He was just another young kid (…) If I remember anything in specific, it was that he was always very pleasant—pleasant to me, to his co-workers, to the customers. Very nice kid. Oh, and his hair. He had his mop-top coming over his ears like this [Edwards says, cuffing his own] and my boss used to get on me, saying he needed to cut his hair, and I would tell him: ‘What am I to do? He thinks he’s a rock star!‘
Kelly Edwards, hotel director at the Gold Coast on Brandon Flowers who worked there as a bellman
Nowy rok jak na razie nie przyniósł żadnej nowej płyty, o której warto by wzmiankować…. za to dowiaduje się o kilku, które przemknęły obok mnie zupełnie niezauważone w roku ubiegłym… takim więc sposobem trafiłem na album norweskiego muzyka, ukrywającego się pod kryptonimem Bellman, a o którym zbyt wiele na internecie nie piszą;-) Jego muzyka to ogólnie pojęty rock niezależny,no a na płycie bardzo przyjemne dla ucha melodie… Album w sposób nieoczekiwany pozytywnie mnie zaskoczył:) co poskutkowało tym, że sięgnąłem po jego poprzednią płytę z 2009 “Mainly Mute”, która utrzymana jest w podobnym, bardzo pasującym mi klimacie:) To kolejna “perełka” z niezwykle prężnego muzycznie regionu Europy jakim jest Skandynawia. Z czystym sumieniem Bellmana polecam…
Portland Cabbies Have Plan To Stop Bribery Racket Between Portland Hotel Doormen And Taxi/Town Car Drivers
For many years now quite a lot of hotel doormen and valets have been demanding and accepting bribes from taxi and town car drivers in order to secure more lucrative fares (mainly to the Portland International Airport).
What started out as a $5 bribe is now as high as $15 in order to purchase an airport bound hotel guest from the hotel, unbeknownst to the hotel guest. The guest is then more than likely to be overcharged for their trip to PDX because the driver had to pay the bribe in order to acquire their business. Another issue is hotel doormen and valet accepting bribes from unlicensed/unpermitted/uninsured drivers (usually using Lincoln Town Cars). This practice not only disrupts the taxi and tourism industry, it also is deceiving and unsafe to Portland’s visitors who should be treated in the highest regard with complete transparency so they will continue to feel comfortable staying at Portland hotels and using taxis and town cars for transportation.
Honest cabbies plan to stop this illegitimate and dishonest practice with an informational flyer they hand out to Portland’s guests as well as proposals to the city for an anti-bribery ordinance. Many hotels have been reluctant to even try to stop their employees from engaging in the practice of bribery and kickbacks.
Hopefully this next attempt to put a stop to the hotel/taxi/town car bribery racket will be successful. It is bad for Portland’s tourism industry as well as it’s private for hire transportation industry (taxis, town cars, limos).
This is the flyer the honest cabbies are handing out to Portland’s visitors:
This Hotel Supports CORRUPT Business Practices
Dear Guest:Be advised that the doormen at this hotel accept illegal “kickbacks” in exchange for steering hotel guests towards corrupt taxis andtown-car limousines. By demanding bribes for business, this hotel unjustlycheats law-abiding taxi drivers and places hotel guests at risk.
How the Scam works:Instead of using taxi services immediately availablefrom assigned taxi stands, the doormen at this hotel will force guests to waitwhile they order another cab from across town. Guests are often told thatregular taxi service is somehow inadequate, but the doorman knows of a“special” driver he can count on. The scandal is that this driver kicks backmoney to the doorman in exchange for your patronage, forcing you to waitidly while honest, available drivers are denied the opportunity to work.
Another scaminvolves telling hotel guests that they can have immediateaccess to a town-car limousine for the same price as a taxi. This is bothUNTRUE and ILLEGAL. Town car service requires a one-hour advancereservation and costs $50 from downtown Portland to the airport. Meteredtaxi rates for the same trip cost about $33. Once again, hotel guests are liedto and manipulated so that corrupt doormen can collect a small bribe. Thiscorruption deprives honest cab drivers of their livelihood and results insubstandard hotel and taxi services.
Know Before You Go:Unmarked town cars and unlicensed taxis are reallyjust “some guy with a car.” Many operate without business licenses orcommercial liability insurance, relying solely on bribing hotel doormen tosustain their business. Should this hotel usher you into such a car, useextreme caution before sharing your credit card information with someoneknowingly involved in illegal activities. Similarly, dishonest cab driversregularly overcharge customers to compensate for the money they mustforfeit as bribes to doormen.
Downtown hotels charge premium rateswith the expectation that theydeliver premium service. Let your hotel’s staff know you don’t expect to waitfor the doorman’s special “kickback cab.” Ask for and expect immediateservice from the first available taxi. The city of Portland provides taxi standsat public expense to bolster the hospitality industry and regulates taxi serviceto assure safety and reliability. And the hard working men and women whodrive Portland’s taxis expect fair treatment from hotel management. Soshould you.
Do your part to help honesty and fairness prevail. Report improper conduct by any hotel, taxi, or town-car service to the City of Portland Regulatory Division at (503) 865-2487.
This is the comprehensive plan to end this dishonest practice for good:
A Comprehensive Plan for the Reform of Transportation Services at Downtown Portland Hotels
The kickback crisis is untenable. The following proposed reforms are key to eliminating fraudulent business practices and restoring a climate of civility and respect on the streets of Portland.
