Wednesday, August 21, 2013

#Doorman Pilot Update and Official Facebook Page

Got some wonderful news this week. #Doorman has been named an official selection of the 2013 New York Television Festival!!! When my producing partner, Greg Caiafa, and I set out to make this show happen, getting into this festival was the number one priority. In 2012, NYTF received 3,000+ submissions and accepted 161. This year, they accepted 47. Doorman is one of them. I'm thrilled and proud of everyone involved, and eternally grateful for all who donated, helped out, and supported my humble little beast of a project.

What happens now? 

The festival is October 21-26, and I'll be using my vacation to be in attendance. The screenings will take place in TriBeCa, and I'll be posting the dates and times as they come. Until then, I'm burying myself in a cave to churn out as many episodes as possible. We have several in the can already, with a first season arc taking shape. 

As for blogging, I may take a breather for a little while (I say that often, then people like Suzy the Twat show up). There's lots of work to be done, and I'm stopping at nothing to see it through to the end. 

What I'd love is for you to click the link below and "Like" the official Doorman Facebook page for more updates and stills from the show. 

Thank you. You're awesome. I love you. 


Monday, August 19, 2013

Doorman and the Taxi Driver You Should Know About

I have a rocky history with taxi drivers. I've screamed at them, been dragged down a block, thrown gum in their car, and fought tooth and nail to get them to take my fucking guests where they need to go. Hell, I'm leaving for work in a couple of hours, and as the Monday afternoon rush looms, I know that I have at least one confrontation in store for me. These altercations, or "hockey fights", as I've called them before, are par for the course. And while I've spent a good amount of time vilifying these hard-working people on this blog, I have to share a humbling story about taxi medallion # 6E14:

I was a Sunday night. Sunday nights are quiet, save for the morning rush of people exiting and the trickle-in of the end-of-the-weekend arrivals. Working Sunday mornings as a doorman is excellent, because you cash in on all of the high-rate people leaving, though evenings are different story. Working the night shift means getting all of the bargain-hunting travelers who were able to get good rates for checking in on a Sunday. This means a lot of shlepping bags for free. It was one of those nights. I busted my ass all evening and had $43 in tips to show for it.

Salty, broke, and exhausted, I leaned up against the door at about 10:30pm, just waiting for this fucking nightmare to end. The clientele in my establishment is changing for the worse, and trying to squeeze tips from these fucking savages is a fool's endeavor. I'd spent the entire evening unloading car after car for this gaggle of pukes, whose only mode of communication with me was snapping their fingers and pointing at suitcases and ignoring my facetious "enjoy your stays!"

Then, out of the woodwork, a man approached me from our side-entrance. I immediately gave him an attitude, because I thought he was going to ask me to grab a luggage cart and unload some more cunty new-money travelers.

Doorman - "My man, you gotta pull around to the front entrance."

6E14 - "No, no! Excuse me, sir. I think one of your guests left this in my taxi."

He showed me a wallet and a passport. It was of a Japanese man, born in 1981. The taxi driver pulled out a green room key.

6E14 - "This is your room key, right?"

Okay, I got nothing else going on.

I took the wallet and ID from him and told him I'd be right back.

6E14 - "Thank you, sir!"

I went inside and called the operator, who patched me through to the room using the last name on the passport. No answer. Called one more time. No answer. I left a message, telling him that the doorman has his wallet and passport and that I will be leaving it with security.

When I returned to the taxi driver, I let him know that we would handle it from here. Before I could get a sentence out, he snatched it from my hands.

6E14 - "Please, sir. I cannot leave it with you. I need to either give it to the guest or turn it over to the police."

Oh, of course! He wants to collect a reward!

Doorman - "Ah! Okay, I get it. You want to be taken care of!"

I winked at him. The smile vanished from his face. I had offended him.

6E14 - "No, please. It is procedure. I do not give a fuck about that. Trust me."

Doorman - "Alright buddy, calm down. I'll tell you what - I left a message with the guest. Leave me your cell number and I'll call you when he comes back."

