Sunday, March 31, 2013

The Greatest Guest of All Time: The Complete Series

Chapter One 

After almost a year and a half of this bullshit, I've been conditioned to expect the worst from everyone I come into contact with. This blog has been a lot of fun to write - and I may have never started writing if it weren't for this job - but the novelty of writing angrily about people who couldn't care less about me has worn off. People are going to be twats, and all of the sultry blog posts in the world aren't going to change that.

Looking back on some notes that I wrote down in search of something positive, I found a business card that sparked the memory of an old friend:

DAY ONE

It was September, the week after Labor Day, and my body was detoxing from a two-week binge of savaging my body while closing out a wild summer at the Jersey Shore. I usually spend the last hour of my Lonely Road to Midnight by standing at the bell desk and bullshitting with the guys from security as I wait to punch out. On this particular night, I had been up there since 9pm using the desk as a crutch while I sweated out fourteen days worth of beer and boardwalk pizza. Every so often, mostly to appease the managers, I'll peak my head outside to make sure no one is getting murdered in the loading zone. As fate would have it, I walked out on a crisp late-summer evening to a taxi pulling up at 11:40pm.

Part of my job description is opening the doors of taxis as the pull up in front of the hotel. Fuck that. People don't like to have someone open the door on them while they have their money out, especially if they've never been to New York before. I also don't care for standing there like a schmuck while these morons try and figure out how to work the credit card machine. The whole thing just isn't for me. But I decided to give it a go for this taxi, mostly out of boredom.

He handed the driver a ten on a seven dollar ride and told him to keep the change, then sprung out with the speed and agility of a college athlete. There he was, eye to eye with me, the only tell of his old age being the massive hearing aids in both ears. He wore stylish, thick-rimmed glasses, with a tan polo shirt and brown slacks. His mane of white hair was neatly combed over, just barely resting on his stereo speaker-like hearing aid.

"Thanks, pal!"

Doorman - "My pleasure. How was your night, sir?"

"Damn good! Yours?"

I was too hungover and exhausted to keep up the hospitality act, and he seemed like a cool enough guy, so I just responded honestly.

Doorman - "Thankfully almost over." 

He laughed as I pulled the front door open for him.

"Good for you, bud."

He extended his hand for me to shake. Now, I have a very firm handshake - but his was like getting an elevator door shut on your hand.

"Nice to meet you, I'm Howie."

Doorman - "Doorman."

Howie - "Not bad for a 92 year old guy, huh?"

He didn't look a day over 70.

Doorman - "Holy shit, really?"

Howie - "I haven't been to New York in thirty years. It's changed. It's got no balls now."

Hello, new best friend.

We talked for the next thirty minutes. I told him about how I moved to Manhattan to make a serious run at acting, which has been stalled because of my shitty work schedule. He told me to stop making excuses and to grow some balls. He was a doctor visiting New York to teach some seminars which, as he explained, was mostly geared toward helping stressed-out med students grow some balls.

He explained that he was born in a small town in Minnesota and married his high school sweetheart. They never had kids, and moved to Florida when he retired at 75. When she passed away fifteen years later, he moved back to Minnesota and began teaching these seminars to keep busy for the past two years.

Howie - "I ate at that Carnegie Deli today. How can you waste that much meat? When they served me, I thought to myself 'no one can finish that god damn plate' till the fat fuck European at the table next to me finished his before I could cut mine in half."

I just laughed and listened as he told war stories and spoke about his late wife. The guy was amazing. Anytime he asked me about myself - about my career, my writing, my family - it would usually come back to him telling me to grow some balls and take what I want without making excuses. People talk to me about a lot of things, but it's mostly about where I was on 9/11 or what it's like to live in New York. In the rare instances where I get to talk about my goals and dreams, I'm usually dismissed with a "good luck" and "when I see you on TV I'll say 'I know that doorman!'" Howie cut to the core within ten minutes of meeting me, and was genuine in every response.

Howie - "You make good money here?"

Doorman - "Yeah."

Howie - "Have you ever made good money before this?"

Doorman - "Never."

Howie - "But you were okay, right?"

Doorman - "Right."

Howie - "So, what the hell are you doing here? You're a smart kid. You got your whole life to make money! Grow some balls and go what you came here to do!"

Doorman - "You're right."

Howie - "I know I'm right. You don't get to live to be 92 without being right! Kid, you don't want to be my age and still carrying bags for people."

I couldn't argue with him. He had my full attention. I wanted to make sure his trip was as great as possible, but he didn't really need my help. He had this.

I looked at my watch. 12:16am. The overnight crew was already working. I usually have a panic attack if a guest keeps me ten seconds after midnight, but I didn't care. I wanted to hear more.

Howie - "Alright, kid. I'm going to bed. Gotta teach a seminar and find a bridge game tomorrow. Remember what I said."

Doorman - "Will do. Good night."

He headed toward the elevators. I noticed that his back was as straight as a broomstick without the slightest hint of hunching. I yelled out to him:

Doorman - "Thank you!"

He lifted his arm up without turning back, then disappeared into the elevator.

I went home and wrote like a son of a bitch. He sparked a fire in me. While I furiously pounded at the keyboard, all I could hear is Howie's voice urging me to grow some balls.

