'Maid Men' Conquers Brooklyn One Dirty Apartment at a Time
GREENPOINT — Greenpoint resident Chuck Bennet once scrubbed the hotel rooms of the stars of “Mad Men,” but now he's master of his own domain.
Bennet, 31, has launched a cleaning company called Maid Men that specializes in deep scrubs and junk removal.
He said he was ready to launch his own business after years on the cleaning staff of Midtown's upscale Hotel Elysee (which coincidentally was featured on "Mad Men").
"My friend came up with the name and it just stuck," he said. "I thought it was catchy, so my mom made the flier for me."
Cleaning provides a lucrative and "meditative" supplement to Bennet's other pastime, as a rapper, he said.
“When you clean a room it’s like your mind is cleaning as well," said Bennet, who goes by Chuck Parker, using his middle name, in his singing career. "I can be creative for a day and then go clean someone's shower."
But the young entrepreneur said he keeps a firm divide between his rap and cleaning sides.
"My raps are filthy sometimes, so as I businessman I try to keep them separate," the Bronx native said.
He's found surprising demand in North Brooklyn for the weeks-old service.
"There are a lot of new condos and people moving...People work really hard and they don't often have time to clean."
The name Maid Men lets Bennet poke fun at the notion of being a male cleaner before others could mock him first, he said.
"I circumvent ridicule by making fun of myself," said Bennet, who posed with mops, detergent bottles and paper towels in the Greenpoint Key Food supermarket.
Bennet went to community college for one semester and worked in Strand Book Store's warehouse before he entered the cleaning business.
He's currently the only member of his new company, but he noted that he has a few potential employees to hire as his business booms — and one of those would-be staffers is a woman.
"I guess I'd call it Maid Men and Women," he said about the potential name change.
In the meantime, Bennet is tackling North Brooklyn one dirty apartment at a time — though he admitted his own home is in shambles.
"I live with one roommate, but he complains I'm really messy. I have a lot of books and records," he said.
Still, Bennet insisted that his apartment was "pretty clean but not what one would expect from a professional house cleaner."
He charges $25 an hour and works in Greenpoint, Williamsburg and Bushwick.
"My mom's pretty happy," Bennet said when asked what his family thought of his venture.