He left me his number, took the wallet, and returned to work. No more than five minutes later, Security came down from the elevator. I let him know what had happened, and it turned out that he had just filled out a report with the guest in his office.

I called the room, and the man from Japan barely spoke a word of english. As I explained the situation, I was greeted with a blizzard of "ok ok ok ok ok ok ok ok" before he hung up. I called the taxi driver right away, who was only a couple of blocks away.

The guest, born in 1981 but dressed like a fucking Staten Island teenager, frantically came down.

Japanese Man - "Yes! Yes! Yes!"

I pointed outside, where the cabbie was waiting in the front. He ran outside like the lobby was on fire.

This was between the two of them, but out of boredom, I snuck outside to see how the interaction went down. Would the Japanese man have the sense to give the guy a reward? Would the cabbie squeeze him if he didn't? Would the Japanese man check the wallet, find that something was missing, and accuse the cabbie of stealing?

Fuck man, this is the Lonely Road to Midnight. I never see this much potential for drama.

I crept out the door, where I watched the exchange completely out of sight.

Taxi Driver # 6E14 sat in his car and handed the Japanese man his wallet and passport. Japanese Man rummaged through it, made sure everything was there, and pulled a crispy twenty out to give to the taxi driver.

Without seeing me, without knowing anyone else was around to see the exchange, he refused the twenty.

6E14 - "No, no, sir! It's okay! That passport saved you! Just be more careful."

Japanese Man insisted. So did the taxi driver.

6E14 - "No, please, sir! You keep it! You are on vacation!"

The Japanese man bowed and thanked him profusely.

6E14 - "Good night, sir!"

And he drove off.

I truly felt like a fucking asshole.

With all of the ranting and raving that I do about the scumbags (and there are a lot, believe me), it's important to me that I tell you about one of the good ones. 6E14 stopped what he was doing, stopped making money in a 12-14 hour shift where every fare and every minute counts, to return a wallet to this man. Then refused a reward.

There's an option on my "Report A Taxi" iPhone app that allows me to "praise an angel." A little dramatic, yes, but I did just that:

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Massholecunt: Part II

I've said it time and time again - when you start screaming and yelling, calling people incompetent and slinging personal insults, the chances of you getting what you want virtually disappear. Yes, we're in the business of hospitality. Yes, we're supposed to make everything about your stay pleasant, and if there's a problem, it's our DUTY to fix it for you. But guess what? You're still talking to a human being. That's a cardinal rule when deal with hotel employees - remember that they're people first. People who have more power than you'd expect. Just read Jacob Tomsky's book, Heads in Beds, if you don't believe me. 

I'll get to the Massholecunt in a minute, but first, here's a quick little example of how to deal with a delicate situation: 

A bellman brought down a cart for a middle-aged American couple. They needed a taxi to LaGuardia airport, so I hailed one as they organized their stuff. As I turned to go about my business, I felt a tap on my shoulder. I turned, and the woman, clearly shaken, had her hand on her mouth with tears in her eyes. 

Then, in the calmest and quietest voice she could muster, her leaned toward my ear: 

Woman - "I think my iPad is missing from my bag." 

She didn't scream, she didn't point fingers, she didn't threaten anyone. All she did was get my attention. 

Doorman - "Okay, did you check everything?" 

Woman - "I think so."

I immediately got security.

With her calmness, and her refraining from accusing the bellmen of rummaging through her stuff and causing a scene, she immediately had me on her side. She eventually found it in another suitcase, and apologized profusely to me afterward. Had she opened her bag and started screaming, she would have vilified herself immediately. 

Seriously, never fucking yell - even in your most livid state. It will get you nowhere. The calmer you are when something goes wrong, the more likely the staff will work with you. I promise. 

But back to this fucking twat from Boston. 

Massholecunt - "WHAT. THE. FUUUUUUUUCK?!?!?!" 

I jumped and nearly dropped the phone. I looked up, and saw her stomping over to Ralph and ordering him to come look at her front bumper. 

