This week seems like the perfect time—post-World Naked Bike Ride, pre-Pride—to tell you about when I found a naked man in my house pawing through my things, and unlike many nude snoopers, he was a welcome and delightful guest. The man in question, Cub Ginger, is one of a team of naked male house cleaners for a Portland company called Cub Cleaners, who will swab your abode for a couple hours or a full day, all while being total nudniks. I got a trial cleaning for three hours. Was it awkward? Not nearly as much as you'd think. Was it awesome? Totally and completely. This is what it must feel like to be a rich person. So you probably have a pantsload of questions, eh? Hit the jump and I'll cover most of 'em. Yes, there's more pictorial evidence.
What happened when he showed up?
Cub Ginger, or Johnny, arrived with a tote bag of supplies, dressed in shorts and a flowing red beard, and his phone out ready to check in with headquarters. He was pretty stoked that I live in Southeast, because he takes the bus everywhere and it can be hard to get up to the West Hills, which leads to your next question...
Who are Cub Cleaners' primary customers?
"Rich gay men!" At homes high up in the public-transit-remote hills. I was Johnny's first-ever female customer. I laughed when he asked me what my partner thought about using Cub Cleaners. I described my very brief conversation with my husband. Me: "Can I have a naked man over to clean our house" Husband: "Sure." Me: "Don't you want to know more?" Husband: "Nah."
So, uh, was it awkward?
Yeah, a little at first. There was a lot of aggressive eye contact on my part. I would've gotten into an animal-kingdom death match if this were the wild. Johnny stripped down as soon as I gave him a tour of the house. He was super at ease, and talked me through it when I looked uncomfortable. There's a definite dynamic to being the clothed person in a clothed/naked two-person situation. He said that if I got tired of him being naked to just request "that he put back on his cute little underwear." But it was amazing how fast I got used to a naked dude scrubbing my house while I worked on my laptop. My cats, however, were never put at ease.
Yeah, but, do naked house cleaners really just clean?
Johnny says his friends ask him that all the time. Yes, naked house cleaners really just clean. And he did a great job. Over three hours, he cleaned two bathrooms, the kitchen, living room, and vacuumed up the joint. It was sparkly when he was done. Three hours isn't much time to fit in a consultation and a full housecleaning, so if you get a naked housecleaning in the near future, I'd recommend a bit more time to get stuff like all your knickknacks dusted (not a euphemism). The Cubs do all sorts of cleanings too—basements, deep cleanings, weekly refreshers—the whole shebang.
Have the naked cleaners ever been put into weird ooky situations?
Johnny says nothing untoward has ever happened to him. According to him, the owner of Cub Cleaners, Buck, says nothing unusual has been reported in their yearlong existence. That's with a crew of seven cleaners (check 'em out here, but they request you enter your email address to keep the creeps at bay). Basically Johnny calls into headquarters at the start of cleaning so the homeowner knows someone's got his back, and dispatch knows where he's at and how long he'll be there. They also recommend you don't have a bunch of people over to watch—'cuz, duh, that's kinda creepy. But all of Johnny's customers are great, he says. Depending on the week, Johnny has one or two cleanings. And dude loves to clean. His favorite job so far has been cleaning a hoarder's house.
You know in Seinfeld, when there's "good naked" and "bad naked"? Which was this?
Well... cleaning does involve squatting.
And I don't know, I'm not a gay dude, so watching a naked bear clean my house doesn't do much to ramp up my ladyparts. Then at one point, a penis might have touched my dish towel. But right on, naturalism! Most of all, I'm really into getting my house cleaned! Srsly. That was the best.
Last and most certainly least, what kind of music do you play when a bare-naked teddy bear is scrubbing the microwave?
Jens Lekman seemed a little too happily self-hating. Greg Dulli too predatory. Beck's "Sexx Laws" too... too... full of banjo. Adele too full of feelings eating. I finally just hit shuffle and stopped freaking out.
Should I try Cub Cleaners?
Yes! I had a great experience. I'm thinking about calling to have my basement cleaned. Johnny was a sweetheart and a half. We chatted about roller derby, music, hoarding, cleaning, and he really wanted me to feel comfortable. And I didn't have to vacuum or scrub any showers. Win.
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