Chapter Two 

DAY TWO

Yet another day of bringing Ms. Joanie out to her taxi, and I'm nose to nose with a suit who tried to steal the one I was holding while Other Doorman walks her out. Her ninety-something year old hip was acting up more than usual that week, making it more difficult for her to get down the steps. 

He walked out of the high-end restaurant next door, and tried to slip into the taxi like he was a Prince dodging the paparazzi. I saw him coming and jumped in front of the door before he could swoop in. 

Doorman - "This isn't your taxi, sir." 

He responded like a many of the entitled trust fund kids before him - completely dismissed my profession and tried to make me feel small. 

Suit - "What? Because you wear a little hat, that means you can tell me which taxi is mine?" 

Doorman - "I don't give a fuck what taxi you get into, it's just not going to be this one." 

Suit - "Fuck you, you fucking DOORMAN!!!" 

Like I haven't heard that before. Still, when some jerk-off who caught a few breaks in life tries to chew me down with words, I can't help letting my temper get the best of me. We screamed in each others faces for about a minute and a half, with him getting more and more unoriginal about how pathetic my life is, and how much better he is than me. I responded with old classics such as "Nice suit, dick" and "come back when I get off and we'll handle this like men." You know - tough guy stuff. 

As other doorman finally brought Ms Joanie to the taxi, he didn't relent from his point of view: 

Suit - "I'm sorry that you work here. You're a nobody, lowlife doorman."

I had been working the body throughout the whole argument, saving my final rebuttal for the very end as the uppercut to the jaw. As a taxi finally pulled up for him, I let him have it:

Doorman - "I can get a new job tomorrow, but you'll always be a cunt who tried to steal a taxi from an old lady."

Boom. Game over. 

He said nothing as he got in the taxi, and I watched the shame of being put in his place by a lowly doorman swallow his face. He gave me the finger and the taxi left. I grabbed my crotch with a big smile. 

Final Score:


Doorman - Infinity

Suit - 0 


Basking in my glory, I turned to see Howie, clapping and laughing like a maniac. 

Howie - "Holy shit, kid! You've got moxy!!!" 

I didn't know he was watching. 

Doorman - "Oh, that? That was nothing - you should see when I fight with the taxi drivers." 

Howie - "That's the way New Yorkers used to be, kid! They had balls!" 

Doorman - "Not anymore." 

Howie - "No, no, no! Now you've got these... these... what do ya call them?" 

Doorman - "Hipsters?" 

Howie - "Yuppies!" 

Doorman - "Right." 

He coughed and wiped his nose with a handkerchief that he pulled from his breast pocket.

Howie - This damn city with all of the damn pollution. Not used to it, kid." 

Doorman - "Anything I could do?" 

Howie - "Yeah, could you flag me a taxi? And try not to kill anyone." 

Doorman - "I think I could do that." 

Being that it was rush hour, it took about ten minutes to get another taxi. We shot the shit about what he did that day. During his four hour break in classes, he managed to check out both the MOMA and Tenement Museums, which are on the opposite ends of the city.  He told me that he really wasn't much into art, but wanted to keep his mind active while in between seminars. Every time one of my married twenty-something friends tries to pull the "I'm too tired from a long day of shopping at Target to hang out with my buddy Doorman", I'll tell them the story of Howie. Anytime I want to take a nap after sleeping in and laying on the couch watching Netflix, I'll remind myself of Howie. If I'm still dominating like this in my fifties, I'll take it. 

I got him a taxi to the Upper East Side, because he found out about an underground bridge game without the help of "one of those computer phones all you kids use". He tipped me three bucks, and wished me a good night. Throughout the evening, I focused up and wrote note after note for the screenplay treatment that I had banged out the night before. On a good night of writing notes down, I'm lucky to get two pages from my notepad. By the time 11pm rolled around, I had yanked twelve pages of punchlines, tweets, and blog ideas out of the pad and tucked them into my wallet. I also made $170 in tips. 

When Howie returned at 11:30pm, I was standing at the bell desk waiting to get the fuck out of there. Right behind him was a SuperShuttle filled with Brazilians. I contemplated playing out the rest of my shift sitting on the john and playing Angry Birds, but I wanted to see how Howie's bridge game went. Somewhere in the fold of me saying hello to him and carrying in twelve dead-weight suitcases without so much as a thank you, Howie engaged in a full-blown political debate with Billy, one of the senior bellmen, about the housing bubble. 

Billy's very passionate about politics and will rant about it on any given occasion. I usually like to stay out of these debates at work, especially with Billy, because it never leads anywhere good. He has a Masters Degree in political science from a decent school in Pennsylvania and planned to pursue a career in politics before three DWI's and a violent bar fight led to him doing time in prison. 

More Brazilians came, and while I wanted to hear what the hell they were at each other's throats about, Billy was worked up and I had to pick up the slack. Seniority is a bitch when you don't have any. By the time the dust cleared and the Brazilians had all been sent away to their rooms, Howie and Billy had parted ways. Billy wore a look that I had never seen, like he had been defeated. Howie strolled triumphantly towards me with a smirk. 

