Honey vs. Vinegar

21 Jun

The city of St. Louis is once again hosting a church convention.  You’d think the city would be full of kind, forgiving, caring people….

but you’d be wrong.

Oh sure, some of them are.  In fact when Mr. and Mrs. Cl\ck walked through the door, I was genuinely excited to see them.  Such a sweet couple, and I couldn’t wait to make sure they were comfortable and happy throughout their week long stay.

But the few that aren’t sweet, really AREN’T sweet.

Take Ms. Wi11iams for example.

Most of us knew who Ms. Wi11iams was before she even arrived.  We’d had the pleasure of speaking with her over the phone multiple times. Each time we’d been brow-beaten and intimidated into doing whatever she wanted.

And each time, it wasn’t enough.

Her reservation was flagged multiple times so any desk agent who spoke with her would have a heads-up on what she was like.  Not that it gave us much ammunition.

When she arrived, she walked up to our most veteran desk agent, and proclaimed, “By the end of this, you are going to hate me.”  Then proceeded to check in her rooms.

This is a christian lady, coming into the city for a christian convention, and she has done nothing but make us want to hate her.

WHY?  Honestly.  I don’t get it.

At our hotel, we bend over backwards to make sure everyone is happy with our service, and we’ve been trying to do that for her.

But she continues to berate us, and let us know how unhappy she is.   And she tells us often she already has her letter ready to go to the corporate office.

What does she WANT?  We could comp every one of her rooms for the entire week and she STILL wouldn’t be satisfied.

Last night, in the midst of all the chaos of which I won’t go into right now, she called me over by name.  I hadn’t had the privelege of speaking with her in person yet, but she knew ME.

As I walked up to her, she said, “I hope I never hear those words again.”


“Oh?”  I replied very concerned-like.  “Which words?”

She mentioned our hotel’s name, but then changed the subject quickly.  We spoke about the Cardinal’s baseball team, and we talked about which pizza places deliver, and other odd topics.

I did my best to stay positive, and happy, showing the right amount of concern that she was happy with her stay.

I let her voice her complaints again, and expressed to her that she should talk with our GM.  I reminded her that we want to be sure she’s satisfied, and I asked that she give us the chance to make things right by her.

That’s what came out of my mouth, anyway.  What I was thinking was – we’re going to do whatever we can to get through this week, and next year, you won’t be invited back to the hotel.  We don’t need YOU.  There are plenty of guests who appreciate what we do, and we would rather bend over backwards to help them.

As we finished our conversation, she actually told me I was very pleasant.

A compliment?  I was honored.  NOT.

I thanked her, and let her know that I would be off on Thursday but that I would look forward to seeing her again on Friday.

All a  lie of course, but my motto has always been:

My motto

Her motto?

her motto


Posted by on June 21, 2013 in The Hotel


Tags: , ,

13 responses to “Honey vs. Vinegar

  1. territerri

    June 21, 2013 at 2:13 am

    Blech! I don’t like Ms. Wi11iams! What she needs is a good kick in the a$$. Or maybe a thump over the head with a nice big bible. I hate people like that. People like that are one of the reasons I don’t go to church anymore.

    • shadowrun300

      June 21, 2013 at 11:22 am

      I haven’t been to church in a long time either. I blame it on my work schedule, but really, the reason I don’t go, is quite a few of the people who attend don’t act like church-going citizens outside of church.
      How Ms. Wi11iams can treat us the way she is, and then go attend a church service is beyond me.

  2. agg79

    June 21, 2013 at 2:23 am

    I am always impressed by your stamina, tact and patience. I don’t think that even JC himself would have found her a nice person to deal with. I always admired your skill and patience in dealing with the traveling public. I should know, I am one of them. We can be such a$$holes at times. I’ve seen a few instances where people get all sideways over their accommodations for something trivial that I get embarrassed. Whenever I travel, I consider it a privilege/adventure and try not to be an a-hole, even if it is obvious that the hotel or restaurant doesn’t really care. Oh, sure, I will complain if they are not even trying, but I try not to be a real PITA. If I were dealing with Ms Wi11iams, I would have said or done something totally inappropriate, but it would have been biblical. Always felt you have way more class than I.

