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How would you guys handle this situation?

Those who’ve been following along this summer are aware of the golf tee time and hotel room reservation fiasco my group had in late June at a northern Michigan resort.

Fast-forward to Wednesday.

“I’m sorry, there was an issue with reservations and we already have someone in that RV,” the young woman on the other line told me Wednesday afternoon as I was trying to prepare for a family vacation that was supposed to start Friday night.

I had called the campground Wednesday with a couple of last-minute questions when the worker on the other line said she didn’t have my reservation. “Do you have an email for the reservation,” she asked.


“Oh, now I see it. Yes, you do have a reservation. I’ll have to call my boss to see what’s going on with this.”

And we wait. And wait. And wait. Over two hours passed with my patience running out. It’s summer. I’m trying to remain calm, but I’m also trying to get my family out of the house and on a vacation.

Then comes the call.

“In March, when I called you to go over your reservation, I told you this is a week when we have a big group that rents out all the spots,” the lady tries to explain.

You know the rest of the story.

Our reservation — yes, the campground took a deposit from our credit card way back in 2021 — was gone.

Were they going to tell us? Not until we got there Friday night with two kids, a car full of coolers filled with food in the middle of nowhere Michigan with the nearest hotels 50 miles away and no backup reservations or plans.

I’m serious.

“I’m so sorry. We’ll make it up to you by giving you a free stay whenever you can make it back,” the boss (owner?) tells me.

What about the deposit you took from me?

“Text me your address and the amount so I can mail you a check,” she says.


We’re not talking about some rat trap, fleabag campground here. They have a legitimate (I thought) business going that has seen significant investment, two golf courses in great shape, and a very nice campground.

Immediate thoughts:

• Is this just a northern Michigan thing or is this happening across the country?

• This has to be a higher bidding situation right? I can’t believe they would just allow this to happen if they weren’t getting a pile of cash to infuriate other customers.

• How can I trust them to keep a make-good reservation? It couldn’t happen twice, right?

• Customer service is a lost art.

• Businesses that have trouble keeping reservations after taking deposits are going to have troubles as this country goes into a recession. We’re talking about a forgotten part of Michigan that is a mess when the economy tanks. It’s not like these people are pulling for a huge pool of possible customers.

• I’m incredibly happy we didn’t show up Friday night and then have to tell the wife and kids, as they’re looking at a fun campground, that we don’t have a reservation.

• Double-check your reservations. You might want to be extra careful and triple-check reservations.

• I spent all night making new plans, new reservations at different places, and changing up our trip. Hopefully, it’s an even better time for my wife and kids.

• I just want to sit by a fire and listen to crickets.

Summer update

• Jason D. in Missouri writes:

I apologize for the long email, but I have been in my bunker for the month of July. As a high school principal I get July off so I disconnect from the world to spend time with my family because that doesn’t happen much during the school year. 

Kudos to you for having Anthony pinch hit for you that last week in June. A lot of guys in your position would have made the decision to just let screencaps take a hiatus in your absence. Many would have let the fear of having a substitute come in and make a mess of things or do such a good job that readers could have demanded more of the new guy, but not you. Even with the pressure, Anthony performed well. 

It has not rained in my part of southwest Missouri in over a month. As a result I have not mowed one time during that stretch. I never thought I would have missed the Thursday night mowing routine but here I am. Before the heat wave/drought of 2022, I was in a Thursday night groove, enjoying my mowing time. So much so that my 10 year old daughter noticed and wanted to get in on the action. She’s not much for physical labor but she picked up on my joy and wanted to take part. There was no way that I could tell her no as I fully expect her interest level in spending time with her dad is diminishing by the second. She only lasted a couple of laps but she loved every second it. She could barely push the mower but she never complained. She just figured it out. That was a proud dad moment for me. 

On our trip to Kentucky Lake during the Fourth of July week, I stumbled across a local beer. I’m sure someone has already mentioned it or there are multiple breweries that are producing it across the country but I had a good laugh at it and of course I had to purchase a six-pack. 