Howie - "That kid's an idiot. I told him that I helped weaponize gonorrhea while in the war and he believed me. He's got no balls."  

My first thought was the image of Rambo shooting a flamethrower-like gun full of gonorrhea at a Vietnam village, with hoards of Vietnamese men peeing and screaming while looking at each other in despair. It made me laugh out loud. 

Doorman - "How was the bridge game?" 

Howie - "Great! Met some good people." 

He was out of breath from the argument, and visibly more run-down that I was used to seeing him. He covered his face with the handkerchief and sneezed into it, then quickly rubbed his nose. 

Howie - "Alright, kid. Gotta finish out the seminars in the morning and these damn allergies are killing me. You take care of yourself." 

He made his way toward the elevator, with his back slightly hunched this time. 

I went home and banged out and outline along with the first five pages of a screenplay for a short film. For the second straight night, I wrote till the sun came up. Howie's voice of approval telling me that I had "moxy" sparked a mean streak in my writing that I felt I was missing. 

After two months of spending all of my days off destroying my body at the shore, drowning all the doorman bullshit with beer and acting a fool, I was snapped back into what the hell it was that I came here to do. I didn't move to Manhattan to make good money as a fucking doorman. I came to entertain. And while the acting trail had gone cold, I had inadvertently found my voice as a writer as a result of being miserable and venting my frustrations on this here blog. For the first time, I allowed myself to embrace that. 

As I typed and typed and typed, I could feel myself growing some balls... Finally. 


Chapter Three 

DAY THREE

It was 10:30pm and I hadn't seen Howie all day. I figured he was out and about, ready to come bursting through the door with another fascinating story of how he knows more about the innards of a city that I've lived in my whole life.

The night was uneventful, and I was working with Billy again till midnight. He was more volatile than usual and looking for any excuse he could to prove victorious in an intellectual debate. It was likely due to the fact that he was still reeling from his loss the night before, and he was dealing with it like a schoolyard bully who got slapped by his drunk daddy the night before. I avoided him most of the night and his verbal diarrhea was forcing me to actually stand at my fucking post.

At around 10:45pm, Howie emerged from the elevators with his luggage. He dropped his keys off at the front desk, then had a word with one of the girls. I was under the impression that we was leaving the following morning. I greeted him:

Howie - "Hey, kid."

He was shaking and clutching his handkerchief. His nose was running. He seemed disoriented and confused. For the first time in three days worth of interactions, he looked old.

Doorman - "Are you okay, sir?"

Howie - "Me? Oh yeah. My allergies just got the best of me."

Doorman - "You're leaving now?"

Howie - "Yeah, I have a SuperShuttle coming at 11. Keep an eye out for me, will ya?"

He hands me a five.

Doorman - "Of course."

This was weird. He told me that he was flying out of LaGuardia, and I've never seen anyone leave in a Shuttle after 8 or 9pm. I didn't want to argue, so I just went back to my post. A couple of minutes later, Howie was sound asleep on a chair with his hand barely gripping the exposed handkerchief.

11pm rolled around and still no shuttle. Howie was still fast asleep and drooling, and Billy was on another tangent about the right to bare arms. I paused him mid-sentence to wake Howie.

A gentle touch to the arm was all I needed as he jolted up, completely disoriented. He had no idea where he was.

Doorman - "You said your shuttle was coming at 11, right?"

Howie - "What? Oh... Right. Right."

Doorman - "I'll call the company for you. You have the voucher so I could give them the confirmation number?"

He looked through me like we had never met before. His hands shook and he tried to find the voucher from his wallet.

Howie - "Here you go."

He handed me a voucher and it was 11am. The next day.

Doorman - "Sir, this is for tomorrow."

As he wiped his nose, he pondered for a few moments then checked his flight info. His flight was for tomorrow.

Howie - "Oh, shit! Damnit!

Doorman - "It's okay! Let me have the bellman bring your stuff back up to the room."

Howie - "No, no! I don't want to tip that idiot."

He was lucid enough to remember that he didn't like Billy.

Howie went to the front desk to get his room back. I helped him out, which I'm not supposed to do, and it pissed Billy off. I didn't give a shit.

The girl at the front desk, who I had a fling with a few months back that ended on a sour note, gave him new room keys. I sent him up to the room while I put his items on a cart. I overheard the front desk girl's conversation:

FD Girl - "Eww, that disgusting old man touched my pen."

Doorman - "He's 92."

FD Girl - "Then he shouldn't be traveling alone."

She shot a glob of hand sanitizer onto her hands.

FD Girl - "Ugh, gross!"

She disappeared behind the wall. I suppressed the urge to rip her a new asshole for both speaking ill of my friend and blowing me off when I thought we had a good thing going.

When I got to Howie's room, the housekeeper was on her way out. He was sitting on the bed, hunched over and exhausted. I brought his stuff in.

Howie - "Thanks, kid."

Doorman - "You're welcome. Anything else I can do for you?"

He shivered a bit and dabbed his nose with the handkerchief.

Howie - "No, you're alright."

There was a slight pause. I didn't know if I should leave him or not.

Doorman - "Alright, then. It was great meeting you."

Howie - "Hang on a sec."

