Cheapskates Sent Postcards

July 12, 2009

in Tipping & Etiquette Stories

Many years ago while working at a very popular restaurant that had a 2 hour wait on a Sat night, the servers and I got together after work and decided we couldn’t run after patrons who stiffed us, but we came up with an idea that worked. Mind you, this was before the ATM/check card was used so widely. We probably did 50% in checks and 40% in credit cards and the rest 10% in cash.

We decided that the folks who stiffed us on credit cards or personal checks would get a postcard from us.

You’re saying WHAT???

We went to Kinko’s and got postcards printed. The front was just the spot of their address, and of course no return address, lest our employers find out and can us. On the other side it had a cheery smiley face that had a caption that said ‘Congratulations, you have been inducted into the cheap tippers hall of fame.’ What a hoot.

Shame on me……..:-)

Naughty Girl in St. Paul

{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

Hugh July 14, 2009 at 2:05 am

If you are consistently being stiffed, it's probably a sign that you are a poor server. An attitude like you exhibited with the postcard further demonstrates this. I was a waiter for 2 years in college and was stiffed exactly once, and it was on a very small order. Perhaps you need to examine yourself first. You obviously knew you were doing wrong because you hid it form your employers. What a whiny person who refuses to take responsibility. Shame on you!!

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Stpaul January 25, 2011 at 3:14 pm

A waiter in college for 2 years…my my..you have alot of experience to back your talk.

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Reebs July 15, 2009 at 5:26 am

I say BRAVO!!! You could be the best server and there are cheap mf'ers out there that will stiff you. Look at a lot of the rich n' famous! They do it all the time and they can afford it. You also have to consider the place where he/she worked. If it's a place a lot of rednecks and low-lifes frequent then they stiff their server just for a laugh and it has nothing to do with the service.

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Hugh July 22, 2009 at 8:19 am

Reebs…some level of being stiffed is to be expected. If it's so much that you feel like retaliating, then you either:

a) suck as a wait person

b) need to change places

c) need to change professions.

This person is a coward and a whiner.

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Anonymous July 24, 2009 at 1:24 am

this is the lamest comeuppance i've ever heard. what happened to good old fashioned face-to-face confrontation (and i do not mean physical, i mean, stand up for yourself. politely!)

what's even more lame are the people who seem to defend the scumbags that stiff a waitperson.

a wise word to the stiffing types: if the service is so terrible you feel you need to "stiff", alert a manager to the poor service. this passive-aggressive way of reasoning yourself into saving yourself a few bucks by stiffing the waitstaff is really lower than low.

i'm sure you "stiffing types" have shown up to your place of work and done a half-assed job at it, but if your boss tried to "stiff" you on your paycheck, you'd be throwing a sh*t fit.

just be kind to your server, and you'll find that no matter what, it'll be worth your while. don't forget: we carry your food and your health–literally– in our hands…and a waitress who's been screwed over never forgets a face.

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Darth Babaganoosh January 6, 2011 at 12:22 am

If I ever feel the need to "stiff" a waiter/ess–only twice that I can ever recall–due to their poor service, have no fear about me telling the manager, as well. I do. I also never go back to that particular establishment (I've worked in restaurants and bars, I've seen the "retaliation" that goes on in the kitchens).

Fortunately, it's been 15 years since I've lived in a country that requires tipping at all. Funny, all those people not receiving tips (and making piss poor salary on top) give as good or better service then pretty much any place back home.

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Hugh July 24, 2009 at 2:21 am

Anonymous??? Who was defending people not tipping wait staff?? While I disagree with the poster, I don't advocate stiffing staff. I have had some extremely poor service at times, and will tip less, but as you mentioned, I always alert the manager and allow them the opportunity to make it right. Sometimes that means giving me a different wait person, or them comping something. Sometimes it's simply an apology and explanation. I agree that a face to face or getting the manager involved would be a more mature way of handling this.

Also, I think it's about time that we got rid of the tipping system, which is abused in this country. We should expect the employers to pay them a decent salary, and the prices to go up accordingly. That way at least taxes will bactually be paid on their wages…as it is now, the vast (90%+) of their salaries are tips and very few wait staff pay taxes on their full tips.

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mw March 21, 2010 at 4:37 am

Really Hugh 90% is can you show me where you got that statistic ?

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stpaul January 25, 2011 at 3:17 pm

Hugh, you are one of those people who like stirring chit up. Get rid of the tipping system? Are you absolutely crazy? I know you can't mean that. Good servers like things just the way they are. Hourly wages are for a tank of gas. You must be kidding?
How are you qualified after only serving for 2 years in college? And by the way, tipping is automatically declared these days. 15% and its up to the server to declare anything above and beyond.

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rei tona November 25, 2012 at 4:56 am

it is against the law to not report 100 percent of your tips… our restaurants remind us of this all the time and we could get audited and fined thousands of dollars for not reporting all of our tips (cash tips included)) so please check your facts.. my paychecks are not even HALF of what they are supposed to be because of how much i am already taxed on them.

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Hugh is an idiot July 27, 2009 at 4:25 pm

Hugh is an idiot

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Hugh July 28, 2009 at 9:14 am

Wow, that's a great post and so well put. Truly you are a model of our public school system. Please pay attention to these posts, as a career in food service or sanitation is likely your only choice in life.

If you disagree with my post, that's fine, by all means say so, but at least make an argument, statement, or something expressing your opinion. You, sir/madam, are a douche-bag for simply name calling.

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Demotage August 22, 2009 at 10:04 pm

I just think that it is a little bit ironic that the person who is advocating personally standing up for oneself, is posting anonymously

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stpaul January 25, 2011 at 3:19 pm

I have to agree with you. And if a group spends $180 and only tips say $10 after receiving great service..well it happens,way too often especially when they all want to pay their own–
if a server was going to confront a guest and want to know why they tipped so poorly–they should be fired autormatically. That's why a 'clever' postcard might just teach them that they, somewhere, somehow screwed up and might teach them how to tip.

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Hugh Sucks January 7, 2010 at 9:56 am

All Hugh does with his day is post here and flightsfromhell.com.

GET A LIFE HUGH!

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luxpink January 7, 2010 at 12:29 pm

ooh BURN. you totally told them!

pfft. as if they even made the connection with your lame ass postcard and the tip they didnt give you.

you pat yourself on the back for THAT lame joke? i hope when you tell this story all animated and shit, to a group of people, they stare at you while the crickets chirp.

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KPinky January 17, 2010 at 7:34 pm

Maybe if you put the same effort into your work as you do in invading people's privacy and sending them 'cheap' postcards you would be tipped accordingly.

Get a life.

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waittron February 7, 2010 at 11:35 am

I think the sending of the postcards was an awesome and very funny idea. I am a great server. I am the most requested server at my restaurant and I still get stiffed every now and then. Just because a server gets stiffed does not mean they didn't take good care of their table. Some people really are that cheap.

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stpaul January 25, 2011 at 3:20 pm

Bravo Waitron! Kpinky and Hugh need to only eat at drive thrus.Guilty as charged!!!!

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