A Swiss man and his daughter decided to have a nice quiet vacation in America and the dad came home with a life-ruining case of tinnitus that he claims eventually broke up his marriage. According to The Blast, Hans-Peter Gauch says that while he and his daughter were staying at The Guesthouse at Graceland hotel in Memphis last October, they were awakened by a very loud fire alarm. Now he’s suing the Elvis Presley Estate for negligence and is seeking $75,000 in damages. And I hope he gets it too. I’d like to sue the EPE for exposing my ear to his terrible covers songs for decades.
Hans-Peter was sleeping near the alarm when it went off at 8:00 AM. He and his daughter did what you’re supposed to do when a fire alarm goes off, they got dressed and tried to exit the hotel so as not to die in a fire. HP says that when they tried to escape, the fire exit signs were inaccurate or obscured. When they couldn’t find their way out (the elevators had shut off ), they went back to their room to call the front desk. Not understanding how America works (or doesn’t in this case), HP says he was “deeply concerned for their safety” but were told it was “probably” a false alarm.
30 minutes later the alarm finally stopped and HP “noticed the presence of a significant whistling noise in both of his ears”. Here’s the thing, it is very quiet in Switzerland. The people are quiet, the trams are quiet, and the mountains are very, very quiet. Even though HP was presumably a fan of Elvis (otherwise this trip makes no sense), he probably listened to his records at a very low volume so as not to disturb his neighbors. This American fire alarm was probably the loudest thing HP had ever heard in his entire Swiss life!
HP took himself to the emergency room at a local hospital to get his ears checked and was given a diagnosis of tinnitus, which can be very debilitating. Lose your wife debilitating in HP’s case! When he got back to Switzerland he went to the doctor and the diagnosis was confirmed. HP claims he now as a “severe, permanent and debilitating bodily injury to his hearing ability”. He says was prescribed prescription sleeping pills which are so strong, he couldn’t get up in the mornings and had to change his work schedule. He also claims it has “altered his speech pattern” and given him such bad mood swings that his wife moved out of the house. Did you know that Elvis never wrote one Goddamn song? Not one!
I looked at the reviews for The Guesthouse at Graceland on TripAdvisor and there are 5 pages of reviews that mention the fire alarm going off at all hours of the night and day, and the staff not giving one shit about it. I say they need to pay up! The EPE can afford it. If they aren’t going to pay all the blues musicians Elvis stole from his entire career, the least they can do is this sensitive Swiss man for his troubles.