The thing I like best about the doorman to my building isn't that he greets me by name when I approach, looks me directly in the eye, touches his forefinger almost to the brim of his hat just so, and then smiles both warmly and genuinely, making me feel for a second that I'm the most important person in the entire world and that I feel welcomed, warm, and wonderful all in one, but that he does all of these things and, on occasion, when the opportunity arises, refers to himself, both plainly and clearly as a... doorman.
What, you say? A doorman? Uhm... well.. don't you mean he's a Residential Facilities Entrance Mechanism & Transportation Procurement Professional?
No. I really don't. I really mean a doorman. And the best part is: so does he.
Because, what I truly like best about my doorman - and he does, as well - is he belongs to a proud profession with an honest title that makes sense, proven as credible, and of immense worth to both those receiving and providing the above mentioned - and most invaluable - service.
Yes. Doorman. And, like waiter, a title with both history and honor. Honor which has been retained, in no small part, by use of a title appropriate to the service itself.
Not long ago, I became aware of a new Chief of Staff position, with responsibilities not far beyond the calendaring and sorting of mail I knew the top finalist candidates applying had focused in both their previous positions and in their current interests. Tempted to explain, unsolicited, to the agent who'd listed the opportunity, as to this rather bodacious title being typically reserved for the senior human resource management position within Fortune-500 corporations and not simply for the slightly higher paid member of a small household staff, I chose instead to smile gently, wish all persons well, and I ended the conversation politely and headed for home.
And as I approached home, there he was, waiting patiently for me in the windy chill of a New York City mid-winter rain, yet standing poised, attentive, holding an umbrella for me and, best of all... for that of being humble, and for that being of service itself. My doorman.
And I, domestic worker, was home again.