Skip to comments.I Was Banned For Not Tipping
Posted on 01/07/2010 9:51:07 AM PST by big black dog
Every Tuesday I go to Murphy's Taproom in Manchester to hang out with a bunch of liberty-oriented people. This is a famous event among Free-staters. About 40-60 people gather weekly for about 4 hours and eat and drink and are merry. I'm no longer allowed to go there, because I don't tip.
I've written some of my thoughts about tipping in the past, and have since fleshed out my position in my mind, so I won't focus here on the reasons to tip or not to tip. Here, I want to merely explain what happened tonight.
About 6 weeks ago, someone at Murphy's charged my credit card for a tip even though I did not pay one. I probably wrote a "0" (zero) on the tip line because I have done that for years, but perhaps the waiter, or whomever, hand-wrote "3.0" in front of that to look like "3.00," because they charged me a $3.00 tip. Next Tuesday I told Keith Murphy, the owner of Murphy's Taproom, and he refunded my $3.00. I did not ask to see the original receipt and he did not offer to let me see it.
Then, a few weeks later, I was again charged for a tip that I did not offer. In case you're curious, I do not tip ever, so I am positive that I did not tip in either of these instances. So tonight when I was gathering with my friends at Murphy's, I told Keith it happened again, for $4.00 this time. He said he'd look into it and refund my money if it was true (he has no reason to trust me, so I accept that he should trust the original paperwork). But then he asked me if I tipped the waitress in cash. I said "No." He asked me how I tipped the waitress. I said "I didn't. I don't tip." Keith then asked me to come with him into the back room to talk about it.
On the way back he said to me, "I've got to warn you, I was a waiter for 10 years." I'm sure this was meant to alert me to his position on the matter, which seemed to be pro-tipping, but it seems odd to think that me knowing his position would alter mine.
He asked if I received good service. I told him "The service is average here, but I can understand why: the place is a zoo. People are changing tables, moving around, it's crowded..." I was being conservative in that estimation of the quality of service: service at Murphy's is generally pretty bad (not always!) but for the aforementioned, understandable reasons.
He let me know that the waiters earned $3.00 per hour. I said, "Yeah, I learned that a month ago. That doesn't happen in California." He told me it's standard on the east coast, which I also learned about a month ago.
He asked me why I don't tip waiters that earn $3.00 per hour, and I told him "It's not my problem or choice. They chose to work for $3.00 per hour and could choose another job that paid more if they wanted to." He asked for more reasons, and I told him "I don't tip anyone" and "if I tip the waiters, why don't I tip the cook or the owner?," and possibly one or two more reasons. He said "But you do tip me [the owner], in a way. I get a small portion each time you pay." And I replied, "So do the waiters: $3.00 per hour."
To this, Keith replied, "I don't pay my waiters $3.00 per hour to give good service." I said, "Yes, you do." He said, "No, I don't." I said, "Yes, you do. You hired them at $3.00 to do what?" And he said "To wait on customers..." - and here he realized what he was saying, and added "...with the expectation of receiving the standard 15-20% tip in addition to their wages." He also told me that "tipping is a custom in this country - at least, and many others." I'm aware of this, and I'm aware of countries in which tipping is considered an insult (e.g., Japan), and I'm aware that on cruise ships, for example, that are in international waters and flying flags of convenience (i.e., they are not in any country), tipping is also customary; I did not mention any of this to Keith.
Keith then told me, "This is nothing personal against you, but if you're not going to take care of my wait staff, I don't want you in my restaurant. It's your right to not tip, but it's my right to not want you as a customer." I replied, "OK. I understand. Please refund my $4.00 and I'll leave. Can I have five minutes to say goodbye to my friends?" He allowed me five minutes.
As I was saying goodbye to my friends, Keith approached me and gave me my $4.00 and showed me the original receipt, explaining "It was an accident. The waitress though the zero you wrote on the tip line was a four, and you can see it does kind of look like a four." It did indeed look like a four. But I did not write it that way. When I write any dollar amount, ever, I write the full amount, like "$4.00" or "4.00" - never like "4" - but on the receipt, all that was written was "0" and that had a few extra lines and squiggles that made it look kind of like a "4." And the number "3" in the total amount at the bottom of the receipt had been written over as well, to make "$23.20" look like "$27.20" - I did not do that, either. I stuttered a few seconds, trying to find a polite way to tell Keith that it was not an accident, that his waitress intentionally stole my money, but I figured he was not going to un-ban me and I didn't see a point, so I just said, "OK."
I recognize that it is Keith's restaurant - his private property - and as such he has the right to choose his customers. I do not hold it against him that he banned me, or even that he disagrees with me about tipping. I am merely disappointed that I will no longer be able to go to Taproom Tuesdays. I really enjoyed that event. And there are some friends that I hardly ever see except there. Oh well, I'll have to make more of an effort to see them elsewhere.
