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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Rothman's Guide To Hotel Etiquette. Part One.

My wife and I are in Chicago, staying at a hotel, and living out of suitcases.
This is a condition that will last for several weeks.
I will get into the whys and wherefores at a later date.
I have spent much time in my life in hotels, and thus, I feel eminently qualified to offer helpful hints on how to conduct yourself to maximize your pleasure when staying at such establishments.
First, when you make your reservations make sure they have precisely what you are looking for.
That way, there will be no unpleasant surprises once you arrive.
I have become somewhat handicapped within the last year.
I use a cane when I walk, or hobble.
I have practically become a full-time hobbler.
So I make sure I ask for a room near the elevator to cut down on the hobbling.
Thus, when I check in, there is no reason to even ask the clerk whether or not the room is near the elevator.
It would be unseemly and embarrassing to ask, only to be met with "Heck, you asked for it didn't you?".
No sense bestowing that kind of shame on either one of us.
So after my wife loads up several of those luggage carts that are strewn about in the lobby, (I can't help, I'm too busy hobbling. And it's mostly her stuff anyway. She over-packs.) we go up to the room on the elevator.
And trudge our way all the way down to the end of the hallway, as far away from the elevator as one can get, where our room awaits.
When this situation arises, and it often does, loud expletives are appropriate in the hallway.
The walls are pretty thick.
The other guests can't hear you anyway.
You get to the room, and the question arises: Do we want to stay here, or force them to move us to a room closer to the elevator?
As my wife would have to shoulder the move, I leave it to her to make the decision.
And she usually opts for staying in the room we were given.
She and I both know what this will lead to: My immediately getting on the phone with the Front Desk, and chewing that person out for assigning us this room, even though he or she was probably not given the memo.
They will usually ask "Would you like us to change your room?
I, knowing the answer before the question is asked, say "No. It's too inconveeeenient! We'll just have to make do!!"
This begs the question "Then why bother to make the call in the first place?"
Simply because it makes me feel better.
As I said going in, the idea is to maximize your pleasure.
One of the supreme pleasures is berating the help.
They are trained to keep smiles on their faces while being berated, which makes it even more fun.
Sometimes when you make the reservation, there are some things you just assume.
Like that there is free Wi-Fi.
Then, when you find out that there isn't, which has become a rarity, you have a GREAT reason to berate the help.
"Eleven bucks a day just for Wi-Fi? What's so special about your God-damned Wi-Fi that it's worth eleven bucks a day?
Hell, you can go to any Starbucks and get free Wi-Fi.
And they're making a fortune!
With rotten coffee!
How do you expect to keep up with that?
You can't!
Keep charging eleven bucks for Wi-Fi and this place will be out of business!
And you'll be out of a job!
And standing on breadlines!"
This is just one example of how you can handle the non-free Wi-Fi situation.
Next time, more pointers.
Meanwhile, I'll leave you with a song, with a nod to Rodgers and Hart:

"There's a small hotel
With a wishing well
I wish that we were there together
There's a bridal suite
One room bright and neat
Complete for us to share together

Looking through the window
You can see that distant steeple
Not a sign of people -- who wants people?......."


My books ,"Show Runner" and it's sequel, "Show Runner Two", can be found at the Amazon Kindle Store.
Along with the newer ones, "The Man Is Dead", and "Report Cards".
You can search by typing in my name, Cindy Williams, Laverne and Shirley, The Odd Couple, or Happy Days.
Check them out.
You don't need a Kindle machine to download them.
Just get the free app from Kindle, and they can be downloaded to an IPhone, IPad, or Blackberry.
The paperbacks, "Mark Rothman's Essays" and my new novel, "I'm Not Garbo" are not e-books.
But they are available for people without Kindle.
I have many readings and signings lined up for those, and the thing about Kindle is you can't sign one.
If you'd like one of the paperbacks, personally autographed, contact me at
And now, we've got my reading of my "Laverne and Shirley Movie" screenplay on YouTube, and my 4-hour interview at the Television Academy's Emmy TV Legends Website.
Here's the link:



  1. Your post reminds me that last year we stayed at the MGM Grand and went to the Pac 12 Basketball Tournament. I wear a pedometer to track my steps so I hit 10,000 a day. (Doctor's orders.) From our room to our seats in the Garden Arena was one-third of a mile. Indoors. Level surface, except for the elevator to the room and a few steps down in the arena to our seats.

    And you pass three Starbucks on the way, since the law is that Starbucks can only open a new location if it can be seen from a previous location. With the naked eye. With my naked eye. Doesn't have to be some 20 year Mohawk Indian's naked eye.

    At least in the Garden Arena MGM Grand provides wi-fi. I think it was included with all of the undisclosed up-charges. The Grand now charges, in addition to the room rate, tax, title, dealer prep, undercoating and a resort fee.

    I've berated the MGM for (a) not cleaning my room (per the supervisor, someone called in sick and MGM did not want to pay for a replacement so they did not finish the floor and were waiting for the next shift at midnight to start); (b) overcharging in a restaurant (prices were raised but they did not want to pay for new menus or to paint over the signs on the bar); (c) deciding to close Craft Steak House at 9:30 p.m., on a Friday night (what closes in Las Vegas?, I mean, other than the pools) and then opening it because Tom or Bruce or Cher or someone famous wanted a steak, and (d) closing the spa, gym, sauna and steamroon for a weekend for a convention (even though they charge $25 or so as a resort fee to use the, well, you guessed it, the spa, gym, sauna and steam room.) At least, I tell myself, if I'm at an event there I'm in the same building. Even if it is a third of a mile from room to arena.

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About Me

Hi. I am, according to my Wikipedia entry,(which I did not create) a noted television writer, playwright, screenwriter, and occasional actor. You can Google me or go to the IMDB to get my credits, and you can come here to get my opinions on things, which I'll try to express eloquently. Hopefully I'll succeed. You can also e-mail me at Perhaps my biggest claim to fame is being responsible, for about six months in 1975, while Head Writer for the "Happy Days" TV series, for Americans saying to each other "Sit on it."