Concierge Corner: Prison Break

I was originally going to write a fabulous blog about aging in theatre and into your dream roles. Don’t worry because that blog is coming.  Really exciting stuff if I do say so myself. But then I got to work. And I started talking to people. And all the people were assholes. 

I’ve said before how stupid tourists can be. I’ve ranted and raved and sometimes you just have to do that. So here I go! It’s one of those weeks.

This week has been insanity at NYC hotels the island over.  Spring break is upon us. In NYC, that means the streets are crowded and tourists are out in full effect. Hotels are overbooked and tourists are actually utilizing me, the concierge!  Whoo-hoo!  It’s been a very slow winter so it’s about time!  I look forward to being used; it might even get me some sales. I welcome the business- let’s get you around the city.

I’ve explained before that concierges in NYC sell things- tours, tickets, transportation, etc.  We will help with everything else under the sun before we become a business center and you take total advantage of us.  99 times out of 100 I become somebody’s bitch- read THIS post of mine to get the gist. Today I was an information desk. I was a broken record. It is the nature of the beast. I am trapped in this prison of a hotel to show around the temporary inmates of our city. I have to just take deep breaths and remember that no one researches anything before they go on vacation, right? (Fucking wrong. Cari makes itineraries. I call bullshit. DEEP BREATH.)

Here are my three pet peeve, repetitive questions of the week.

1. The Statue of Liberty. Great, you want to see the “Liberty Stat” and go to Staten Island.  Quick info. For those who don’t know, it’s called the Statue of Liberty and it’s on Liberty Island, not Staten Island. The only boats that go there and Ellis Island are the Statue of Liberty ferries. The lines are fucking hella long and you can’t go to the Crown without a reservation. They are sold out through June. JUNE. There is a free boat that goes to Staten Island NOT the Statue of Liberty.  I tell people how to take the subway there and I even have written directions prepared for them in advance.  I do this all day. Don’t feel bad for me but just remember that this is something EVERYONE asks about and I know what I’m talking about. Listen to the concierge. Get there early. Expect to wait in long lines. Expect it to take up most of your day. If you don’t know your left from your right to get out of the hotel, take a taxi there or stay home.

2. TKTS. I don’t even know where to start. TKTS is a place to buy tickets for Broadway shows: same day discounted pricing for shows that don’t sell well AND full priced tickets to same day and future performances.  When a show doesn’t sell all that well, they discount tickets. Makes sense, right?  A store has too many leftover cantaloupes and you put them on special so they don’t get wasted. Same shit. Popular shows are not there. Lion King, Wicked, Book of Mormon, Aladdin, On the 20th Century, Fish in the Dark, anything with a star performer—- tickets for these shows will NEVER be at the TKTS booth! People cannot grasp this concept.  Everyone knows someone who got a ticket for negative dollars at this urban legend of a ticket booth.  You stand in line sometimes for hours and when you get to the front of the line, you can see the actual list of available shows.  Sometimes you get lucky and what you want is there but if it’s not you just wasted your whole damn day. PLUS they sell full priced too so it just confuses the people who already do not understand what is going on. Disclaimer: I have stood in line at TKTS twice; once was with a friend and the second was to shop it as an experience. The tickets you get at a concierge desk are pricier because we’re doing all the work for you and the price includes everything. I feel you, pennysavers, but leave the urban legends at home.  Ain’t nothing magical about TKTS and despite what the “interweb” said, there are no Mormons there, tickets or otherwise. (Actual convo. No exaggeration necessary.)

3. Taxi cost. Taxes in NYC are metered based on distance traveled and time accrued.  There is a flat rate to JFK but not to LGA and EWR.  Giving you an estimated price is very difficult because of traffic.  We also cannot call taxis in NYC.  If it ain’t yellow, it’s not a taxi. I say these simple statements all day long, at least 50 times.  You have to hail a cab; stick your arm in the air and wave. “You can’t call one?” Nope! I’m not being lazy- there is literally no one to call. Go find one of the 1000s of cabs around and pray for one to be available like the rest of us do.

 

These are three simple but popular things in NYC that I talk about all day.  If anyone knows the deal, it’s me.  Take my word and don’t fight me.  I don’t have any fight left. OKAY. I have expelled the bad energy.  I have let the crazy out into the world.  I have broken free of the prison walls. I have bid adieu to the toxic crap that these requests come with.

And breath out….

A side note. You know you have a great husband when he knows what a bad day you’ve had and you walk into your door to loveliness. Last night my pajamas were set out, candles were lit, Frank Sinatra was playing and one of my favorite meals was on the table.  We danced and smooched in our kitchen.  And I forgot about every single complaint I have about being a concierge because I got love. Hashtag blessed.

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