· Pass an anti-bribery ordinance. When corrupt drivers kick back money to hoteldoormen, honest drivers lose money, deceived hotel guests receive substandardservice, and an atmosphere of cheating, distrust, and corruption prevails. Portland should take the lead among American cities by identifying kickbacks asan undesirable corruption of public standards. The exchange of money betweenfor-hire drivers or their agents to any hotel employee for the purpose of accessingfares should be prohibited. Substantial penalties should be levied against bothdrivers and hotels that violate this ordinance.
· Hire a full-time transportation enforcement officer. Consider the number of parking enforcement officers in Portland and compare that to the fact that there is not a single, street-level transportation enforcement officer upholding for-hiretransportation regulations. A full-time officer on patrol will be able to check logsand issue citations on site. This takes city regulations to street level where theycan be most effective. A single officer can work alternately between downtownhotels and at PDX airport to survey customers who’ve received transportationservices. For-hire licensing fees can pay for a patrol officer without requiring anallocation of public resources.
· Allow parking enforcement to ticket commercial vehicles parked in hotels zonesfor more than 15 minutes. Hotel employees routinely allow corrupt taxis,town cars, and shuttles to occupy hotel zones for as long as they wish, causingparking shortages in hotel loading zones, double parking, traffic congestion, andpublic safety risks. At present, parking enforcement will only respond to requestsby hotel management to issue citations against vehicles parked in hotel loadingzones. Hotels have abused the privileges they’ve been granted to regulate parkingas they see fit in these publicly owned parking areas. Parking enforcement shouldbe authorized to ticket commercial vehicles in these zones at will.
· Impound unpermitted vehicles. The City of Portland is presently workingtowards acquiring the authority to impound commercial vehicles if they are operating with revoked permits or if an unpermitted operator has previously been cited for working without proper permitting.
· Revoke on-demand permitting for town cars. Two years after town cars gained the option of legitimately acquiring on-demand service rights, only two of more than 180 town cars have seen fit to do so. This policy has clearly demonstrated no useful purpose.
· Post travel rates in hotel lobbies. Hotels should post a small, visible signinforming guests of their travel options to PDX airport. This sign would detailprice, travel times, and brief pertinent details about the four most commontransportation options to PDX: MAX light rail, airport shuttles, taxis, andtown cars. With this information, educated consumers can decide for themselveswhich option they prefer without falling prey to coercion by corrupt hotelemployees.
· Post travel rates, company names, and reservation demands in or on town cars and shuttles. Many town cars have no identifying features on them giving customers little recourse against fraud. Vehicles with no posted rates routinely exploit unwary travelers. Company names and commercial rates should be visually displayed to minimize any potential for fraud.
Here are some links to local Portland news coverage on the bribery racket between Portland hotel employees and taxi/town car drivers:
Portland’s tax funded tourism representatives attempted to silence me rather than correct this problem and the GM of a major Portland hotel tried to have me fired behind my back rather than stop this insidious practice. Do they have something to gain ($) from the bribery/kickback schemes? Makes one wonder.
Please support the honest cabbies! Their efforts to put a stop to these shady schemes will only help Portland’s tourism industry to flourish.
Note: The cabbies that submitted this information to me wish to remain anonymous. I don’t blame them. As I said above the local tourism community/hoteliers came down on me for exposing this issue. It’s smart to protect your livelihood. It’s even smarter to promote a safe, honest tourism industry to boost our local economy.
How much class and taste does your hotel really have if you allow a low level, third world, mafia style racket to exist at your front door which deceives your guests? Not enough for Portland. People from around the world come here for good taste, friendliness and great times. Please stop the fleecing.
As for the hotels who have stopped this practice or never allowed it to begin with, thank you for raising the bar for Portland’s tourism industry. Our visitors deserve only the best in hospitality and transportation services.
okay, a lot of people who stumbles over this here tumblr seems to be from other countries than my native sweden.
And i beg you to really watch this, if you’re not from sweden.
this is a song, written in presumably 1780 (give or take a few years) - by Carl Michael Bellman. It’s got amazing lyrics.
It’s performed by Joakim Thåström, one could call him the swedish “version” of Bob Dylan and Johnny Thunders rolled into one person. It’s a great version of the song. Thåström decided to record it, as a mean to distance him from his punkrock audience. Like Dylan, he didn’t like being easily categorized…
The lyrics are really haunting, and the video matches the mood of the text. Filmed at Stockholms largest cemetary. The song is about alcoholists, prostitutes and death in Stockholm in the 18th century. At the time, very contemporary lyrics.
This is a loose translation (sadly, you can’t get the same feeling as the swedish lyrics actually give you):
Behold our shadow, look, Movitz my brother How it’s encompassed by darkness How gold and velvet, in the shovel, there shifts to gravel and tatters
Charon waves from his rushing river as does then, three times, the grave digger no-more will you clasp your beloved grape Therefore, Movitz, come help me lever a headstone for our sister!
The small bell tolls, for the death of the large bell.
Festooned with leaves, the cantor stands in the archway.
and at the bawling boys’ prayer
sanctified this place is.
the path leading to the temples adorned base,
tramples forth over the roses yellowed leaves,
rotten planks and stretches.
Until the long line, all dressed in black,
softly bowing in tears.
So went to rest, from brawls and ball Troublemaker Lofberg, your wife There, to the grass, long necked and gaunt Is yet where you turn your eye
She from Dantobommen parted today And with her, all merry games Who shall now command the bottle? Thirsty was she and unthirsty am I; We are thirsty, all of us.