It's worth re-mentioning that this KIA Optimum was a rental. 


Ralph stood there, horrified. Judging by the quivering of his chin and bulged eyeballs, I could tell that he immediately regretted getting himself involved with this psycho to avoid lifting a few heavy bags. 


And here, my fine readers, is where my experience comes into play. I've been doing this for almost two years now, and while bumping heads with lunatics like this has made for some great stories, I knew that dealing with her would do nothing but raise my blood pressure. So for the time, instead of following the misery and putting myself in the line of fire, I did the sensible thing:

Stayed the fuck out of it. 

And guess what? It was one of the best decisions I've ever made while working in this god forsaken job. 

I grabbed our security guard on duty, who, and bless his heart, is about as useful as a can full of smashed rectums, and watched the show. 

Here are the highlights of the next thirty minutes: 

- Massholecunt came storming into the lobby, where security intercepted her:

Security - "Ma'am, I'm gonna need you to calm down." 


I think he farted with fear. 

Security - "Imma... well... we gonna... umm.. let me... um... look at the... umm.. damage." 

Security went outside to survey the damage. I walked inside and watch the delightful silent picture of Massholecunt flailing and pointing her arms like a gangster rapper as Security quivered and nodded and pretended to talk to someone on his radio. 

- Massholecunt, tired of the sound of marbles swishing in a coffee can that is security trying to negotiate a solution, ran into the lobby and demanded a manager: 


It took twenty-six minutes, but I'm not saying a word. Today, I am a spectator. 

My manager eventually came out, and she continued to go apeshit: 


Okay, so remember when I said that yelling gets you nowhere? Calling everyone on the staff a retard also falls into that category. 

My manager simply wrote down the phone number of the parking garage, offered to let her use the bell captain phone, and went right back to his office. 

- Ever go to a parking garage in Manhattan? If so, have you ever had an attendant that spoke perfect English? Maybe you have, but at our garage, not a one of those guys can muster anything beyond a little bIt of Spanglish. With her rage and the serious language barrier, her ten-minute tirade on the phone was just a beautiful thing to listen to: 


This went on and on and on. Eventually, I had to go to the bell stand to get staples, and I was able to overhear this delightful little nugget: 

Massholecunt - "OK!!! OK!!! I'M COMING DOWN THERE FOR YOU TO SEE!!!" 

Then, on the other end of the phone, I hear a faint, thick hispanic accent: 

Valet - "No no no no no no no no!!! I send someone there!" 

She slammed the phone onto the receiver and made her triumphant exit: 


- I stood by the door as she yelled some more to her embarrassed friends. About ten minutes later, "Jorge", the manager at the garage, came strolling up the street. 

I stepped outside, because I had to see how this would end. And end it did, fucking beautifully. 

Jorge stood with his arms folded and stared at the front bumper as the psychopath ranted and raved, pointing and threatening to sue. He stood there, seemingly unfazed, as if he had a trick up his sleeve. Then, just as she gave him a teeny-tiny window to get a word in edgewise, he crouched down and took a closer look at the "damage". 

He licked his thumb, rubbed the bumper for a couple of seconds, then stood up.

Jorge - "It's fixed." 

The color of red in Massholecunt's face turned to magenta, as I'm sure was a result of a mixture of humiliation and unnecessary anger. 

Jorge - "Hey, Doorman!!!" 

I waved at Jorge as he disappeared down the street. Massholecunt and her friends got in the KIA Optima and drove off. No apologies. 

The moral of the story - Don't be an animal. Be nice and maybe someone will work with you to find a really fucking easy solution. 

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Massholecunt: Part I

I'm terrified of girls from Boston. Yes, I admit that. I will scream in the face of an immigrant from Haiti, tell him to fuck his mother, then watch murder cross his eyes as I will laugh and go on with my day. Girls from Boston? I can't even make eye-contact. Any girl with Massachusetts plates that pulls up in a valet gets the upmost attention and grade-A butler service. Why? I don't want to get punched in the mouth. Don't believe my convictions? Read this story:

Valet parking in my hotel, and most others in NYC, goes like this: 

- $35 per 24 hours, no in-and-out services, and the minute your vehicle goes over 24 hours, they nail you for another day.

- The Doorman takes the car, gives the guest a ticket. 

- The Doorman calls a local parking garage, who sends a valet attendant to pick up the car. 

- The valet attendant then takes a voucher, makes note of any marks, scuffs, or dents on the vehicle, then passes it off to the Doorman, who brings it to the front desk. 

- The guest is instructed to present their ticket to the front desk, who will call for a price from the garage. They bill the guest right there. The guest is then instructed to present the voucher to the Doorman, who will call for the car. The voucher serves as a record for both the garage and front desk of any damage that was on the vehicle before it was picked up from the hotel.

- To allotted for time to have the valet attended retrieve the car in the garage, then drive it through a few blocks of midtown traffic is 15-20 minutes. It says it on the ticket, but that rarely happens. Most of the time, it's at least a half hour. 

I tell every guest this on the way in, but no one wants to listen to the fucking Doorman, so calling for a car from the parking garage is always a god damned nightmare for me. Every time a guest comes to me with their voucher, the conversation goes like this: 

Doorman - "It'll be about 20 minutes." 

Guest - "TWENTY MINUTES?!?!?!" 

And it usually takes longer, especially during rush-hour. You have to understand, if you need your car at 5pm, the garage is not only dealing with everyone leaving work and picking up their cars at the garage, but they have to actually drive to the hotel, which can take 30 minutes on it's own in rush hour traffic. Yes, driving three blocks can take that long in midtown rush hour traffic. 

Or say you want to get your car at check-out time (usually noon) - you have to account for twenty other people who had the genius idea of waiting till the last possible second to vacate their room. 

So if you park your car with the valet service of a hotel, be smart. Leave at 10am and you'll have your car in 15 minutes. Leave at 5pm and be prepared to wait 45. And listen to and tip your fucking doorman. Also very important. Gave me an attitude and didn't thank me on the way in? Maybe I'll tell the garage to take their time. Had me load a cart full of your bullshit, tell me to "be careful" with your Hyundai, and not give me a fucking dollar?  Maybe I'll get distracted and forget to call till you ask me a second time. 

So it's 5pm, and four girls from Boston walk into the hotel. I had valeted their car the day before, and didn't get a tip, but they insisted on bringing the bags in themselves. They didn't have much, so I considered it a wash. You can't really expect someone to let you take their backpack inside and expect a tip out of it. They also blew me off when I tried to explain the laws of valeting the car, which is why her attitude pissed me the fuck off. 

Now, when I say "Boston girls", I'm not talking about them as a whole. I grew up on Staten Island, and I understand when someone uses the term "Staten Island girl". These particular girls all carried beer guts that would put your Uncle Lenny's to shame. They sported the heaviest of accents that simmered beneath those heavy-smoker voices that would lead one to believe that they've gargled lava every morning since the age of 13. 

The leader of the pack, whom I will call "Massholecunt", hands me her ticket. Had she not dismissed me when I greeted them, she would have known that she needed to go to the front desk first. The lobby was a mob scene, and she immediately sucked her teeth when I told her she had to wait on the line for an available front desk agent. 

After about 10 minutes, she came back with her voucher, clearly agitated. Whatever. I called the garage to bring over her fucking KIA Optima. 

Doorman - "It'll be about twenty minutes." 

Massholecunt - "Seriously?!?"

Again, terrified of Boston girls. So, I was sheepish. 

Doorman - "Yes, ma'am. Sorry." 

She sucked her teeth again, rolled her eyes, and stormed off. I really didn't care. 

Cut to twenty minutes later, and I could feel her watching me from the lobby. Every time I brought a guest in, I could see her trying to make eye contact with me as she threw her arms up in the air and shook her head. Like I said, had she listened to me on the way in, she would have known better and picked her car up earlier. 

