It’s List Time, Kiddies!

Gather round the virtual campfire, children, it’s time for The Hook to read from ye olde list.

In other words, here’s another lame-ass post cobbled together from my eighteen years in the Niagara Falls hospitality trenches. Excited yet?

Either way, let’s switch things up and look at a department I’ve never discussed before: Laundry. People rarely think about the folks who literally sacrifice blood, sweat and tears in order to ensure you have clean sheets to sleep and fornicate on while you’re away from home. Working in a hotel laundry is as close to the fires of Hell as you’d ever want to get, my friends.

paris_hilton_laundry_gifThis captures the general mood but not the steamy reality, kids.

One of the less humid duties of a Laundry worker is to empty the main chute in the basement. Each floor has it’s own door that feeds into the main chute which empties in the bowels of each tower. Sounds real sexy, doesn’t it?

Trust me, it isn’t.

The truth is, while this duty may be cooler in temperature than the main laundry room, the downside is you have to deal with whatever little surprises are waiting for you in the seemingly-endless piles of filthy sheets you have to sort through. And sometimes guests just chuck stuff down the chute for the hell of it.

Like what, you ask?

breakNeedles of every variety. We’re not just talking syringes containing legitimate medicine like insulin. No, we’re talking about delivery systems for heroin and… well, to be honest, I know bugger-all about recreational drugs. My knowledge is limited to five seasons of Breaking Bad, unfortunately, but trust me, you don’t want to ever get stuck by a needle left in a hotel room.


Sorry, but this doesn’t happen in hotel laundry rooms, men. Trust me.

Bricks.  Okay, it was a single brick, no doubt thrown by a complete moron who wanted to hear it crash at the bottom of the chute. Unfortunately for the moron in question, the bottom was too far away to hear. Fortunately, for Laundry staff, no one was working in the chute room at the time. Otherwise, if the main door had been open someone could have been seriously injured or even killed.

Sex toys.  So, so, so many sex toys. For the life of me, I can’t understand how people could possibly leave their pleasuring devices wrapped up in sheets. Don’t they realize how expensive it is to have a tech-assisted orgasm these days? On the plus side, it’s really cool to watch Laundry workers slowly approach a buzzing sheet… gently reach for it… and then roll their eyes and let out a “OH!” when faced with the not-so-sexy reveal.

That gets me every time.

Feces.  Yes, people actually involuntarily empty their bowels in their hotel room bed or they deliberately wrap human waste in sheets, knowing full well some poor ridiculously-underpaid hospitality worker is going to have to deal with it eventually. 

Aren’t humans the best?

Someone’s furry best buddy.  Parents, I know it’s exhausting but you really have to keep a close eye on your kid’s non-living best bud while traveling. Children will often leave their little buddies – unintentionally, of course – behind when they finally get out of bed and if that happens and you’re asleep at the switch?

Well, strap yourself in, the ride’s about to get bumpier than you can imagine…

Seriously though, as parents we must remain ever vigilant, despite our innate ability to mess up. The last thing you want is to be hours away from your hotel when Little Timmy or Sally (yes, I’m great picking original names) realizes Mr. Stuffy Pants has gone rogue like Daryl from The Walking Dead.

Bottles of liquor.  Glass does not handle stress well, especially the type of stress that results from being dropped fifty stories down a laundry chute. Luckily in most cases, the impact is cushioned by linen.

Phones and all manner of tech.  Sadly, no Stark Tech ever shows up in the chute room which is such a shame. I could really use a suit of Iron Man armor. However, when people lose their devices, especially their phones, they act as though they’ve lost an appendage. Tech dependence can be ugly to witness, kids, so stay in drugs and off school.

Or something like that.

A live snake.  I’m kidding! You can relax!

The snake was dead.

Various weapons.  Knives of all shapes and sizes. Brass knuckles. Tasers. Small bats. I swear, people have gone off the reservation since shows like Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead debuted. Travelers love to carry weapons they feel will save their lives if a zombie outbreak finally occurs. Or if The White Walkers show up.

Toys.  Actual toys, not toys one would insert into orifices for sexual pleasure. Unless, of course, one was a real freak.

aquaYou want to put me where?

