Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Your Hotel Housekeeper Is Judging You

So judging you.

Going on vacation and staying in motels, which I did recently, always reminds me of two things. This and that time I was a housekeeper at a motel for a few months in college.

When I remember that first thing, I'm all, "REAL tomato ketchup, Eddie?" But when I am reminded of that second thing, I also remember that I am happy I don't do that job anymore. Because, let me tell you, I've seen some things. "What things, Bethany?" you ask in my mind, your curiosity piqued. "Things," I reply ominously, shaking my head and looking at the floor as if I can say no more without being violently ill. It is a very dramatic imaginary exchange indeed.

But this post is not a tell-all detailing all of the animal blood and used condoms I've scraped off of television sets. I'm not some kind of sicko who delights in making you feel like vomiting up that spinach wrap you ate two hours and six minutes ago. I'm putting this post here as a public service. Because when people go into hotel rooms and close the door, they sometimes think that what they do in there stays in there. And I'm here to tell you that it doesn't.

I KNOW WHAT YOU DID IN THAT MOTEL ROOM. You think nobody knows. I know. Somebody had to go in there after you left. That somebody was me. I told everyone what you did.

I've now had 14 or so years to think back over my time as a housekeeper. I've been to therapy. I think I'm ready to write about it now. The question is are you ready?

Well, either way...

There are many kinds of hotel guests. And I'm really good at stereotyping them. What kind of guest are you? Read on to find out. I'll start with the best and work my way down.

1. The Phantom.
The Phantom is the best kind of hotel guest for a housekeeper. He checks in late. He checks out early. And when a housekeeper goes into his room, it looks exactly the way she left it the day before. There will be a single wet towel hanging in the bathroom. The bed will be slightly rumpled but still completely made. Exactly five squares of toilet paper will have been used. Did someone sleep here or just walk in, take a dump made of Scrubbing Bubbles, and leave? Was the guest even human? When you are a hotel guest, try to be a Phantom. But if you can't be a Phantom because, after all, you are a human who pees and poops and eats things, maybe shoot for...

2. Bob and Carol.
Bob and Carol are a nice married couple. "Thirty years together! Can you believe that?" They're on vacation, usually in town to see the kids. They want housekeeping service tomorrow, but today they will get along just fine with a few extra towels. Bob and Carol spend 20 minutes each morning discussing how much of a tip they should leave the housekeeper. "Is $5 enough, Carol?" "I don't know, Bob. Maybe we should check the Google." Be a Bob and Carol. But if you can't because you are in a super big hurry and took a giant dump and the toilet wouldn't flush and you're too embarrassed to call the front desk, I suppose it's okay if you're a...

3. Count Dracula.
Count Dracula cruised in at 2 AM looking for a cheap place to crash. If check-out time is noon, you can bet that Count Dracula will be hauling his bags out of his room at 12:01 on the button, wearing his sunglasses, stinking of the pizza he ordered from Dominos at 3 AM. On a scale of Daffodil to Bloated Dog Corpse, the smell in his room ranks somewhere around three-day old underwear. But it's not Count Dracula's fault. He's just not a morning person. At least he's not as bad as...

4. Frat Bros, Dave and Brad.
Dave and Brad are nineteen years old. It's their first time checking into a hotel without Mom and Dad. They've saved up some cash from their jobs at Modell's Sporting Goods and it's time to partay. But they have a dark past. Once upon a time, one of their parents uttered the words, "Let someone else clean it up. That's what they get paid for." And after that day, Dave and Brad were total assholes who fail at life. Have you ever taken a shit in a pizza box? Dave and Brad have. Have you ever drunk an entire 24-pack of Bud Light and peed off a hotel bacony into a pool? Then your name probably isn't Dave or Brad. Dave and Brad eat Doritos. Nacho Cheese Doritos (no other flavor will do). But when they aren't eating those Doritos, they are mashing them into the carpet and rolling around in it. On a scale of English meadow and the Thames River, ca. 1820, the smell in their room the next day is Thames River, ca. 1820. But they still aren't the worst. That award goes to...

 5. That lady from that episode of Hoarders who made you dry heave.
Have you ever walked into a room and immediately wanted to kill yourself? I have. These people DO. NOT. GIVE. A. FUCK. And I don't punctuate mid-sentence and use all caps lightly. That lady from that episode of Hoarders who made you dry heave, or as I like to call her, The Most Horrible Person Alive or TMHPA, takes a shitty diaper off her toddler, sees a trash can, and throws the diaper into the bathtub instead. Then, she turns the water on and smears the diaper around the tub. Was she raised by feral cats? Probably. TMHPA starts her day by going out and getting takeout from KFC. She takes it back to her room, eats 90 percent of it, then takes the remaining gravy and just rubs it on things. And then there's the smell. One time I was on the subway and there was this homeless lady who smelled so bad that they had to stop the train and evacuate it. While we were standing there waiting for the next train, she walked by. Everyone on the platform was gagging. Someone threw up. People were screaming. If you take that smell and subtract six, you'll get the smell of TMHPA's hotel room. How can one person smell like so many bad things at once? I don't know.

But there are some things I do know.
1. Don't ever touch any part of your bare body to the duvet cover on your motel bed. Ever. They are not washed daily, no matter how handsome you are.
2. Use the "Do Not Disturb" sign if you're fucking between the hours of 7 AM and 2 PM, when you know housekeeping is around. Your body is super gross. Rather than standing there red-faced and scandalized in the hallway like your porno brain imagines it, your housekeeper is running down the hall to tell her housekeeper friend about your flopping man-titties and pantomime vomiting. Don't be the story your housekeeper tells everyone/Tweets at the end of the day.
3. There are pubes in that bar of soap you left on the shower shelf.

I'm going to go drink a lot now and hopefully erase the memories writing this dug up.

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