I’m Not Your Janitor


Customers thank us all the time for our work at the movie theater. I especially get this as I’m standing just outside a movie theater in the process of preparing to clean it. Moments later, I turn the corner and realize that everyone collaborated to leave their trash. Worse, only half the people actually ate their $15 purchase. That really bugs me, ya know? Don’t complain at the concessions stand that we’re robbing you of your money if you’re not going to finish your food. For goodness sakes, there are starving kids in Africa. I know we aren’t helping the cause but you aren’t either. So… I stared doing some research. It was a few months ago that I bumped into a curious customer. She asked exactly this,

“When I was younger, my MOTHER said it was your job to clean up the trash. We’re “supposed” to leave our trash because it’s your job, right?”

I had to take a moment to think. My job? My job? Yes, it is my job to clean the theater but I am not everyone’s personal maid. Do you understand that my dust pan can only fit a bag of popcorn? It’s not made to pick up the vast amount of cups, containers, and outside food that you shouldn’t have brought in. I had to hand it to her mom though. Teaching kids at such a young age to let other people clean up their sh*t is definitely the way to go (not!). My answer?

“No, you’re supposed to take your trash with you. That’s why there are trashcans directly outside of every theater.”

I didn’t add that if it was indeed our job, we should be paid the equivalent of a janitor (easily 12 an hr.) She wasn’t too happy but she didn’t report me to a manager. I call it a win-win. Unless of course, I see her leaving trash in my theater again…

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