On the Job

15 Reasons Why You Deserve a Raise

25 November 2022 By Gavin Rothenburger
An illustration of a man balancing on a dollar sign in the ocean.

Gavin Rothenburger has been the author of Dockwalk’s humor column Last Laugh since 2008. For questions, concerns, or for general badmouthing, you can write to me at gavinrothenburger@yahoo.com.

We all have our reasons for doing the jobs we do, not the least of which is that most of us like getting a paycheck. But sometimes we have to scratch our heads and wonder if, because of what we’re now required to do, we shouldn’t ask for a little bit more. A few thoughts on when this might be a good idea:

1. When it turns out that the “quiet,” privately owned boat you signed up for actually has seven sets of private owners who forever bicker over whose turn it is to be on board before settling their differences by all showing up at the same time and never leaving.

2. When the captain turns to you one day and says anything resembling: “Customs is coming on board! Quick, swallow this baggie!”

3. When your normal duties expand to that of carbuncle masseuse, hemorrhoid technician, and chief lancer of the royal boils. Get paid or run.


4. When you’ve been on board five years, never received a raise, never taken a sick day, and discover that, after adjusting for inflation, you’re now paying the boss for the pleasure of cleaning her underwear.

5. When you’re asked to lie to the owner’s spouse about how many affairs you’ve been witness to and/or participated in.

6. When the skorts you’re being told to wear as uniform keep getting shorter and shorter and you no longer feel comfortable. Especially true if your name is Steve.

7. When you learn that the “industry standard” wage you were promised is actually referring to the Bangladeshi textile industry and that most of its workers would consider you exploited.

8. A raise is warranted when the “round the world” itinerary you signed up for changes to one in which you’re permanently stern-tied to an isolated rock to save on dockage.

9. When you talk to a friend and discover that most people don’t just work for tips. Especially when, like you, they’re on a private boat.

iStock/BRO Vector

10. When you can no longer afford the cost of your addictions to those wonderful “supplements” that only barely grant you enough energy and willpower to get through one more day on the calamitous trainwreck of a dumpster fire that is the horror-show, nuclear waste-settling pond of the barely floating catastrophe of a so-called yacht that you work on.

11. You deserve more when the previously very likeable and personable owner decides that you should now refer to him as Lord Vader.

12. It never hurts to ask. The worst that can happen is that they say no and laugh pitilessly at your completely unfounded sense of self-worth.

13. When you discover that the boss’s medical ailments include at least six conditions preceded by the word “explosive” and that it’s now your duty to clean it off the walls.

14. When, mostly by accident, you become the owner’s paramour and want to find out if they really do love you.

15. When the boss decides that you’re to become the “official food taster,” which is really just a fancy title meaning you’re sampling the meals to see if they’ve been poisoned.

There are any number of reasons to ask for a raise. You’re good enough. You’re smart enough and doggonit, people like you … to lance their boils.

For more related content:
12 Signs to Gauge How Well the Charter is Going
How to Know When it’s Time to Go
The Art of Looking Busy on Board When You’re Not
How Many of these Yachtie Terms Do You Use?


More from Dockwalk