Monday, April 25, 2011

Prying Eyes


I was in New York last week.  The last couple of times I've gone, I've flown up early in the morning and left late the next day.  It works out pretty well as it allows two mostly full days in the city with only one night away.  Besides the frenetic pace and the feeling that I have tricked the time space continuum, it saves me from obsessing about practice carpools and the fact that, try as he might, Mr. Blandings never gets the lunches quite right.  Not that I'm all that concerned about crusts on or off or apples sliced, but I tend to hear about it when I get back.

This trip I stayed at the Standard, a hotel for which I am not hip enough by half.  I felt quite sure that the people craning around to see who was there figured I must be Justin Bieber's mother.  Despite my cool quotient, the staff was completely delightful.  The view, as well, was wonderful as one entire wall of my room was a window.



Perhaps you'd heard this as there have been some shenanigans with guests using those large pieces of plate glass as a TV screen in reverse, have regarded the neighbors as audience.  After all, people tend to take liberties on vacation.  In a different city you are anonymous; you could do anything there, relieved from the prying eyes of Mrs. Kravitz.  Further daring to invite the witness of strangers.  Some people tell me that when the hotel first opened, encouragement of this kind of inhibition might have been implied.  To negate this, a letter from the manager was left squarely on the table.  "As a reminder, please be aware of the transparency of our guest room windows and that the activity in your room, when the curtains are open, may be visible from the outside."

My eyes brushed this letter three or four times during my stay.  I was amused each time to think that any human being capable of making a hotel reservation would need to be reminded that glass is clear.  That if you can see out, they can see in.  That, regardless your bravado, on-lookers might not prefer to look on.  Needless to say, that when I was uncovered my windows were covered.  The reverse was also true.

I thought I could get a couple of posts together over the weekend, but the holiday tripped me up.  Further coverage to follow.

9 comments:

Todd the Bruce said...

Momma used to say, "if they want to look, let them look." But, in the way it is with most things Momma said, she always kept the windows covered.

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Jane Kilpatrick Schott said...

Gotta love the stationery! The Standard is in such a great part of town and it must have been lovely right now.

mary said...

Glad you had a good time.....I agree, windows need to be covered--but in New York, like Vegas, anything would seem to go.

ArchitectDesign™ said...

Oh, you'd be surprised! When I moved into my condo -which has a wall of glass-it never dawned on me that people could see into my apartment (after facing a blank stucco wall for 3 years in my old apartment). Lets just say my first morning there was a bit embaressing and I learned my lesson quickly! I can't believe I just admitted that!

David said...

I love The Standard...I laughed when you siad TV screen in reverse...

Lynn T. said...

" . . . if you can see out, they can see in."

Not necessarily -- my doctor's office has large windows that are one-way, so that one can view the city but the city can't see you. It is disconcerting. I never feel really comfortable slipping into something similar to a large paper doily with ties, in what feels like full view.

My Dog-Eared Pages said...

I think somehow THE letter is sort of a charming reminder to go for it!! Love the letterhead ; )

The Decorator said...

Had the best steak ever at the Standard Grille from an adorable Aussie waiter who was the image of Heath Ledger!
Love that place...love that city!