Observations by Key Monroe~~Home of Right Opinions, Cynical Viewpoints, and TMI in Hefty Doses
|E-mail: keymonroe [at] alltel [dot] net

June 05, 2005

Exceeding Tip Parameters

I'm a 20% tipper. Period. Very little fluctuation. Well some... If they suck, but with a great attitude, they get 15%. And if they are hateful while sucking, rock bottom is 10%.

While this is my anal little rule, I broke it Friday night for someone worthy of mention.

I bumped it to 40%, and had I had a crisp Ben on me, I would have been sorely tempted to leave it....yes, even though I am in debt up to my eyeballs.

She smiled. She asked how we were doing. She was bright-eyed and chipper. She got everything right. She was only eighteen.

That was impressive enough, but I held her at the table long enough to find out a little more:

She has been waitressing full-time since age 16. She has not only stayed in high school while working full-time, she has held a seat in the student council, participated in the marching band, and been a member of the Beta club.

And she will continue to work full time while putting herself through college.

WOW! That's what I'm talking 'bout.

I know it's not ideal. I hate that she is having to work so hard, but I can for damn sure appreciate it, and raise my glass to her.

(Did I mention that she was always smiling?)

posted by Key on 07:51 PM | Comments (18)
» Gut Rumbles links with: tips
» Velociworld links with: ON THE WAITSTAFF

i find that good service is rare. congrats to you on getting it!

Posted by: jessica at June 5, 2005 08:54 PM

Good for you. I am a huge tipper when I get service worthy of the name - I waited tables for a lot of years, before college and after it - so I know how hard those folks work. When I get shitty service, I tip accordingly.

Posted by: Kelley at June 5, 2005 10:40 PM

It's awesome when you get a waitress like that and EVEN more awesome when someone tips accordingly.
My daughter just graduated from High school last week.
The very day she turned 16 she went out and got a job at a restaurant. She could only be a hostess because in FL. you have to be 18 to waitress if they serve alcohol. She was a hostess there until she turned 18 and then moved on to waitress where she made alomst $300 a night in tips alone (very high scale restaurant)
During all this time she was a Varsity cheerleader. Editor of the yearbook (4 years) in First priority (a christian based group at her school) Anchor club (did community service...i.e: mowed lawns for elderly, planted flowers at elementary schools ,cooked meals for the homeless) and people wondered why I spoiled her silly (to the best of my ability)
You don't find many tenagers who are willing to put in that much effort anymore.
I don't take any credit for what she has accomplished at her young age. I just pointed her in the right direction and she took off.........

Tips my glass to you....

Posted by: dawn at June 5, 2005 10:50 PM

I'm downtown with you...

Posted by: Sam at June 5, 2005 11:33 PM

I agree, I always give 20% because I know I would be a really shitty waitress. They work hard!

Posted by: livey at June 5, 2005 11:36 PM

Most impressive young woman, and good for you for rewarding her accordingly. The country needs more like her (and you).

Posted by: Jim - PRS at June 6, 2005 02:35 AM

Was she pretty? Good for you Key, I always tip good and the better the service, the larger the tip. We do need more people like her in the eating business, most of them suck, but I would to, if I had to wait on some of these sorry ass customers. Some custoners are very mean and look down on the help. I am an old biker and all of our girlsfriends use to wait tables, we know all about that trade. So when you are out eating and it is time to tip the help, please think about me and all of my ex girlfriends who slaved to take care of my sorry ass, Cat

Posted by: catfish at June 6, 2005 11:42 AM

I waited tables for years and I was damn good at it. I worked as a trainer and advisor for several restaurants, helping increase server productivity.

I almost always tip 20%, sometimes more if they are really good. Half-assed service gets 15%. If they suck...leaving me waiting and waiting and waiting AND screw up my order, they get 10%. However, I have a rule. If the server meets all of the criteria on which I used to base my training, I tip 50%. That seldom happens, but every now and then, I find an excellent server.

I am glad that you recognize the work that this server puts into her job. It's hard work!! Bless you for recognizing a job well done - in all aspects!

Posted by: Dana at June 6, 2005 01:47 PM

Depends on how drunk I am!!!

Posted by: Yabu at June 6, 2005 02:59 PM

Anyone who's hung with me knows I tip generously, to a fault, even. But I've left nickel tips, too. Sometimes a person needs to know THEY SUCK! But that is extremely rare. Even poor service gets 15% from me. Often not their fault. And I never punish the waitstaff for the sins of the kitchen. I did get pissy in Jekyll, but I tipped well.

Posted by: Velociman at June 6, 2005 05:36 PM

You sure did get pissy, Vman...I really thought I earned more than 10 percent, though. Darn it, I worked hard for that money...

In all seriousness, I'm with you, Key. My sister always gives me a hard time because she insists that I overtip but that's hard work they do. I mostly stuck to washing dishes and working in the back but I know that (generally) the waitstaff work their tails off.

You should have asked her if she blogged, too. ;-)

Posted by: zonker at June 6, 2005 06:14 PM

For the record I left 25% at Jekyll, after drunkenly insinuating that my waitperson might be, just possibly, romantically involved with a burro. Simple misunderstanding, is all.

Posted by: Velociman at June 6, 2005 07:29 PM

Frankly, I almost always tip 20% because it's easier to calculate in my head with too much thought.

However, lately I find that I'm tipping everyone, and unfortunately, it seems to be expected....little tip cups at Subway, at the dry-cleaners, at the ice cream parlor.

Exactly, how much friggin service am I getting at a fast-food joint to rate an additional tip?

When someone truly deserves it, I, like you, tend to go high, and feel good about it.

Unfortunately, not many really deserve these days. Good for you for taking care of someone who did.

Posted by: jmflynny at June 6, 2005 10:50 PM

Ah, that annoys me too...the tip jars everywhere. Of course, I will throw my change in there. But I figure they're making $7/hr, while the genuine restaurant servers are averaging $2-3/hr plus their tips...meaning THEY are actually working for tips. That is their sustenance. Meat, not gravy. (And that's not to mention the fact that many servers end up having to tip out.)

Posted by: Key at June 6, 2005 11:05 PM


If I flipped a Ben at a smiling little 18 year old waitress, I'd get my pee-pee slapped damn quick.

That's why I let the Goodwife pay.

Posted by: Anton at June 7, 2005 03:59 PM

That girl is going places. I hope you can keep track of her for us.

Posted by: Lord Whorfin at June 7, 2005 04:51 PM

With one daughter having waitressed and worked in cafes for many years and the other having driven the Beer Cart at the local Country Club (yep - the Mistress was the Beer Bitch), I've cultivated a healthy respect for the 20% tip. These people work damn hard for that money.

It's rare that I will smack someone with a 10% or less "lesson tip," and if I do, I'll explain exactly why. Maybe it'll just piss 'em off, but just maybe they'll learn something.

Posted by: Elisson at June 7, 2005 09:19 PM

On the flip side, I was out with friends and we had this horrendous waiter.. (Olive garden here in Roswell) One thing that stood out was his "refill" of my Coke. Rather than the fresh glass I needed, he simply dumped more soda in atop of the glass I currently used. He got a $.04 tip that night from our ENTIRE table.

Posted by: Nancy at June 10, 2005 02:04 PM
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