He went into is wallet. I wasn't going to take another tip from him.

Doorman - "No, no! You already took care of me!"

Howie - "I know."

He pulls out his business card.

Howie - "Shoot me an email and let me know what happens with the acting. You've got balls. Just stick with it."

Doorman - "Will do."

I never did. It wasn't intentional, I just never got around to it. Hurricane Sandy happened. Life happened.

I shook his hand. The strength of his grip was a far cry from a few days ago.

Howie - "Good luck, kid."

That was the last time I saw him.

I went home that night and glued my ass to the chair. Over the next three days, I finished the first draft of a twenty-seven page screenplay called "Wayne the Bellhop Misses the Super Bowl", which is based on my "Doorman Misses the Super Bowl" post. It was the first script that I've ever completed on my own. My goal obviously is to produce it, but I need a real budget. Still, it was an achievement in and of itself. It was then when I realized that I wanted to see this blog on the screen - and all I needed was the balls to do so. That reality is coming into fruition. I stopped making excuses and took my career into my own hands.

So while looking through my notes I found his business card. I decided I wanted to tell him about the pilot and how well it's going. Before I did that, I googled his name out of curiosity. The first thing that came up was his obituary. Howie died of natural causes on January 21st, just four days after his 93rd birthday. I'm not sure what he spoke about in his seminars, or how many people he inspired to do something with their lives, but he sure as hell got me off my ass.

I'm very fortunate to have met him, and my balls are bigger because of it.


Like what you read? Want to see these characters on the screen? You can! Click in the link below to donate and make the Doorman TV pilot happen!!!

http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/doorman--2/x/2888858

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Ugly Americans: Part III


This is not a trilogy. This will go on and on and on. And I've noticed that my first post and the most recent one both featured stories where women were the antagonists, so here's one about a wormy little man that I will call Fatso: 

I can't emphasize how unlikable this fucking guy was. He was a fat, obnoxious, redneck asshole. He had one of those accents that you only hear in Mississippi courtroom dramas. Like those movies where every character simultaneously delivers dialogue and pats their upper lip with a handkerchief while the shadow of a ceiling fan quickly wipes the frame.

He was in his sixties, and wore a tie that probably last fit him when he was seven. It widened somewhere around his man boobs and came to a screeching halt about three inches above his belly button. He had a massive gut that hung over his belt to go with an even more ample double-chin that made him look like he was trying to swallow a softball. The rest of his body was disproportionately thin, which was probably a result of years of gluttonous eating and drinking. At first glance, he could have passed for a pre-surgery Roger Ebert. 

It's 6:50am, and I'm nearing the end of my second straight overnight bellman shift. At 7am, the doorman and two morning bellmen come in and the floor becomes theirs, leaving me to wander around the lobby till I go home at 8. I had managed to earn $9 through my first seven hours, so I was desperate for one last guest interaction to at least cover the money I spent on food and coffee during my shift. I was already in the red because of the two books I downloaded onto my Kindle at 3am. This is what I'm currently dealing with. It has, indeed, gotten that bad. 

Enter Fatso: 

He comes morphing over with a briefcase and carry-on bag. I'm as friendly as ever, and my training as an actor is the only thing that masks how little I care for whatever his fuckhead is going to tell me. 

Fatso - "Son, can you watch these here bags for me? I got a SuperShuttle comin' but imma run inta that there coffee shop and get me some steeeeaaaaak and eeeeeggggssss." 

Steeeeeeeak and eeeeeeeegggssss. That's "Steak and eggs", in case you couldn't decipher his abundant enthusiasm. The melody in his voice as he announced that he's going to further increase his chances of dropping dead of a heart attack leads me to believe that he likes to throw his money around freely. Don't ask me why. At this point, I'm going to the bullpen to dig up some charm to get this guy to toss me a couple of bones. 

Doorman - "You got it, sir! Make sure you emphasize how you want it cooked. The morning chef can get a little liberal with the fire." 

I don't know what the fuck that means, either.  

Fatso - "Well thanks for the advice, son! I'll be sure to do that!" 

I detest that fact that he's calling me "son", but I let it go. I put stickers on the bags and hand him his claim ticket.

Doorman - "Come see me when you get back. I'll put keep them in the front of the closet for ya." 

He looks at my name tag. 

Fatso - "Why, thank you... Doorman! I'll see you in a few!" 

Boom. 

He doesn't give me anything on the way in, which I'm okay with. Most of the time when you store luggage, the tip comes when you get the bags back. 

I spend the next forty minutes dodging any stupid question or task that would keep me from the bell desk. I didn't need to load up two carts full of Brazilian luggage and bring it up to the 2nd floor storage room, only to get stiffed and miss the guy coming back. In the meantime, I find out that the morning doorman has called out. 

At 7:35am, Fatso comes strolling back into the lobby: 

Fatso - "Well, if that wadn't the best damn steeeeeaaaak and eeeeggggs I ever ate in New York." 

Doorman - "Glad you liked it, did you tell them to go easy on the fire?" 

Fatso - "Sure did!" 

He starts looking through his wallet to find the claim ticket. 

Doorman - "Awesome, let me get your stuff."   

