Is it just me, or has the “tip jar” custom developed into a practice that is completely out of control? It seems to be that no matter where I turn there is someone there with a tip jar waiting for me to give them extra money for doing a job for which I just paid them.
Please don’t get me wrong. It is not that I am cheap (contrary to what W.E. may think). I often tip waiters at least 20 percent if there service is above and beyond and they are attentive to my needs. I just don’t understand why I should tip the little asian girl who spoons in my two items along with my fried rice and lo-mein noodles into the little styrofoam tray. I think I actually take more steps than her as i walk back and forth in front of the glass covered steam table trying to decide what my two items will be. We then walk together to the register where I pay and she puts the container in a plastic bag with a big red smiley face on it. If I beg and smile she will put two soy sauce packets in the bag with a napkin and plastic fork but I don’t think she is really happy about it. What can I say? One packet is not enough to bring the fried rice back to life. But I digress. There, in front of the register, is a tip jar. I just don’t see what service has been rendered that warrants a tip.