Sunday I took some visiting friends to Todd English’s new P.U.B. at CityCenter. It’s a casual place, as you would expect a pub to be, but it’s on the Strip in the city’s most luxe property, so the prices are a tick more than what you’d expect at a typical pub. But it’s a pub, nonetheless, with a vast selection of beer and a carnivorous menu to complement.
So, imagine my surprise when my girlfriend and I ventured to the restroom and discovered an attendant. A male attendant. The restrooms at the P.U.B. have separate toilet areas, but a common sink area, so no, this male attendant wasn’t technically in the women’s restroom…but in a way he kind of was.
I’m going on the record right now: I HATE restroom attendants. I hate them because their services are never optional–as soon as you emerge from a stall, they hunt you down to squirt you with soap and then you can practically feel their breath on the back of your neck as they wait to hand you a towel. They stare mercilessly if you take a moment to primp. And then you are expected to tip them for this “service.” It’s like they’re watching my every tick, trying to anticipate my next move and can never relax because of it…and then I can’t relax because they can’t relax! And what’s less relaxing than all of this is having the attendant be a MAN. It’s like the icing on the cake of uncomfortable.
I don’t need anyone to put soap in my hands. I don’t need the water turned on for me. I don’t need a towel handed to me to dry my hands. And I certainly don’t need to tip you for something I did not ask for and do not want. And most of all, I do not need any of these things in a pub.
I didn’t take my purse with me to the restroom and neither did my friend, so we weren’t able to tip this attendant. Could I have gone back? Sure. But I didn’t, because I resented the whole thing. The whole uncomfortable situation and then my inability to tip him for it. I felt like not returning with a dollar was making some sort of point, though I’m sure it just irked him.
It reminds me of the time a homeless person came up to my car at an intersection and asked if he could wash my windshield. I politely declined, but he did it, anyway. When he finished, he wanted a tip, which I refused to give him, and he proceeded to spit on my windshield.
I think I’d mind the whole attendant thing a lot less if the person didn’t assail me as I approached the sink–could they perhaps wait for their services to be requested so that those of us able-bodied folks who just want to wash their own damn hands can do so in peace?
As an aside, the P.U.B.’s menu has been revamped since I was there a month ago, and it’s much improved. I recommend it without reservations. Just remember to use the restroom before you go.