Fatso - "Well, I know I put the dang ticket in here somewhere!" 

Doorman - "It's all good, I remember ya!" 

I run to the closet and grab his shit. I'm expecting a five. Usually the custom is one dollar per bag, but I put on a show and gave him advice that worked for him, albeit it was advice that came via my ass. Good customer service can go a long way. A five is fair in this situation. I'd be happy with two, but a five would end this shift on a positive note. 

I bring his shit back to him. He's still looking through his wallet, which is falling apart and drenched in ass sweat. 

Doorman - "Don't worry sir! I remember ya, it's all good." 

He finds it. 

Fatso - "Ah! Here we go!" 

I rip off the stickers.

Doorman - "It's okay, I don't need it." 

Fatso - "That's for you!" 

He holds the ticket at the very tip of his fingers and slowly hands it to me, as if he's a doctor handing a child a lollypop after giving him a needle. 

I take it and wait there. He collects his shit and heads toward the couch closest to the front door. 

Nothing. 

This guy is obviously here on business, has likely been traveling for a very long time, and just brazenly stiffed me. Not even a "thank you." He bragged about getting a $22 item for breakfast, then handed me the ticket as if I were grateful to throw away his garbage. I expect this from naive first-time travelers and shitty European tourists, or some fuckhead college students, but not from a fellow working American. It's the cuntiest of cunt moves. 

As I watch him walk away, I fantasize about getting a Charlie Brown-esque running start and kicking him in the asshole with everything I've got. The thought of him flailing on the ground and clutching at his asshole while screaming nearly gives me an erection. I decide that it's a bad idea and return to the bell desk instead. I go into my jacket pocket, take the $9 that I made for the shift, put it into my wallet, and concede the end of my earnings for the day. 

I wish the story ended there. 

With 15 min to go in my shift, all I want to do is go into the locker room and destroy furniture. Instead, the bell captian comes down and gives me shit. 

Bell Captain - "Doorman, why are you standing up here?" 

Doorman - "Because it's where I've been standing for the past seven hours." 

Bell Captain - "Man, don't you know that the morning doorman banged out? You gotta cover the door till the 8 o'clock guy gets here!" 

God damnit. I work this shift to get a break from being a doorman, and now I have to spend my last fifteen minutes covering the very post that I wanted to get away from, while staring at this fucking slob that just let me down. I put on my overcoat and hat. 

At my post, I stare at Fatso as he thumbs through his iPad. I think about how he probably has children, and grandchildren, and they probably love him. They probably have a pet-name for him, like "Poppy" or something. Then I wonder what his children would think of his little antics. They probably do the same shit. It's people like this that produce more cheap, inconsiderate cunts. I think about my Old Man and Mom, and how they would never do something like that to some friendly schmuck trying to make a living. I think about how they taught me better. All of this makes me grateful for begin raised right. 

The SuperShuttle pulls up, and Fatso spots it immediately. There's a small staircase just before the door, and he makes his way towards it. He has no money in his hands, but hesitates before going down the steps, as if he wants me to come fetch them and walk him to his shuttle. I don't. This pisses him off. 

He takes his shit down the steps, and I reluctantly open the door for him. He takes a few steps past me, stops and turns, and without getting a good look at my face, utters this remark: 

Fatso - "Well, I guess that cuts out your tip!" 

Are you fucking kidding me? 

Doorman - "Really, guy? You weren't going to tip me, anyway!" 

He looks up at my face and see that it's me. He never saw me change into my doorman uniform and post at the door. The blood drains from his face. I take my hat off to drive it home. 

Doorman - "Yeah, I'm the guy you stiffed ten minutes ago." 

He says nothing. He can't say anything. 

Doorman - "Have a good one!" 

The SuperShuttle driver laughs the "good for you, bro" laugh. I wink at him. Fatso takes his shit and gets the fuck out of my sight. 

I take out my notepad and frantically write it all down, which causes me to punch out two minutes after my shift ends. It looks something like this: 






Sunday, March 10, 2013

Doorman Berates a Dunkin Donuts Employee

Once in awhile, we have an ugly moment that we'd like to push under the rug. For me, today was a fucking disaster, so I took it out on some poor schmuck, like a many have done to yours truly:

It's 11pm, just a few hours ago, and I'm in a really, really crabby fucking mood before I have to start my overnight. Here's a list of reasons why:

- Last night (Saturday), I made $58 in what has been the worst month since I started working here. In the slowest months of last year, I was averaging $100 in tips per shift. I've hit that mark once in the past 3 weeks. What was once a really bad night has become the median. If things continue at this rate, I won't be able to afford my apartment through the end of my lease.

- I get home to the only thing I was looking forward to all evening - Justin Timberlake hosting Saturday Night Live. I press play on the DVR, crack open some Ben & Jerry's, and plop onto my couch. Two minutes into Timberlake's cameo-studded monologue, my cock sucker cable box zaps and I lose everything on the motherfucking DVR.

- I try to go to sleep, but can't. Daylight savings happens, so I lose an hour of sleep on a night where I couldn't get any in the first place.

