A Tax you SHOULD be paying

In my service we have a tradition, an unspoken rule, that if you are working overtime, you owe a “tax.”

Since you are working the same hours, but making more than everyone else, you are expected to chip in extra towards the meals.  The amount is up to you, of course, and not everyone takes part, but most do.  I contribute the equivalent of one hour’s worth of pay and donate that to the cook prior to shopping.

Sometimes it means improving the menu a bit, other times it means a drastic discount in the price of the meal for everyone else.

I think it’s a good idea and benefit from other folks donating more than it costs me to donate when it’s my turn.

And if you’re working a Chief’s house and they’re on an overtime…surf and turf!

So if you’re on an overtime shift and working with someone who isn’t, don’t be a jerk, kick in.  It could be to the meal or if on post, maybe coffee is on you this time.

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25 thoughts on “A Tax you SHOULD be paying”

  1. Sounds like a good idea. I’m a respiratory therapist, so most of my work is inside a nice, warm, and dry building. However, some of us do pull double shifts occasionally. I usually pitch in for coffee, or bring in some bagels or donuts for breakfast every now and then. My mama always told me “do unto others and hope to god they get a clue and do unto you”. Sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t.

    I was in the military and whenever we did field work, I would bring extra snack bars or treats for the lower ranking troops. Our officers didn’t always get that, but when you work with a bunch of folks who are doctors and nurses first and military officers second, that happens.

  2. Sounds like a good idea. I'm a respiratory therapist, so most of my work is inside a nice, warm, and dry building. However, some of us do pull double shifts occasionally. I usually pitch in for coffee, or bring in some bagels or donuts for breakfast every now and then. My mama always told me “do unto others and hope to god they get a clue and do unto you”. Sometimes they do, sometimes they don't.

    I was in the military and whenever we did field work, I would bring extra snack bars or treats for the lower ranking troops. Our officers didn't always get that, but when you work with a bunch of folks who are doctors and nurses first and military officers second, that happens.

  3. An interesting concept. Has anyone every considered the other point? While you are working the same hours and getting paid more, you are giving up a day off. By doing this, you are decreasing the overall work load of the members of that shift as now they are not a person short as they would have been had nobody picked up the shift. It seems that you should pay the same as everyone else that the people at that house pay a day for meals, even if you are already paid up for meals at your own house.

    1. If it worked that odd way, perhaps, but if hired for OT, it means that no one else wanted to cover that spot on straight time. There is no change in workload between me on OT and a person on straight time.
      If you’re hired OT into a spot that didn’t exist before, like a special event or something then HELL YES you deserve to buy coffee.

  4. An interesting concept. Has anyone every considered the other point? While you are working the same hours and getting paid more, you are giving up a day off. By doing this, you are decreasing the overall work load of the members of that shift as now they are not a person short as they would have been had nobody picked up the shift. It seems that you should pay the same as everyone else that the people at that house pay a day for meals, even if you are already paid up for meals at your own house.

  5. Our OT is split into halves, 12 hrs each. 2nd half guy brings in ice cream, pie, or pizza.1st half gets off scot free, it’s hard enough to fill those slots as it is.

  6. If it worked that odd way, perhaps, but if hired for OT, it means that no one else wanted to cover that spot on straight time. There is no change in workload between me on OT and a person on straight time.
    If you're hired OT into a spot that didn't exist before, like a special event or something then HELL YES you deserve to buy coffee.

  7. I just stopped in at the station, had to drive by after a deposition concerning an accident five days before 9-11-01. Didn’t remember a thing, imagine that.

    I pitched in five bucks for some dried out hamburgers, helped the dinky a little.

    I think I’ll be joining the Fire/EMS blogs network. They are putting something together now. I hope it works out!

  8. Our OT is split into halves, 12 hrs each. 2nd half guy brings in ice cream, pie, or pizza.1st half gets off scot free, it's hard enough to fill those slots as it is.

  9. I just stopped in at the station, had to drive by after a deposition concerning an accident five days before 9-11-01. Didn't remember a thing, imagine that.

    I pitched in five bucks for some dried out hamburgers, helped the dinky a little.

    I think I'll be joining the Fire/EMS blogs network. They are putting something together now. I hope it works out!

  10. In our department, the tradition is that the OT guy buys dinner. Not a problem in the houses with 3-person crews, a bit pricy in the 5-person houses. We’re about to start staffing 1 house at 8 (including a BC), so I expect we’ll change the “tradition”.

  11. In our department, the tradition is that the OT guy buys dinner. Not a problem in the houses with 3-person crews, a bit pricy in the 5-person houses. We're about to start staffing 1 house at 8 (including a BC), so I expect we'll change the “tradition”.

  12. Weird. As Ordo points out, if I’m working OT, I’m giving up several hours of my off duty time. Which of course why OT is compensated at 1.5 x my base rate. It also means that for some reason my employer ran short of medics, not that no one would work the shift on straight time. If no one will come in voluntarily, someone will be held on mandatory overtime, so someone that got to go home should owe me for helping him out.

    Of course I can’t resist the snark that being from Pelosi land, you’d be in favor of extra taxes on people who work hard. :)

    1. I have had more meals discounted because of other’s generosity in sharing a bit of their extended wealth than I have ever contributed.
      When we all share, we all win. Try it.

  13. Weird. As Ordo points out, if I'm working OT, I'm giving up several hours of my off duty time. Which of course why OT is compensated at 1.5 x my base rate. It also means that for some reason my employer ran short of medics, not that no one would work the shift on straight time. If no one will come in voluntarily, someone will be held on mandatory overtime, so someone that got to go home should owe me for helping him out.

    Of course I can't resist the snark that being from Pelosi land, you'd be in favor of extra taxes on people who work hard. :)

  14. I have had more meals discounted because of other's generosity in sharing a bit of their extended wealth than I have ever contributed.
    When we all share, we all win. Try it.

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