Thursday, January 8, 2009

Mercenary Work

I was reading this.

But, really? I found that there are better. And I've had them. Tipped work can easily pay more than what you make as a white-collar professional. It's something I always keep in the back of my mind...especially times like now with transitions and poor general employment forecasts. I've found myself unemployed before.

Substitute Teaching:
Work more or less when you want, as you are likely to get calls on a daily basis asking wether or not you'd like to have a day of gainful employ.
Pay: $80/day (7 hours)

You can usually find somewhere that'll assign you your preferred shift.
Pay: Minimum wage or higher plus tips (and tips can be HIGH. I once made $1,000 over an 8 hour shift, but I never made less than $400 in tips).

Much the same deal as bartending, but with more walking and lifting of heavy items. If you waitress, you shouldn't need to work out on the side.
Pay: $2.13 (or possibly more) per hour plus tips. I found the tips here to be greatly variable and not as good as bartending (usually, I also frequently came home with over $400 in tips and once made over $1,000...however some days I only made $15). The benefits of waitressing over bartending are the hours. Say you need a morning shift. you won't find that bartending. And during those slow mornings you *can* eeke out a good amount of tippage if you play your cards right. There are some customers no one wants to take because they are seen as "weird" who'll appreciate someone friendly and non-judgemental. There are lonely customers who just want company. And there is the odd overly-horomoned teenaged boy with too much spending money (you can ignore his love notes and pocket the cash). It's not too hard to get a $25 tip when all the check had was a cup of coffee.

Does this all seem mercenary? You bet. You gotta do what you gotta do. And there's nothing wrong with simply being conversational for money.

And the best option is to do a combination of all 3. It's not hard to finagle and you'll find yourself flush enough to pay for everything you need, and be able to take off on weekdays when you are lucky enough to have in interview.

1 comment:

caramama said...

I've got to say, I didn't enjoy waitressing at all. The money wasn't bad, and I'm a friendly person, but the stress of getting double-seated with large parties when the kitchen is backup... too hard and too exhausting for me.

I preferred the part time work I had as a bank teller and a technical writer. Maybe I just enjoy sitting more than getting exercise! ;)