Litigation

"Book a room near an ice machine when on the road with penguins" and Other Bits of Wise Advice Leading to Lawsuits

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At Overlawyered, guest blogger of Crispy on the Outside Baylen Linnekin (yes, that Testicle Festival guy) reports on a bizarre legal case involving a traveling zoo, alligator dander (or something), penguins, and a Hampton Inn:

A Miami area maid is suing her employer, Hampton Inn, in federal court there, claiming she was forced to clean up after hotel guests who defecated and urinated on floors, left feathers strewn about, and emitted allergenic dander. The guests included "Maya the spider monkey, Bob the alligator, Tango the Macaw", and two lemurs, along with their human handlers. The multispecies group all stayed at the Hampton Inn at Miami Airport hotel for about a week while in town as part of a traveling zoo.

Interesting notes about the case include 1) a filing showing a training manual created by Busch Gardens, which had hired the traveling zoo, sensibly suggesting animal handlers "[b]ook a room near an ice machine when on the road with penguins"; and 2) plaintiff Arlin Valdez-Castillo's claim to have been kidnapped and driven to a cemetery by two men who pressured her to drop the lawsuit. (Douglas Hanks, "Traveling zoo at hotel made me sick, maid says", Miami Herald, Sept. 24).

More here.

The moral of the story? There isn't one, I suppose. Or this: Don't just stay at a Holiday Inn Express; work there too.

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  1. I hate hotels that have few or no smoking rooms yet allow pets. I’d wager I’ve spent more nights in hotels than anyone who comments here.

  2. bizarre legal case involving a traveling zoo, alligator dander (or something), penguins, and a Hampton Inn

    That sounds eerily similar to a bachelor party story that a co-worker of mine tells.

  3. Depending on the employment contract, the maid could have a case against Hampton Inn for making her go above and beyond her job description. Cleaning up after zoo animals is not a standard part of hotel house keeping.

  4. So SIV, I bet you’ve stayed in places where the only thing that didn’t smell like urine was the toilet, eh?

    😉

  5. Cleaning up after zoo animals is not a standard part of hotel house keeping.

    Hey, it’s about the service man. Now suck it up and clean up that elephant turd. Customers will be here any minute!

  6. Baked Penguin, as a moderate (not undercooked, not burnt) penguin many here feel that you are morally obligated to speak out against the senseless, feces-ridden behavior of radical penguins. Failure to do so will make you almost as bad as a radical avian fundamentalist.

    So what do you have to say for your kind/yourself?

  7. sage,

    Yup, and far worse
    I expect a discount when housekeeping staff turns tricks in my room while I’m away.
    Dirty diapers are not an acceptable patch for holes in the wall.There is often “free” reefer behind the nightstand, there is never free cocaine.Used condoms and old fried chicken bones are not acceptable room decor even if it is only $25 a night.Unfortunately the company I’m working for now rarely pays lump sum per diem so I can’t shop for motel bargains to save extra tax free money like I used to.

  8. Ooooh! A pare fare pare fore! hmmmhmmm!

  9. Junter, you’ll notice that the feces issues were connected with the group of animals that included spider monkeys, lemurs, and human handlers. I think you’re projecting because you know full well this is a primate problem.

    The only suggestion for us was that we be situated near the ice machine, which I wholeheartedly agree with. Warm rum and coke sucks.

  10. Ah-heh-hem! Thanks for the plug for Intercontinental Hotels Groups!!! I work at one and Holiday Inn Express happens to be one of our hotels.

  11. NOOOOK NOOOOK!

  12. I hate hotels that have few or no smoking rooms yet allow pets. I’d wager I’ve spent more nights in hotels than anyone who comments here.

    I dunno about that…when I was consulting I spent 5 days a week in hotels and was only in my own home on weekends (Friday and Sat. nights) — I did that for 3.5 years.

    Nothing surprises me about hotels and the gross ass shit that goes on in them

  13. take an ultraviolet light with you on your next roadtrip and check out the cumstains on the bedspreads even at “nice” hotels.

  14. ?P-p-ping, p-p-ping, Pingu, Pingu!?

    When I was a kid, I thought that show was in Norwegian, and that it was the coolest-sounding language ever.

  15. Unfortunately for me I have you beat ChicagoTom.
    I rarely work in the same State as my legal address.I’ve blown relationships all over the States of the Old Confederacy because I wouldn’t quit and “settle down”. I do love my work and have been paid to spend an entire season on the beach, in the mountains and other beautiful and interesting areas.I know the entire State of Mississippi better than my own home town.

  16. Having worked as a front desk clerk for a hotel I unfornately know ChicagoTom is right. I have seen used blowup dolls & a bathtub full of human excrement before.

  17. I don’t see how the maid has a case. If she got an allergic reaction to exposure to animals on the job, wouldn’t that be covered by workers’ compensation?

  18. I bet you’ve stayed in places where the only thing that didn’t smell like urine was the toilet, eh?

    I have. It’s called a holding cell. The cops even gave me a blanket to put on the solid metal “bed”.

  19. I have seen… a bathtub full of human excrement before.

    See, Junter? See?

  20. Pointless article.

  21. Pointess, but amusing.By the way, if you find such stuff as used condoms, etc… in a room that you’re staying in, and you’re using an AARP card, you can complain to AARP and they’ll get your money back for you.You can join AARP at the age of 50.

  22. Hotel Management: Go clean up the mess the zoo animals made in rooms 101, 102 and 103.

    A maid worthy of my amorous attention: Clean it yourself. I quit.

  23. Ok, so the feces in this case came from primates, but this merely an anomaly. It hardly compares to the literal mountains of guano that the feathered folk… produce so much of that we can literally mine it. And have you ever been to a beach with thousands of birds? You need an umbrella.

    But even in this case, the birds were to blame. Part of the mess was of feathers. Monkeys don’t have feathers. And even though penguins and macaws are distant cousins, incidents like this still give all bird-kind a bad name.

    So why have you not condemned their actions yet? Are you an avian fundamentalist, living under the delusion that birds can do no wrong and that it is only primates that are capable of destroying the planet with increased CO2 emissions, massive habitat destruction, nuclear missiles, and oil spills? Or are you a crazy peacenik, thinkin that, “hey, we are different and just need to get along anyway. Not cleaning up feathers? Not a problem where I come from, so out of respect for my culture you should not get angry at me.”

    It doesnt work that way. Photosynthetic organisms obliterated the planet over a billion years ago, unleashing toxic clouds of oxygen gas into the atmosphere and saturating the oceans with it, killing off whole lines of organisms. And, no, I will not clean up your feathers just because you think they are no big deal. I dislike them. This mode of thought is like saying killing your sister is acceptable because she compromised your family’s honor. Maybe that is standard practice in your barbaric lands, but do that here and its death row or life in prison.

    And now that I have blown the situation completely out of proportion like a Muhammad cartoon or an aquateen hunger force light brite, the world is coming to an end and it is all Baked Penguins fault for not condemning the radicals soon enough, allowing them time and resources to carry out their sinister plans to destroy the universe.

    The End

  24. Increible lo delicioso que es el Cholado pastuso

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