mad anthony

Rants, politics, and thoughts on politics, technology, life,
and stuff from a generally politically conservative Baltimoron.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

You should tip your neigborhood blogger 20%...

A couple days ago, I went out with a group of people. When it came time to split up the check, people kept telling me I should take more change back. I realized I've gotten into the habit of leaving fairly large tips.

Part of this is because one of the few places that I eat out at is a small bar near where I work, and my coworkers and I are on a first-name basis with the people who own it and run it. They will often make us stuff that's not on the menu, and they are really cool, so we always tip well.

But I think another part of it is, once again, because I don't eat out much. If I just need food, I don't go to a place that has wait staff - I go to the drive-thru at Chick-Fil-a or Taco Bell. If I'm eating at a place that has wait staff, it's probably as much for the social aspect as for the food - I'm with friends or coworkers or whatever. In that kind of situation, having someone who is cheerful, pleasant, talks to you, ect adds to the experience, while having someone who clearly would rather be doing something else makes the experience less pleasant - and I think that's worth rewarding.

A forum I read regularly often has threads on tipping, like this thread or this one. I usually stay out of it, because most people are pretty set in their views and aren't going to change anyway.

But is tipping a good system, or would it be better if waiters and waitresses were paid more and we didn't have tipping? Being a big fan of capitalism and rewarding work, I like tipping - I think it's a good way of providing an incentive for the server to provide good, friendly service. And to be honest, I can't think of the last time I've had a really bad restaurant experience -maybe because I don't get out much, or maybe because tipping works - I can think of a ton of negative experiences I've had in businesses where tipping is not done, like retail.

I guess I also like the idea of tipping because it seems like a direct way of rewarding good service, and because I have to work with customers in my job and know how difficult customer service can be. Of course, maybe I'm just overly sympathetic because I sometimes read this guy's blog.

But much like democracy, I think tipping is the worst payment system ever, except for every other payment system that's ever been tried.


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