Do you have domestic help because your neighbors do?
December 18, 2017 5:07am CST
Did you know 80% of residents of houses that can afford a private cleaner in the United Kingdom ‘clean up’ for the cleaner? Being house proud is nothing new, of course, but why not spend the money on something less decadent and do you washing up yourself you lazy sods! All these people could donate their money they save employing a cleaner to give to charity or something. What would those desperate Black Africans on those rubber boats make of that in the Mediterranean, black Africans who may well end up in servitude in some of Europe’s richest houses? Even if I was the richest man in the wold I would never pay people to clean up after me! Having a paid cleaner in England is not that common, as it is in places like South America and Southern Africa, and very much a status thing here. People want their neighbours to know they can afford them. In the summer working for my brothers gardening company when we do someone’s garden in a richer area we soon get approached by their neighbours to do their gardens, competitive leaf blowers soon raging down the street. Well-to-do people can’t bear having less than their neighbors in class ridden Britain. It’s the same with house and garage extensions. If you walk down a suburban street you will see house with an extra room on the roof or in the garden are often next door to each other. It’s called ‘keeping up with the Jones’s’. I lived and worked in South Africa for 6 months and I was amazed how many middle - class whites and blacks had help. Even Black Africans needed that status symbol in a country like South Africa to prove they have made it. Rich Nigerians and Arabs are the worse for it in London and enjoy the perverse pleasure of having staff in servitude for the lowest wages possible when they could clearly pay more, all but legal slavery. The British government turns a blind eye because of the oil money those people bring to London in property and partying.
11 people like this
• Paso Robles, California
Most of my life I did my own cleaning with help from the children when I had them at home. I really hate hiring cleaning help. But my husband is always trying to help people he knows need work and hires them to clean or do yard work and I have nothing to say about it. Lately he hired a woman from church because her family had a lot of medical expenses. We pay her more than we can really afford to, but she is a real help now that there are things I simply can't do. I need the help or they wouldn't get done. I don't sit around while she works. I work with her on projects like decluttering that I can't do myself because of the lifting. She helps me decide what should go where and how we can get what we can't use to those who need it. Then she loads up her car and distributes it. She is worth more than I can pay her, but we've become friends. We consider our arrangement helping each other.
• United States
I'm not that wealthy myself. I have friends who do cleaning and I have one friend who has a cleaner. I'm not sure I would like it - it would feel like an intrusion into my privacy. I agree. While I haven't thought of the cleaner dilemma - I have wondered with rock stars and so forth who back a particular cause. Instead of lavish parties and excesses - what happened if they would donate more?
I was surprised when I went to live in Pakistan every household had one (or 2, or 3... got to have someone to cook, someone to clean, someone to do the babysitting/raise the kids, and a driver!). Of course, most of the wives were obese and lazy because of it. I always do my own cleaning.... until I got very sick and the kids make the apartment look like a hurricane just passed by. Then I had a house cleaner for 2-3 months. Now I'm doing better and I'm back to doing it on my own. I'd like to burn my calories while the house is being cleaned up, thank you very much!
Cleaning services are promoted quite aggressively here too. Their selling point is always "why spend time cleaning when you can spend more time with your family" blah blah blah. It has to do more with the fact that people are "too tired" (or lazy?) to clean rather than a status symbol.