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Saturday, April 10, 2010

Just Bring It By and I'll Sign For It

As a former PDG (Pizza Delivery Gal) and current patron of many fine and not-so-fine food-delivering establishments, can I just point out what a great idea other people cooking is? Whether it’s to my front door or to the table, if it’s brought to me ready to eat, I'm a fan: I didn’t cook it, I won’t be doing the dishes later, and I may even throw my napkin on the floor.

Well, no. I won’t throw my napkin on the floor.

I'm especially fond of delivery. Love delivery. And I’m not talking only about pizza, the Old Reliable of the I’m-Too-Tired/Busy/Hungry-to-Cook standby. I’m talking about Chinese food, liquor, movies – anything that they bring to the door. Big, big time-saver/enabler for the ill-equipped amongst us.

We tip, heavily, at my house. Acquainted in the most intimate of ways with the food service industry in both my former and current work life, I can only say that it is in your best interest to tip your servers. This includes the man who brought your lasagna and garlic bread to the front door.

I’m not saying that people will spit in your food if you don’t, but – oh, wait. Yes. Actually, that is what I’m saying. Disgusting? Yes. Immoral? Probably. Commonplace? You'd be surprised.

And speaking of tipping, why have I been tipping the guy that walks my coffee the four feet between the coffee maker and the counter at Starbucks?

I love their coffee and probably pick up a cup two or three times a week; but can someone explain that tip jar to me? I mean, I do it – I tip them, so help me God – but why am I tipping them? Is it truly a tip? Is it to make up for what must surely be a meager hourly wage?

They couldn't manage to spit in my coffee between the pot behind the counter and the counter itself, could they?

So here's today's thought; and actually it looks like I’ve managed two – almost three! – of them:
  1. Food delivery: Yes. Good;
  2. What am I tipping for, and why? To have food brought to my door? Completely worthy. To have food brought to me without un-ordered body fluids? I’m not as excited about this one, but sure, seems like a wise investment, and;
  3. Tipping to have my coffee moved from there to here? I’m still working that one out.

Now if the baristas would bring me a coffee – and maybe a lovely cheese danish – to the bus stop on my way to work in the morning, I’m willing to tip for that.

21 comments:

ellen abbott said...

I totally don't get the concept of spare change. spare change as in money I worked my ass off for and don't need? As in all my bills are paid and all my material desires are satisfied? SPARE change? Maybe if I was Bill Gates.

I do tip though.

Janie at Sounding Forth said...

You sound like us. We tip, heavily, even on bad service. (We call the bad service tip a blessing - like maybe it will bless them into doing better next time?)

And as to Starbucks, yeah, the tip jar. I put money in it every time - but sometimes I wonder why.

steelxmagnolia said...

Conundrum: If I tip how do I know they still aren't salivating into my meal since the food comes before the exchange of money?

Willoughby said...

We're heavy tippers, too. I don't know if it keeps them from doing unspeakable things to the food, but I hope it does.

Marla said...

We are big tippers however I refuse to tip for a drive through coffee. I'm revolting! Wait, that didn't come out quite right.....

Ruthibelle said...

lol. Yes. Bus-stop breakfast stands would make a killing here. But nope, no takers. As yet.

Unsettling what you said about body fluids in the food ... omg.

Karen said...

My son works as a chef. He's young, just learning and receives low wages (like he can't afford to move out and share an apartment with two other young men). He doesn't get tips.

My husband and I tip the delivery people well. We also tip the bartenders and wait staff very well. They don't even make minimum wage. My son get's excited when the tip staff shares their tips with the kitchen crew (they're not required to).

I will not leave a tip in a tip jar when all someone is doing is handing me something. I feel like I'm being mugged. I feel like a meanie but they haven't actually DONE anything for me.

I guess I fall in the "gotta earn that tip" category.

Emma @DivorcedBefore30 said...

I agree that the expectations for tipping are a little crazy. I'm already paying 2 bucks for drip coffee, people!

I wholeheartedly agree on the value of food delivery and takeout, though. I couldn't lead my hectic life without it, and I even give people a couple of bucks when I get take-out from a restaurant (having worked that gig myself).

Finally, I love the "throw my napkin on the floor" image. Ha!

reasonably chubby said...

Oh, honey I'm all about the tipping!:) My husband however didn't know that it wasn't accetable to just leave a Jesus tract until I informed him. And made him leave huge, magnificent tips for a year to make up for his stinginess. Now he gets it.:) Good tip=No spit

Jen said...

I tried waitressing one night and have been a good tipper ever since. Those people work hard for their money!

Tempo said...

This tipping this is interesting...but only in America. Here in Oz we dont tip, never did and we're encouraged not to! The staff are paid for their effort and dont need to be bribed to behave as they should.(thats what indisciminate sackings are for) Its not about being cheap, but where do you stop? Tip the road cop so he wont book you? Tip the politician so he doesnt pass some crap law that screws us over?

SparkleFarkle said...

I love carry-out so much that I even considered naming my daughter after it. "Carry" for short. She would have killed me. I know it. She would have.

Simply Suthern said...

I play musical resturants at lunch during the week. I have four or five different places I haunt. I like the food. I like the folks that work there. You over tip, they know you, they take care of you. And they brush before they spit in it.

Out in the sticks we get pizza delivery only. It's a 15 min drive oneway to pickup takeout from real food joints. They deliver liquor?? AS close as I get to that is sneaking my sons beer.

5 Kids With Disabilities said...

Having survived my first 15 working years as a waitress, and having a very generous husband, we never leave less than a 25% tip. Even my kiddos learned to leave good tips. (My oldest son also seeks out and throws money into the cases of street musicians! I've created a monster!)
Lindsey Petersen
http://5kidswdisabilities.wordpress.com

injaynesworld said...

I totally agree on the Starbucks tip jar and the same goes for any tip jar at any fast-food place. Seriously... I never leave tips in those places.

The Unbearable Banishment said...

I'm especially fond of delivery.

Well, then New York City is the place for you. You can get aaaaanything brought to you. I'll bet you can arrange to have a doctor visit and perform open heart in your spare room.

Gregory said...

being the pdg (pizza delivery guy) of past I commend you on tipping... I remember an order to a hotel, 50 freaking pizzas, I had to pass up about a dozen runs to get it all, bill came to some ridicules amount check was written for that exact ridicules amount... point being I got stifffed.... but anyway, if you deliver you get more business so why doesn't Wendy's deliver?

IndigoWrath said...

Hey Pearl! Tipping in fast food places and on deliveries is a fairly new thing to the UK. Restaurants have always been tipped, but not the likes of Pizza Hut. We used to just go to the till, ask how much, and pay, but seven or eight years ago they started bringing to bill to the table. We all went "huh?", but we soon got the message. Ten percent. And yes, I've also wondered about Starbucks. Indigo.

Becky Cazares said...

Tipping always gives me anxiety - I never know if I'm doing it right! However, adding numbers at the end of the credit card slip is relatively painless. But are they the correct numbers...? Argggh!

Anyhoo, when we were dating, all those eons ago (okay, about 10 years ago), my to-be-hubby asked me, at the beginning of a date, what my favorite food was. I replied, "Anything I don't have to cook." When I asked him the same question, he said, "Anything I don't have to pay for." So when we get restaurant gift cards as presents, it's the IDEAL gift!

Becky Cazares said...

Wait... are you supposed to tip when you pay with a gift card? Argggh! (Just kidding, I know that!)

Kevin Musgrove said...

I always leave a tip at the coffee stall on the way in to work. Primarily because that'll be the last smile I'll be seeing all day.