The Diary of a Nobody/September 1

Meet Sparrow, an average man passing an average life…

Sunday, September 1
I got off pretty easy tonight…What with a sold-out weekend and end of the month to do, it could have been a madhouse – full-tilt boogie until 0700, which goes against everything I stand, er sit, for – but there were very few calls or walkins demanding rooms and guests seemed content to sleep and not bother yours truly for towels and such. 

The end-of-month process isn’t particularly difficult, but I don’t do it all the time so it takes 15-20 minutes to get back into the swing of things…The first thing you do is settle the house accounts…First, you copy the account then make a new one for the coming month, then you adjust off the balance so there is a zero balance, then you check the account out and print the folio…Later, you’ll check-in the new account and then, among other things, make a new revenue spreadsheet for the next month and print out the account receivables, which isn’t as hard as it is time-consuming. 

As sometimes happens, one guy wasn’t pleased I didn’t have a room for him…He was traveling with his son and his initial reaction was shock that a hotel was sold out on a holiday weekend…I’d like to say I was sorry he and his boy are homeless for the night, but I’m really not…Plan ahead…Things like reservations work wonders…Then you have a room for the night…On the other hand, the kid will – if pop has a good attitude, which he doesn’t – probably look back fondly on camping out in the car with his old man that one Labor Day weekend. 

The only real problem with end-of-the-month, as usual, was assembling the goddamned box to put the month’s registration cards in…The top I can usually figure out without drawing blood, but the box itself, good gravy, it makes me feel like an oaf…The instructions, at first, appear to be easy enuff but actually following them is another matter and I could probably assemble it quicker if I closed my eyes and put on mittens…I am generally able to get Side A folded over, but B and D always end up getting folded in directions not originally specified.

Brandon said the guy I put in 265 last night had nice things to say about yours truly…Recall his reservation at the new place down the highway was lost and he needed a place for his wife and three kids and I ended up putting him in a suite that had a bed, a pullout couch and the rollaway I brought by…Brandon said the guy said “that Sparrow guy went out of his way…Really taking care of us…” which is really nice to hear, altho I should add it wasn’t above and beyond or anything like that…It was, in fact, the service I would expect to receive in that circumstance. 

This is what I am obliged to deal with sometimes: a guy barking at me from the front desk, declining to ring the bell, while I’m in the back and he is standing directly in front of the sign and the bell!!!…I am not making that up…I go out there and there he was, standing right there…He wants me to email me stuff and print it out for him and, of course, I say sure and he asks for some paper to write my email address on…I wanted to smack him because there’s some paper stacked right next to the bell…Fortunately, he was holding a pen, tho I’m surprised he didn’t ask for one, too. 

We sent Bob H off to whatever comes after our existence this afternoon…It was a gorgeous day – it’s still hot – and I put on my Legion shirt and black pants and district commander’s cap and when I got to the park across from the Legion hut Commander John, of our small town post, immediately put me to work…He said he needed someone to round out the flag detail that would lower, fold and then deliver the flag to Bob’s widow…Of course…My job was easy: stand across from Larry while he lowered the flag, hold the halyard while Larry removed the flag and not get in the way while Larry and Commander John folded the flag…Rather than stand there with my thumb up my nose, I actually looked useful standing in the middle and keeping the flag taut while John folded the stripes…There was some modest hilarity when ol’ Sparrow forgot to move, and Commander John stopped so he wouldn’t fold the flag over my hand…It was a short, simple ceremony that, in addition to the flag detail,  featured a color guard and a rifle salute, and Christine – married to Charlie, who used to own the now-closed diner – played taps while Larry lowered the flag.

On the memorial table inside there was a pic of Bob in his Army uniform and boy, he bore a striking resemblance to Joe Friday or, rather, Jack Webb, the actor that played Joe Friday…There were also certificates for the Bronze Star (meritorious achievement in combat) and Purple Heart (wounded in battle) he was entitled to wear. 

Sparrow’s Sleep Log:
0930 Sunday until 1200 Sunday
1630 Sunday until 2130 Sunday 

7.5 hours total, a pretty good start to the week…The staggered sleep periods, however, meant Sunday Spaghetti Nite (SSN) didn’t go off because I was sleeping…SSN will be celebrated Monday night.  

The Diary of a Nobody is a novel. All elements are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Anything else is a coincidence. 

It was inspired by the 19th century British novel of the same name. 

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