23 December, 2011

Classic post: 22 December, 2010

Look, the snow's coming down and I'm going to be shoveling on and off through out the day. I just got back inside long enough to think about today's subject and already you can't hardly tell that I just took a swipe at the sidewalk. And because the MPLS sidewalk department fines folks US$110 per sidewalk (meaning US$220 for us since we're a corner property) that remains unshoveled three hours after snowfall has ceased (I've read the literature), I have to keep on top of this unless I want a real back-breaker like last year.
That, and last year's post was fairly decent. I may sound preachier than I like in this, but that doesn't take away from the point.
The best part is when I say "come down from a hategasm".
You know, ever since we got rid of that wicked, cancerous twat, we've all felt so much better. It really was like her negative energy just infested the house and even when Georgie and Janis and I got together to collectively vent and blow off steam and make snide jokes, we still couldn't get past the negativity - after all, we were trying to be positive by reacting negatively.
But in the fifty two days that Aimee (that is how she spelled it) bunked here at MIH, she was nothing but snotty, demeaning, and rude. She grifted food and drink from easily suckered male guests. She was never once seen cooking for herself. She proved incapable of paying her own bill. She spent most days in front of her laptop, and the staff doubted she was trying to find any sort of job. She mocked the staff when she (mistakenly) thought we were out of ear shot. She reacted to rules as though they shouldn't apply to her. She became increasingly melodramatic and paranoid that the staff was divulging her "personal life" to the very people who were paying her fucking bills for her. She was way too fucking loud and uncooperative. As pleasant and accommodating as we tried to be to other guests, it seemed as though our efforts were in vain after Aimee talked to them; it's a hell of a thing to crack a joke with a guest one minute and read about what an asshole you are in their review the next minute.
From October 29th until December 20th (which is when we simply told her to get the fuck out), I hastily cooked my meals to avoid being around Aimee. I ate in the office off the clock to stay the hell away from her. I sometimes had to close the office door (thus giving the appearance that we were closed) so that I could either hear the movie I was watching or just hear the conversation I was having because she was loudly declaring how fucked up the United States is when compared to the awesomeness of Ecuador. Or Guatemala. Or the Dominican Republic. Or whatever other Central American country she was on about that night like a regular fucking know-it-all.
Except she didn't know anything.
She certainly couldn't wrap her head around this:
You see, you may think that because you pay for something, that you get to dictate how things go and in most cases, I'd agree. But you see, ever since I took the other side of the desk or counter or whatever, I get the other side of it. You can not repeatedly insult and mock the people you're paying and expect them to just take it. You can not be given one chance after another and continue to abuse that you've been given every opportunity to change your tune without actually doing so. And you certainly can not think that because you pay the bill that you have nothing to be afraid of.
Because there's this thing, a sort of provisional safety net for the service providers, if you will, called "We Reserve the Right to Refuse Service".
Sometimes, you have to exercise that right. In Aimee's case, this meant that when the staff unanimously decided to discontinue service, she was out on her ass. We weren't going to take her shit anymore and I told her that to her face: "We're all sick of your attitude."
There is a responsibility on the part of the customer, after all. We've established time and again that I'm probably shit-fuck-bonkers and the rest of the world is perfectly sane but you can't argue with the results I consistently see when I'm the customer. I've seen immigrants behind counters talked down to and verbally abused by ghetto trash, I've seen teenagers berated by soccer moms with faulty debit cards, I've seen middle-aged women who are just sick and tired of stupid people with expired accounts yelling at them. And you know what else I've seen? I've seen them cheer up a little, most actually even smile because when I get to the counter or the window or what have you, I say Please, Thank You, Have a Good Day and I don't demand a fucking thing from them. This person's job, for the past ten minutes, has sucked because someone, a customer, forgot how to treat people. You can call it the golden rule, I call it common fucking decency. So, like I said, when it's my turn to interact with someone, I'm the polite gentleman I was raised to be and four times out of five, because I treat my cashier or customer service rep like a human being, they smile.
They really do, man. Try behaving like proper respectful and respectable next time you're in a line behind six assholes. Say your Pleases and Thank Yous and Have a Good Days and watch: That person's going to smile a little.
Aimee forgot about this as a customer and did nothing but complain to everyone about everything.
In the last forty eight hours, her forced absence has brought a long-forgotten levity back to our roles here at the hostel. Yesterday, I found that checking in guests was a hell of a lot easier and pleasant that it had been in the past month and three weeks, to the point where I was even flirting a little with one of my check ins. I found myself offering to brew more coffee for the guests and asking if people needed help with directions. Seriously. I feel so uplifted that I hate to call this a "come down" but, you know, it is a come down. A come down from a hategasm.
So happy have I been that when I knocked one out of the park yesterday, I came so hard it kind of hurt a little. Seriously, man, it was like my peenee was a goddamned pressure hose. Like one of those water jet cutters. That's how happy I've been.

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