Let me start by being frank: I only have experience as a waiter (and I was shit at that), and hosting dinner parties (I'm not too terrible at that, but I ain't Thomas Keller, either). I'm a high school math teacher, and I'll have a huge chunk of downtime this summer. I want in. I want to work in a kitchen; I want to see how a good one runs. I've got one in mind. I want to have maximum opportunity to learn with minimum odds of totally fucking up some crew's shift. So, I figure, I should start by washing dishes. Like the lowly grunt I am. What is the best time to beg to be admitted to the dish pit?