Monday, October 31, 2011

Return to San Diego, part 2

Our hotel had this thing near the light switch. I have no idea what it was. I tested it a few times, and determined that it wasn't a motion detector or light sensor. I asked everyone at the front desk, the maid, and the maintenance guy. None of them knew what it was, either.

After various family things Craig wanted to go to Sea World.

We were in line for the Sea Lion Halloween show. We actually got there first, followed closely by a deranged woman and her tribe. She immediately accosted the poor teenager standing at the entrance to ask what time we'd be allowed in. The girl said "about 15 minutes."

So, exactly 15 minutes later the woman wanted to argue about it.

Deranged woman: "Why haven't you let us in?"

Teenage girl: "Gates open at 2. It's 1:56, ma'am."

Deranged woman: "Well, at 1:41 you said 'about 15 minutes.' It's been that. I demand you let us in."

Teenage girl: "Sorry, but it has to be at 2:00. My boss will tell me."

Deranged Woman: "This is ridiculous. I demand you refund my park admission RIGHT NOW!"

Teenage Girl: "You'll have to discuss that with the office by the front gate, ma'am."

Deranged Woman turned away to mumble under her breath for about 30 seconds. During that time a park employee came over with an older couple. Both were using walkers, and he clearly had Parkinson's disease. Teenage Girl put them at the front of the line.

Deranged Woman: "What are you doing?"

Teenage Girl: "These people are handicapped, ma'am. Therefore we allow them in early to give them extra time to find seats."

Deranged Woman: "That is grossly unfair! I demand you make them go to the back of the line (which by now was the size of the Queen Mary)."

Teenage Girl: "Sorry ma'am. Our policy is to assist those with disabilities."

Deranged Woman: "That is discrimination against the healthy. When I go for my refund, I'm going to report you."

At this point Deranged Woman noticed my Grumpyville Faceplants cap.

Deranged Woman: "Oh! Grumpyville. My sister lives in Grumpyville. She's a surgeon. Do you know her? Are you a doctor?""

Dr. Grumpy: "I clean fish tanks." (this is true)

She turned away and pretended I was invisible. Obviously aquatic habitat maintenance people were beneath her caste.

Mercifully, Teenage Girl let us in at this point. While we were waiting the guy doing the pre-show, Biff, sprayed Deranged Woman with a squirt gun, and she dragged her kids out of the theater. Apparently she'd had enough.

Over at the Pets Rule show Craig noticed me staring at a fire extinguisher, and asked why. In a true sign of how bad a neurology geek I've become, I realized I was staring at the "In case of emergency break glass" hammer and thinking what a great reflex hammer it would make.

Craig was hungry, and I got him some chicken fingers (which should be dipped in gold for what they charge). I lost my appetite when I looked at the table across from us.

You'd think they could keep the crack dealers out of the park.

After Sea World we went down the street to Belmont Park, a small amusement park by the beach.

Craig loved the place, because he could run amok without interference from his siblings. They have a cool, older, roller coaster there, The Giant Dipper (he called it "Giant Diaper) which he dragged me on 14 times. By the end of the day I thought I'd need a giant diaper myself.

They also have a ride that sends you up in the air and flips you around. I personally DID NOT find it reassuring that they have a large ladder attached to the fence surrounding it.

While we were waiting at the "Beach Blaster" line a homeless guy (wearing nothing but sneakers and spandex shorts) came over, and tried to earn some change by singing the 1980's Kim Wilde song "Kids In America." Unfortunately for him, the 80's were 21 years ago, he had no singing voice, and he only knew the chorus. So he repeatedly belted out:

"We're the kids in America! Wa-ho!
We're the kids in America! Wa-ho!
We're the kids in America! Wa-ho!
We're the kids in America! Wa-ho!
We're the kids in America! Wa-ho!"

Until finally security led him away.

They had some prize games on the midway, where, as usual, you could win stuffed animals. I'd hate to win one of the whales. They were doing a chain hump, and I didn't want to interrupt them.

On the way back to the hotel I stopped for some artisanal Mexican food at Taco Bell, and we sat in the lobby to eat it. While Craig watched TV, I downloaded a few EEG's to my computer to read them. Behind me the front desk phone rang, and I heard the polite clerk have this remarkable discussion.

