As usual I find myself alone in a hotel room. Tonight it’s because I’m doing some promotional stuff for the new show and the commute to and from my Connecticut mansion is too long to make it worth the trip. Comedy Central was nice enough to get me a room so I’m sitting here taking advantage of my alone time to obsessively Google “Michael & Michael Have Issues,” which is really, really healthy.
Hotels are strange places. They only exist because humans need sleep. Were it not for sleep, we would need hotels, which is why meth addicts rarely stay at hotels, unless those hotels also happen to be meth labs. So many hotels try way too hard. Over the last ten years or so, it seems like hotel lobbies have become Petri dishes for both the worst design ideas in the world and the worst music in the world. To me a hotel lobby should be a tranquil and serene environment which beckons the traveler welcome, not a shitty replica of a Turkish dance club circa 1993. Thank you, but I don’t need over-sized black porcelain poodles on the reception desk. I don’t need laser lights or vertical fireplaces or jellyfish aquariums. What I need is a room, a TV, good internet, and a warm chocolate chip cookie (Thanks, Doubletree Suites).
The idea of hotel as destination unto itself seems to stupid to me. If I’m staying at your hotel it’s because I need to be in your town, not because I need to be at your hotel. If I need to be at your hotel, it should only be because somebody’s getting married there and couldn’t afford a nicer place to hold a reception. But that’s it. Otherwise don’t intrude onto my trip. Rule number one for hotels: be unobtrusive.
The hotel I am staying in tonight is pretty good about this, but even they suffer from a chronic case of “Look at me.” For example, there’s a switch on the wall that opens and closes the window shades. Right above the switch is a sign that reads “Window shades open and close switch). Do I really this touch? How about a metal thing that I pull that opens and closes the shades? By putting the switch on the wall and then putting a sign above the wall, you’re not impressing me. All you’re saying is, “We’re just like the Bat Cave.” I don’t need to stay at the Bat Cave.
But the worst is when hotels attach cutesy names to routine functions. Like instead of a sign telling you where reception is, they’ll have like a hot pink neon billboard that reads, “Get it on” or something. Something just obscure enough that you have no idea what they’re talking about so you have to ask one of the male models where reception is, and they’ll turn to you and say “Get it on to your right,” like you’re the idiot.
The other thing that bugs me about hotels is how they try to impress me with toiletries. While I appreciate that the hotel wants me clean, I do not need “body milk” in my bathroom. Yes, body milk is an actual bottle of something in my bathroom at the moment. I keep thinking some poor Guatemalan illegal immigrant had to lactate a tremendous amount to fill that specimen container. Body milk, of course, is not to be confused with “body wash,” which is also in there, along with two different kinds of soaps and a telephone right next to the toilet.
I have never had a telephone conversation with somebody while shitting and I never will. There is probably no good reason for this other than it’s simply something you don’t do. God forbid you let out a little grunt and something and the person on the other end says, “Are you shitting?” Then what do you do? You either have to admit that yes, you are shitting while conversing or you have to lie. Either way you don’t feel very good about yourself.
Some hotels offer compact discs for purchase. The hotel I stayed in last week had one for sale for twenty-five dollars. Twenty-five dollars for a CD featuring bands I’ve never heard of, produced by somebody I’ve never heard of, put out by a hotel? For some reason, I always imagine that the people deciding to buy these are all involved in international illegal arms smuggling. I don’t know why. Maybe because I imagine that gun runners like techno.
A suggestion to hoteliers: please get rid of hotel TV remote controllers. They are horrible. When I turn on the television, I do not want a welcome message from you. If I want a welcome message I will call down to room service and have them send one up. But you don’t need to sell me on your stupid hotel. By definition, I’m already sold – I’m staying there. When you keep pushing your stupid hotel on me after I’m already staying at it, you just look cheap and desperate.
Also, stop charging for your terrible wireless internet connections. The internet is no longer a luxury item. It is a necessity. When you charge for it, you look cheap. Fourteen dollars a day for the internet? I will pay it, yes, but only because I need to know what Perez Hilton is saying at all times and at any cost. But I will resent you for the charge and I will never stay at your hotel again.
When I come to your hotel, please just let me go to my room. I don’t want to hear about your restaurant or your spa or your breakfast which is served from six to eight-thirty because I won’t be awake then. I don’t want you to talk to me, and no, I don’t know my license plate number and I’m not going to go look at it for you. Just give me a room key and shut up and we’ll get along just fine.