Janitor, plumber, building manager and other housing and communal services workers in culture and art
March 19 is the Day of Workers of Consumer Services for the Population and Housing and Communal Services. What representatives of this sphere are depicted in books, films and fine arts - in the material "Kommersant".
"Good janitor knows things about the residents that they themselves have long forgotten» (from the novel by Darya Pleshcheeva "Batteries of Magnusholm", 2014).
“This is congenial,” Ostap informed Ippolit Matveyevich, “and your janitor is a rather big vulgar fellow. Is it possible to get so drunk on the ruble? “M-you can,” said the janitor unexpectedly. (from the novel by Ilya Ilf and Evgeny Petrov "12 chairs", 1928).
“Your ambition is completely atrophied.
- Well, there is no craving for fame ...
— But what a glory the master has ... What is he, an astronaut? Or a hockey player? The master of worries is full of mouths and one salary " (from the movie "Afonya", 1975).
About the lexicon
“In the speech of one of my acquaintances, an electrician had two parasitic words, which he owned almost masterly. In a conversation with men, he used a single swear word, but, if a woman joined the conversation, he immediately replaced it with "fig"that is, as linguists would say, had two registers of speechwhich were strictly distributed according to gender" (from the book by Maxim Krongauz "The Russian language on the verge of a nervous breakdown", 2013).
About relationships with residents
“In Leningrad, I struggled with house management for years. He sought something, asked, scandalized, threatened. One day the plumber came. He came and ruined everything... Then he asked for six rubles and left... I endured for four days. Then I tracked down a drunk plumber. He dragged him to the fifth floor. Got a hunting rifle. I sat down on a stool and said: "Step to the side - escape! I shoot without warning!" The plumber worked for two hours. Crane fixed. Gas fixed...And only at the very end he thoughtfully said: "I should have pulled you right away with a tire iron!" "True," I say, "but it's too late..." (from the book by Sergei Dovlatov "March of the Lonely", 1983).
“Oh happiness! There was no hot water. So, it means that summer has come in the state. The invisible REU took up the work, and we, as usual, will stay walruses. The public utilities always deprive us of water after the winter. O power of nostalgia! Now it is already clear that it is not us, not us, not the Jews, but others, others! Why prevention - I myself will not say. Don't know. Especially for three weeks. But for the benefit of people, of course, a no brainer, so that we sit without hot water» (from the book by Dmitry Bykov (recognized as a foreign agent) "New and latest letters of happiness", 2010).
“They say that electricians in old age develop conditioned reflex: do not take on two metal objects at once, even if one is a knife, the other is a fork" (from the collected works of Vladimir Savchenko, 1995).
“Wipers are for the most part very melancholy people. Perhaps the reason here is that they have to collect the remnants of the day: all the pieces of paper, broken cigarette boxes, rags, a torn sandal that fell off someone's foot - all the rubbish and horse apples left on the streets during the day by two million Moscow's population and many thousands of horses. (from the essay by Ilya Ilf "Moscow from Dawn to Dawn", 1928).
“Great historical events always affect public utilities. For some reason, attempts to make the world a fairer place always turn into dirt on the streets and in the latrines.» (from the book by Oles Buzina "The Union of the Plow and the Trident", 2013).
On advice to ministers
"[Работая дворником] I received only sixty rubles a month, but I perfectly studied such good phenomena as snowfall, leaf fall, rainfall and even hail, which, of course, none of the ministers or their assistants can say about themselves ... So I draw a simple conclusion: if you are a minister, you cannot properly know and understand what is happening on the street and in the sky ... if you want to be a smart minister, ask the janitor about the weather» (from Sasha Sokolov's novel School of Fools, 1976).
About intelligentsia in housing and communal services
“Intellectual janitors honored themselves as the spiritual elite. They reprinted samizdat, discussed world problems over cheap wine, wore torn sweaters and despised conformity. The denial of Soviet power was not a product of analysis, but fate and a symbol of faith. At the same time, every third was a KGB informant.» (from the book by Mikhail Veller "Samovar", 1996).
"The janitors were our highest authority. They pointed out where you can play, where you can’t, separated the fighters. They knew us by name, instructed us, they knew our shelters, and they helped our mothers to look for us. (from the essay by Daniil Granin "Leningrad Catalogue", 1984).
On choosing a profession
"I dreamed of becoming a janitor. Honestly! I dreamed of standing in the morning at the door of our house, in a white apron with a beautiful badge, and the first, the very first to say to all the tenants that day: "Good morning!" I just wanted to say to all people "Good morning!" (from the novel by Arkady and Georgy Vainer "I, the investigator ...", 1987).
“— Here I am, Varvara Sergeevna, I was in London, and there dogs walk everywhere. The dog is man's best friend.
- I don’t know how it is in London ... I haven’t been. Maybe the dog is man's best friend. And with us ... the house manager is a friend of man!» (from the movie "The Diamond Hand", 1968).