A Day on the Job with: A High-rise Window Cleaner.

Chad McGuire
So this is the first, of what I hope to be many, of a series of blog posts in where I follow someone during their typical work day. This first post is about my friend Chad McGuire. He's a high-rise window cleaner! I thought it would be interesting to follow Chad around for a day because for one, I thought I might get some cool pictures, and two, he's been doing it for just about a decade and I have never seen him at work before. With permission from the Waikiki Landmark building, I followed Chad on a solo job where he did what he does best... clean windows that are really high up.
You can also see the company Chad works for, "Worldwide Window Cleaning Inc." on an old episode of "Dirty Jobs" with Mike Rowe on the Discovery Channel.

As part of these blog posts, I wanna take a really quick interview of the individual. Here is a quick 5 question and answer with Chad;
1.) What's the best part about your job?
~Not being pinned down to a desk. I need the scenery to be constantly changing or my brain shuts off.

2.) Would you trade positions with your boss?
~Hell no. Heavy lies the crown.

3.)The most memorable experience on the job so far was...
....When my rope snapped and I was dangling five stories above concrete. It was 100% my fault. I will never forget that.

4.)The easiest way to kill yourself on the job is to...
...Convince yourself you are not afraid. Fear keeps you safe. Fear keeps you double checking your safety lines.

5.)What's your dream job?
~Playing guitar in a band with my friends and being able to travel around the world doing it. Viva la Contra!


I showed up to the Landmark building just as the sun was coming up. It was gonna be an early start to the day. One of the reasons High-rise window cleaning gets off to an early start is because they have to factor in the strong winds later in the day.
Up the elevator to the roof
This is a photo of the Landmark building in the elevator. Im sure you can recognize it when you're driving into Waikiki.
We got on the roof a few minutes after sunrise. Me and Chris spent some time taking pictures of the view and of each other before Chad had to start his job.
Chad and Chris taking a peek 400 feet down.
We did a quick little portrait session with Chad.

I brought all my lenses to the roof. I shot a few pictures with my long forgotten 'Lensbaby'.

Great view to check the surf... I think this is "Three's", but i'm not sure.
Enjoyed some more of the sunrise..
The town

Then it was time to get to work. Chad's job for the day was to clean all the windows in the middle of the archway of the building.
This is Chad's rope.. a literal "Life-line"

The necessary tools for today's job. A bucket of soap/washing liquid. An applicator sponge, and a squeegee.
This is the 4'X4' hatch that Chad will be descending from. A big misbelief is that all High-rise window cleaners clean windows by standing on a scaffold on the side of a building, Chad says he never uses one of those.
Chad uses a seat. It looks like a wood swing you'd take from your backyard tree. He hangs from that D-ring in the picture. I don't know about him, but I was scared just looking at.
He said he still gets a little nervous dropping into this hatch. Usually (on different buildings), he hangs off the side of the building, which he says is much less scary. But this hatch gives you the only access to the windows under the arch.
Last minute thoughts... (or prayers)
We gave Chad a camera too, to take some pics. (he's multi-talented)
Half posing for the picture, half actually scaring himself.

There's a pipe hole in the floor that gives a pretty cool view of Chad at work.

Geometric look at the Waikiki Landmark.

Chris shot a buttload of film... still waiting for that to get processed :)
After Chad cleaned one side of the building, he had to clean the other side. But first, he has to pull up 400 feet of rope. Hard work I tell ya.
Back on the roof for some more photos, before Chad drops into the hatch on the other side.
interesting views
Waikiki at lunch.
Last photo opportunities

and that's that. If you have a cool job that would be interesting to take photos at, lemme know. Thanks to Chad and Worldwide Window, and the Waikiki Landmark building.
Chad, you're an amazing person.

Till next time...