Dishwashing

Thursday, February 01, 2007
Has anyone out there worked as a dishwasher in a restaurant (and not just washing dishes in your own kitchen)? I have an interview for a dishwashing job on Saturday and the gentleman who called me had concerns over my ability to do the job. He said it was "tough" and tried to see if I would prefer a job as a waitress (no thanks). I didn't get the impression that he was being sexist just that he really felt it was a rough job. Any thoughts?

6 comments:

Lee said...

When I worked for Outback, the dishwashing job looked pretty tough. Lots of heavy lifting of racks of glasses and the guys always looked wet and exhausted. In our restaurant, it was pretty much strictly a Peruvian/El Salvadoran/Mexican job.

mister anchovy said...

i've never done dishwashing.... the worst job I ever had was doing breakout cutting in a waterbed factory.... the wackiest job was evening desk clerk in a motel (I could tell you a story or two).

Wandering Coyote said...

Ok, I've done tonnes of dishwashing. How big is the restaurant? You might want to ask what the volume is. Dishwashing can be tough, and it's VERY hot, sweaty work. Lots of lifting, lots of organization involved, and you have to be fast. You'll also probably be treated crappy by the kitchen staff and most likely you'll have a small workspace to deal with. Hopefully they have decent equipment where you're applying and there won't be too much pot scrubbing by hand. As how long it's been since the machinery's been maintained (some are old and break down regularly) and you might want to check the rest of the kitchen out to see how cleanly they are in general. Health inspectors are very persnickety about the dishwashing area and equipment, and they can test your water temperature and cleansing agents and machine whenever they do an inspection. If the kitchen looks shitty, I wouldn't go near it. That's all I can think of right now...

Barbara Bruederlin said...

In high school I did dishwashing (and everything else) in a cateria place. It was sweaty and stinky, but a machine did the actual washing so it wasn't very hard.

Beth said...

I was a full-time dishwasher for six months in 1998 and yeah it's a hard job. It's standing and leaning at awkward angles for extended periods of time. It's lots of heavy lifting (bus pans filled with dirty dishes, carrying huge piles of clean dishes to wherever they have to be put away, moving full trays of clean glasses over your head, etc.). Can be really hard on the back and knees. Slippery floors can be a hazard - I worked with a guy who slipped and broke his elbow and he was/is a dishwasher for life.

There is probably a machine for most of the washing but you will still have to do a LOT of scrubbing - stuck-on stuff, like scorched crap on pots and pans, doesn't come off in a machine. And yeah sometimes the wait staff treats you like shit. And the pay usually sucks.

I lost a lot of weight when I was a dishwasher, so that's one up side to the job. Another one being that it's a completely brainless task and your mind can go wherever it wants to. You leave smelling foul most days, also a good thing. Well - it is if you're gross like me.

paddy said...

I did dishwashing for exactly 2.5 days in 1993. I left without even bothering to get paid and kept the outfit. I can heartily recommend against being a dishwasher. Grind rocks to gravel, or do foot massage. Anything!

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