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This Holiday Inn used to be a Radisson

July 13th, 2010 · 122 Comments · Potpourri, Stories

This hotel is in the final stages of renovation after being purchased from Radisson. The marquee on the side of the building just below the roof looks as if it has been there for years, but I know based on the SSID of the Wireless LAN (and the gregarious installer who warned me that he would be shutting it down for 24 hours on Thursday to finish the transition and whatever technology upgrades the new management squeezed their couch-cushions to pay for) that only a few weeks ago it read “Radisson” instead of “Holiday Inn.”

Which hotel is better? The Radisson, or the Holiday Inn?

Which one has better filters on its building-wide plumbing? Better filters on the plumbing for its ice machines? Is any of the water in this building filtered at all? If so, what exactly is filtered out, and when did they last replace the charcoal through which the water is filtered?

Why and how the hell is charcoal, that nasty black shit you burn to cook your pounds and pounds of dubiously-packaged meat products at your family reunion, used to filter out other nasty black shit from water intended for ingestion by intelligent human beings?

How old is whatever plumbing that lies between whatever filters may or may not exist here and the faucet in the bathroom (where you defecate) that is the only place I can currently acquire the most important substance on this planet without either paying an ATM fee to get 20 dollars I’ll need to break at the front desk in order to use the vending machine or getting in my car and driving to a convenience store to buy a bottle of stuff from the same local supply as said faucet?

Would it be safer to just fill my ice bucket from the machine and let it melt, or forget the ice and just choke down the room-temperature tap?

The bottom line is that I’m not a pansy and I drink tap water. But I like it cold. And the ice that came out of that ice maker on the third floor of the Midtown Austin Holiday Inn (Please pardon our mess, we’re making our hotel even more awesome so that you’ll press “9” when you get that automated telephone survey call asking you how awesome was your stay at the Midtown Austin Radisson, er, Holiday Inn.) has pepper flakes all up in every 4th cube.

At least I’m telling myself they are pepper flakes. If I weren’t still on antibiotics for a recent strep throat infection, I might be less inclined to buy into that assumption.

I’m tired, I’m thirsty, and I’m about to use the wall-mounted hair-dryer to fix myself a nice, delicious glass of life-enabling beverage.

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