Thursday, 10 December 2009

A View From The Mop

Little Words & These Fists in the Air (december)
By Jove "Lanky" Lank

Monica and I when sometimes we fight she raises her fist at me and
sometimes her middle finger too but I just say ‘Jesus’ back at her and
then she quits off. But these guys here in this office where all it is
that they do is read and talk about reading and read about reading they
have been raising their fists at me when I try to take these little scrap
pieces of paper from off of their desks when it seems like all it is, is

I clean here and the scraps of paper that I see are usually trash even if
they have a number or some words on them. Sometimes just by the waste bin
like they shot for a basket and missed. Sometimes in the toilet and I have
to reach in my hand and get them out. That kind of paper, those kinds of

Pick it up and I get these raised balled up fists in the air at me, no
words but a gesture from these goddamn reading filthy readers.

These guys here in this place with Monica and me they must keep
everything. They must in their houses have all the things they have ever
had since when they were little boys and little girls. They must have old
birdcages and tiny baby shoes and empty frames and all kinds of other shit
that most people would know was trash and would put out on the curb or in
the bins but no these folks here they keep it all.

They are having a contest I think who can say the most by using only
little words on little pieces of paper. That would at least make sense,
and then I wouldn’t have to hear the air around their fists moving when
they raise them up at me, telling me without words that I shouldn’t touch
those pieces of paper that look like trash, their noses in books, reading.

I clean here and trash is trash is trash.

Me, I don’t keep anything except for Monica and that’s because we are
married and she only sometimes raises her fist in the air at me and how I
am. I clean but that’s it.

Jove 'Lanky' Lank is one of LWOT's oldest employees and has been cleaning the office since 1967 when he immigrated to Canada from Australia. His rantings first appeared in the pages of LWOT in the April 1974 issue as punishment for accidentally throwing out one of Gradey Alexander's manuscripts. Alexander beleived the embarassment at seeing the "lunatic ravings that are about as palatable as a teaspoon of cat litter mixed with acorns" would lead the janitor to quit in disgrace. Instead "A View From The Mop" went on to become one of the magazine's most popular features.

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