Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Rude Service in Restaurants

While I was gone on vacation I came to eat with my family at a restaurant with a waiter who was obviously gay and irritated. (There was a time when it was impossible to be gay and irritated at the same time- but that is a different rant!) So this guy actually says to us " hurry up " when we are ordering! My son orders a shake- gay guy lets out big sigh!- as if we are pain in the butt. When giving us the check he tries to play it all down as part of his "routine". I can't tell you how preturbed I was. I wanted to rip his face off! But I refused to tip him- which caused a problem with my wife who is under the delusion that all wait staff is to be tipped regardless. I have always believed TIP meant "To Improve Service".

People who are in the service industry have forgotten something these days- SERVICE!

I'll give you my criteria- you can tell me if it is too strict.

Excellent Service - 20% tip - makes me feel like I am the most important customer in the place.
Good Service - 15% tip- made me feel like I was one of many important customers.
Fair Service - 10% tip - made me think that you forgot that customers are pretty important to your business- perhaps having a bad day!
Poor Service- 0 % - (often I leave a quarter to let them know I didn't forget!) Made me uncomfortable to have to ask for everything myself (Ketchup, Mustard, etc).

Am I being unreasonable? Is it unchristian not to tip?


Roger G said...

When we tip someone who is giving us bad service we are condoning mediocrity. Open rebuke is better than secret love is biblical. My daughter and I went out to lunch after service one day and the waiter decided he was Mr Charm and at first was amusing but soon was irritating especially when he started making excuses for his bad service. When I am at a restaurant I am there to eat and if my waiter makes that experience better by taking care of my needs then they should be rewarded. It is a job and with any job if you don't do it well it shows. In Titus 2 it says, In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us. Is life a test? Of course it is and each day is a new assignment. We should learn from each experience and learn from each other because we can find truth in the oddest things. God cannot be put in a box and when we think he can we can be pulled into legalism. What does this have to do with tipping? If we tip someone who is doing a bad job how will they know they need to improve? My waiter could tell at one point I was getting ticked at him and I left a smaller tip than usual and he will either think how can I improve or what a jerk Roger was. We either learn from each other and our experiences or we walk around in a predetermined box that shows us our predetermined life and God never challenges us and how boring is that? It would be like playing pin the tail on the donkey without a blindfold. We get rude service in restaurants because we accept it and waiters don't change unless they're told or shown there is a consequence to their actions.

Drew Thornley said...

Well said, Roger. Tipping is just that: It's a tip. It's extra. Most waiters/waitresses feel entitled and just expect a good tip, so they do not work for it. If part of your livelihood depends on how well you treat people, then you shouldn't be surprised when you aren't rewarded for bad service.