Memphis Y'all: Two Months Midsouth

The Texarkana Hotel and Murderer | May 28, 2010

I’m not sure if it was my navigational device’s fault or the fault of my mother. Either way, I nearly missed the inn my mother booked me in Texarkana. Sure, it was straight off the highway, and sure the sign was as tall as the Chrysler Building, but I still missed it and had to drive in a big circle before I arrived, road weary and haggard at the Baymount Inn.

The parking lot was well lit. There weren’t shingles hanging off the front of the building. There was no blinking vacancy sign and Lorelei, the on-duty manager, was wearing a very nice bobbed wig and had all of her teeth.

Lorelei seemed delighted when I arrived. We chatted for a few moments about my long drive from Texas. I told her that I was worried that my car, stuffed with all my worldly possessions and the plants, would get broken into. She said, “Baby, don’t you worry. You park your car right here up front next to mine and I’ll watch it all night long.” She looked me up and down. This is she saw: blonde girl, purple sorority shirt, hairy legs (only if her eyes were good), tired face. And this is what she thought: why is this 14 year-old runaway bothering me at my hotel.  And this is what she did: smiled and handed me the hotel room key.

“I put you in a room really close to the front office so you shouldn’t have any problems,” Lorelei said. “Breakfast is early but we serve eggs, ham and buttermilk biscuits, so don’t miss it.”

Outside I grabbed my bag from the cars and went in search of my room. A man with gray hair was pacing outside on the second floor. I watched him from the first floor; he didn’t look like a murderer, he didn’t look like a bad guy—but wait maybe it’s a disguise—bad guys try to not look like bad guys, right? I went up the stairs anyway. I know these things: Avoid eye contact. If he offers candy say ‘no.’ Don’t open the door for strangers.

My parents taught me well.

Safely in my room, I turned on the lamp by the desk. I thought about the time I had almost-sex with my former boyfriend in a La Quinta. I posed on the poor coffee table in my pink thong and then attempted a lap dance in the arm chair. I’m sure I’m not the only one who’s done this. I decide to not sit in the Baymount Inn arm chair just in case. I’ve often wondered why hotels have white sheets. Is it so that they can be bleached? That’s unsettling.

I washed my dirty feet in the tub and took in my puffy face in the mirror. It’s odd how eating nothing but salt for six hours while driving makes your face look like a Stay Puft marshmallow man.  I chugged some tap water.

At 2:00 a.m. I crawled into my lumpy queen and turned off the T.V.


There’s a loud sound outside my room. Oh shit. It’s the gray-hair man with his ax. He’s come to murder me. I turned the TV back on. Bravo will save me. Nine by Design will dial 9-1-1 if gray-hair man axes my door. I considered calling Lorelei. I turned up the TV. Maybe it will sound like there are more people in my room if I blast the TV at top volume. Or maybe I’ll get kicked out and he’ll kill me in my car.

It is this moment that I realize that I’m in most common horror movie plot.

I’m a college co-ed and I’m white. I’m in a city I don’t know and I’m at a strange hotel. I’m alone and even though I saw Vacancy in theater I didn’t check for hidden cameras in the vents. Worst yet, I’m not a virgin, so Jesus Christ, I die in this movie.

I chain my door. Okay, no that’s a lie. It’s already chained so I pull on the chain to make sure it’s good. Then ashamed, I crawl in my bed and wait for the sound of splitting wood as the ax splits the door.

I wake up curled in a whirl of sheets and very much alive.


Posted in Uncategorized

1 Comment »

  1. Emily this is fabulous, your writing is so great I love love love this!

    Comment by Erica — May 29, 2010 @ 3:32 pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

    Find it:

    Suga' why don't you type in your internet-mail to get my updates right to your inbox.

    Join 6 other followers

%d bloggers like this: