Sunday, September 16, 2007

If you can't afford the tip, you can't afford the meal

Today we witnessed the proverbial "after church" crowd at Monterrey, our favourite restaurant. There were three families clearly there after church, with a bunch of kids. There they were: kids were screaming, chasing each other around the restaurant, climbing in and out of empty booths while shouting at each other. In short, they were brats.

Christians are an embarrassment in public.

A non-Christian friend recently told me she used to work as a waitress in college. She said on Sundays there were always people there after church who would not leave a tip, because she shouldn't be working on Sunday. Of course, they always left gospel tracts...

It's embarrassing.

So here are a few ethics I would consider minimal if you're a Christian and go to a restaurant:

  1. If you can't afford to leave a tip, you can't afford to eat out. Go to McDonald's or get take-out from KFC. Or even get one of those rotisserie chickens from the grocery store. But don't cheat the waiter.

  2. If you actually pray visibly and audibly in a restaurant (and I encourage that), you better tip heavily. I would suggest you tip 20% as a baseline. Terrible service is worth 15% if the waiter sees you praying, hears you talking about church or the Bible, or sees you in a tie at Sunday lunch.

  3. If you leave a gospel tract, tip a few dollars more. I knew a guy once who tipped at least $20 if he left a tract: that's not a percentage, and we weren't eating big---that's being more concerned about the Lord's reputation than his own wallet.

  4. You had better make sure you treat the waiter with respect: say "thank you" when he brings you your drink; say "please" when you ask her for a refill. And don't---whatever you do---don't ever make sarcastic quips. It's entiely possible the waiter is useless. It's possible it's the worst restaurant experience anyone ever had. But if you are publicly claiming to be Christian, you need to uphold a much higher standard. Complain to a manager if you like; better yet, complain to the waiter himself, but do so politely and calmly.

  5. Keep your kids under control.



It's in the little things that our Christianity is evaluated.

9 comments:

Ames said...

Can I get an "Amen"?

Stace' said...

AMEN!!!! I absolutely agree. Now, let's go get some Gary's.

Chuck said...

Amen, amen, amen, amen, and amen.

Ames said...

Stace, shall we get our usual?

Gwen said...

I can't get giant, red font here, but...

A M E N ! ! !

Stace' said...

yes!! BBQ salad, and chili cheese fries. I'm talkin' health food!!!

Ames said...

Stace', it is only health food if the fries are cooked in 100%, all-natural lard.

Karen said...

Oh, this post is too good! Hilarious if it wasn't so true. I remember having to float behind and add to the tip when I was with a group of Christian cheapskates. Since we're not running up a big bartab, they're already not getting as big a tip as they would from some other groups, we tend to go overboard to make up for it. Hey, what's an extra dollar or two on top of the usual tip, right?

clumsy ox said...

Karen, Good to see you!

I seem to remember doing the float once before too.

But I'm with you, our reputation as Christians is worth more than a few extra dollars left on the table.