Here’s the deal. People act differently in hotel rooms. And usually not in a good way.
Maybe it’s just our way of trying to emulate celebrities. Rock stars and bad boy actors have a storied tradition of trashing hotel rooms simply because they can. Superstar Keith Moon was known to throw television sets out the window, set off cherry bombs throughout hotel rooms and even once drove a car into the swimming pool. His hotel behavior was so bad that The Who were banned from all Holiday Inns, Sheratons and Hiltons. Which created endless comedy banter for hotel clerks across the country…
“The Who can’t stay here anymore.”
“Who can’t stay here?”
“You got it.”
“I don’t understand. Who can’t stay here?”
“Not just here, they can’t stay at any of our hotels.”
“What are you talking about? Tell me this – which people can stay here.”
“Who can stay in Boston?”
“No. Who can’t stay anywhere.”
“You’re not making any sense. Are there people that are allowed to stay at our hotel?”
“Of course. For example, Kansas is fine.”
“Why are you talking about Kansas now? Why does it matter who can stay in Kansas?”
“No they can’t. Like I said, they can’t stay anywhere.”
“Right. They can’t stay anywhere. But Kansas can stay in Boston, Boston can stay in Kansas, either can stay anywhere.”
“I should have never left Chicago.”
“They can stay too.”
“Chicago. Chicago’s fine to stay.”
“Who’s fine in Chicago?”
“No. Who’s not fine anywhere. They’re banned. But Chicago is fine. Boston is fine. Kansas is fine. Who can’t stay here.”
“That’s what I’m trying to figure out. Who can’t stay here?”
“Wait…are you talking about the band The Who? Are you saying The Who can’t stay at our hotel?”
“That’s what I’ve been saying the whole time.”
“Well, that was a cheap trick.”
“They’re booked for Saturday.”
Now, where was I? Oh, yes, why do people lose control the minute they step into a hotel room? Take Howard Hughes, one of the most successful businessmen in the world. Then, he checks into a hotel room and suddenly he’s walking around wearing tissue boxes for shoes, only cutting his hair and fingernails once a year, and spending endless hours sorting peas by size. Why would you do that? You can’t get good traction with tissue boxes. They offer no protection for your feet whatsoever. And they’re really not all that stylish. Plus, where are you going to keep your tissues? You see what I’m saying…people act differently in hotels.
Jack Torrance certainly changed. Torrance, of course, is the protagonist of the 1977 Stephen King novel The Shining, the 1980 movie The Shining and the 1997 mini-series The Shining (busy guy, huh?). As you may recall, he took his wife and son up to Overlook Hotel to be the caretaker for the winter months. (Here’s a life tip for you – don’t take a job when everyone who held that position in the past went crazy and murdered their family). Anyway, long story short, ghost lady, creepy girl twins, blood elevator and, just like Keith Moon before him, Torrance starts trashing that hotel. Then the kid started saying, “Sdrawkcab,” which nobody understands until they realize that it’s “backwards” backwards…and then they still don’t understand it. Maybe I’m remembering it wrong, it’s been a long time. But the point remains …people act differently in hotels.
Of course, it didn’t help that the hotel was built on an Indian burial ground. You see, there was a time in the 1980’s when land developers were buying up Indian burial grounds just as fast as they could find them and building creepy hotels and soon to be haunted houses. It was all the rage.
But the point is, let’s show some decorum people. Let’s not treat our hotel rooms like oversized garbage cans. Let’s not act like nuts just because we’re out of the house. Let’s not park in the pool.
So the next time you check in at your local Ancient Indian Burial Ground Suites…the next time you start to eye those tissue boxes and think you could pull off the look…the next time you fail to remember that it’s someone’s job to clean up all those unspeakable things you’re doing to your hotel room…just try and act reasonably…try not to be a total wreck…try to remember who you are…
“No. Don’t you start again.”
“But I had this whole bit about how I needed you to clean The Doors.”
“Oh, they’re in room 237.”