Thursday, June 20, 2013

John Perks

When I mention John Perks, most folks seem to think that I am speaking of a man. Perhaps, middle-aged with coke-bottle glasses and funky side-burns that make him look a touch daft. Regardless of who I mention John Perks to, folks seem to think that he is some low-level pencil pusher who works in a small, noisy cubicle, somewhere near the elevator. But the fact is, John Perks is not a person. It is more of an unspoken, amorphous concept. If we consider the two
words separately, I think that you will begin to understand.

1). John [jon] noun: a toilet or bathroom (slang).

2). Perks [purks] noun: an extra inducement, benefit, or award (slang).

So you see, John Perks is not a person. It is a benefit program of sorts that may not be spelled out in a worker's contract or hiring agreement. It is more of a tacit award for rank in the corporate food chain. The deal that I have noticed after painstaking research and more than casual observation is that the higher folks are on the corporate ladder, the nicer their bathroom facilities are and the more often they are cleaned. Here is a list of my findings.
  • Position: CEO
  • Bathroom Description: Teak rainforest beadboard. Imported porcelain with gold fixtures. Spacious room for single user. Includes changing bench with leather padding and wall sconces. Toilet tissue extracted from angel's tears.
  • Cleaning Frequency: Every two hours.

  • Position: Upper management
  • Bathroom Description: Mahogany inlays with stone tile floor. High quality fixtures outfitted with polished chrome. Two stalls with floor to ceiling dividers. Coat rack with gold-toned hooks. Concealed, soft lighting. Toilet tissue scented with jasmine potpourri.
  • Cleaning Frequency: Twice per day.

  • Position: Middle management
  • Bathroom Description: Tastefully painted walls with standard tile flooring. Reasonably clean and outfitted with three to four stalls with 3/4 panel dividers. Brightly lit space with fluorescent fixtures on ceiling. Name brand toilet paper.
  • Cleaning Frequency: Once per day.

  • Position: Lower management
  • Bathroom Description: Standard work-a-day john. White walls and tiled floors. Semi-funky, lingering odor. Rust stains around plumbing. Five to seven stalls and urinals with minimal privacy walls. Fluorescent lighting with only half the bulbs working, the rest either buzzing or flickering. Commercial grade toilet paper.
  • Cleaning Frequency: Three times per week.

  • Position: Technicians/Workers
  • Bathroom Description: Gas-station-level facility. Covered with green mold and infested with roaches, spiders, and fruit flies. Most stalls covered with distasteful graffiti. Many toilet seats missing. Low-grit-sandpaper quality toilet paper, but only in some stalls. Sheen of liquid of some sort on the floor at all times. Dark room, likely haunted. Odor level nearly inhuman.
  • Cleaning Frequency: Once per month.

  • Position: IT Folks
  • Bathroom Description: Port-a-potty in back corner of lot laying on its side. Occupied by an ornery conclave of raccoons or possibly wolverines.
  • Cleaning Frequency: Never
Has anyone else noticed this John Perks scheme at their place of work?