One minute after the twenty minute mark, a bellman "Ralph", the laziest dude on the staff, approached me. I love the guy, but he's the type that will take on any problem if it meant that he didn't have to lift any bags for a period of time. 

Ralph - "Yo, did you call for a car for those broads?" 

Doorman - "Yes, twenty minutes ago. It's on the way." 

Ralph - "Ight, cause they're flipping out back there."

Doorman - "That's nice." 

Six minutes later, I could see Massholecunt's red face burning in the background as Ralph attempted to keep her calm. All the while, he passed up three fronts with lots of luggage. 

Her brand new, silver KIA Optima rental pulled up. From the lobby, I heard her: 

Massholecunt - "FINALLY!!!" 

That's 27 minutes to pull it out of a parking garage and drive it one avenue and three streets through New York City traffic at 5:15pm. If you had any idea what you were talking about, you'd call it an impressive feat.

Ralph held their tiny little backpacks and walked them to the car. I could feel Massholecunts eyes burning at me as she walked by. I didn't make eye contact, because, well, you know. The valet attendant handed her the keys, which she snatched out of his hand, and hauled-ass out of there. I knew he left in a hurry because the garage is a mob scene at that time of day and he needed to get back, but an outside source wouldn't have seen it that way, especially someone who is already looking for a reason to flip out. 

So as Ralph waited patiently to put their little schoolbags into the trunk of the car, avoiding doing any real manual labor, I picked up the phone to resume my doorman duties. Then I hear an evil, raspy roar from the street. A roar that sounded like Harvey Fierstein performing the final scene of A Streetcar Named Desire: 

Massholecunt - "WHAT. THE. FUUUUUUUUUUCK?!?!?!?!" 


Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Fuck, At Least She's Honest

French people. Take them or leave them. What can I say? The French are assholes? You knew that. Americans get drunk and loud and shitty? You knew that, too. Brazilians shop a lot and speak in ugly tongues? You betcha. Certain stereotypes aren't stereotypes in the service industry. Some things are common knowledge. The French don't tip? Common fucking knowledge.

Though in my hotel, the majority of French people come in organized groups. And as I mentioned in my bellman tip breakdown, the bell staff get a certain amount of money per person when large tour groups arrive and exit. It's protects us from being completely shut out of money when these cunts come in, don't use our car services, then don't give us a dollar when we schlep their luggages up and down the steps, and to and from their rooms. So I really can't complain too much about the French. 

Actually, that's a lie. Because even with the groups, we still get a slew of individual arrivals in the late summer and early fall, and for those individual arrivals, we get dick. Dick. Maybe a "merci", if we're lucky. They never actually make the effort to say "thank you". Ever. Seriously, service industry peeps, try and recall a French person ever actually uttering the words "thank" and "you" together. Can't do it, right? 

I don't really have to rant about all of the French people who have stiffed me over my time here, because all of us industry folk know the drill. "They don't understand because it's not custom over there." Suck my pink ball-bag. There's that phrase "when in Rome..." and the second part of that sentence isn't "be an ignorant cunt." You're in America. We live on tips. Read a travel guide. 

I can't tell you how many times I've sauntered over to a shuttle bus or a taxi, excited to greet what appear to be American travelers, only to see the dreaded "Air France" luggage tags. Now that I'm over there, I have to follow through, and work for fucking free.

Though I recently had a brief interaction that's definitely worth noting: 

I opened the door for an incredibly attractive woman and her mother. They both had suitcases, and as it's my job, I reached to take the luggage and carry them up the steps. I started with the daughter (because she was closer, not because she was hot) and (okay, because she was hot) was greeted with an index finger to the face: 

Hot French Woman - "EHHH NO! We do not give tips! If you want to help, it is only because you love me!" 

Never in my life have I been so turned on. The accent, the conviction, the fact that she one-armed the fucking thing over four steps like it was nothing. But I'm not one to buckle for a woman because she's attractive (another fucking lie), so I let her go up the steps by herself. Though not before trying to sound cool and instead coming off as a complete fucking doofus: 

Doorman - "Okay, C'est la vie!" 