- I finally doze off at around 5am, only to have my roommate come stumbling in, somehow kick over my mini-fridge, then have a vomit-party in the bathroom. After 30 min of babysitting, I finally get him to bed. I'm not mad because he was very forgiving when I did something repulsive in the bathroom at our shore house, and I owed him one. (That story is for another post.)

- After hours of staring at my well-lit ceiling, I fall asleep at 9am.

- Remember that I had a brunch planned at 11am. I hate canceling plans last-minute, so I go, and my lethargic nature makes me shitty company. Usually, I put them back at an unlimited booze brunch till they cut me off, but I could barely choke down my 2nd mimosa. Brunch disperses early.

- I remember that I missed the Rangers game, but it's okay because we have the DVR set to record and save all games.

- I get home, and the Rangers game has been zapped from my cock sucker DVR.

- After an furious tirade of profanities, I spend the rest of my day in full-blown zombie mode.

- Take a nap at 6pm, only to be continuously woken up by my roommates, who are simply living and functioning at a reasonable hour.

- Stare at my bedroom ceiling as the alarm goes off at 9pm.

- Watch an awfully anti-climactic episode of The Walking Dead, then get ready for work.

So here I am, at Dunkin Donuts, about to order an extra large coffee to keep me awake through this god-forsaken overnight. The store is empty, and the young, Indian desk clerk is cleaning the counters. His name is "Kwak", which makes me giggle. I have an uncle that used to call poop "Kwakies", when I was a young lad.

Doorman - "What's up, buddy? Can I get an extra-large French vanilla, milk, two sugars, please?"

Kwak grabs the 24oz, extra large cup and checks the size chart. He looks back at me, as if he's unsure of whether or not he wants to open a can of worms.

Kwak - "Sugar?"

His accent is thick.

Doorman - "Two, please."

Kwak - "I cannot put the sugar."

Doorman - "Come again?"

Kwak - "I cannot put the sugar."

Doorman - "Yeah, I heard that. Why not?"

Kwak - "New York state law."

I can't believe what I'm fucking hearing. I quickly remember a nearly identical argument that I had with a deli clerk the first time I tried to buy beer before noon on a Sunday, which is also illegal in NYC.

Regardless, I'm not in the mood to hear this shit.

Doorman - "Dude, come on."

Kwak - "We cannot add sugar to 24oz cup."

Doorman - "Fucking Bloomberg."

Kwak doesn't say anything. It's a silly new law that the mayor of New York has put in place, in an effort to curb obesity. So we can't get big, sugary drinks anymore. Guess what, Bloomy? There's nothing keeping me from ordering two dozen donuts and shoving them through the fat fucking hole in my face in one sitting. It's like saying "hey, lets get rid of cigarettes", then only removing one brand from the shelves.

Doorman - "It's two sugars, man."

Kwak - "I cannot put the sugar."

He's not in the mood for a belligerent customer. I'm not in the mood for the "I'm going to repeat the same rebuttal over and over till you get frustrated and give up" technique that's generally used by snooty front desk managers and kindergarten teachers.

Doorman - "My friend, it's 11 o'clock at night. No one is going to care if you dump two scoops of sugar into-"

His voice becomes more stern as he cuts me off.

Kwak - "I'm sorry, I cannot put the sugar."

Doorman - "That's fucking ridiculous. Do you see that there are 300 sugar packets over there that I could very easily dump into my sugarless coffee after you give it to me?"

He says nothing. He doesn't care about my argument. He's just awaiting word on whether or not he should just pour my fucking coffee.

Doorman - "Whatever, fine. Fucking bullshit."

I see the look on his face. It's the same look I probably give people when they berate me for a hotel policy that's completely out of my hands. Whenever people give me a shitty attitude about it, or try and belittle my job in an attempt to win whatever argument we're having, I become less inclined to try and get them what they want. I'm on the opposite end of this scenario, and I know it.

Doorman - "I mean, what are they watching you on the cameras or something?"

Kwak ignores my little comment as he seals the lid onto the white styrofoam cup.

Kwak - "$2.60"

He swipes my debit card. I'm already starting to feel my face turning flush. I want to thank him, but don't.

In my stubbornness, I grab a despicable amount of sugar packets and make a spectacle doing so. He could care less.

I leave, completely embarrassed. I'm just another asshole customer.

As I walk to the hotel to start my graveyard shift, I weigh whether or not I'm in the wrong. Then I remember the last three overnights that I did, all within a few weeks, and the other clerks putting the sugar in without even blinking. It's an insanely stupid law, but maybe the kid was new and weary of breaking the rules. I'd never seen him before tonight, nor do I really ever want to have to face him again.

Any other night, I probably would have brushed it off and put the sugar in cup myself without thinking twice.

I mean, don't I do that every time I go to Starbucks?

