That time in Kentucky.
Yes, I needed a shower.
(you will understand later).
In the summer of 2011 I found myself in Cincinnati for a mid-project check-in with Paycor, a client I was working for while with Cynergy. This was the summer of the “heat-dome” and it was hot, muggy and downright awful out. Jeff (the Creative Strategist on the project) and I arrived at Paycor’s HQ a bit early so we hoofed it over to a Big Boy Restaurant
If you talk to Jeff he will inaccurately claims that the Big Boy was a block or so away.
He is wrong, it was miles away, up-hill with the sun in your face and burning your back. Both ways.
At the Big Boy, I made an idiotic mistake and ordered hot coffee and biscuits and gravy.
I need to fuel this beautiful body of mine, so coffee was a must. I admit… the biscuits and gravy were excessive.
Anyway, the Big Boy was sticky, their AC underpowered thus unable to deal with the heat-dome’s varsity effort to cook everything to death.
I sweated. (Jeff never sweats).
We walked back to Paycor’s HQ again. I was just gross. My blue shirt was two-toned blue now. Normal blue and sweaty blue.
Jeff kindly pointed out a restroom and that, maybe, I should "consider changing into a fresh shirt". (We still had oursuitcases with us). I took his advice. This was the best part of the trip. That couple minutes, shirtless in a fairly cool restroom at Paycor’s HQ was heavenly. I considered rolling around on the tile floor. Yeah… it was that hot.
Anyway, we met with Paycor people the whole day. Their boardroom was suffering the same fate as the Big Boy.
Hot. Muggy. Smelly.
It was disgusting. At some point James (our techical God) joined us and we crushed it.
At the end of the day our contact at Paycor took us to our hotel so we could toss our bags. I changed shirts so I wasn't disgusting at dinner.
For those not keeping count, by dinner I was on shirt number five for the day. Two dress shirts and two undershirts were destroyed and by the end of the night I would unleash hell on shirt number five. It was hot out people!
And I desperately needed a shower.
That night, I got back to my room and it was 87 degrees and humid with the AC turned all the way down. I decided I would take a shower in the morning. I stripped to my natural state and tried to get some sleep.
Now is when the bad things happen
Fast-forward to 4:00 AM. My room is dark and warm. The AC at the Radisson is suffering like all AC systems in the mid-west.
I am asleep.
I am totally owning this hotel bed with a move I like to call the starfish.
Suddenly I wake up.
I am itchy.
My head is itchy.
My back is itchy.
I wipe my hand over my head and a cockroach jumps off me. Another shoots down my back. It runs over my naked body and disappears.
Now I am all the way awake. I am freaking out a bit.
Snapping the light on, I see cockroaches on the walls, on the floor, in my bed. I try to wake up… this is clearly some weird, horrible dream.
The cockroaches are real. The smaller ones disappear under the bed. The bigger ones don’t. I am pretty sure one is smoking and asking me why I am not wearing pants.
I get out of the bed, and while my mind was racing, all I am thinking is “how am I gonna get a shower with the God Damn bugs everywhere?”
Well, I do… I shower. It's not fun. I am jammed in to the corner of the shower, cold water spraying me as I rush to get the funk of a five shirt day off me. And to be honest, I am trying to feel clean after being covered in bugs. It sorta works. I am "clean" enought.
I get dressed. I’m ready to leave.
I grab my bags and one big, fat cockroach flies out of my bag, bangs into my face and I let out the *manliest* shriek I can muster and stomp it to death.
The blow to the head makes me realize no one will ever believe that I was in the Radisson and my room was covered in cockroaches. So I take a picture, shoot some video. And then I run from the room.
In the lobby I dump my bags and scatter sweaty shirts and everything else on the floor. I am on a mission to kill anything that moves in my bags.
The woman behind the desk stares at me, so I tell her
“I woke up with cockroaches on my head”.
She asks if I want to check out.
“Yes” I mutter.
Do you want a bill?
I am wondering what the hell is wrong with this person. I get a cab and leave.
I text James and Jeff, warning them of the swarming bugs. When I talk to them a couple hours later I find out that James never heard the text.
Jeff did. But he decided to ignore it… says it reminded him of Jamaica. And went back to sleep.
Like I said, he never sweats.