Having travelled around a bit lately, there are some things we've noticed about American motels which may mark them out from other places:
- Due to some obscure federal regulation, every motel room must have at least one switch that has no discernable effect on the state of the world. It is considered good practice to have two or more.
- For extra points this should be the switch beside the door that would - in a normal world - switch on some kind of room light when you get in. If this switch is associated with a light, it should be somewhere obscure like the bathroom, or inside the wardrobe, casting as little useful light as possible.
- If there is one thing motel customers hate it is being able to see, consequently motels refuse to have any ceiling lights, instead choosing to offer a selection of oddly positioned lamps.
- Although a motel must place multiple lamps in any given room, it is considered good practice to have as many different types and positions of switch on them as possible. A motel proprietor whose rooms have no two lights operating off the same switch is considered a true master of their trade.
- Every room needs to have one component that is inordinately loud, ideally the fridge or the heater.
- The showers everywhere have exactly the same control system and you can step right in and know how it works, this is something that the UK could really learn from.
- If the shower is on a bath, regardless of the care with which the curtain is utilised, at least five gallons of water must somehow find their way onto the floor per shower.
- A square pillow provides motel customers with an entertaining puzzle while at the same time preventing them from engaging in egregious activities such as sleep. To add an extra layer of complexity why not provide five square pillows on a double bed? Figuring out how to divide those up will give your guests hours of fun.
- Motel proprietors must surely wish there was a snappy short name for those "personal cleansing bars" that they provide for customers. Somebody should get onto that.
- If someone is staying for two days and they have opened a "personal cleansing bar" on the first day, cleaning staff are under a critically important mandate to discard the sullied item and replace it with a new sealed package. Heaven forfend that a customer use the same "personal cleansing bar" twice.
- There is a general problem with the flush on motel toilets. It works on a similar principle to a gentle water pistol or plant mister. Suffice it to say that if you launch a dreadnought there, you're going not going to be able to flush with any success from that point forward. Then you have to deal with choosing between an awkward visit to the front desk or having to hold everything in until you leave and hope your guilt is never revealed.