Monday, August 01, 2005

I got your tip right here

You know you are an addicted blog... um, writer... when you have your entire household boxed up and ready to move except your laptop, and you still take time to write something in hopes you won't lose readers by taking a few days off.

My coffee pot is packed, so I am using the drive-thru at Starbucks to satisfy my caffeine requirements. Let me preface what I'm about to say with a statement to food service professionals everywhere:

You are appreciated. When I dine in a restaurant and the service and attitude is good, I am a 20 percent tipper. I love you people, your job is, in many ways, more important and impactful than mine.

Now then, my issue. There was a tip jar at the drive-thru window of Starbucks. Yes. A tip jar sitting on the ledge outside the window.

Oh sure, I'm aware that all the extra training, years of college and historical study of coffee beans and the personal commitment it requires to become a licensed Barista doesn't come cheap.

Oh wait... there is no extra training, college, license or commitment. It's a drive-thru job! Just like McDonalds, only you don't have to ask about fries. It's a job where you prepare a product and hand it to the customer. There's no water-filling, no extra care that comes with waiting a table, and apparently no smiling.

Add to that, the fact that I'm being charged 4 dollars for a freakin' cup of joe. And you want me to tip you?

Sorry, but placing that tip jar at a drive-thru window takes tremendous, stupendous testicular fortitude. Congratulations.

From now on I'm going to QT for coffee, get it myself and drop a buck in a tip jar on my dash board. In short order, I'll have enough for a 12 pack.

14 comments:

Bottle Rocket Fire Alarm said...

If I ever see such a tip jar, I'll be sure to drop a lit cigarette into it.

Justice said...

It kills me when I see a tip jar at places like that. Come on...how hard is it to fix me a cup of coffee. I don't see a tip jar at McDonalds.

Chris Cope said...

Maybe they think they work at a bar, since their drinks cost as much as a cocktail.

Weary Hag said...

You make quite the valid point (as does Chris). What pisses me off even more is the assumed tip; when they charge you $1.84 for a medium tea (Dunkin Donuts) and you hand them two bucks and they say "thank you" and shut the window. I've been known to hold up the drive-thru line for nearly five full minutes waiting for my change. I'm not cheap... it's the principle of the thing.

Now Dave, since we've been warned that we'll have no contact with you for the next few days, there are a couple of things you need to remember: brush after meals, drink plenty of water, wipe well and be sure to wear put on clean undies before leaving the house.

Best of luck in the move!

Lee Ann said...

Wow, that is odd! I was just having a tipping conversation about an hour ago. I was saying that on a normal routine dinner out, I normally tip 20%. If it is better than normal, then I tip more. My dilemma is take out. Some of the take out is curb service. Now they bring it to your car, but there is no additional service (bringing you drinks or extra this or that). It is just a one stop drop. I normally will tip curb side 15%. What about going in and picking up take out? Do you tip for that? For instance your average chinese restaurant, you call ahead, you drive there, walk in, go to the counter, pay right at the register....do you tip? Well, I used to not tip in those situations, but then I ordered from a nice Chinese Restaurant, PF Changs, still had to walk in, but they walk away to finalize the payment...for some reason, I felt like I should tip there. So I tipped a few bucks. Now, I wonder if I should tip at the average chinese restaurant. I wonder if they remember me, and if I don't tip, could that be a bad thing for me in the future? So now, I tip $1 or $2 for those take out orders. But drive through coffee shop...no! You are right, next will be McDonalds and all of the other fast food places. Then we will be tipping everyone for doing their job. Don't get me wrong, a server deserves a good tip! Hey maybe I should leave a tip jar on my desk at work!

Anonymous said...

Here's an idea... tip nothing!

At a drive through or anywhere else where you get what you paid to get. IF you get good service (attentiveness, some caring, a little eye contact) then tip well.

Tonight I tipped a waitress 100% because she explained the menu at the Thai restaurant, made recommendations, warned me against what was too hot/not good/not fresh etc. She refilled my iced tea and brought the bill promptly when I was finished. That's all I ask for. Don't get in my way... I came here to eat. Not to be entertained, cajoled, or made into a friend. Do your job... give it a little extra like you care about me and I'll give you a little extra like I care about you.

The level of "service" won't change one bit until the people being served speak from their wallets.

Lightning Bug's Butt said...

Thank you, Dave! Holy cow. I've so often wondered about tip jars at places where the people couldn't possibly earn a tip!

Jesus! You work a cash register. You want a TIP? Finish college!

OldHorsetailSnake said...

I think what you're supposed to do is drop in a slip of paper with a tip on the 5th race at Churchill Downs. Surely they wouldn't expect money. Would they?

Rob Seifert said...

The best tip I can offer to a food service slave is find another form of indentured servitude - preferably one that pays enough that you don't have to resort to begging. I also tip 20%+ in restaraunts if the service is good and 10% even if it absolutely terrible. Having worked in restaraunts for 15 yrs, I do have some pity for those poor SOBs. I have NEVER tipped a Starbucks employee drivethru or otherwise.

RCS

RCS

gary said...

A Tip...
Without buying a BEER...
What the ...

lilly05 said...

Hmmmmmm? Do you suppose that the tip jar is FOR college? I once went to a restaurant that had a tip jar with a large print sign reminding the customers that college is still expensive and to tip genorously! What a huge set of freakin cohones they had. I asked if I could dip in as well, I was after all in college at the time. Went over like a turd in a punch bowl. ;)

Mishka said...

There was a tip jar at the DQ I went to the other night as a treat. Didn't tip...didn't see a reason to.

Kerouaced said...

THe tips should come from the people that own Starbucks...

Ari said...

I've started hittin' the 7-11 for coffee too, even though I have to get out of the car. Turns out I enjoy making each cup just the way I like it that day, without having to translate the menu from Italian, and paying $3.00 less for it.