That time an elephant gave birth in my hotel room

You may not want to see this...
You may not want to see this…

Yesterday, I wrote about the obligation we all share in pursuing our weirdness, and how the city of Portland in my home state of Oregon has an unofficial slogan I feel is a noble pursuit: Keep Portland Weird. For those of you who have read my last few posts, you’ve probably figured out I actually spent some time in the City of Weirdness last week. If you haven’t read them, I’m sorry — but it’s too late to issue a spoiler alert.

That being said, during my stay I encountered what was easily the most annoying door in the history of hotel rooms. And as someone who actually read “The History of Hotel Room Doors” by Robert Hookey, you can trust my judgement.

While it would’ve been easy to react by demanding the hotel to bring a can of WD-40 to my room (for the door hinges, jeez…), or move me to a different room, I decided to take my own advice and utilize my inner weirdness to keep things in perspective and deal with the situation with a laugh instead of a grumble. 

What follows is the result of weirdness in action…



I’m pretty sure this will end any chance I had of ever being on Animal Planet




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Ned's Blog

I was a journalist, humor columnist, writer and editor at Siuslaw News for 23 years. The next chapter in my own writer’s journey is helping other writers prepare their manuscript for the road ahead. I'm married to the perfect woman, have four great kids, and a tenuous grip on my sanity...

52 thoughts on “That time an elephant gave birth in my hotel room”

  1. You do realize that was a mis-spelling : it was supposed to be Keep Portland Wired but after all the promotional material and news releases and brochures were printed, they realized the error and it was too late, so they went with the flow.

    As possible as your story of sharing your room with a baby elephant may be, I suspect there could be a more down to earth, simpler explanation. I saw a presentation a short while ago on cell ring tones. It turns out that our beloved teens are suffering great angst because they cannot leave their phone ringers on during classes. Who could blame them? After all it is a God-given right to talk on the cell phone and receive and send texts. Imagine the nerve of the teachers. Anyway, our ingenious teens have devised a solution to this. Apparently when we are young -i.e. under about 20 years – our hearing is much more sensitive to higher frequencies. (true story) so they developed a high freq ring tone that can only be heard by those under 20. And it works!

    So,that said, I would like to postulate that there is yet another range that can only be heard by women. And that bathroom door is supposed to be broadcasting in the female range – audible only to women and calling them to the luxuries and relaxation of a good bathroom stay – be it a bath or an extended visit to the throne – just any relaxation and alone time for a busy woman of the 21st century. Somehow, the door has gotten out of tune and is now calling to all male comedians over the age of 40 – and I must say it is working well there. A quick call to the door tuners,or a teen, whichever is nearest, should fix the problem.

    1. Hahaha! It was actually my daughter. We had a dad/daughter weekend to celebrate her turning 21. There may have been a pink elephant somewhere, too 😉

  2. I’ve been considering filming some vlogs or perhaps even a pilot version of my blog, Ned. (Lord knows I can’t get a network to spit on me if I was on fire, never mind buy a pitch from me.)

    If I take that route I pray can be half as entertaining/zany/inspiring/brave/foolish as you, my friend.
    In case it isn’t apparent yet, I loved this!

  3. Reblogged this on You've Been Hooked! and commented:
    If I ever grow up or get reincarnated, I want to be/come back as Ned Hickson.

    This son of a B is one funny son of a B.



    Try to get the image of Ned splayed out across a bed out of your head, kids…

  4. So funny. It would have driven me nuts, and into the shower bottle! I found out some years ago that in the absence of grease, oil or WD40 for such creakiness, liquid soap/shower gel/washing up liquid was a quick temporary solution. Just don’t splash around too much in the bathroom…….. those bubbles can be a bitch to get rid of! 🙂

  5. Prior to the mentioning of birthing a baby elephant, which is dead on, I thought it sounded like an epic fart. One for the record books, one to be worked into every conversation ever for the rest of existence, one that never fails to make the crowd roar…the rock star of farts if you will.

    1. You know, I thought the same thing after watching the part where I wince… like it was escaping from deep within my own gastro system. Possibly after “all you can eat” night at the Enfermo Taco.

      And yes, epic farts last forever. Like soundwaves in space or something.

  6. On our trip to Europe last summer, we stayed in a hotel in Munich that reminded me of that ongoing skit on Saturday Night Live where the German talk show host kept telling people to ‘touch my monkey’… oh yeah, Sprokets… Now is ze time on Sprekets ver ve dance! This room was total hipster German… the door to the bathroom, which was like a traditional Japanese wall in a house, made of thick paper set between square wooden frames… and the door opened in a really weird way… it was on a central pivot pole, so you pushed on either end and it swung around. This sounds okay, as long as nobody was standing anywhere near it, or worse, trying to get in while you were trying to get out…

    1. Hahaha! Oh man, I can’t even get through one of those turnstile doors in big hotels and office buildings. Trying to get into the bathroom after eating German food would be a nightmare.

  7. Giggles! I’m sitting here in the living room with my husband as he watches The Voice. This means the sound is off. This video is hilarious even without sound – especially as I make up my own story to go along with your antics. I can’t wait to get to a space where I can hear what’s going on, too. You are so creative! Love this!

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