    • shadowrun300

      June 21, 2013 at 11:30 am

      Such kind words! Thank you! I’ll agree, I’m patient while in front of the guest, but most importantly, I try to be understanding and compassionate. People like you, who travel frequently, deserve the comforts of home and an easy, stress-free experience. I strive to make that happen. And if their experience is less than expected. I WANT to know, and I view it as a challenge to make things right. I usually have pretty good results, so it’s extremely rewarding.
      But if you’re an a-hole, or a b*tch, I’ll act the same way in front of you, but behind the scenes, I’m writing a blog about how mean you are. 😉

      • agg79

        June 22, 2013 at 1:43 am

        You are better person than I. If I would have run up against Ms Wi11iams, If I didn’t have the heuvos to tell them off. I would have probably done something vindictive. Say a 3:00 am wake up call? Or perhaps have maintenance crew mess with their temperature setting at night. Or perhaps you could have the cleaning crew set out a Bible with a particular passage open (Matthew 7:12) I know, that’s not the “mature” way to treat a customer and it won’t score you any points with management but I am that kind of person and some people just deserve to be messed with. I hope that her visit is a brief and painless one (but I doubt it). Keep smiling and posting about her.

      • shadowrun300

        June 22, 2013 at 2:12 am

        I know I’m not better than you. I just don’t have the heuvos you do, and I generally don’t like confrontation.
        But dang, that 3am wake up call would have been a great idea!
        I will definitely keep smiling. I like what I do, and luckily there are only a handful of Ms. Wi11iams’s out there. I had the pleasure of being able to say goodbye to Mr. and Mrs. Cl\ck today, who stopped by often this week to chat with me. They showed their appreciation by giving me a nice tip and writing a complimentary letter to my GM.
        Ms. Wi11iams who?

  3. Rock Chef

    June 21, 2013 at 10:44 am

    Maybe you should send a couple of male strippers to her room – might do her good!

    Alternatively, leave her a note asking if she has ever actually read any of The Bible. Or skip that and just leave a note saying something like “You gonna burn in Hell, bitch!” 🙂

    • shadowrun300

      June 21, 2013 at 11:31 am

      Two VERY good ideas! I wish I had the guts to do it.

  4. Abby

    June 21, 2013 at 3:29 pm

    It’s the honest to GOD truth that people like Ms. Wi11iams are the reason we no longer attend church. I’m sure He’s got a special place waiting for YOU, however.

    I remember once, back in my hotel days, we had a whiny customer. We tried everything to placate him, but he just enjoyed complaining. He asked to speak to a manager. My coworker said, “He broke his leg, we had to shoot him”. That was the only thing that shut the guy up.

    • shadowrun300

      June 22, 2013 at 2:02 am

      Good people and church-goers don’t necessarily go hand in hand. I’d like to think He has a special place for me. I’m pretty nice. at times. 😉
      What a great response from your co-worker! I’ll have to remember that.

  5. lottajoy

    June 23, 2013 at 4:45 am

    Hey, you copped out! I wanted a list of her complaints!!

    • shadowrun300

      June 23, 2013 at 10:35 am

      You would! 🙂
      But that’s just it. She really didn’t have complaints – she was just mean and controlling and seemed to make things up to be upset about. We did make a mistake (gasp), but it was easily fixed and we comped one of her nights for the inconvenience (it was a billing error and wouldn’t have been an inconvenience to most people.). I think she was most angry that we weren’t able to get all 12 of her rooms on the same floor. Secretly, I think the people she was with were happy they weren’t on the same floor as her. In fact, a few of them apologized to us for her deMEANor, and were embarrassed their group was being represented in such a negative light.
      She’s gone now. All is good again.

  6. meleah rebeccah

    June 24, 2013 at 4:44 pm

    Oy vey. She sounds like a complete nightmare. And if she’s so unhappy staying at your hotel – why does she keep coming back?


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