get a glimpse into what they are doing behind closed doors. Obviously they want you to see what’s going on… or they could easily keep certain things out of sight… Perhaps I lack the exhibitionist attitude necessary to understand their motives?
I’m sorry to hear about the construction delays. I can’t imagine how annoying that is. Though, I do have to deal with the perpetual construction of every major road around my house that’s been going on for five years and projected to last five more…
Trust me, I feel your pain…
Here the construction business here is fine
yes sir cos we are and it seems we will always be a developing country cos we work like snails. tearing down is fast what takes ages is putting things back to order….we have been developing since the time we landed here from mars and it will go on till we find next planet
You always put that extra bit of effort into commenting, Soma.
Ha, oh man! Nice One Direction line lol, I’ll bet that killed the mood for him.
Sucks about the construction, hope it doesn’t last too much longer for you and your guests!
I fear it shall NEVER end, mate.
Contractors and construction. (There’s a reason when we say we remodeled the house, it means we did the work ourselves….even if the company hired came with references…) The hotel would have done better if they had simply handed the staff the hammers and plans.
Hang in there Hook – no matter what something wild and crazy finds you daily. As long as crazy leaves you daily too, it’s OK?
As always, you’re on the right path, my friend. Thank you.
It pains me to be laughing at your expense but I haven’t laughed this hard in awhile. Poor Hook dealing with this crap and then “the work gloves came off” and here I am laughing my butt off. Of course, I know this is your goal but I still feel bad about the construction.
Some people seem to know when to leave the stage, while others would rather want to settle in forever. This seems to be the story of this post. Construction workers come in two categories, those who pride themselves with the best craftsmanship and those who care to do nothing. Unfortunately it seems like you and your hotel have encountered the latter. Hope things are going well for you!