Friday, May 19, 2006

Bill of Fare

David is absolutely right. If a fellow intends to be truly professional, he ought to have a schedule card of services and rates available.

To that end, I have prepared the following for the ladies I'm hosting on the tour.

Franklin, Your Host for "Islands of Antiquity"
Discreet • Educated • Steadfast

Conversation (prices are per hour)
  • English fiction, history, art history, opera ($2)
  • Shopping and clothes ($2)
  • Parents these days ($5)
  • Your grandchildren ($5)*
  • Previous travels ($5)
  • Your cat(s) ($350)
  • Knitting (complimentary)
We regret that we no longer discuss the Bush administration or your Republican politics under any circumstances.

For parties of six or more, a 15% gratuity will be added.

*If pictures are displayed, there will be a surcharge of $10 per image.

Dancing (prices are per dance)
  • Waltz ($2)
  • Foxtrot ($2)
  • Quadrille ($2)
  • Polka ($2)
  • Texas Two-Step ($2)
  • Lindy Hop ($20)*
  • Mazurka or Tarantella ($50)*
For parties of five or more, lessons in country line dancing can be arranged for a negotiable fee. Before engaging in dances marked by an asterisk (*), customers must present a doctor's certificate of sound health and sign a liability waiver.

Shopping (prices are per hour)
  • For tacky souvenirs ($150)
  • For clothes or jewelry ($35)
  • For books or yarn (free)
Please note that for the 2006 season we are offering an entirely new selection of fitting room compliments, enthusiastic squeals, and reassurances that no, it doesn't make you look at all fat.

Fetching and Carrying (prices are per quarter hour)
  • Purse/handbag holding ($50)
  • Forgotten item retrieval (free up to 1/4 mile, $10 thereafter)
  • Purchase of small items from ship store ($5)
  • Assistance in crossing cobblestones, going up or down stairs, alighting from motorcoaches, etc. (free)
  • Drinks from the bar (ask a steward, it's what they're here for)
  • Diplomatic removal of drunken husband from dining room or bar ($50, plus $50 surcharge for men weighing more than 200 lbs)
Lectures/Demonstrations (prices are per lesson)
  • Basic knitting (free)
  • Basic photography (free)
  • How the heck does this e-mail thing work, anyway? ($150)
  • Harmless flirtation is always complimentary. However, as your host is queer as a three dollar bill, we recommend that you inquire of the concierge should you desire actual rumpy-pumpy.


Paul said...

This is absolutly precious! And I'm assuming these are being engraved on what - white or eggshell linen stationary?

Aidan said...

Now if a steward should want some "rumpy pumpy"?

Knitress said...

As an alumna of your employer, this is just making me want to save up my meager funds to go on the next tour!

I suspect the alum association would do pretty well offering a yarn-and-book tour, come to think of it.

Anonymous said...



have never thought about it this way.......

what would miss manners say about your "bill of fare"?

have a great weekend; I can't wait to see what happens next!

anne marie in philly

beadlizard said...

No tango?

Oh, and how about lessons in drawing sheep? Sell your strengths!

pacalaga said...

WTF is rumpy pumpy? Oh, nevermind, my slow mind required spelling it out. Goodness.
Kids these days.

Sandra said...

Actually, you're pretty cheap on the grandchildren thing. ou may be makin' some yarn money on this trip...

All the Way With Knitting said...

"Queer as a nine Bob Note" here there were ten shillings in the lowest note ..but still weird.That was so wonderful ..glad to hear talking knitting is free .The last time I danced The Polka I was 13 and had to stand on my Polish friend's father's feet.

Freecia said...

Franklin, I have a question for you but couldn't locate your e-mail address (the butler has a paper fetish and refuses to let me read your visiting card. I suspect he hordes invitations, too). Would you mind weighing in on how to properly inscribe a book? My question is posted here:

Really appreciate your input. My local gay men were able to advise me on the etiquette of gay bars, but I'm not ready to comb the Castro district for the queer who happens to have his Emily Post with him.

BTW, one is better off inquiring with the secondary waiter or busboy for rumpy pumpy.

ann said...

Well, damn! I should have hired you for my class reunion last weekend. At least you would have been able to waltz, presumably would have stayed sober for 90% of the weekend, and would have been happy for a side trip to Webs.

Andi said...

Will Dolores be sharing her rate card as well? I'm sure that the gentlemen on the tour will require entertainment as well.

Elisabeth said...

I think you're selling yourself short on the conversation....

Does Dolores have a bill of fare, too?

Anonymous said...

Franklin, I think I may have a crush on you.

I don't care how much it costs me.


Sorka said...

Hmmm I'll take forgotton item retrival and some gratutious yarn/knitting talk and throw in some flirting just for fun..hehe we can pretend I still have it??

