This morning I am rapping at you from the tech-biz-media hotness that is the Ace Hotel lobby. While I will not be exploring the venue’s dude-catching potential, I will spend the day here and report on the doings of New York’s aspirational officeless class. I will drink the coffees, eavesdrop on the conversations, and attempt to draw Ron Jeremy into a live chat if he ever comes down from his alleged room. Check back on this post all day for pulse-pounding updates until it becomes boring or I am thrown out.
10am – This place is buzzing already. I would guess that 10% or less of the inhabitants are hotel guests, judging by how everyone keeps asking for the wifi password (freely given at the registration desk, no questions asked). A cool bald guy at my table was just joined by a cool chick and they are about to do a cool conference call. Laptop count: 9. Free table space: 2. Empty couches: 1. Seated population: 29. Foursquare population: 1.
10:24am – Michael Orell is here.
11am – Michael has left. We had a nice salesy conversion. Go look at one of the things he’s working on at Crushable. Morning rush is over and the dilleatantes have moved on, replaced by people with heads down over screens, doin’ computers. Someone nearby just mentioned Tumblr. Laptop count: 18. Free table space: 2. Empty couches: 2. Seated population: 27. Foursquare population: 2.
11:25am – Wow, this place is absolutely packed. My table is now totally mobbed, and various lost souls are wandering, sadly, looking for a place to roost. No room at this inn at all for workers, loungers, drinkers or anyone else. Not sure what to do for lunch since I’m loathe to give up my precious chair. Will someone feed me?
11:40am – Thinking Breslin for lunch. Something about this cold, wet weather makes me hungry for a steaming platter of entrails.
11:55am – When one of the people left my table, the guy who wedged himself in next to me opened up … a newspaper? What the hell? Get your analog media experience over to the Natural History Museum, pal. Meanwhile, an intern just talked about enduring a focus group for Chanel. She was paid some money and she is happy.
11:58am – Some people were run off from our table by a server. Not sure why? They had been here as long as me, even a little longer, and had ordered coffee. I have yet to order anything but have so far been unmolested. Perhaps it’s my naturally foreboding demeanor. Much as I am leaning toward pork scratchings and tongue sammiches for lunch, I fear I’ll never get a seat back for the afternoon if I go hunting for food now.
12:02pm – First cocktail order! Guy sat down across from me, popped open his laptop, flagged down a server, and ordered some kinda scotch, neat. Bravo sir.
12:37 – Ordered lobby lunch, no need to Breslinize. Porkslap Pale Ale arrives first, is confirmed as tasty. At least three different people lurking in corners on Important Phone Calls. Laptop count: 29. Free table space: 2. Empty couches: 0. Seated population: 50. Foursquare population: 2.
1:08pm – Post lunch and second beer, productivity is flagging. The Ace lobby is still generally abuzz and basically SRO, with more conversatin’ going on among the laptop drones. I believe Neat Scotch Guy and myself are among the few already drinking though.
1:34pm – Perfidious internet connection! Almost nothing accomplishable in the last half hour. Are they throttling bandwidth on all us lobby leeches? Hardly fair. I just paid $16 for a ham and cheese sandwich, I deserve some free internets. Or rather, I am now obligated to pay $16 for a ham and cheese sandwich, which I ate. I’m not alone in my sorrow. Lots of blank staring at laptops and uncomfortable shifting in chairs. The action never stops!
2:20pm – Defeat! After an hour-plus of crap connections, I’m forced to retreat to more welcoming internet climes. Sorry Ace, you were fun while you lasted. No wonder so many chairs were opening up by the time I bailed.