View Full Version : If I wanted to look for information on Maids

03-21-2013, 09:27 AM
What would be the recommended book? Like the life of a maid working for a powerful mob boss. I found books on the mafia.

I tried doing an amazon search, but mostly just novels about maids came up, which while useful isn't really maid nuts and bolts.

I've sort of found books on the drug trade, and running guns. But for some reason I can't find research on this one aspect.

03-21-2013, 04:42 PM
Ermmmm....... I think maybe you want to change the title to your post cos as is, it's really...odd. LOL!

Sorry, can't help with the question.

03-21-2013, 06:41 PM
I know several Italian maids. Not sure if this is going to break any dark, slim, and sexy images you might have but most of them are older women who do the work for spare income. Most likely even a mob boss Italian man would have respect for this Nonna-like figure. Most Italian men revere the motherly type. Sidebar- the maids in Italy use the strongest chemicals imaginable. You can barely stand to enter a room once they are done with it.

03-21-2013, 07:12 PM
Sorry, I meant things like protocol. How a Maid works, what their job description is, that sort of thing.XD

03-21-2013, 07:50 PM
LOL! I sort of knew what you meant but the title was giving me all kinds of weird ideas.

03-21-2013, 08:57 PM
You may find more information if you search for things like "domestic service" and "housekeeping" rather than "maids"

03-21-2013, 09:56 PM
Not sure if this http://www.ilo.org/public/english/support/lib/resource/subject/domestic.htm will be of use.

Benbenberi is right - you need to search for domestic service or servant, servants duties, possible with a date or century.

Siri Kirpal
03-21-2013, 09:59 PM
Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

I worked as a maid in a hotel one summer, back before they were called housekeepers.

In general, housekeepers who work for families come in once a week or once every two weeks. They clean the baths, dust and vacuum. One who lived with a family would also clean the kitchen, do the laundry and the ironing and make the beds. I would expect a Mafioso to have some area of the house that was off limits, probably a desk, possibly a gun room.

Career maids tend to be hefty and older. Not the college girl I was. I would expect her to be treated with respect...unless she happened to see something she shouldn't.


Siri Kirpal

03-21-2013, 11:25 PM
*eight maids-a-milking, seven swans-a-swimming, six geese-a-laying*
Oops, wrong maids!

Seriously though... I've read that many "maids" or "housekeepers" in western nations are illegal immigrants in modern-day slavery situations. If your character is a mob boss, this could definitely be an option. Maybe he knows something about her that would be devastating to her family and working as his maid is the only way to keep him quiet. (Like she or a family member killed someone important. Or even the brother she loves refuses to pay the "protection money" to the mob boss.) Then you could also throw in some domestic violence behavior.

But that all depends on how you want your characters to evolve...

03-21-2013, 11:35 PM
My family used to have a maid when I lived in Singapore, growing up.
She lived with us in the a room in near the kitchen. Most apartments in Singapore have a small room used for this, usually with a separate bathroom with a shower.

She cooked and cleaned, did the laundry, most of the domestic housekeeper duties, bought groceries and went on errands. But every sunday was her day off, so usually she'd leave Saturday night and return very very early Monday morning.

I suppose it would be different for a mob boss than for an expat family in Singapore, though. On average maids were older woman with children/families back home. Because this usually meant they were pretty experienced. The few younger maids I've seen didn't really know what they were doing, and sometimes it let to a few problems with boyfriends coming over to the apartment, etc.

Its the norm in South East Asia, but I think it would depend on where your mob boss was located. I've lived in Singapore, Korea, Switzerland and now Canada, and domestic help means entirely different things. :) If I can be of help though, let me know!

03-22-2013, 01:01 PM
Well in my particular situation, Bianca was adopted by a rival mob leader as his stepdaughter and housekeeper. This small bit is what triggered the plot catalyst. Luckily there is also enough books on the other end of the journey too.

Oh, I found something else that might help me too, even though its not set in Nashville: http://www.musiccitymaidservice.com/?gclid=CM_UgJf6j7YCFQ70nAodaVkANA

The illegal immigrant option is something to consider for Hiromi and Akiko though. I'm wanting to make sure I have all the resources before I start outlining.

03-22-2013, 04:02 PM
Why does this thread have me wanting to break into a song from A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum?

03-24-2013, 06:09 AM
Nickled and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By In America (http://www.amazon.com/Nickel-Dimed-Not-Getting-America/dp/0312626681/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1364090810&sr=8-1&keywords=nickled+dimed) is an interesting read and would probably be helpful. The author spent some time working in a variety of low-wage service jobs, two of which were cleaning, and chronicled what it was like to try and get along on minimum wage. Hopefully some of her insights would help you!

03-24-2013, 06:23 PM
wendy may be new, but she read my mind pretty well. I was going to suggest reading the maid sections of Nickel and Dimed, which have made me vow I will never treat anyone as Ehrenbach was treated. (I.e., employers who want her to scrub on her hands and knees not because it does a better job but because it makes them feel superior. Ugh.) Plus I now tip hotel maids every single time.

Maryn, getting along with wendy because that mind-reading thing is scary