My favorite aunt taught me, at an early age, the difference between a TIP and a gratuity. And I think this is a good time to educate a generation of the difference.
So, to my generation, we weren’t comforted when we were wrong. In little league, you only got a trophy if you were a winner. In school, if in math, you answered the question (2+2=) and if you answered anything other than 4, you got a big red ‘X’ meaning you were wrong. If you were routinely late to work, you would be fired. My generation would turn in school reports that we typed on a typewriter and had to research subjects by reading encyclopedias because there was no internet nor handheld computers that had a phone app on it.
To our countries shame, we have coddled our children into believing that they are owed an easy life and our government is backing that belief, so it is no supprise that the younger generations believe that just by doing their job, they deserve more than a paycheck.
Tip is actually short for T.I.P.S. which is an acronym for ‘To insure prompt service’ which is a type of gratuity given ‘before’ service is rendered. A TIP (or TIPS) would be appropriate to give at an hotel to the consierge or bellboy so if you want extra towels or ice or pillows, they would bring them to you in a timely manor. A gratuity is given after service is rendered as in a ‘sit down restaurant’ and the waiter has made your dining experience pleasurable by making sure your glass is full, you get a new fork if you drop it and you get whatever condiments needed to insure you enjoy your meal. Waiters and waitress’ are paid a lower minimum wage and are encouraged to work for you while dining at that establishment.
Would you tip someone at McDonalds? No! Those employees are paid a different minimum wage, now in some states $15 dollars an hour. (No wonder my quarter pounder has increased 40%). If you goto a food chain hot dog joint, stand in line, place your order and have it given to you, you don’t give a gratuity. Now, if it is a privetly owned hot dog cart, you might be inclined to give him/her a gratuity.
I don’t give a gratuity when I buy a 2×4 from Home Depot or a ream of paper from OfficeMax.
At my local, chain owned donut shop, if you take my money and hand me my bag of donuts, your gratuity is your paycheck. If I do my job, I don’t get a gratuity from my customers, I get a paycheck. And where I live, January 1st marked an increase in the minimum wage to $15 dollars an hour. But my salary has not been increased in several years, not even keeping with inflation rates. Food, gas, services and rent has increased and my money is stretched thin as it is. If you keep demanding a gratuity just for doing your job, maybe I will go somewhere else or just do without. I have seen a automated fastfood restaurant. There were a total of 2 people there and all they did was keep the food robots stocked with food. Those robots don’t demand a gratuity, they don’t show up to work late or need to leave early and don’t take maternity leave or sick time nor take vacations. Your job is quickly being replaced with automation because you refuse to work, demand more than what you are due and generally arent worth the $15 per hour. Wake up and see what the long term effects of your actions are. Life is hard. It is harder when you are stupid (John Wayne)

One thought on “To tip or not to tip. That is the question

  1. VERY GOOD! People here in America are getting so spoiled. After I left the military and went to work in industry, I earned $2.25 per hour for my time and labor. I was married, with two young children, and bills to pay. My hourly wage went much further back then, more so than the value of money does now. I worked hard, and was glad to get that $2.25 an hour. I never expected handouts or gratuities from anyone; I was just glad to have a job that supported me and my family. Your post is spot on!


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