Yesterday, at about 4 p.m., our front gal gave me the phone saying that the Caller ID showed that it was from a local hotel, but that she couldn’t understand the guy on the other end; his accent was too thick, and she was getting flustered. I grabbed the phone…
Me: “Hi there, how can I help you?
Guy: “Allo. You will delibber fruhdee peetsah?”
Me: “Ummm, I’m sorry, I don’t understand. You are looking for delivery?”
Guy: “Yes, da free pizza dat the girl who delivers brings.”
Sometimes I take complimentary breadsticks or desserts or occasionally even a pizza (if it’s made incorrectly just prior to a regular delivery – why toss it? SHARE it!) to the front desk of a hotel/motel. My intent is that by surprising the front desk clerks with free food, they’ll promote our business and drive more traffic our way (which is needed, as we’re a mile outside of downtown).
So recently, the manager of a local hotel/motel questioned me as I dropped of a complimentary pie to the front desk gal standing next to him, asking why it was free. It took me awhile to converse with him, as he had a very thick Indian accent. I explained that I brought by free goodies every once in awhile as a Thank You for advertising our business. The front desk clerk stepped behind him, shaking her head NO NO NO surreptitiously while I said this, which made me wonder…
that’s why I had just had the phone call from him. Dude wanted a free pizza. Delivered. For Free.
He kept asking for the “Free Pizza The Girl Said We Get” and I explained that it was ME that he spoke to previously, and that NO, we don’t just bring a free pizza to you just because you work at a hotel. I said that when we get a bunch of deliveries at your place, we’ll hook you up, ya dig? But no, you can’t just call and order a free pizza to be delivered just because you’re hungry. If we have a mistake pie that’s made just before we deliver to your hotel, we’ll probably bring it for your front desk. Or if we get a ton of business from your hotel, we’ll hook up your front desk with food.
“Oh,” he replied. “Okay. I understand. We bring you business, you bring us pizza. Or you make mistake and we get frudee peetsah.”
🙂 Yes. You understand.
Or so I thought.
Two hours later, our front gal comes back to the kitchen and says, “That was weird. That Indian guy called back from ********** and ordered a pizza. Same guy, too, and the same phone number… except he gave a room number. Doesn’t he work at the front desk?”
Actually, yes, he lives there, without a room number. His living space is behind the front desk, so yes, this is strange. However, yes, he never eats a pizza with meat, but this was a Tree Hugger pie (our vegetarian Specialty pizza) so it made sense that he ordered that particular pie. Knowing that he gave a room number, though, put me on-guard, and I was sure to have all of my personal security measures in place prior to taking the delivery.
Upon entering the lobby of the ******, the front desk gal said “What, no goodies today?” I smiled and kept walking towards the rooms of the hotel. Room 113. I ran half-way down the hallway and stood between 111 and 114, and couldn’t find 113.
I jogged back to the front desk and asked where room 113 was. She stared at her desk, with a guilty look, and starting thumbing through some papers on the desk in front of her.
“Ummmm,” she said, fingering through paperwork, “I don’t think we have a room 113.”
I honestly knew that was coming.
“So, the Indian guy that lives here, does he live in room 113?” I asked.
“No,” she replied. “We don’t have a room 113.”
I asked if there were any Indian guys on the premises that she knew of, and if so, could I speak to them (knowing full well that the guy lives in a room just behind the front desk). She knocked on his door, and he opened it but wouldn’t come out into view, standing directly behind the partition.
She asked “Did you order pizza from Paizano’s?” and looked back at me with an uncomfortable smile.
“No,” he replied from outside of my view. The front desk gal shifted back and forth glancing at me and back at him.
She repeated his reply and added, “He said he didn’t, and you know, he doesn’t even eat pizza.”
I turned around and walked out…. and yet, instead of getting back into my minivan, I turned the corner on the sidewalk and walked a few more steps to the front door of the room that the dude who was denying his delivery lived in.
His front door was wide open, and as he raced to meet me there, I saw another guy sitting at a table in his room, chowing down on a Domino’s pizza. WTF?
I locked eyes with the guy and shook my head. He kept clamoring that I had the wrong guy, he didn’t order no peetsah, and had never called us before.
“You called me,” I said, “and asked for a free pizza. I said no. So you called back and ordered a pizza to be delivered to room 113, which doesn’t exist, which you, of course, know. I just don’t understand why you’re lying to me. I have to pay for that pizza, you know. It wasn’t free.”
I turned around and walked back to the delivery van, and he followed me, although he was staggering a bit. I didn’t notice this before, thinking that his accent was what was so confusing to me. He approached the minivan as I was locking my seatbelt, so I opened the door and got out.
He continued mumbling about how he didn’t order a pizza, doesn’t eat pizza, no one in his family likes pizza…. and I realized that he was either psychotic or drunk.
I shook my head and said, “Whatever man, I’m outta here. I’m not going to be late on my next delivery just because I had to listen to your sh*t.”
When I got back to the restaurant, I called Domino’s. Sure enough, they send out free pizzas when the front desk of this hotel calls for an order, and yes, they had sent one out tonight. For every 10 orders they get, they allow a free food order to be delivered.
The free delivery trumped our paid delivery, so he was just going to straight-up lie to me either way.
Tonight, I had a delivery order for this same hotel. I called back to verify that they were in the room… just in case. When I showed up for the delivery, I noticed that all of our menus and rack-stand cards were gone. Hmm.
The front desk gal cornered me outside and told me that the manager had thrown out all of our menus, and asked what had happened. I gave her the 30-second run-down, and she cursed about the manager.
I asked her if he was just straight-up crazy, and she said no, not when he’s sober… although that’s not very often. She asked me to call the owner and explain what had happened. I don’t know if I have the time or energy to put into it. It seems so much easier to just write off this particular hotel.
Two other hotels in the area wouldn’t allow us to put our menus/rack-stand cards in their lobby areas – both citing that they have restaurants on their premises and questioning why they would want to steer their guests to another restaurant. Ummmm, because they aren’t visiting Baker hoping to stay within your property lines for their entire visit….. and eating at your diner or “fine-dining” restaurant isn’t going to cut it for breakfast/lunch/AND dinner.
Whatever. I used to suck up to this kind of crap, nodding vehemently while someone explained their half-assed reasonings. I’ve since learned to walk away before they get to the period in their sentence. My time is more valuable than listening to the intriguing sound of smoke being blown up my tight parts.