Monday, January 11, 2010

Tips? You don't need no stinkin' tips

Posted By on Mon, Jan 11, 2010 at 8:54 PM

tip jar

I stopped today to pick up a sandwich at Einstein Bros Bagels on Monroe Drive. I haven't been in the shop in more than a year.

I paid for my reuben sandwich with a debit card. The clerk handed me the receipt and thanked me. I asked her if I needed to sign it and she said, as is fairly common now, that I didn't have to do that for something less than $20.

I looked around for a tip jar and couldn't find one. "How do I tip you?" I asked.

"Oh, they took our tip jar out. We're not allowed to have one."

I know that many people find the otherwise omnipresent tip jar annoying, especially in fast food restaurants where service is negligible. But I don't get it . How do the owners of a restaurant that probably pays little better than minimum wage deny employees a tip jar during this miserable economy?

I also recently heard from a friend who waits tables at a fine-dining restaurant that his bosses have begun taking a significant percentage of the "tip pool." Unless the law has changed recently, this is illegal in almost all situations. But nobody's saying so for obvious reasons.

(Photo courtesy of What Tian Has Learned. )

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