when i was younger, i absolutely hated doing the dishes. for some reason, my sister never had to do them. i used to do extra chores and tasks around the house to earn supplemental income to put away with my allowance.
i was able to build quite a nest egg. i was building it for a reason. one day, i sat my mom down and brokered a deal with her. she agreed to do the dishes every night for six months for my nest egg…$400, which boiled down to $2.22/day.
my mom didn’t mind, because she enjoyed doing the dishes. she couldn’t understand why i hated the chore so much, that i would pay her $400 to do them. she told me that the task relaxed her and allowed her mind to wander.
in 1985, i took a job at the bread basket restaurant, in alpine, california. it was close to my house, out in the middle of nowhere, and they were willing to work with my schedule, as i was still in high school. i worked nights and weekends.
my parents wanted me to have a job, be self-sufficient, and responsible. i just wanted money, because i wanted to buy my freedom…my parents 1971, buttercream yellow, toyota corona. and, i worked and went to school.
i excelled at both school and work. i was able to maintain a 3.50 gpa, while working about 32 hours a week, for $3.50 an hour. i was still living with my parents, so i saved money like crazy, and was able to purchase my freedom.
i absolutely loved that my job afforded me new-found freedoms, experiences, adventures, socialization, and friendships that my parents had absolutely no knowledge of, or any control over. i was free, in control of me.
oh yeah, i forgot to mention what my wonderful, new job was…drum roll, please…i was a dishwasher. 😂 later, i got a promotion to busser, but yup, i was a motherfucking dishwasher…and, i absolutely loved it.
i finally understood why my mom didn’t mind doing the dishes. it wasn’t an unpleasant chore or task, it was relaxation and a blank check to go anywhere, or be anyone. it was control, order, and organization of a system.
i had complete control over my area, implements, order, organization, and time. i had a system. when i arrived in the morning, i began with silverware and utensils, because without silverware, nobody eats.
then, i would do the butter containers, melting the residual butter, and running them through the dishwasher. i would finish up with the pots and pans. then, i ran around, putting everything away and set-up for the morning.
as the day went on, i emptied the bus tubs and worked in the following manor: silverware, glasses, mugs, bowls, plates, and then bus tubs. i raced around trying to keep up with the pace of the place, washing and putting away the dishes.
i was completely on autopilot, in a groove, and my mind took me anywhere that i wanted to go. i loved it. i find myself doing something similar here. i don’t like dishes thrown into the sink, with food and garbage. i detest that.
that happens a lot here. after, i dig everything out, i arrange it in order, like with like. i fill the sink with hot water and dish soap…and, i begin with silverware, knives, and utensils, because i hate them, and want them over with.
next, i move on to glasses and mugs. then, plates and bowls…followed by containers. next, it’s skillets and pans. i finish up with pots and the colander. while doing these dishes, i am anywhere and everywhere, but here.
dishes provide me with relaxation, freedom, and escape…