I had to google that term, because I'm fucking stupid, and it means "that's life" in French. I dunno. I say stupid shit when I'm caught off-guard. 

Anyways, I wanted to be angry with her (as her elderly mother struggled up the steps and I did nothing to help), because she was just another hot girl who blew me off, who saw the doorman hat and treated me as if I were just some monkey that she could just poo poo away. Inferiority complexes can be a bitch. Though after I thought about it, I realized that she was what I wish every other French tourist would be: 


Imagine a service industry world where every foreigner who didn't believe in tipping told you up-front that they weren't going to compensate you for your services?!? It would be divine!!! 

You don't tip? Thanks for letting me know! My back has been killing me and I could use a break! Go fuck yourself and have a wonderful stay!!! 

Imagine being a waiter?!?! 

"Oh, you want some more water? I'll get right on that!!!" (THEN YOU FORGET ON PURPOSE!!!)  

So refreshing!!! 

I spent the rest of the night fantasizing about her coming back down and saying something like, "eehhhh sorry for before! My mother went to a movie, would you like to come upstairs and ravage me?"

(She didn't.)

UPDATE (8/8/13) 

She left the next day. I was in a jolly good mood, so as she went to take her suitcase down the steps, I grabbed the handle from her.

Doorman - "It's because I love you."

I winked. She blushed.

Her mom laughed as she struggled down the steps with her suitcase.

Hot French Woman - "Ah! I knew when I first met you!"

She winked back.

She exited the door and onto her shuttle bus, though not before looking back at me and smiling.

Sometimes, it's the little things. 

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Doorman Has a Run-in with the Devil

Today I had an experience that was something out of a David Lynch film:

It was around 3:30pm and Shitdick had gone for a smoke, so I was left to deal with the nonsense. Thursday isn't my usual day of work, and I had just spent the morning helping my new roommate move in, so I was a little fucking cranky. (As if you really need me to explain why I hate being at work anymore, but a little pretense gets my writing juices flowing. Go fuck yourself.) 

As I unloaded a taxi for a family of mouth-breathing Times Square-goers, I turned to see the scariest man I've ever seen standing right in front of me. 

He was a black man (I know I'm treading on thin ice because of my previous post, but I have to paint a picture, god dammit. Go fuck yourself.), and was clearly homeless due to the blue sweatsuit that was now shredded into ashy rags. His eyes were a shade of white indicating he was probably (if not already) going blind, and what was left of his irises looked in different directions. His head trembled and ever-so-slightly ticked to the side every few seconds. 

As we stood in a stand-off that I was clearly not ready for, I put down the suitcase I was holding. He slowly rose his index finger to my face and meticulously waved it from side to side, like Dikembe Mutombo

Satan - "No... No." 

I stared into his faded, vacant white eyes, waiting for him to say something. I thought he was going to hit me, which I prepared for, but he didn't. His body turned, with his eyes and head maintaining contact with mine as he slowly slithered away. 

I picked the suitcase back up and headed towards the door, engaged in a full-blown stare-down with this obviously possessed man. 

Then I asked what any common man would ask the devil. 

Doorman - "What the fuck are you staring at?" 

His arm stiffened as he pointed his elongated index finger at me.


As he turned away, Shitdick walked past him and they brushed shoulders. Him and I could pass for brothers, and seeing that we wear the same uniform and Satan was blind as a bat, he reacted as if I had teleported myself behind him. 

Satan jumped back with a gasp, then turned to run away, though not before sending the two Doormen a message: 


He took off down the street, bouncing off scaffolding poles and storefronts. 

After taking the mouth-breathers into the hotel without a tip, I returned to Shitdick, who provided me with an update: 

Shitdick - "The Mets are losing. Fucking Harvey was cruising then gave up three runs." 

Doorman - "Next year, buddy." 

And that's how New Yorkers react to run-ins with the devil. 

(Go fuck yourself.)