The following is an account I submitted to Pajiba for one of their Afternoon Comment Diversions about the Worst Job Ever. Since Layman Pong has demanded a story (and I don’t have anything to rant about this week), I present my worst job.
I’ve actually liked most of my jobs. Most of the time, anyway.
Once upon a time, I was employed by a certain prominent hotel chain as a security guard/bouncer. At that time, this hotel was host to an annual- and very large- science fiction convention. This shouldn’t have been a problem: I was a fan, I got to meet a lot of authors and artists (including Phil and Kaja Foglio- woot!), and I bought some neat stuff. The Con staff did a fairly decent job of keeping things organized- provided one has a very broad definition of organization.
The biggest problem was usually some of the fans.
A brief digression is in order. The hotel permitted the general anarchy caused by the Con because the attendees filled the entire hotel (including the $2500/night “Presidential Suite” and the $1500/night “Governor’s Suite“) for five solid days … and booked a year in advance. Imagine Spring Break … confined in one 25-floor hotel … populated by every nerd, fanboy, cosplayer, and geek within a thousand miles.
Basic rooms (single occupancy) went for $100 a night. Many people would rent the rooms, then sublet them for $50 a head ($200 for the bed) every night and make out like bandits. Some of the rooms were literally carpeted with sleeping nerds.
This was strictly against hotel (and Fire Department) regulations, of course, so I spent a lot of time evicting people when we had proof of what was going on. This was made difficult by the fact that there were lots of activities and parties going on in various rooms, and it’s hard to distinguish the remnants of a good party from a room-farming operation.
As a result of the population density, the hotel had chronic water shortage problems during the Con (this ended up being the reason the hotel finally kicked them out). Add water shortages to crowded rooms to summer temperatures to nerds (many of whom thought bathing was optional anyway) in costumes, and some of the rooms smelled like stockyards covered in skunk shit and whale vomit … and- frequently- real vomit.
Now add in the fact that many nerds only get laid once a year … at the Con. Basement dwelling Morlocks would emerge every April to mate, essentially. There was a lot of sex at the Con. Since there was no space in most of the rooms for any sort of boinking activity, the nerds and/or nerdettes ended up using whatever horizontal surfaces happened to be relatively unoccupied and not directly in public view. This led to places like laundry rooms, public restrooms, elevators, and stairwells smelling like the rest of the hotel- with the nauseating, musky aroma of nerds in rut thrown in for good measure.
It was in this funky atmosphere of general bedlam that we come to the star of this little drama. One morning, I got a sort-of-panicky call from the hotel cafe (as opposed to the four-star restaurant on the top floor) about a guest creating a disturbance. I bobbed and weaved my way through the tide of early-rising Klingons, Imperial Storm Troopers, Daleks, Vulcans, and hordes of creatures and/or characters that would take too long to describe. When I got to the cafe, I immediately discovered the problem. There was a … woman … there. She was hard to miss, being significantly larger in two dimensions than I, but somewhat shorter. If you’re familiar with Robert Asprin’s Myth Adventures series, think of Maasha without the orange hair and only about 5 feet tall.
She was wearing an apparently home-made “costume” which resembled mosquito netting … and nothing else. At the time, I held the belief that all women are beautiful, but this woman made me seriously reconsider this philosophy. Pendulous breasts, a jungle of riotous pubic hair, and an ass that resembled a couple of full-size hogs tied up in canvas bags full of cottage cheese were all clearly visible. Her face was no better- think of Miss Piggy with dark hair and painted-on eyebrows.
No one was enjoying the view.
As bad as her appearance was, her attitude was worse. Calling her a shrew is an offense to vicious little rodents. She was drunk and/or stoned, combative, and as reasonable as a rabid wolverine with a toothache. And she stank. She refused any suggestion to change her attire. It was only after I had called the police for assistance (no way in Hell was I about to try to evict this creature all by my lonesome) that she made any attempt to cover herself- she grabbed three cocktail napkins and stuffed them each under her mosquito netting until they covered her nipples and pubic hair.
This was still not acceptable attire for anywhere- least of all a dining facility. She expressed her displeasure at great length and with many profanities, not stopping even after the police repeated the instructions to cover up or leave. This porcine creature made several pointed references to “pigs”, which she thought was amusing. The police were less than amused, and escorted the woman out of the hotel (she was not a guest- just a Con attendee) in handcuffs. She was issued a summons for public indecency and released to her vehicle after being told not to return to the hotel. Ever.
Not an auspicous start to the day for anyone involved.
Currrent status: Appalled
Current music: 5th Symphony by Beethoven