"Front desk, this is Mike, can I help you? No sir, sorry. We don't have safes in the rooms. We have safety deposit boxes at the front desk, and you can use them at no charge. Just bring down your valuables and... No, there's no way I can move one up to your room, sir. They're built into a concrete wall for security. Um, well, uh, I really have no idea what local companies install safes, especially at 9:15 on a Saturday night. But it's a hotel room, sir. You can't just have someone come up there and install a safe in the wall. Because it's against hotel policy. I am the night manager, sir. I'll be happy to lock up your valuables down here, but there's no way you can install a safe in your room. Okay, sir. Have a good night."

I was impressed. Mary couldn't have done it any better.


King J's Queen said...

That looks like an occupancy sensor. They put them in hotel rooms to determine when nobody is there and it stops the heat/ac from running.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, it's a movement sensor to activate $THINGS when there is movement in the room. Quite common in Germany, not so in the States I guess?

Matt M said...

What if Craig had one of those little squirt guns, the type you hide in your palm. Do you think he could win a prize for hitting that little crack in one try out of three?

Packer said...

I don't think the lady sitting across from you (the one you made the smart ass crack about) would appreciate being the butt of your joke, she just wanted to hang out without airing any problems.

Yay a 4 punster.

Sarah Glenn said...

I'm worried about the clarification by King J's Queen. I move as little as possible once I'm back in the room. Does this mean I'll freeze/swelter to death?


jimbo26 said...

No underwear ? ( At least no brown streaks ) .

Li'l Azathoth said...

Boy, those "A Whole Bunch of Washed-Up One-Hit Wonders of the 80s Together on One Bill" tours are just getting more and more downscale, aren't they?

Anonymous said...

Maybe that guy with the valuables in your hotel could get that woman from the photo to come up to his room.

Anonymous said...

looking for a safe place to hide his drugs?

ronstew said...

If Front Desk Guy is young enough, he and Teenage Girl could get together and supply San Diego with several customer-service marvels.

Best laugh was the reflex hammer evaluation.

Loren Pechtel said...

"Crack dealer"?? Are you saying she's a prostitute? Where would she find customers? <G>

Anonymous said...

Not sure about the msytery object being an occupancy sensor, I think they would be up high for better view and would not need to be as large.

Especially if it is near the door I would guess it is an emergency lighting system.

If so a bit concerning that nobody knew what it was...

Mockingbird said...

Did Craig's Hair survive all the splashing at Sea World.
Oh, you mispeld "artisanal".

C said...

if you Google images of "occupancy sensor" there is one that looks just like that. I think that it just turns the lights off... makes sense that it is right there by the light switch.

Bob@thenest said...

I guarantee you that DW you observed at Sea World was not the only one in the park that day. When I worked at Walt Disney World there were many like her and I refuse to believe we had more here that you have out there.

The scary part is the fact that those children are learning public behavior from her and will back in the park on their own at a later date.

We had a mother-20-ish-daugher act that came every year and pulled the same crap AND got away with it because they were "guests." Managers knew them by name.

SuFu PhD said...

whale chain hump... brilliant.

that just made my night!

arzt4empfaenger said...

I think hotel staff - especially night shift - take a lot of abuse, same for amusement park staff. Maybe, if you ever need additional staff, ask for who has previously (successfully) jobbed in a hotel establishment. ;-)

The sad thing is that raging people like deranged woman often get something for free just because they're being obnoxious for a long time. We need more zero-bullshit-managers (doctors/nurses...) out there.

The hammer thing amused me a lot!

Leslie said...

I want to know if you were able to figure out who DW's sister is by the way she was acting. (No idea how big Grumpyville is. Maybe it's too big to have any idea of who the other docs are.)

Just a little snarky said...

Occupancy sensor? What happens when I sit quietly and read my Kindle? Does everything turn off?

Anonymous said...

@Bulrush - yes, if you sit quietly the lights will eventually go out. Used to happen to me in my office when I would be reading lengthy (and oh, so boring) legal documents. I'd have to wave my arms around a bit to get the lights to turn back on.

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