Danny in Minnesota reminded me of a question that I have wanted to ask all summer. Is there any nontypical drink that readers must have during the summer? Mine is something that we call “summer brew.” It is 6 beers mixed with a can of frozen lemonade concentrate. In my wilder days, I would add lemon-flavored vodka but now that I am in my forties, my body just can’t handle the recovery time. I would love to hear those secret recipes that readers might have.

As I make my way to exit I would ask a small favor of the screencap family. Don’t be a dbag at your child’s sporting event. With my job, I have to supervise a ton of school sporting events. The worst part about it is babysitting the adults in the stands. Please don’t be the parent that I have to politely ask to leave the venue before getting the police to force you out. Enjoy your child’s small window of time playing a sport that they love.  C-ya Joe.

Don’t leave us!

• Guy G. in western New York has a big concern when I hit the Mega Millions:

A billion dollars, before taxes, sounds awesome! And early retirement sounds great too. But giving up Screencaps?! Maybe we’re reading it wrong, but it does seem that you enjoy doing this. Now, I propose, after you win your billion, that you continue to write this every day.

But, on a less time restrictive basis. Maybe it starts coming out at noon..pacific time, or whatever time zone you decide to land in that day. 

Make it a 3 day work week. We all come here for this. This keeps our minds right, and gets the day going the way it should. And reading what we usually do, from a billionaire, would make us all sit a little better each day. ‘See, he’s just like us…with a lot more money.’

Just like us, Joe, you’re a grinder.

We grind every day, and entertain almost no one. You’re reaching thousands, who in turn, spread the word about babes in the morning, TNML, stadium fights and crazy celeb houses for sale.

Just because you move into a higher tax bracket overnight, doesn’t mean you get to leave. Also, take the billion over 20 years.

Your kid’s kid’s kids will thank you.

I respect Guy’s opinion on this one. Tell you what, I’ll serve as guest editor once a month to update you guys on my latest travels around the world like Mike T. in Idaho. You better believe I’m not cutting Cindy T. out of my social media life because she’ll be serving as a tour operator.

I’ll pop in once a month on a Monday, hammer out 2,000 words, and then go dark for 29 days. My days of Saturday Screencaps Lite in the middle of the summer are over after hitting that BILLION.

Same shirt idea

• Some of you might’ve seen the video posted this week where guys go out to dinner with their wives and the husbands show up in the same shirts.

Matthew F. writes:

Saw the post on screencaps where the guys showed up all in the same shirt. Our church did something like that. The wives all got together and found matching shirts for the husbands and had them wear them the same Sunday. It was quite humorous seeing these guys trickle in and find out they had been had! I, being single, managed to avoid looking like a Smurf.

Our friends at Hooters slid into the inbox with a National Chicken Wing Day alert

The Hooters team was nice enough to send gear for the June golf trip, so I’m going to keep the good vibes going around here. Business 101. Hooters never loses my reservation — full disclosure, I haven’t been lately.

No, Screencaps isn’t being sponsored, but you’re damn right I’m working on that. Come onboard full time, Hooters!


The lawns are struggling

• Jim M. in Rhode Island (I’m impressed by how many readers we have in America’s smallest state) writes:

Even here Joe, near the ocean where we get a lot of moisture. Check the pics! May 2021, reno……..May 2022 came in nice!!!…and 1 and a half months later .

Sad….BTW, I’m in RI…..full disclosure I was a golf course superintendent for 30 years . I just won’t waste money to water, on a hill, where 50% runs off. Plus here in rocky New England there could be boulders the size of Volkswagens under there that heat up like an underground oven.

And if you’re wondering why my lawn got so bad I had to renovate it being golf course superintendent and all, well as the old saying goes, the plumber has leaky pipes, and the cobblers sons have holes in their shoes! Tough life the superintendent life, but that’s an article for another day!

Seed conspiracy?

