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No One’s Above The Rules, Not Even Tomatoes

, , , | Right | CREDIT: veedubbug68 | March 30, 2022

I work in a hotel. One day, my general manager gets a call from a sister property’s manager. The other hotel’s building manager — not technically connected with our hotel chain, just a corporate manager of the building the other hotel operates out of — is coming to our city the next day on some last-minute trip for a family gathering, not even work-related.

Apparently, he’s one of these people that likes to feel “connected” or “networked”. He gets a kick out of being able to say that he was “hooked up” with a good rate on a hotel room by having an associate call up on his behalf to make a booking for him with priority early check-in because of connections. Eyeroll.

The general managers have a quick chat.

My Manager: “Okay, email me his details.”

Two minutes later, he clicks print and hands me a piece of paper.

My Manager: “Here’s a booking for you, darls.”

Me: “What rate?”

My Manager: “Whatever’s online for tomorrow night.”

Me: *Chuckling* “Okay.”

I enter the booking, email the confirmation to [Building Manager] directly, and think nothing more of it. Until the next day…

Pretty much bang-on at 12:00 pm the next day, in sashays a middle-aged fellow that I presume is [Building Manager]. That was his estimated time of arrival, and most of my other check-ins are regulars who aren’t him. He gets to the counter, greets me smarmily, and introduces himself.

I check the system.

Me: “I can have a room ready now and check you in.”

He seems very pleased that the pleb at the desk knows what’s what and is ready to acquiesce to his booking request for early check-in.

Honestly, if I have vacant rooms, I’ll put you in one as soon as you arrive, mainly so I don’t have to store your luggage and deal with you again later.

I pull out his registration card, grab a pen, and ask him for his credit card and ID. It is an amazing and almost instantaneous transformation as his smiley face immediately drops into a bright red scowl — think of an angry, slightly underripe beefsteak tomato — as he raises his voice and spits out at me:

Building Manager: “I’m not giving you my credit card and ID! Nobody told me about this. This is ridiculous! Don’t you know who I am?!”

I am a little taken aback by his demeanour.

Me: “Yes, I know who you are, [Building Manager]. I processed your booking yesterday. We require a credit card and ID from all guests on arrival; it was outlined on the confirmation that I emailed to you. I’ll need them to be able to check you in.”

Building Manager: “I’m not giving you my cards! I’ve booked a room; you’re going to give me my key!”

Me: “I’m sorry, but I can’t do that until you register on the form here and provide your credit card and ID.”

Building Manager: “Fine! I’ll pay cash for the room right now, but I’m not giving you my cards!

Me: “You’re welcome to pay cash on check-in for the room bill, but I will still need your credit card for the incidentals guarantee. And your ID.”

Building Manager: “There are not going to be any incidentals!”

Normally, if reception was empty and I had the time, I’d be happy to play with an jerk like this, going round in circles, for as long as I fancied. I hate jerks, and something especially grinds my gears about arrogant self-important toolbags like this, so I like to put on my best “you can’t complain about my service because I’m following policy and you’re being a d**k” customer service voice and keep going on this merry-go-round to nowhere for a good ten to fifteen minutes. But this is a busy day. I have things to do and it is about my lunchtime.

Me: “Okay, sir, I’ll get the manager for you.”

I send my general manager to the front desk. He heard the whole interaction from the office to this point, and he is generally supportive of my playing on the merry-go-round with jerks. I go out the back and boil the jug for a cup of coffee and start heating up my lunch. A couple of sips later, my manager lets me know I can go and finish check-in.

I return to the desk and a very sedate and considerably less ripe tomato silently hands me his credit card and ID and the completed sign-in sheet. I process his authorization, check him in, give him room keys, hotel information, etc., and direct him to the lift.

Building Manager: *Quietly* “Thank you. Sorry about that. I’ve had a long day.”

Me: “Well, I hope your day improves. Have a good afternoon.”

He proceeded to his room. I retrieved my now-heated lunch and walked into the office to listen to half of the conversation as my manager and our sister property’s manager had a laugh about [Building Manager]’s behaviour and personality. I think the general consensus was pity for this guy, though my pity extended more toward anyone that had to work with him regularly.

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