Vacation was great. It is always good to get away to a change of venue. The one thing that I don’t like about a change of venue is the need to tip.
I hate the tipping. I understand the need to tip, I dislike not knowing when and how much to tip. In general, I play it safe and tip a little more than I should. This behavior all goes back to a visit to New York City when I was eighteen.
A group of us went to a Greenwich Village bar where we acted like big shots who could actually drink alcohol legally.
You could drink legally at eighteen in New York at the time. In New Jersey you had to be twenty-one, so jersey teens went to the city to get legal booze.
Eventually New Jersey dropped the age to eighteen as well. They changed it because Jersey kids got drunk legally in New York and then got killed returning to Jersey half in the bag. They figured it was safer to keep them drunk in the state. Not long after both states decided to make the legal age to get drunk and drive twenty-one.
Anyway, we went into the city to drink and listen to “The Crickets.” Buddy Holly had died years before, but we still thought it was cool to listen to “The Crickets.” At the end of the evening, we paid off the check, probably about $60 and left a dollar tip. We had no idea, and actually thought a dollar was a good tip. The waiter thought different, and I expect he was prepared for a bad tip based on the level of sophistication we must have demonstrated throughout the night.
New York City waiters do not mess around. This guy stopped us before we even put on our coats.
“Uh excuse me boys, this is not enough!”
“Oh, sorry, here’s another buck.”
Waiter shaking his head, “Uh, no, stills not enough.”
Looking really foolish, “Er, how much is enough.”
“If you were satisfied with my service you would be expected to leave at least $12.”
“Oh yeah, of course.”
We were able to scrape up the cash, but I never forgot the humiliation. Today, in general I over tip.