• Beau in Toledo writes:

Yeah, taco meat over coals?  Get more Lodge Logic Cast Iron and do it.  Even took the opportunity to smoke some onions before I ran them through the dehydrator… winter chili (not gonna go there) is already calling… Imma get fat(er).

I did notice a background theme in some of the recent ‘Cap mentions… seeds being smuggled in… i’d provide links,but either my laptop is being a douche, or the #OutKick site (with the article blocking video) is being a DoucheCanoe.. and the search engine for the site won’t even let me find Your chronologically listed articles from the last few days… #Douchey

That being said… the seeds and plant-based stuff being smuggled in… Not to get all Alex Jones on everyone, but they could be classified as a bio-weapon… search noxious weed list… many species of plants can choke out useful vegetation, even food sources… You’ve seen the damage an emerald ash borer beetle can do in the NWO Region, imagine a “flower” invading a corn or bean field… Heck, even P-Burgh Ohio is dealing with a weed that’s harming Puppers… ODA investigating plant reportedly making dogs sick in Perrysburg (

Take this as a stern but friendly warning to every ‘Cap and #TNML Member…

The link from Your article the other day leads to a list of harmful invasive plants… learn it…

Then produce a list of food manufacturing plants that have been destroyed since January of 2021…

Maybe You and Ian Miller could collaborate on this one…

I’d be more than happy to call myself a Conspiracy Theorist, but i’m running out of conspiracies…

Yes, I know what Beau is talking about with his seed conspiracy thing and it’s just another wild moment this year for the city I call home. First, we had the racist water tower thing that has been a massive mess and now the seed thing is the latest subject to dominate the local Facebook community.

And with that, I’m off to pack bags for this trip that nearly didn’t happen that is now back to happening. Let’s all remain calm in the face of adversity out there today. I understand you want to fly off the handle. I understand the world is a place that doesn’t make sense.

My message as we go attack the day is to double-check those reservations and to have one helluva day. Finish July strong. The NFL is officially back (sorta) a week from tonight.


Numbers from :

Stuff You Guys Sent In  & Stuff I Like:

Written by Joe Kinsey

I'm an Ohio guy, born in Dayton, who roots for Ohio State and can handle you guys destroying the Buckeyes, Urban Meyer and everything associated with Columbus.


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  1. You are a journalist, Joe. That should be all you need to have that site cave to your particular needs. I honestly don’t think they care about you and your family, and are more concerned in disappointing a lockdown client that can guarantee a sellout in the future. Airlines overbook for a reason and have no problem funding extended stays for overbooked passenger’s who give up their seats.

    Drop their name. Had you showed up WITH your fam and this unfolded, we would know their name soon after. Other families should know the same risk.

    • Agreed. Unless you feel 100% certain that they made an honest mistake and will make it up to you in good faith, you should let us know who it is so we don’t make the same mistake of trusting them. Your description of their property narrows it down quite a bit, but that could just make it bad for the other possible suspects too.

  2. “Customer service is a lost art.” This. A million times this. My wife and I find ourselves saying basically this almost anytime we go out or expect anything at all from a business or service. Its very sad. If you find an organization who treats you right, reward them with your business as much as possible.

    • Why is Chik-Fil-A consistently named the number one restaurant in this country, and by a landslide? Because of their chicken nuggets? Everyone makes chicken nuggets! It’s because they treat you like royalty when you go there, and if, on the very rare occasion they do screw up, they bend over backwards to correct the situation. Like Joe said, highest bidder might work when times are good, but times will be bad eventually, and you’d better have a strong customer base on every end of the spectrum if you’re going to survive.

    • My husband bends over backwards to thank and tip anyone at a store or restaurant who is kind and helpful to him. Why? Because it almost never happens anymore. He believes we have a generation 15-30ish year-olds that are so selfish, they have ZERO interest in SERVING others. The idea of “serving or helping” someone is beneath them. Customer service is TRULY a lost art, as is decent human interaction. We always support those with the best customer service, whenever possible.

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