When is it OK Not to Tip? (For Me -- Not Larry David): EDITOR'S COLUMN
At what point is a gratuity optional?
I have this problem.
I frequent Tomaso's Pizza on Seventh Avenue. I usually order the food to go and eat at my home office, where half the pizza either winds up on my face or on my carpet.
But when I go there I'm confronted with a social quandary I've faced many times in my life: Should I leave a tip on my credit card receipt for take-out?
Though the specifics of tipping have been dealt with many times in shows by writer/producer/actor Larry David, both in his show Curb Your Enthusiasm and Seinfeld, take-out tipping has never been addressed.
So, here's what I do: I usually don't tip.
Because I have shame, though, unlike the aforementioned television characters, I feel a child-like sense of guilt if I do not leave a tip where a tip is requested. In fact, it's eating me up inside.
It activates my nimble neuroses: Does the cashier hate me? Does she dread seeing my face? When she's scooping two slices of pepperoni pizza into the Styrofoam box, is she masking frustration with her seemingly genuine smile? Probably not, but how can I know for sure?
And it's not like I'm upset for them putting the option to tip on a receipt, but it's my understanding that the rules of tipping prescribe tips when I am waited on. Since I was not necessarily waited on, I feel as though a tip is optional.
But, again, I'm not so confident in that anymore. After weeks and weeks of pizza slices, I'm starting to feel obligated to leave at least something every once in a while.
So I'm asking your opinion. What would you do in this situation? Do you leave a tip when you get take-out?