I think about going back to apologize, but don't. Instead, I dump four sugar packets into my shitty, watery coffee, and start the my lonely trek to 8am.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Ugly Americans: Part II

Disclaimer: If you're anticipating another tale of a drunk woman wiping her menstrual blood and fecal matter all over a bathroom, then I'm sorry to disappoint. Fortunately for poor, sweet Aju, an incident like that one comes along once in a blue moon. You have my word - the next time a woman spitefully smears her shit and bloody tampon all over the lobby bathroom, you, my faithful readers, will be the first to know. What I will promise, is more stories about Americans acting like cunts:

It's last Saturday at around 9pm, the evening of the Hoboken St. Patrick's Day parade. For anyone outside of NY, Hoboken is an awesome little New Jersey town just across the river from Manhattan. I have lot's of friends that live there, and I visit to get hammered whenever I get a chance. According to a shitfaced guy that I once spoke to in a bar, Hoboken has the most bars per capita in the country. I don't know exactly what he meant by that, but it sounds accurate. For every deli or restaurant, there's at least two bars.

As you can imagine, the Hoboken St. Patty's Day parade is a balls-to-the-wall shit-show. I went one year and got so fucked up that I blacked out and woke up to an empty wallet and a cop nudging me with his nightstick at the end of the NJ PATH line.  It's one of many Hoboken stories that I have, but that's for another blog.

So it's 9pm on a Saturday and I'm bored as fuck, as usual. The night before, this unattractive woman in her thirties with her equally unattractive friend ask me for directions to the PATH that takes them there. I tell them that the parade is a good time, and they disregard what I say because they don't give a shit about my opinion.

I'm at my post when I hear a woman singing "I will survive" at the top of her lungs. Horribly. The two of them turn the corner, and the more sober one is carrying this singing, walking disaster. She's wearing oversized green sunglasses, and enough green beads around her neck to lead me to believe that she's spent the whole day walking around with her tits out. Her friend has the pissed-off, long-distance babysitter look that I know all too well. I can hear her telling her friend to shut the fuck up because we're close to the hotel. Behind them are two men and I can't tell if they're with them, but they find this very amusing. As do I.

Then I see drunkie's eyes lock on me.

I know exactly what's going to happen. She wants to wear my fucking hat. Drunk women love my fucking hat. I'm happy to let them wear it and make kissy face pictures to post onto Instagram with the hashtag #doorman and the caption "You're just a doorman, DOORMAN!!!" No skin off my back.

Her singing gets louder and louder as she approaches me. I'm anticipating just taking if off and throwing it at her like I would if I were holding a steak and a rabid wolverine were gunning for my testicles. Though her friend has a pretty firm hold and is hell-bent on getting her the fuck out of public and into their room.

Drunk Girl - "NOT IIIIII!!!! I WILL SURVIIIIIIVE AS LONG AS I LOVE HOW YOU WILL STAY ALIVE!!!!"

Friend- "Let's go! Let's go!"

They get close to me and Drunk Girl stops stops singing. She stares at the door. Her friend keeps a firm grip on her. The two men are laughing and drunk as well, and I open the door for them. They take about ten steps inside, then turn around to see what this sloptard is about to do.

She looks at the door, looks at me, then looks back at her friend with her eyes nearly shut.

Drunk Girl - "I WILL SURVIVE!"

This startles everyone, including me.

She makes a dash toward my hat. Her friend intercepts her immediately. She begins clawing at my face. I would have given it to her if she asked nicely, but now I don't want her to have it. Her hands smell like a crude mix of vomit and saliva, as if she had just shoved her fingers down her throat to make herself throw up.

Drunk Girl - "I KNOW HOW TO LOVE TO HOW TO LOVE TO SURVIVE!!!!"

I take a step back. Her friend fights her harder.

Friend - "I'm so sorry, sir!"

Drunk Girl pushes through her friend like Michael Strahan in his prime. She keeps clawing at my face and making Donna Summer spin in her grave.

Drunk Girl - "I WILL SURVIVEEEEE!!!!! GIMME YOUR HAT DOORMAN!!!!!"

Fuck this bitch. She's not getting my hat. I take another step back.

I hear the guys laughing from the lobby. Drunk Girl keeps clawing at my fucking face. Her friend is getting tired. Drunk Girl gets over her shoulder and fully extends her arm. Her disgusting, vomit-scented finger pokes me directly in the eye. My first instinct is to punch her in the mouth, but I control myself and take several steps back in an attempt to completely remove myself from the situation.

Friend - "I am so sorry, sir!"

I don't have to take this bullshit.

Doorman - "Just get her out of here!"

Her friend turns to the guys watching in the lobby.

Friend - "Frank, please help me!"

Through my blurry eye, I see these two guys watching and laughing. "Frank" doesn't come to help. This is his fucking girlfriend.

I respond like any calm, courteous, professional hotel employee would:

Doorman - "HEY, ASSHOLE!!! GET THE FUCK OVER HERE AND CONTROL YOUR WOMAN!!!"

The smile immediately vanishes from his face. He understands that he's about to take the hit that I wanted to plant on this pig's face.

He pussyfoots back to the door and takes her by the droopy fat of her bicep while never making eye contact with me. She resists him at first, then conforms when he becomes a little more forceful.

Frank - "Let's go, babe."

Her friend apologizes profusely on the way inside. Frank doesn't, neither does the cunt.

I immediately run to the bathroom and drop my contacts into the toilet. I spend the rest of the evening not being able to see anything ten feet in front of my face.

The next day, they all leave in a Super Shuttle. Her friend sheepishly smiles and thanks me, but Drunk Girl and Frank have no recollection of who I am.



