Hi, I'm Levi.
I'm a 24-year old who's lost. I've been dishwashing for 5 years now. It doesn't bring me much joy. But I don't have a diploma or a GED. And I don't have a driver's license or a car. And frankly, even if I had all of those, I don't know what I would want to pursue. I work 47 hours a week, and every day, I spend 2 hours getting to work, and an hour and a half getting home (transit certainly is something). Altogether, my workweek is 47 hours of paid labor and 17.5 hours of unpaid transit time, for a total of 64.5 hours of tiredness every week, day in and day out.
3 out of 5 days of the workweek, I spend the first 3 hours of work dishwashing and the next 7 hours prepping food and working the line on a 9-hour shift. The other 2 days, I wash dishes all day long on a 10-hour shift. My job has also been restructed recently, so instead of working for the kitchen I work in, I work for the new Steward department, and my boss is the newly-hired Executive Steward. I like him, but unfortunately, my conversations with him about overtime opportunities seem to imply that if I come in on an extra day, I may be expected to clean walls, ovens, and smokers, and I'm not entirely sure if I'm up for that.
How I maintain my sanity
There are a couple things I do to maintain my sanity and positive attitude on a daily basis. For one, I get coffee as often as I possibly can. Coffee is delicious (especially with flavors). For two, I try to get out as many weekends as I can. As many as possible means rarely in my case, because I usually just don't have the energy. But when I do, there are a couple of fantastic places to go in Seattle.
One is Distant Worlds Coffee. I didn't find out about them directly, let alone through advertising. A good 5, maybe 6 years ago, I saw an ad for a celebration of Wikipedia's birthday, by the Cascadia Wikimedians. I wasn't entirely sure who they were but it was a geeky celebration in the middle of Seattle on a Weekend, so I was willing to give it a shot. I was still in high school at the time, and had a little more energy. The coffee shop it was held at was called Wayward Coffee on NE 65th St and Roosevelt Way NE in the Roosevelt district of Seattle. It was down a set of stairs in a strange building where businesses are on 2 floors with a set of stairs. I loved that one of the businesses, a glasses shop, had a particularly punny name: Spex in the City. But onto the tale. When I arrived to this unfamiliar coffee shop, I noticed that the aesthetic of the room was rather warm and comforting, as string lights hung from the ceiling at the far end of the shop, and the entirety of the coffee shop was decorated with Funko Pop figures, and geeky posters and decorations, and what really pulled me in was the Fandom in a Cup menu: Everything on it was named after something referencing pop culture media. The TARDIS latte, named after the TARDIS from Dr. Who, was Blueberry and Irish cream, the colors of the telephone box the TARDIS got stuck in the form of. The Inigo Montoya Mocha was Cinnamon, Chocolate, and Orange. And there were many others. The group of Wikimedians themselves were pretty friendly too, although I found it difficult to connect with them, because I hadn't ever done any Wikipedia editing, or even Wikipedia page vandalization (how they say they got their start). But their main hobby is ensuring that people cite their sources on Wikipedia. This is something I don't find much interest in, but to each their own. Over the years, Wayward Coffee changed hands and became called Distant Worlds Coffee, a much more fitting name to reflect the sort of theme and style they're going for. And eventually, they needed more space as they planned to add a bakery. So, now they're on 64th and Roosevelt Way, just around the corner from where they used to be. This is a relatively recent change and I believe that they're still undergoing the process of bringing their bakery to life. I highly recommend checking them out, they make amazing coffee even if it takes a few hours to get there via transit.
The other thing I like to do when I get out to Seattle is to go to Bainbridge Island. I will admit that people have a tendency to overrate it, as it's mostly an island full of wealthy people who are straight-up bad at socializing. But there's a good diner there called the Madison Diner. It's smack dab in between Wyatt Way NE and Winslow Way W, and the diner has a sort of vintage theme to it. Last August was the first time I tried them, and I was astonished to find how out of the ordinary their hours are. 7 AM to 2 PM is an unusual set of business hours, but if you can get there on time, they make amazing burgers and the staff are extremely friendly. When I got there, Jimmy Buffett (may he rest in peace) was playing on their radio, and overall a fantastic experience.