I was watching a news story not too long again in Taipei and they were reporting on one of the most famous restaurants in all of Taipei, Ding Tai Fung. The food is truly amazing and it’s always one of the first things I want to eat when I arrive. There’s always a wait no matter what day of the week. Besides Taipei, there are locations all over the world.
Back to my story. They were reporting on the salary of the employees there. The dishwashers made about $1,000 US per month (I know it’s not much but stay with me). In the video it was mostly older ladies doing the washing. Seriously. My fiancé’s mom was watching and said she would totally do that. She would go wash dishes there cause the money was good plus they got six days off a month.
It got me thinking. If she’s saying this then there has to be many more people out there thinking the same thing. The money is good so I’ll wash dishes. Forget the duty that is involved. It’s easy and pay is good.
<Sidenote: Now the cost of living in Taipei is much cheaper. Minimum wage starts at about $3 an hour. So you can see that $1,000 US can be considered a lot. However don’t think Taipei is a poor city. It’s a bustling metropolitan city.>
Let’s make the salary something relatable. If someone paid you to wash dishes and paid you $50,000 a year, hypothetically of course, before taxes would you take it?
You’d have to work 6 days a week. It can’t be the weekends cause that’s when it’s the busiest. When friends are out playing, you’re working. The days you work would be from 10am till 10pm. After work, you’re exhausted. You don’t get holidays off because holidays are when the restaurant is most busy. Christmas dinner with the family? Sorry. You’re not doing this just for a month, or a year. You do this for five years or ten years with no promotion. But hey the money is unbelievable!
I’m not talking about getting your foot into a 5 star restaurant and you have to wash dishes to move your way up, if that’s what you want. I’m talking about that’s your job. You wash. They pay. Thank you very much.
Don’t forget what washing dishes is like. If you’re never done it before, it’s a great way to go on a diet. After seeing all the food that is wasted, scraping it off, and unclogging sinks and drains full of food, you won’t feel like eating. Not to mention you’re standing near a hot dishwasher all day.
Sound appealing? According to my fiance’s mom she would. Maybe she didn’t think about it that way.
As for me, I wouldn’t do it for $120,000 a year. Screw that. I’ve washed dishes a few times before and it’s miserable. I don’t even like washing dishes at home. Sure that’s a lot of money. I could pay my bills and have money to spend but where is the time when I get to spend that money? When do I get to take a vacation? How can I be proud to be a dishwasher?
I understand there’s no dishwashing job that’s going to be pay anywhere near $10,000 a month. The point is the dishwashing job could be any job you despise. It could be a past job. It could be your current job. Long hours. Meaningless. Boring. Unfulfilling. Fill in the blank. “I would not (horrible job) for $120,000.”
Money isn’t worth the agony and depression. If you’ve never been in that situation then it’s hard to describe how it feels at the thought of just going to work. Sadly it can get to the point where the thought of death sounds much better.
Some people have to take the dishwashing job for minimum wage. It’s all they got. The world needs dishwashers. The world needs garbage collectors. The world needs people stand on the side of the road dancing and holding an advertisement.
However if you’re reading this, then I know that does not have to be you. You’re here because you know you’re capable of much more than that. You have the opportunity to do more. Don’t be the one that does something for money.
Your well being and happiness is worth much more than a paycheck. Don’t be the one that takes the money while feeling like you’re stuck in prison.
Were you in a situation where you walked away from a higher salary cause you hated your job?
Are you in a job now that you wouldn’t stay on even if you were paid more?
Or is sacrificing your well being worth it for a bigger paycheck in certain situations?
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Main photo by _J_D_R