glossary of janitorial words and phrases

All industries come with their own sets of jargon.  Here are some that are janitorial specific (or possibly just my workplace-specific):

Centrum – a large room with 5 classrooms branching off from it.  All the first graders are down in the centrum.

Christmas Delivery – vomit in a bag that needs to be taken to the dumpster.  The nurse has a Christmas delivery. 

Drop Some Wax – to spread a coat of wax on a designated area, such as a class room, with a specialized mop.  Go drop some wax in room 205, before you leave.

Doodlebug  a stick with an interchangeable rectangular pad at the end, used for scrubbing floors and walls.  Go get a doodlebug to get behind the doors.

Gang Bathroom – a bathroom that has more than one stall.  The boy’s gang bathroom needs more soap.

Garlic Table – two tables specific to my school, that came shipped in a tractor trailer that had previously been delivering garlic.  The smell was so strong, in the truck, on the cardboard, and even on the tables.  We still need to put legs on the garlic tables.

Kaivac – a machine that sprays water, sucks up water, and blows out air.  Commonly referred to by a co-worker as the Sky-vac.  You’d be better off using the Kaivac on that bathroom.

Kidney Tables – tables where the teacher sits in the middle, with kids around the outer edge.  The kidney table up in 204 needs its leg tightened.

Liquid Gum Go – the equivalent of “Goo Gone.”  Commonly referred to by a co-worker as Gumbo.  You’re going to have to use gum go on that tape residue.

Merry Christmas – vomit that needs to be cleaned up.  There’s a merry christmas in room 105.

The New Wing – the part of the school that was built most recently, even though that was 1992.  Make sure you hit the stairwell in the new wing.

Pull The Carpet – to use the carpet extractor to clean a carpet.  We still have to pull those carpets.

Sheila Shine / Glint – a stainless steel cleaner.  We sheila shined all the water fountains.

Slop Room – a small room, usually in the corner of a building, where supplies, mops, and chemicals are stored.  A sink, known as a “slop sink,” at ground level, is used to fill mop buckets and machines.  I have extra gloves down in the slop room.

Slopper – A wet mop that is being used to put liquid down on the floor as opposed to cleaning a liquid up.  This slopper is going to need to be run through the washing machine tonight.

Water – Water does in fact mean “water,” but it also means a chemical solution you are putting on the floor to get it wet.  There’s not enough water down yet for scrubbing.