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I will no longer stand for unnecessary tipping.

There's a comedian I follow on social named John Crist... Funny guy that I have seen at the track a couple of times and met at a charity kickball tournament that I "played" in last year.

If you need proof, you can see my fat pale head in the background of this picture from John's Insta feed...

Anyhoo, I watched a clip the other day where John proposed a new rule for tipping, and that rule is: 

If I order standing up, I am not tipping.

I think I like it.

Lemme back up a little... I did not grow up wealthy. Still, my father, who spent 35 years crawling around on I-beams 50 stories in the air as a Local 40 Ironworker, was very generous to the service community. I remember when the toll for the Battery Tunnel was only $2.00 (I believe it's closer to $10 now). And EZ Pass was not invented yet, so you had to pay a toll booth attendant every time you used the tunnel. If my pops didn't have singles on him, he would give the guy in the booth a five-dollar bill and tell him to keep the change... And the attendant would be pleasantly surprised and outwardly appreciative every time.

I drove through that tunnel THOUSANDS of times with various drivers for several years, but to my recollection, my dad was the only guy who left a tip. I think that might be why I have always been a generous tipper as well. 

But, like everyone else in the world, I recently feel like my generosity is being taken advantage of, and the gratitude those toll-booth guys expressed towards my dad back in the 1980s no longer exists.

This was particularly evident when I took my family to one of those frozen yogurt places the other night... The kind where you grab your own cup, pump whatever frozen flavor combo you want into that cup, and then navigate around the sneeze guard covering the "Fixins Bar" while you blanket your cup with sprinkles, gummy worms, pretzel bits, brownie chunks, whipped cream, chocolate syrup, etc.

When you're done with your masterpiece, you pop it on a scale, grab your own spoon, and then pay for it all before heading home.

That night, I juggled four desserts onto the scale, grabbed our 4 spoons (along with 1,000 napkins), and when I tapped to pay, I was prompted with options to tip.  It gave me the option to leave 10% (with a graphic next to it saying "THANK YOU!"), 15% (graphic read, "WOO-HOO!"), 20% (graphic read, "SUPERSTAR!"), or nothing at all. 

I instinctively hit 20% and I immediately regretted my action.

The punk behind the counter casually looked at the tablet that I just left a generous-but-undeserved gratuity on and said NOTHING.

I wasn't expecting a "superstar" comment like the tablet teased.

Giphy Images.

I wasn't even expecting the "Woo-hoo!" that the 15% tippers are subtly promised.

Giphy Images.

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(plus "Hoo!")

But I was expecting to get at least a simple, "Thank you."

And it bothered me when I didn't.

Bothered me enough to trump any nostalgic pride I had for my dad's generosity and made me reexamine my own.

So, while I am not abandoning tipping altogether, I am going to set some ground rules for myself going forward, and I think "If I order standing up, I am not tipping." is a good place to start.

As with any rule, there are obvious exceptions to this one. The most obvious is when you are standing at a bar.

This might be the functioning alcoholic taking, but a good bartender can sometimes be more helpful than a good doctor.

I'll say that again for the people in the back… A good bartender can be more helpful than a good doctor. I've gone to doctors feeling downright AWFUL and walked away feeling no better but a lot less wealthy.

Conversely, I've visited my local bartender quite a few times, and they have always provided me with affordable counseling and just enough "medicine" to get me through some of the roughest seas. 

Now, if I discover a lump on my body tomorrow that shouldn't be there, the first place I am going is a doctor. But the second place I am going is probably MacMurphy's for a shot and a pint… And maybe an order of wings, to pass the time.

So bartenders are exceptions to this rule, as are prostitutes who "service" you while you're standing up in a Men's Room stall at Six Flags. And there are personal exemptions all over the stand-up service world… Any deli guy who gives me a free sample of the meat he's slicing for my sandwich, a coffee shop worker who has my coffee ready as soon as he sees me walk in, etc. But this is a good starting point for now, and I'll eventually get back to a place where I only give a little extra to those who deserve it.

Take a report.

-Large


There is a new episode of Twisted History available, and it is hung like a horse…

TAR

-L