DOORMAN UPDATE: Found a hotel that will allow us to use the front entrance, which was the most challenging issue. We'll likely cast a few small roles this week, with filming tentatively set to begin at the end of April. A teaser will be shot and posted by the end of the month. Good things are happening!!!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Doorman Gets Nostalgic Over Gallon Smashing Videos

I got hammered at the Rangers game on Thursday night, so I spent Friday in bed nursing a stage five hangover. Right after my 3rd or 4th nap of the day, I took a look at my Facebook feed to see a YouTube video titled "guy throws milk all over grocery store." My brain was too clouded to handle something heady like "House of Cards", so a little viral video surfing would have to suffice. Holy shit, was I glad I clicked on the link.

Now, I'm usually terribly behind on internet trends (I didn't know what a Harlem Shake video was until several weeks after the Super Bowl). So the fact that I was only a week behind this one is a proud achievement for me. First thing I did was text my old roommate "Dude, type 'gallon smash' into YouTube. You're welcome", to which he replied "welcome to the internet, Doorman." 


The first one I watched was the original, and I must say, I've never laughed so hard in my entire life. ( I understand that this is a bold statement, to which mustn't be taken lightly. I once dated a girl that used to describe every waking moment of her day as the grand old experience that she has ever experienced: "Garlic mashed potatoes at Outback? Greatest thing you'll ever eat in your life." "My new assistant? Stupidest person on earth." "Snowboarding? Don't go snowboarding! You'll fall a lot and it'll be the worst thing you ever do in your life!" Really? What if I went to Uganda and fucked a hooker without arubber? Learn some adjectives, stupid.)

But I digress. 

My stomach hurts more than 24 hours later. I feel like I did 200 sit-ups last night because I watched every single one of those fucking videos as if I were watching Arrested Development or Breaking Bad for the first time. At first, I literally had to force my eyes open, because between the squinting and tears, I couldn't see straight. It took me several times to get through the video before I actually witnessed each hilarious fall. 

Now, I don't condone what these kids are doing... actually, yes I do. And here's why: 

I was a little son of a bitch when I was a kid. That didn't stop till right around the time where I was able to get into bars, then I started getting into adult trouble. Looking back on those days where I worked in a hardware store, those little shenanigans were what we thrived for. Hell, on my first day, the kid that trained me said "watch this, yo", lit a ball of twine on fire, and threw it across the store. Here I was, day one of my first real job, and I'm watching a fireball sail over the plumbing aisle. He could have killed someone. Is that funny? No. Was it fucking hilarious when no one got injured and the store didn't burn down? You bet your ass it was. Would I take part in something like that again? Not in a million years. 

We were kids that we were making minimum wage for beer money. And we had a damn good time doing so: 

I remembered the days of taking turns farting into the intercom with my buddies. It was a simple game: the guy with gas would fart into the intercom, while guy without gas pretended to stock shelves while waiting for the reactions of unsuspecting customers. At that time, there wasn't anything more satisfying than seeing an adult trying not to giggle at the symphony of flatulence pounding through the loudspeakers. Or, if the manager were out of the store, we would get super ballsy and lead in with "Attention, customers... BBBRRRRRRRFFFFTTTTTT." 

I remembered the days of cutting out a large cardboard cock and balls, then putting it underneath the florescent lights in the store. What was more fun than walking a customer around the aisles, and catching their reaction to a penis-shaped bat-signal glistening from the ceiling above them? 

I remembered the days of replacing my co-worker's name tag before they got to work, then watching them help customers with "Hello, my name is DILDO. How may I ass-ist you?" pinned to their vest. 

I remembered the display of stick-on letters and numbers that you used to put on your mailbox or front door. I remembered that it was someones job to keep them in alphabetical order, and that it was my hobby to rearrange them to say things like "Help. They kidnapped me, I'm in the basement" or "Uncle George diddled my nut sack." 

I remembered having "fluorescent lightbulbsaber fights" in the basement. 

I remembered putting boogers on the doorbell displays, then celebrating like a muppet when I heard a customer press one. 

Point is, these kids were a lot clever than I was. I mean, come on, if you heard that sound in supermarket, then turned around to see some kid lying in a giant pool of milk, what the fuck you would you think? I honestly don't know how I would react. That's what makes these videos so funny. People just stare, or scream things like "OH MY GOD!", or just ignore it. Almost every instance has a different reaction. 

Is it wasteful? Sure. Are people starving around the world, and these little American white kids are smashing gallons of precious milk like it's nothing? Fine, it's a sin. Does someone have to clean it up? Yes, and that sucks. Did they damage property? Yes, and it should be paid for. You know what you do? Have their parents come in and pay for it, like my parents had to do when the school across the street from our house caught my brother and I breaking windows with a stickball bat, just for shits and giggles. We sure as fuck got ours that day. 

Kids will be kids (as seen in my previous post). They're going to break shit, fuck things up, and act like assholes. At least these kids brought some creativity, and for that, I commend them. Now, it's true that one can say "But, you did all of this bullshit, and you grew up to be a Doorman, Doorman." This is true, but my brother grew up to be a doctor, so suck on that.