Thursday, February 10, 2011

Epistolary romances: a pre-Valentine’s story

James and I have been together over 20 years now. And during those decades, many minor but ongoing disagreements have come to the fore. The most frequently repeated is probably about career. James will be able to retire one day – a concept all but unheard of in the theater profession. When I bemoan my fate, he says, “But you’ve spent your life doing work you love.” To which I can only say: “Yes, but YOU have the option of retiring from your work when you feel like it!”

Other oft-iterated arguments: whether you should dust before you vacuum or after (I maintain it’s the latter), and whether hotel tips should be delivered at the end of a stay or doled out in miniature every day (the former, according to me).


But here at the Colorado New Play Summit, come to find out James was right all along about the tipping. This came to the fore because on my first day, I left a note in my hotel room alerting housekeeping that the TV wasn’t working, along with a small tip for the trouble. When I returned to my room that evening, the TV worked perfectly and on top of it was the note at right. Sweet!

The next day I left a thank you note with another tip, and came “home” – after trudging through 10 blocks of fallen snow while the white stuff continued to sift down from the heavens -- to a note that read: “Something for a cold day!” It sat atop a packet of instant hot chocolate mix. And then yesterday, another note expressing the hope that my stay in Denver was going well.

Today, I was just a little disappointed to get no note. But then I noticed a brown envelope on my desk, which turned out to contain a chocolate chip cookie. And in the fridge: two small cartons of milk, probably pilfered from the hotel larder. Sweet and sweeter.

Do you think I should try gradually increasing the size of the tips to see what happens? I think I should we (my interlocutor and I) should go for the gold, don’t you?

8 comments:

Susan Denning said...

I hardly ever dust. But shouldn't you dust BEFORE you vacuum so that all the stuff that falls to the floor after you dust gets vacuumed up? I guess this shows what a housewife I am, that this is what I"m responding to from your post!

k. crow said...

This story warmed my cold and stony heart. I think your tryst is best ended with a note to the management commending the service you received.

Also, "The best routine is to dust with a damp cloth before vacuuming. Using a damp cloth or furniture polish reduces the spread of airborne allergens by about 93 percent," says the literature bequeathed to me by my allergist.

Novelty Pens said...

I read it depends on the quality of your vacuum. If it filters the smallest microns you dust first, then vacuum. If it's not a high quality vacuum, vacuum first, then dust.

splattworks said...

I've always kind of thought of the "life in the arts" this way: I never get to retire as a writer...but I never have to retire as a writer. How good or bad this seems usually depends on how tired I am and how well the writing's going.

Mead said...

It's true you never retire from writing; the James likes to point out that I'll never "retire." However, my income depends on my wits -- such as they are -- so I have to hope I'll always have them.

col ceathair said...

20 years! Wow. 20 years.

Mead said...

Freaky, isn't it.......

Prince Gomolvilas said...

I want hotel staff to design a scavenger hunt for me!!!!!