As a JET, I make 3,600,000 yen before taxes (360 man in the local lingo).
Today I read a book in a conbini that layed out the average salary of many types of jobs. Let's compare (I tried to memorize the figures as best I could so I may be off by a bit, but as you can see I can hardly afford to be buying books on my salary).
Average teacher pay (junior high): 740 man. And they get bonuses. And they live with their parents, so life is practically free. Downside: No free time and you are basically a replacement parent.
Average cop: Something like 780 man I think it was. Not bad for bike wranglers.
Average talento: A mere 280 man. Crap. That is my secret dream job. And they work so hard it seems!
Average hostess: 450 man. Does it make up for the liver damage?
Average stripper: 470 man. Probably not worth the extra 20 man a year to go from entertaining guys as a hostess to entertaining guys. And I imagine you get stuck with a Nigerian boyfriend that always borrows your money. I'm just saying there were a lot of Nigerians working for the strip clubs in Roppongi; there's gotta be a lot of hardworking Nigerians with real jobs outside of that area.
Director: 280 man. No wonder Takashi Miike makes so many films.
Farmer: 420 man. Probably not enough, seeing as I have never met a farmer without a family.
Translator: 360 man. Crap, that is my not-secret dream job.
Ramen restauranteur: 450 man.
Soba restauranteur: 800 man. Who knew the kings of the noodle industry were soba dudes?
Public servant: 700 man. Ironically, one of the easiest jobs in town is the highest paying. You have to pass a test to get in though, and maybe know some people who know some people.
Tomorrow I promise to go out and double check the numbers and maybe add a couple more.