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Why Can’t People Like This Just Stay Home? Part 2

, , , , | Right | CREDIT: Melnsto22 | November 20, 2023

I have worked in the hotel industry for forty-two years. There is little that I have not experienced. However, in all that time I have not encountered a true “Get Me Your Manager” type of customer. That is, until a few nights ago.

I have been dealing with this woman for the past month — getting all the reservations sorted out and attached to her group block, assigning room numbers to accommodate mobility issues and make sure they were all close together, etc. She was always pleasant on the phone. In person, she showed her true colors.

The first encounter happened at check-in. The hotel I work at is in a small resort town in Southern Oregon. Due to a really bad fire a couple of years ago, there is no affordable housing, and as a consequence, a very small labor force. So, I was at the desk by myself working my way through the line of people. [Woman] came in, saw the line, and immediately came to the desk and started pounding on the counter.

Woman: “You need to get someone up here to check me in. This is ridiculous.”

Me: “I’m sorry, I’m the only one here, but I will get to you as quickly as possible.”

The general manager was there but was handling the phones so that I could focus on check-ins.

Woman: “You had better hurry. I won’t stand here all day!”

It took me just under four minutes to get through the five people in front of her.

Me: “I’m sorry for keeping you waiting. Can I get your last name, please?”

Woman: “You know who I am!”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but I don’t.”

Woman: “I’ve only been talking to you people daily for the past month… since you f***ed up my reservations.”

It was actually her fault; she didn’t tell her group to ask for the group block. This let me know exactly who she was.

Me: “Oh, you must be Karen. Sorry, I mean Kathy.”

We then completed the check-in, and she went to her room. Of course, there’s more. It wouldn’t be a true Entitled Jerk experience with only one interaction.

The phone rang, and I answered it.

Woman: “How am I supposed to get a drink of water or brush my teeth?”

Me: “There is a tap in your bathroom, ma’am.”

Woman: “Am I supposed to put my head in the sink and drink from the tap?!”

Me: “No, ma’am. There are coffee cups and glasses on top of the microwave.”

Woman: “I don’t have a microwave in my room.”

Me: “All of our rooms have refrigerators and microwaves.”

Woman: “Mine doesn’t!”

Me: “It does. You might need to close the bathroom door.”

I heard the sound of the bathroom door closing, and click! She hung up.

A few minutes went by, and she called again.

Woman: “I need a king-size pillow.”

Me: “We only have standard size.”

Woman: “Your website says you have a pillow menu.”

Me: “We had one prior to [the global health crisis], but now we only have standard polyfill and feather pillows.”

Woman: “Bring me six feather pillows.”

Me: “All of our feather pillows are in use.”

Woman: “You just said you have them!”

Me: “No, ma’am, I said they were on the menu, not that we had any available.”

Woman: *Click… again*

A couple of hours went by…

Woman: “Someone is going to come into my room!”

Me: “Someone is trying to get into your room? I’ll send security up immediately!”

Woman: “Are you dense? That’s not what I said.”

Me: “Did you mean you have a guest coming? I can add their name to the computer so that they can get a key.”

Woman: “You really are stupid. I said someone is going to come into my room!”

By this time, she was screaming.

Me: “I can assure you that no one will be given a key to your room unless you authorize it.”

Woman: “Including housekeeping?”

Me: “Housekeeping will only enter your room to clean if the ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign is not on the door.”

Woman: “Finally, she gets it!”

Me: “I’m not sure that I do. Why don’t you explain it to me?”

Woman: “There is no  ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign in the room, duh!”

Me: “Oh! My apologies. I have some available at the front desk, or—”

Woman: “I’m not coming all the way down there to get something that should have been here already!”

Me: “Yes, ma’am, it should have been there, but as I was about to say, I will be happy to put one on your door as I leave in a few minutes.”

And once again, she hung up on me.

This is getting to be longer than I expected, so I’ll summarize the remaining incidents:

  • She berated the engineer because the bulbs in her room were “too cool”.
  • She yelled at the breakfast attendant because the air conditioner in the breakfast room was turned off, claiming that it was illegal. It was forty-five degrees outside and much too cool for an air conditioner.
  • She yelled at the night auditor at 3:00 am, demanding that she call a manager so she could complain about these issues. Once the auditor called me and [Woman] realized it was me, she demanded the owner’s phone number. I don’t even know his name, much less have a way to contact him.
  • She threw a comforter at a housekeeper claiming that it was covered in urine stains. It wasn’t.
  • She yelled at the morning front desk agent regarding dust on the fireplace mantle in the lobby. It was clean.

There were many more encounters, but I’ll just finish up with one last incident.

She emailed the general manager this morning, specifically to complain about me. She said that I was rude, incompetent, and just plain stupid, and I should be fired immediately. I’m happy to report that my wonderful manager called her back and told her that, while the rest of her wonderful family was welcome to come back any time, she was now on the Do Not Rent list and not allowed back. He then hung up on her!

Why Can’t People Like This Just Stay Home?

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Have you ever met a customer who thought the world revolved around them?

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