Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Tipping like It's 1969

I learned about tipping at an early age. I learned who was tipped and why. I also learned in what amount you tipped. Service Workers, which includes Waitresses, Hairdressers and yes folks, even your Postman (Postie to my British friends) are Service Workers. I know I know, they get paid 92 dollars an hour and why in heck should I give them a tip? Well, for one thing they don't get paid $92 an hour (except in their dreams) , maybe if they're lucky they get $19 an hour. Out of this the Rural Route Delivery persons pay for gas and upkeep of their car. But I'm not here to haul a banner up for the Post Office, but for the Public Service workers in general. When I had my hair done, I worked out fifteen percent of the total in my head (and the Magic Miranda either made out pretty well, or she got cheated...math was never my long suit). When I paid her I included this "gratuity" in to the total. I did this because I was happy with the result. If I had been unhappy I would simply tell her why and if she couldn't fix the problem then I would never darken her door again. A very simple fix for a simple problem. The ones who seem to get the short end of the stick are Food Servers, or Waitresses...different restaurants call them different things, but they are never paid what they are worth. Most restaurants pay about $2.00 an hour (ask any Server) and depend on their patrons to pick up the slack. That's all well and good if you were taught by your parents (or Oprah if etiquette was not included in your upbringing) the proper amount to leave your Waitress. It is 15 percent, people(or more)...of today's money, not the last century's money. I know, I know you only ever left but $2.00 before...but that was in 1969 and dish prices change. I'm not saying you have to tip the people at McDonald's or Burger King, I'm talking real restaurants here. You know, FishFare, The Smokehouse, Gold Nugget, Plyler's , Fatz and the rest of them. Where you sit down to eat and a nice lady or fellow comes and keeps your coffee cup or tea glass filled and takes plates away or brings your food to you. The ones who ask "is everything all right? What can I bring you?" Their work day started on their feet and ends on their feet. It's a grueling job with no benefits and very little pay. So be a it out in your head how much to tip on a thirty dollar tab and leave 15 percent of it for your Server. Be generous, make it 20 percent if the service was you could dream of. You can be sure she or he will be all smiles when you next see her (or him). People tend to remember kindness. Oh, and the tip in this case would be $4.50...little enough, don't you think? So, make it a fiver.


Unknown said...

LOL...when I think of tipping, I always think of the episode of "Third Rock from the Sun" the main guy had to learn about tipping, well he goes in a restaurant and throws a pile of money on the table. Every time the waitress did something he didn't like he would take a dollar away!
I'm somewhat that way myself. Good service gets a good tip. Great service gets a great tip. You no smile and don't act like you care if I'm there or not...I take money!
I'm hard on waitress's too because I've been one, I was trained by the best and I don't expect nor like slip shod service.

Anonymous said...

Hi Sandi, just caught up, THANK YOU HON!! Couldn't agree more, great post! Did some waitressing during my uni days, and it's hard work for sure. Makes perfect sense to us, $4.50 sure is little enough! Jenn and Jacqui

PAT said...

We are good tippers! Our girls have all been food servers at some time or other, in their high school and college years. Something we will never forget! They did indeed depend on those tips! Sometimes we increase the tip to more than 15%, for breakfast and lunch. We always tip at least 20% after 4PM.

I worked a soda fountain many moons ago, when I was still a teeny bopper. This was after I married...yes, I was a married teeny bopper. One fellow came in everyday for a chocolate malt with a raw egg added. The malt was 50 cents and he always gave me a 50 cent tip. Pretty good for 1962!

Sandi, come on back over to the back porch. I have new photos! We arrived back from the lake this afternoon and my first thought was the back porch and my blog buddies! I have a potpourri of photos to share, this evening!:-)


Unknown said...

Hi Sandi,

I couldn't agree more with this! My youngest used to be a server at Outback and I know how much she needed the tips. It's a tough job and I always think of my daughter when I go out to eat and leave a tip. Thanks for reminding everyone.