Garbage.  Yes, back before the days of locks on laundry chutes, guests would hurl bags of refuse down the hotel’s chutes as thought they were at home in their apartment buildings. Naturally, those bags would rarely be closed up and a shower of garbage would land in the chute room. People really are the best.

Room service trays.  People really do get bored while on vacation. Either that, or far too many guests are obsessed with the Jackass movies. Unfortunately, room service trays aren’t the right dimension to fit in a laundry chute. So they get jammed. In-between floors. Which isn’t as much fun as it sounds.

Children.  Why do you think the hotel put locks on the laundry chutes in the first place?


Well, as the wife often says, “this started out fun… but now it’s just exercise.” Or something like that. At any rate, it’s time to go. There are bags to be delivered, tips to be collected and guests who need harassing.

See you in the lobby, kids…

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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44 Responses to It’s List Time, Kiddies!

  1. Tara says:

    Once again, I have learned important details I never considered. But I’m still stuck on the fact that stuffed animals retrieved from said chute which also harbored dirty deeds, er – sheets and nasty toys would need to be washed at home in hot water on the heavy soil cycle before my kid got it back. And – for the record – I do not believe there’s any weapon in our arsenal for battling white walkers. Unless we have a dragon. Which, unfortunately, is only on my casino slot machine.

  2. Paul says:

    Wow, just Wow. Great info Hook. What happens to usable stuff, like smart phones and such?

  3. You have enlightened me… again.
    Just a little thing to ponder……….. the toys bit, you know, the kids toys (not the other). Wasn’t there a bit in the news some time ago about an action figure and human attachment ending up in A&E because something opened in situ that shoudn’t? Can’t for the life of me remember the details, and can find nothing on the ‘net. Damn sure I didn’t dream it though!!! 🙂

  4. nbratscott says:


  5. The Cutter says:

    “you don’t want to ever get stuck by a needle left in a hotel room”

    Just keep working, and eventually you’ll stick yourself with the antidote!

  6. List of X says:

    What, no cash? Not one person drops off their money to be laundered?

  7. Doug in Oakland says:

    Tell them to cheer up, working at a hospital laundry would be worse, and probably not nearly so amusing.

  8. Laundry chutes – you’re in a classy place! (good idea about the locks on them – far too many kids running wild and far too many wild ones have seen too many movies with chute escapades…)

  9. I find it hard to believe people mistake a laundry chute to a place to throw trash. Living on the beach tells me if something weird shows up where it shouldn’t be it is on purpose. Nice Job.

  10. Hooray, hooray, I LOVE list time!!!
    So seriously, you’re not supposed to put small children down the chute? Huh! Who knew.
    Good Lord, sullied sheets? Ug. And here I was thinking about complaining about MY job. Do you guys have that Tangerine banking ad in NF? They should’ve included your laundry staff in it!

  11. I once heard a radio phone prank where the DJ called a hotel explaining to the person who answered the phone how he left some “things” in the room, trying to unnerve the person who answered. This explains why the man never flinched at the mention of things like artificial leg & butt plug. People are in indeed special.

  12. Mark Myers says:

    Wow… I can imagine the initial sorting can be a harrowing experience.

  13. Jesus – I hate people! Well, most of them.,Some? Good grief, most of what you noted i would never have even guessed at. And you really got me with the snake… just kidding, a dead one… ARGhhh, poor person who got to find that! Geez, Robert… what a life…

  14. Ned's Blog says:

    Wow. And I thought leaving your heart in San Francisco was bad…

  15. Ugh… people really are gross. Hotel staff must love me because I always leave a room tidy. Even during my stay. I put everything away and out of their way so they can clean and if I am in a hotel with a kitchen, I empty the coffee pot and put all the dirty dishes into the dishwasher. All the dirty towels go in a pile and I leave the ones I didn’t use folded. AND I leave a tip!!!
    Being in the hotel industry in ANY capacity is seriously underpaid for the crap you deal with.
    *raises a glass* Here’s to the hotel workers who are under appreciated!! 😉

  16. curvyroads says:

    OMG, there is not enough money in the world to pay hotel laundry people to deal with these awful ‘finds”!

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