Wax On, Wax Off
rating: +1+x

Dan Dunke-Hatyx is a normal person, despite his last name that was described as odd by a lot of people.

Dan Dunke-Hatyx is standing up in front of a building located on a boulevard.

Dan Dunke-Hatyx is a janitor. Every day, he goes to his workplace, on foot, in order to do his job, which was to clean up the corridors of this building, the same one. It’s been 5 years since he started doing it and, to this day, he never had to complain about it.

Every day, Dan takes his bucket, fills it with water, takes his broom and starts cleaning up. No dirt residue escapes him. After all those years, he knows exactly where they are. His friends like to joke about the fact that his work consists of following the same, long path every day. Dan never provided a counterargument because after all, this joke was a bit true.

Dan likes his job. He judges it simple, repetitive enough to know what to do each time but mobilizing enough energy to not bore him completely. This work gives him calm and tranquility. This is all he asks for.

Dan always feels a bit uncomfortable when he has to walk across the corridors of the building. They always look « not enough » to him. Not big enough, not large enough… just « not enough ». If only this could be fixed, he would consider his job as the best job in the world. But those corridors stayed the same since day one. So, he tries his best to ignore their flaws.

Dan always puts his walkman on when he wants to ignore the absence of noise that reigns on the building. For him, listening to a good song was the best way to not think about it. When he thought too much about it, he realized that a lot of things were making this building scary. So, he needed to do the opposite thing and to do his job without questioning anything else.

For every little part of the floor and the walls he has to clean up, Dan sweeps it four times in a row. Five times, if he needed to. In his way of thinking, it never hurted to sweep it one more time than needed.

Dan concedes that what he was thinking about earlier was wrong. The building wasn’t silent all the time. He could distinguish two « modes », as he usually called them : complete silence or overwhelming noise.

Dan could connect all of this to precise lodgers in the building. The silence, he was relating it to this woman always clad in blue who rarely went out and was sometimes leaving a scent of tobacco behind her. The noise, he was rather connecting it to the children of this couple who settled down here, at the second floor, not too long ago.

Dan Dunke-Hatyx is considered a good employee by his boss. The fact that said boss, at his knowledge, never complained when Dan put a paper with « Dan Dunke-Hatyx, President/Chairperson of All Janitors » on the door of the room when all his equipment was stacked was a sign, for him, that there was no problem.

Dan Dunke-Hatyx doesn’t plan on taking another job. There was nothing complicated in doing it, he doesn’t have to spent a lot of energy doing it and he could go home on a somewhat decent time.

Dan Dunke-Hatyx is standing up in front of a building located on a boulevard.

Dan Dunke-Hatyx wishes he could take another job. He was doing it since 25 years and nothing was changing. It didn’t bother him before but, now, he just wanted something else. Those last decades, he felt that everything was repeating itself. He wanted to see something more exciting happening.

Dan thinks that his employees, these days, are not the most competent out there. At times, he thought he could do all their work by himself. So, he wouldn’t have to pay anyone and could walk more than usual. In addition, he had the feeling that some of them were stealing his donuts. He couldn’t prove it.

Dan hates sitting down on his chair all day but he has no problem pretending the opposite. He has no problem living and being aware of some minor contradictions coexisting in his mind.

Dan wants to go to sleep because exhaustion is really starting to take him over. He thinks that the man below probably haven’t finished his task. He also thinks that this old man living downstairs was about to come and talk to him (in a very loud voice) about his neighbors and every little thing he doesn’t like about them. Whatever. At this point, he doesn’t care.

Dan thinks that if he went to sleep, his thoughts would be clearer and he could stop thinking that his employees were that bad. He wasn’t the best or even good at everything. There are things he teaches to others and, in return, there’s things the others teach him. It’s a two-way exchange.

Dan Dunke-Hatyx is standing up in front of a building located on a boulevard.

Dan Dunke-Hatyx looks at this habitation which building just ended. For several weeks, he was walking past it, when he wanted to go to the subway or to go back home.

Dan doesn’t generally have an opinion on houses or anything close to it. But he makes an exception just for this building. He doesn’t really know why. Maybe because he finds it relaxing to stop for some seconds and just settle down on this particular place. Maybe because it was the first time he saw a building being finished, with future tenants about to go live in it. Maybe because of something else.

Dan only knows a few things about why this apartment building is constructed. He only heard about the property owner, a woman who collected vinyls from the 1950s.

Dan wonders how many people will settle down in this building. Or, at least, how many people will think about settling down here.

Dan decides to go back home. He will have more time to think about this sort of questions later.

Dan Dunke-Hatyx, sometimes, asks himself why does he have the feeling of being young one day then extremely old the following day. Sometimes, he thinks it’s just because he gets off on the wrong foot and this conclusion allows him to ignore this sort of questions running around on his head but there is other times when he finds himself forced to think about it more deeply.

Dan hates it when he has to think about the passing of time. Even if the subject is not morbid in itself, each time he thinks about it, he always ends up thinking about things that are morbid.

Dan would like to not have to think about his own mortality. Or about his perception of time, that he judges appalling.

Dan decides to go back to sleep before thinking too much about it and getting angry. He still has work to do, tomorrow.

Dan decides to keep on working. He’s still young. He doesn’t worry too much about it.

Dan decides that he’s not afraid anymore. He thinks he had a good life and also that said life isn’t really over yet. Far from it, in fact, is what he would tell others.

Dan decides to go take a walk somewhere else instead of directly going back home. It’s his miracle solution for everything. He laughs about it, sometimes. But it’s not his miracle solution for nothing.

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