After reading J-Mo's post about one of the great sociological questions of our time, I decided to go to Sonic for lunch today.
So I'm sitting there and of course I have no idea how much to tip or even if I should tip at all. Because the place is like a gigantic roundabout anyway. Who knows what to do. You pretty much just hope to get out of there without running into anything.
Anyway, my order comes to $5.39. I briefly consider giving her $6 and telling her to keep the change, but that never seems like enough to me. I feel like the carhop is standing there thinking, "Gee thanks. This will pay for my little brother's operation to fix his lazy eye."
Next, I consider giving her a $10 bill. Then as she's giving me the change I can make it a point to return one of the dollars to her. This seems like a pretty good idea, except who wants to break a ten. Those big bills just disappear once you break them.
So then I dig around in the coin repository that is the console of my car and find thirty-nine cents. I don't have a five, so I decide that I'll give her six one dollar bills and thirty-nine cents in change. That way, she'll be getting a full dollar tip. That should help her brother out.
Well, she comes, I pay, she leaves. Story of my life. But she doesn't count my ones. She just takes the money and walks away. So then I'm thinking that she's thinking I gave her exact change and has no idea I even tipped her. I mean, she said thank you. But it was just a regular thank you, not an oh-thank-you-so-much-kind-sir-for-my-tip-is-there-anything-else-I-can-do-for-you-today thank you. So basically, I got NO CREDIT for my tip.
Oh sure, when she gets back inside and starts going thru her money, she'll find a nice little Washingtonian surprise. But what good does that do me? Isn't the whole point of tipping at Sonic so I don't get dirty looks or feel guilty?
Oh, it's not?
Oh... Well, nevermind then. Forget I said anything.
"If you wanna go and take a ride with me, we three wheelin' in the fo' with the gold D's. Oh why do I live this way? Hey! Must be the money..."