This story of a stiffed waitress has been making the rounds, and I can’t resist throwing in my 15%:
“Last night, I was stunned by this receipt that was left for me by a party of eight people,” Jones wrote. “I would have preferred a ‘$0’ tip than a ‘LOL’ tip, but as a waitress, bad tips and harsh notes are all part of the job. Even though they did wait an hour to eat, they remained satisfied with filled drinks and proper notice that the kitchen was a bit busier than normal. I’ve worked in the service industry for five years and I take pride in providing great service to my customers.”
Jones wrote that servers in New Jersey earn $2.50 an hour. For non-tipped workers in the Garden State, the minimum wage is $8.38.
“Most of my paychecks are less than pocket change because I have to pay taxes on the tips I make,” she wrote. “I need tips to pay my bills. All waiters do. We spend an hour or more of our time befriending you, making you laugh, getting to know you, and making your dining experience the best it can be. We work hard, and we really do care.”
The waitstaff has zero control over what’s going on in the kitchen, and the kitchen is a place of rushed anarchy on a good night. When the kitchen gets backed up, it’s the waitstaff’s job to keep the drinks full and the customers informed — which is exactly what Jess Jones seems to have done for her eight-top. If anything, she should have been tipped a little extra for the additional time she had to spend trying to keep her diners happy.
The last time something like that happened to us, the kitchen was so far behind and the food was so screwed up that dinner was free — but Melissa and I still tipped the waiter 20% of what the bill would have been.
Please don’t be the jerk who stiffs the waitstaff for doing the best they can in a bad situation they didn’t create.