Sorry Boys, No HBO

a road sign claiming free hbo

Photograph by Julian Kliner


The motel sign clearly read, “Clean Rooms, Cheap Rates, HBO.”

I was only concerned with the second claim. My companion and I approached the office door. We were in a great mood, the day’s travels had been good, fun and brisk. As the screen door slammed behind us, the grizzled clerk behind the counter announced, “Listen boys, here’s the deal. There’s no HBO.”

He pointed to a rack of VCR tapes on the wall, made it clear we were welcome to them, and accepted our $35 for a room with two double beds.

“More than we need, we’ll take it.”