Leaving The Tip Of The Iceberg

Posted by admin - 20/09/10 at 07:09 am

I think when the end of the meal comes, we all lose focus a little bit. We’re full, we’re sleepy, and then it’s time to tip the waitstaff.

To begin with, we can never figure out how much 15% is of anything. Just give up. Take ten percent of the total (move the decimal over, Chester), then add a couple of bucks. We invariably round off, so don’t worry about exact percentages.

Why do we tip? I’m not complaining, I’m just curious. When did we decide it was okay to let the restaurants pay these employees several dollars below minimum wage, and make them hustle to make up the difference? And then when did we also decide it was okay for them to not hustle, and still count on us to subsidize the industry?

At some point, the tip went from being a reward to being an expected part of the meal. If your waiter brings the appetizer after the meal, sneezes in your salad, and grinds the pepper shaker over your glass of tea, you might be ticked off enough to only give that incompetent idiot 10% above the cost of the meal.

Another thing that irks me is when people assume tips. If the meal is $43 and I give the waitress $60, just assume I want you to bring me my change and let me figure out the tip.

Her: “Do you need change?”
Me: “Uh…no. Why don’t you just climb up on the table and dance for me, while you’re at it?”

Don’t be cute. If I get $12 in change, don’t bring me a ten and two ones. Don’t try and force me to overtip, I’m a bit stubborn.

And there are some occasions where we just lose our minds and tip too much, like in a bar. Why do you always tip a bartender too much? Because they’re getting you alcohol, and you like alcohol. Bear in mind they’re not actually brewing the beer themselves, they’re just handing it to you. They don’t rush to the back to their still to make us a martini, they just pour it and place it in front of you.

And if you’re a guy, and your bartender is female, you may go ahead and slide down one more row on the abacus of tipping. You will overtip her, go ahead and admit it, in spite of the fact that your odds of successfully taking her home are about the same as getting struck by lightning while screwing Beyonce. I know it’s happened before, I just don’t know anybody personally who’s successfully accomplished it.

We set our tip for waiters and waitresses on how the food was. They’re not cooking it, folks, they’re just walking it out.

We tip strippers, and we usually tip them before they do anything other than display the items they have for rent. Then after the tip, they display them again, then put them away. I have nothing more to say about that, just pointing it out.

Why don’t we tip people who actually work hard for us? Mechanics? Plumbers? Farmers? Why isn’t it okay to slip a ten spot to a college football player who made the big touchdown that won you money in your office pool?

How about pastry chefs? We tip the person who hands us our cheeseburger, why doesn’t the woman who sets her alarm and gets up before the sun every day just to make doughnuts that you buy for fifty cents get a little thank you?

Shouldn’t the traffic cop who lets you off with a warning get a small token of your appreciation? What if he were kind enough to run your license and registration, and then come back with a refill of tea and a desert menu?

— Reid Kerr has no problem with overtipping, as long as his beverage stays full.

One Response to “Leaving The Tip Of The Iceberg”

  1. Bobbie Kerr says:
    September 20th, 2010 at 9:17 am

    Have you hired a mechanic or plumber lately? They are at least honest enough to say I want this much and don’t leave it up to you to decide what will get you good service next time. But I agree–tipping started as a thank you for special service. When did it become so mandatory that the IRS taxes them for it whether or not they get the tip! One difference–bad service–NO tip!!

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