Anonymous said...

Girl I had three kids that worked there in school serving people. It sure taught me about tipping. Now I will say this im not always a sweetie. If I go in and you mistreat me.. talk on your cell and I never get a refill of tea. Your tip will be written a a napkin.That happened the other day when four of us went to eat. The lady was on her cell when she came to the table..said hold on and got our drinks. Never saw her again as she talked on the cell for the whole hour I was there. I complained to the boss and they said it was her last day. I took a napkin in dark black and wrote... Your tip"Take care of your customers and stay off the phone on the job!

Theresa said...

I have waitressed a couple times for extra cash. I am a horriable waitress, I would mess up orders, but then I would give them free drinks and lots of bread, and what other freebies I had to pass out- and believe or not when I quit the management was sad to see me go since they said customers liked me:)

I always tip well, unless I get a rude waitress. I figure what is an extra dollar to make someone happy- and they probably can use the money if they are waitressing!

Pam said...

I've always considered myself a good tipper but honestly, it's only been within the past 10 years that I've learned proper tipping ettiquette for certain jobs (yes, guilty).

smilnsigh said...

I totally agree. Especially about waitress/waiters. Our daughter bussed and was a waitress, in high school. Oh yes, she taught us a thing or two! And I've never forgotten.

Good reminder entry!!!


Rhoda @ Southern Hospitality said...

Hey, Sandi! I'm a good tipper too & always do 15-20%. I'm still trying to figure out how restaurant owners got started with NOT paying there wait-staff a decent wage. Something seems to be wrong with that picture to me...depend on the patrons to pay their wages. Only in the restaurant business!

Anway, I am still enjoying my time at home. Staying on the computer too much is going to be my downfall this month. I will need to get more on a schedule & not waste so much time. I have gotten a few chores done though, so since this is the dreary time of year, I'll be happy with that. On to bigger plans for the future! Can't wait..I do feel free!


Susie Q said...

Oh Sandi! I could not agree more!
My sis in law is tough on them as she put herself through college as a waitress and can not abhor rude or unfriendly servers. AS long as it is obvious they are trying hard she will overlook any goofs.
Bill worked his way through college as a commissary bagger and was always stiffed on tips by those who had the most money...IE the base commander's wife, the rear admiral's and their wives, those with the mink coats. : )
Bill and I are great tippers, especially if the service is especially good. WE also think it is important to praise them and tell their bosses. We would gripe if it was bad right? So people should tell when it is good!

I know some people, who I love dearly, who are lousy tippers. I always hate that so much...

You always have such interesting posts! I LOVE the way you write!


Lynn @The Vintage Nest said...

I always leave a 20% tip but I have a question. I was always told you don't tip your hairdresser if she or he is the owner of the salon. Is that true?

Penny from Enjoying The Simple Things said...

I have had sons and sisters working in the food service industry for years. The best "tip" I can give on tipping is this. Remember the person serving you lunch works just as hard as the person serving you dinner. Only the cost of lunch is much less, so when you figure the is much less. So I always leave a 20% tip at lunch.

12 Days of Christmas Swap said...

Oh Dear Sandi, I do so wish I lived closer to you and the E.S..
Your blog and writings are so interesting for us `Down Under' , especially as `tipping' here isn't big and not expected as such. However, if your Miranda was here and could get me looking in any way presentable, ( like getting rid of the tell tale signs of wine and cigs) for the job interviews, then I too would be looking at tipping big time
I am fine, and thank you, busy, busy, trying to look good and a sick cat!
Hugs from N.Z.

Wanda @ Just Vintage said...

I'm the most awkward at my hair salon. It's a no tipping salon, but I've seen people hunting down the girl (or guy) who washed their hair and hand them money. I've never done that because it's a no tipping salon! And sometimes, two people besides my hairdresser work on my hair. It's too complicated there.