There are times when I just feel like the biggest middle class white asshole. Actually, I am guaranteed to feel that at least twice every weekday while I am at work. Because my office has a black cleaning woman who's entire job is to clean the bathrooms and office spaces on two floors of our building. She cleans these spaces over and over (which honestly makes me wonder if we are animals or does some one have OCD that the bathrooms are cleaned literally six times a day) every single day and it kills me.
She is a nice woman. She actually likes her job unless she is totally lying to me (which is possible of course). I can see why. For a cleaning job it is a score. Weekday schedule, she gets the same medical/dental/401K/benefit package as the rest of the employees and even the worst of the messes we make are not as bad as a custodian at like a school or restaurant would have to deal with.
She smiles and laughs while she works. And wears the most gorgeous earrings. And while I am sure she doesn't imagine this as her life's work she seems to enjoy her work.
But something about it brings out all my fears about race and class and all of the ugliness of how our society operates.
I know they pay her well. I know she is appreciated. This is my problem, which makes it worse.