I was in Los Angeles for the PDC this week. I started out in a great hotel - one of the best, in fact. I was in the InterContinental in Century City. Everything was beautiful. Marble bathrooms, incredibly plush beds, a little balcony overlooking Beverly Hills. Someone sneaking in your room and turning on classical music while you were out. Just lovely.
Alas, I needed to stay an extra night and then fly out early in the morning. On Wednesday, I moved to the Ramada Burbank. ("Latest in Meeting Rooms Facilities" barks their Web site.) The Ramada was not without its charms, but I soon noticed a few differences in the quality of the lodging.
By the time I staggered back from the dev community party at oh, 1:30 AM, these differences became acute:
1. Insufficient parking at the Ramada. However, they were pleased to offer six additional spaces across the street, next to the railroad sidings.
2. I needed to put a parking pass on my dashboard, even though there were no viable businesses within blocks.
3. The restaurant was named Whispers, a likely hat-tip to the many secret trysts taking place in the oversized, mildewy rooms.
4. My room keys didn't work at 1:30 AM. I had to go down to the front desk to get them reissued.
5. But the elevator on my side of the floor was "under refurbishment" so I had to walk all the way around.
6. Next to the front desk, there was a folding table set up with a cop sitting there on duty.
7. When I got my key and returned to my room, there was a woman sitting next to it, in a plastic chair, smoking. "Non-smoking" refers to inside the rooms only.
8. The toilet had stress fractures.
9. The couch had definite "naked fat guy" imprints on the cushions. Probably the same one who was responsible for the toilet.
10. The doors were made out of the hole-kickable wood paneling that I had in my room as a child. I was afraid that I'd be awakened by a steel toe at 4 AM.
11. When I woke up all too early for my morning flight, I went over to reattach my contact lenses. There were tiny ants crawling on the case.
On the other hand, I didn't have to endure the spectacle of a woman screaming out the front desk staffer like I did at the InterContinental. THAT was pretty gruesome. "HOW CAN YOU SAY YOU DON'T KNOW HER? HOW MANY PEOPLE WORK AT THIS HOTEL ANYWAY?" Followed by a long tirade as the clerk stood quietly. The screamer then turned and started announcing to everyone that she needed to see a manager. I tiptoed over to the staffer who'd been waiting on her and whispered not to worry, because the woman was going to be reincarnated as a diaper.