Will Pillage For Yarn said...

"we recommend that you inquire of the concierge should you desire actual rumpy-pumpy"

Dear Franklin. You owe me a new laptop because all of the water I just spit taked over mine cannot have been good for the circuitry. Love and kisses, The Yarnpirate

CatBookMom said...

Major ROFL here!!!! Ah, do we dare ask about the particulars of offerings from Dolores? Maybe not....

Norskybear said...

This has to be the most inspired post I have read in awhile.

You forgot to include guest blogging on your rate card, as I would be the first to hire you to make me sound so witty and clever.

Juno said...

Sir, I salute you.

brewerburns said...

Rumpy-pumpy. *hee hee* I'm going to use that in conversation. Soon.

I also think you didn't go high enough on the grandchildren.

Fyberduck said...

You should have mentioned that clients could also pay you in yarn ;)

Kathleen said...

Geez, guy, how do you THINK of all this great stuff? I don't even want to consider how many keyboards you have been inadvertently responsible for short-circuiting today a la the Yarnpirate.

Way. To. Go.

sahara said...

Franklin, I love it, you are so out of your mind!

But, I gotta say this. Re-think the free knitting demo, as when their memory goes, so may your patience, when you're asked to "show me how to cast on, I forgot," for the seventh time ("what happened?" "I took it off, it didn't look right, then I forgot.").

And, as all the husbands may be over 200 lbs., bump up 20lbs extra on the rowing and bench press, before you leave.

BTW, how much would you charge to find dentures?

Anonymous said...

Did you get all that on one buisness card??

Carol said...

I truly, truly love you.

Carrie K said...

Very practical. So much better when it's all spelled out. What's the yarn exchange rate on the ship?

AuntyNin said...

Hilarious! Though you really ought to charge a lot more for discreet removal of drunken spouse, that could get messy. And I'd charge a lot more for the "grandchildren" talk.

So, does Dolores have a rate sheet too? (The very thought boggles the mind...)

Isela: Purling Sprite said...

Hilarious!!! I am afraid I would have to break the bank to go on that cruise....I would have you dancing all night long to some swing.

Of course, like everyone else, I'll await to see the price sheet from Dolores, I bet she would be more lenient to the kid's pictures.

AprilBrokenA said...

Fanklin - when I come to Chicago, I'm going to bring you something. I don't know what, but now that I've read this - I need to meet you.

I don't need entertaining when in a brand new town, but would love to have your sense of humor along for the ride!


witchypoo said...

Oh darlink! You are selling yourself too short - you need to double those fees, especially if you are forced to listen to medical issues for long periods of time.

David said...

Brilliant! Look everyone, I'm a muse, I'm a muse!

Cheryl said...

Oh I love it.......
It's one of those accordian fold wallet thingies right???
Wonder where I could find some "rumpy pumpy"..

roggey said...

I adore your writing as always, but the fact that you use one of my favorite phrases (a bit of rumpy-pumpy), I'm fairly smitten!

Geogrrl said...

I'm keeping the price sheet. You're worth it at double or triple the fees.

You're also hired for my next vacation. Next time I want to go on a yarn crawl, go to a museum, or art exhibit, I can let my husband wander off and you and I will go.

Windsornot said...

I think your fares seem very reasonable, considering some of those things can take quite a bit of time, after all. More than fair pricing. As Elizabeth mentioned, did Dolores have any suggestions on pricing or other services that should be considered? I mean, if anybody would know that sort of thing, SHE would. ;-)

Liz said...

What if you have a three dollar bill?

Just curious ;>

You're WAY undercharging for discussions about children and pets. Personally, I'll pay you not to discuss my child. For the love of God, that's why I go on vacation. To be away from home. Including said child.

julia fc said...

Sounds like you have all the skill necessary to go to my cousin's wedding as my proxy. Just send me the invoice. No one will care that you're not actually a six foot hetero mom of three; they'll think that your showing up instead of me is my gift to the couple.

--Deb said...

Oh boy, that is too funny! I wonder what kind of gratuities Dolores makes?

Donna said...

I am starting a special saving account so some day I can pay your way here and I can afford yoour services.

ellen said...

My SO did a similar tour of the Mediterranean a few years ago; his anecdotes would suggest you need another conversation category on the lines of "What a cutup you were when you were in college, ($500)."

mad angel said...

Franklin, I think I am gonna abduct one of those old ladies and put myself in her place. I LOVE your list!

Sean said...

I'm just catching up on reading posts and I am so excited for you. What an amazing adventure you'll have. I hope among your duties you'll find time to enjoy the trip. WOW...just amazing. Will you have time to knit?

ForestBird said...

I, too, am late to this posting. I thought you were adding items to THE SHOP!

Have fun!

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Well, I do not actually imagine it is likely to have effect.

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