**Edited to include another brilliant creation by “Photoshop Dave” (For those who don’t know, Dave will send me brilliant and hilarious photos he creates to fit my blog entries by using photos in my archives. He has total permission to do so and they are always such a hoot!)
I am a stay at home mom. There is a bit of confusion from time to time because I will write, “When I was at work” or something similar and I will get an email with an inquiry that usually involves a statement like “Wow, I haven’t read in a week. Did you suddenly get a career and I am just totally out of the loop???”.
Alas, it is nothing that grand.
Sporadically (Yet, fairly steadily) I get small and insignificant side jobs. Sometimes I am bored and the job is fun (Working in a bookstore), sometimes it is necessary (Working as office manager for my husband’s company) and sometimes it is because I want to make my own tiny bit of money to save for something important to me like my dream trip to the UK this fall (My current job). With this current job of mine I have been deliberately obtuse on this blog. You’ll see why.
In January, my husband told me that the couple who were contracted to clean his company’s office building weren’t going to continue and he wondered if it would be something that I would be interested in doing? I hadn’t really ever thought of doing something like cleaning offices before, but I really want to go to the UK in the fall. The pay was decent and it was only about 4-6 hours a week and I could work at night. So, I said yes.
Last week I had a startling realization:
I am a janitor.
I am not totally sure how I feel about this. On one hand, I have never, ever been ashamed either for myself or on behalf of others for doing decent, honest work. On the other hand, I AM A JANITOR!!!!!!!!!
At least this title is a bit easier to swallow since purchasing my new car. Because truly? The whole going to the janitor job while drive an ’83 Station Wagon was just a little too hard to take some days. If it is hard for me to swallow, you should see my awkwardness in explaining that I do to people.
People have various reactions to it. There are times I can tell that they are trying their best to keep a casual face and not judge, but it is still goin’ on in the cranium. When that happens I start freaking out in my head, “DUDE, I CAN FEEL THE JUDGEMENT!!!! STOP THINKING THAT I SUCK BECAUSE I SWAB TOILETS 3X A WEEK! Oh, and you have some spinach stuck in your upper front tooth. I am not going to say anything about it to you since you are such a hater. So, pppth!!!”
Even worse than that though, are the sweet, well-meaning people who get that “Look”. When I was telling one of my friends about my job, they got “The Look” and I said if they were about to use the terms “Courageous”, “Admirable” or “Brave” I would have to severely hurt them. I also said if they call me a “Sanitation Engineer” I will be forced to start ripping out their arm hairs one at a time.
Unless I just decide to accept my fate about it all. Maybe I can start a network of janitors and form a faction that is plotting to take over the world like the diabolical janitor with no name from “Scrubs”.Don’t fear, I have zero plans on inundating you all with “Tales from the toilets”. Actually, given my abhorrence of all things “Excrement”, I can’t believe I actually agreed to do this job in the first place. At least I don’t have to deal with bitchy people doing this, which is more fab than I can begin to tell you. Actually, there is pretty much zero people interaction at all. Unless you count Wednesdays.
I hate Wednesdays at work, and let me tell you why in two little words: MARY KAY.
Now, before I get hordes of you pink fans emailing me like the Amway fans that think I am a hater, let me say that Mary Kay can be awesome. I am a total fan of the Timewise system and they have a completely sweet lip mask set that makes my mouth soft and munchable like nothing else. Lots of women have found their niche in the world due to this little company and I admire it.
The office building that I clean is not just any office building. It is a freaking HUGE office building with like 50,000 square feet. They rent out a lot of it to other businesses. A Mary Kay faction rents it out on Wednesday and it almost always involves craploads of perfume, glitter and a boombox blasting “I believe I can fly”.
These big weekly gatherings of women can irritate me like no other. I am just not a fan. I have never been “Into” large groups of women doing anything, really. I tried to join a sorority my freshman year and pretty much snorted and giggled so much during initiation because I thought it was STUPID that I was sorta univited. When I was an active LDS person, Enrichment Night used to make me break out into hives. I am really not sure how I survived being PTA President for three years.
Every Wednesday, I am required to walk into this room full of very nicely groomed women and gather the trash from the cafeteria. I always have to go in in the middle of their meeting and it fills me with apprehension and DREAD. It doesn’t help that the trash has usually been crammed full of 8 billion Styrofoam packing peanuts and pink makeup boxes and so retrieving the trash is rather awkward and long. Usually, this involves about 30 pairs of eyes looking at me and taking in my hair (Usually hurridly thrown into pigtails, a bleach stained t-shirt and Army cargo pants and a sweater. I may or may not have smeared eyeliner at that point as well. I hate it. It probably has to do with the fact that 90% of the time that I am at work, I look like a homeless person. I live in total fear that one day I will be accosted because they will think I would make a great charity case. “Awe. Let’s give the poor, fugly janitor lady a makeover and bring some joy and grooming into her bleak little world!”
I know. I’m being wenchy, but it is still a fear, and I sense that it is not all that unreasonable, either.
Over all, though it has been an ok little job, actually. And frankly as long as it means that come September I am able to fulfill one of the biggest dreams of my life, I can put up with toilets, mop water and even Mary Kay and be pretty damn grateful about it all.