I realize, though, that what Keith essentially did was ban me from the restaurant because he's too cheap to pay his wait staff better. That's not exactly true, because the government has a law saying that restaurant owners must pay their tip-receiving wait staff exactly $3.00 per hour - no more and no less. But Keith could make better arrangements with his employees and not hold his customers responsible for his wait staff's well-being. Keith could, for example, pay his wait staff more, but keep it under the table; or he could offer to give them, out of his own pocket, the difference between whatever his customers tip and 20% of their bill; or he could make a policy in his restaurant that tipping is not allowed, and then the law would allow him to pay them more; or he could even help his wait staff recognize that tips are not guaranteed like wages are, even as reward for good service. But he would rather pay them less of his own money and rely on his customers to follow tradition and give them more money. And his decision to do so, in this case, cost him a customer.
Yep...been there...done that.
Tipping has become ingrained into the minds of the public in one of the most blatant mind washing efforts in history.
There is no reason to tip. Do you tip the hardware guy, the grocery store clerk or anyone else who gives good service? No? The reason for that is you know they get paid by their employer so you pay the bill and don't tip. Waiters/Waitresses get paid also and their living wage is the problem of the employer. Period.
You do realize that by openly endorsing tipping, you basically are rewarding one group of hard-working low paid people while kicking to the curb anybody else.
That is, unless you also tip the following types of people that after tips probably make less than miss waitress making $3 an hour officially (without taxes on much of it of course):
1) the entry-level administrative assistant who greets you in your building
2) Wal-Mart cashier or greeter at the front door
3) the janitor who helps clean your office
4) early child care workers who help take care of you kids
5) the busboy working his butt off to clean the restaurant tables of plates, yet you shell out the cash to the waiter but ignore him.
The way I look at it if the service is very good I want that server to stay working in that job. If it totally sucks (provided they are not brand new) I want them to quit and go find a different job.
this is interesting to me... and something i can talk with my father-in-law about, as he is from New Zealand... he sees many things differently... however, he is a great tipper...
"That's a Bingo!"
Have you noticed tip jars showing up everywhere. I NEVER tip at Starbucks, EVER. It is as though they are trying to create a new paradigm. Maybe McDonalds really SHOULD have a tip jar. ;)
> Most Restaurants only pay their wait staff $2.13 to start.
That is probably the main difference right there. In New Zealand they must pay their staff a “living wage”, which is $12.50 per hour before tax.
I see that as a fair cost of doing business: if someone is adult enough to own a business, they must be adult enough to pay for their staff’s work. Else they have no business being in business.
Working for less than a living wage isn’t an “employment” relationship, it’s a “master/servant” relationship — indentured servitude — something that ought to have gone out the window with your Emancipation Proclamation 150 years ago.
Basically, Mike needs to have a conversation with Joe. We’ll make a tipper out of him yet.
i know several Republicans who have been waiters and waitresses...
I nominate this guy as douche of the year.
>>But it does hit the tax roles. They have to pay an estimated tip tax on their receipts. The IRS takes it whether they receive it, or not.<<
If, by some chance, they are over the amount that is taxed anyway, mine won’t be included.
My nephew delivers pizza as a second job to support his wife and four kids. He told me to tip in cash so I do.
Bingo, he has links all over his site for Anarchy movements, Lew Rockwell and the like..
Should I ever visit New Zealand (I understand it's a beautiful country), I'll remember that. I wouldn't want to embarrass myself or offend my waiter/barmaid/whatever.
In these United States, the policy you advocate is boorish. I consider that the waiter/barmaid/whatever is working for me, as well as for the restauranteur. I can, after all, cook a meal, fix a drink, and place these things on a table. I am paying the waiter/barmaid/whatever to do it for me ... and I pay them according to how well (in my thoroughly subjective judgment) they do it. It's called a "tip" ... but it's really payment for services rendered.
In these United States.
Should you ever visit here, I hope that you will have the good sense to remember this.
Tips are a method of provoking better service. If you are going to receive more $$ by being a better server, you’ll work harder to make that extra money.
Besides, The federal minimum wage is currently $7.25. $2.13 for tipped positions, however, If the worker doesnt make $7.25 and hour after tips, I believe the employer is required to make up the difference. This might be just Texas, but I thought it was federal.
Notice how it is always the professions filled with liberals who need more and more to do less and less?
Waitstaff: 10% tip grows to 15%, grows to 20% and still service stinks.
Teachers: we need more money, more money, more money and America’s children fall further behind the rest of the world.
Government workers: higher wages, generous benefits and we get longer lines, bigger potholes, and higher taxes.
You’d think people could see the common denominator in this.
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