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Here’s a tip for you

Tipping is an odd, uneven custom in America. We routinely leave extra money for the waiters after our restaurant meals.

A gratuity for our barber or hairdresser is not uncommon.  A taxi or rideshare driver expects you to grease the palm.  Although driverless vehicles that transport us relieve of us that pain—for the moment. 

Who know what will happen as Artificial Intelligence (AI) developments becoming increasingly more human like?

But there is an increasing backlash from unhappy customers who object to leaving tips—especially on checkout machines—when there was virtually no interaction with a live individual. 

There are online suggestions, of course, about when to tip or not and how much.

I always tip our waiters, leave some money for our barber and hairdresser, and gratefully hand over a few dollars to the food delivery person.

But I often wonder why we don’t consider a gratuity for the grocery store employees at the meat counter or at checkout?  My auto mechanic never receives extra cash from me nor does the plumber when I need emergency service for clogged drains.

Health professionals always go empty handed although they provide more important service than others to whom I unthinkingly leave some money.

I don’t expect my habits to change anytime soon.  But I certainly can understand the resentment of consumers who object to pre-tip businesses.  Or paying extra for airline service or any one of a score of other businesses that expect us to fork over extra money in addition to the price of service.

Our practice is strange but seems to be generally accepted.  I’ve never patronized a business that asked for a tip before service.  But if I do in the future, I’ll leave and go elsewhere.  It should be my decision whether to reward a good experience. 

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