This week actually HAS been boring on the train. No crazy people. Nothing interesting to report. It seems that everyone is on their best behavior (Or they have figured out who I am and are being good around me so I don’t blog about them). So, I will revert to last week in New Orleans. It has nothing to do with the train but it was interesting to observe their society.
Tipping…everyone had their hand out in New Orleans. Everyone wanted a tip…for doing NOTHING or for doing unwanted things for us! Some homeless guy told me that he takes contributions for petting his homeless dog after I stupidly just pet his homeless dog sitting in the guy’s bicycle basket. Another homeless guy tried pedaling mardi gras beads. When I decline the beads he asks me if I’m racistIt was so awkward and of course when I told him that I wasn’t racist and that I simply didn’t want the beads he started yelling in his drunken stooper. I reached for my pepper spray in my purse before just walking away.
Another night on the way to dinner a woman in a chef’s apron, holding a 40 ounce beer in a paper bag approached my husband about his shoes. She looked like she was taking a break from a restaurant. “I bet I can tell you where you bought your shoes!” she says. My husband, thinking she was just on a break plays along. “Ya, where did I get my shoes?” she starts mumbling about how she isn’t going to say what brand they are but she can tell him what state he bought the shoes in. She kneels on the sidewalk next to his feet. He is wearing brown leather flip flops. She takes out an Axe spray bottle from her apron. The Axe label is missing and she has some sort of concoction in there. She starts spraying my husband’s feet. She starts telling us how she is legit because her kids are playing down the block or some sh*t. I look down at my husband’s sandals. She just sprayed the “thong” part of his sandal and it’s showing water marks now. I look at my husband and he rolls his eyes. It took her all of thirty seconds to complete this leather ruining- Axe-polish-shoe-shine. She stands up. “I want $5 and $5.” And holds her hand out. “I am pretty sure you ruined my shoes. How about $1 and $1?” my husband says (PS they are ruined). She rolls her eyes, grabs the money out of his hand, swigs her beer and stalks off.
After all that though, this tipping experience takes the cake! We go to a Jazz bar on Frenchman. I go in to the bathroom not realizing that there is an attendant. I go into the stall and since I am about 6 feet with my heels on and the stall door is short, I can see the attendant just standing there until I sit. Awkward! I hate that! Then I realize that all I have are 20’s. This girl wasn’t getting a 20 for squirting my hand with soap and handing me a paper towel. NO WAY! After I dry my hands I say to her “I’m going to make some change. I will be right back.” She looks at me confused and throws her hand out and points to her jar “Ma’am! You tip! I need a tip!” I look at her with my jaw dropped. What the heck? Didn’t I JUST tell her I was going to make change and be right back? Maybe she doesn’t speak English? I am also floored that someone can demand a tip! I repeat myself slowly as if maybe if I slow down my words she’ll get it “Maaaking Channnge. Be right baaaack.”
I run out of the bathroom and to my husband. “Give me a dollar! Please!” I demand. The music is loud. “What?” he screams. “GIVE ME A DOLLAR!” I cry. I look up and this woman has followed me. She is keeping her distance but is staring me down and giving me the crazy eyes with her arms folded. “Oh, you have an attendant in your bathroom too.” He says.
“Yes! Thanks for the warning.” I say back. Also, keep in mind that this place isn’t a classy place. It’s kind of a hipster dive so having an attendant in the bathroom seemed a little out of place. He reaches into his pocket and gets me a dollar. I look back at the attendant that is still staring me down but now she is tapping her foot. UNREAL!
I grab the dollar out of my husband’s hand ran over to her and hand it to her. She grabs the dollar out of my hand (PS I have now researched this, proper etiquette for tipping a bathroom attendant is $1). She turns around and storms off back to the bathroom. It was kinda early in the night and so I decided that I’d nurse my martini because I didn’t want to have to pee again in the presence of that b*tch where she could potentially cast some voodoo spell on me or something.
That night we were out late. The trolley wasn’t running anymore. It was a mile and a half back to the hotel. I walked that mile and a half as quickly as I possibly could because I had to pee…soooo bad but hey, having to pee versus getting a voodoo hex cast on you while you’re peeing. Which would you choose?
Later in the week we went to another bar that had attendants. Since my husband’s bladder is weaker than mine or maybe because I was sipping 1 cosmo per every 3 beers he had…either way, he peed first. He comes out of the bathroom and says “FYI, There is an attendant in there.” I didn’t have to go but I kept it in the back of my mind to request a dollar from him before I head to the ladies room. I still only had 20’s. I am the queen of swiping my credit card. (Points! Cha-Ching! Rack ‘em up!)
The band at this place was playing some 90’s old school stuff and some top 40’s too. The crowd was really into them. Toward the end of a song I scream over to my husband “I need a dollar so I can pee!” That my friend is when the music took a brief hiatus and the people around me stared at me…not in a voodoo hex kinda way. In a “that’s hilarious” kinda way. Ya know…we’re laughing with you! My husband dies laughing. “That’s one for the books! Who would have thought you’d ever say anything like that?” he says.
Yup, that was one for the books alright and I learned my lesson. Carry some damn ones. You never know when you’ll have to pee!