“Capital Insights” with Jack Kern: “It Smells Like Teen Spirit”

I’m at the NMHC Research meeting staying at the Chicago Renaissance Hotel. OK, first things first, they shouldn’t name a hotel Renaissance anything because it’s too hard to spell. What happened to calling a hotel a hotel? Isn’t the name Marriott too long anyway?

Then, after a hard day of running around, visiting friends and walking around sunny and freezing Chicago (..hey I have an idea, next time why not Antarctica? I hear they have great room rates and it’s warmer than Chicago?), I went back to my hotel to get some work done. I’m on the 17th floor above the loop and every 90 seconds a train zips by, brakes squealing and slamming to a halt.

I love this city.

When I went to take a shower, I noticed they didn’t have any soap. At least not what I think of as soap. I’m not interested in washing with something that leaves me smelling like a fruit salad. The avocado this and the lime that is probably designed to impress someone who is obviously a fan of produce, because everything has this scented bias to it. I want to remind you that the last time I was offered a shampoo called, “It Smells Like Teen Spirit,” I told them it better be made out of teenagers or I’m not using it.

I’m looking forward to seeing my colleagues tomorrow. I want to find out, honestly, how many of them needed to call the front desk to find out how to turn on the shower. It turns out, you have to pull the handle away from the wall. Now I’m not sure if I’m going to take the handle home with me, now that I ripped it out of the wall, but for now, the water is running just the way I like it.

I can’t wait to see what happens tomorrow.

(Jack Kern is the managing director of Kern Investment Research. He can be reached at 301.601.900 or jkern@kernIRC.com.)