Tipping is huge in America. Almost everyone leaves at least one tip every day. More than five million American workers depend on them, and we spend $66 billion on tips each year. And everyone recognizes that queasy feeling - in bars and restaurants, barbershops and beauty parlors, hotels and strip clubs, and everywhere else - when the check arrives or the tip jar looms. Omnipresent yet poorly understood, tipping has worked its way into almost every part of daily life.
In Keep the Change, bestselling author Steve Dublanica dives into this unexplored world, in a comical yet serious attempt to turn himself into the Guru of the Gratuity. As intrepid and irreverent as Michael Moore or A. J. Jacobs, Dublanica travels the country to meet strippers and shoeshine men, bartenders, bellhops, bathroom attendants, and many others, all in an effort to overcome his own sweaty palms when faced with those perennial questions: Should I tip? How much? Throughout, he explores why tipping has spread; he explains how differences in gender, age, ethnicity, and nationality affect our attitudes; and he reveals just what the cabdriver or deliveryman thinks of us after we’ve left a tip.
Written in the lively style that made Waiter Rant such a hit, Keep the Change is a fun and enlightening quest that will change the way we think - and tip.
©2010 Steve Dublanica (P)2010 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
mostly nonfiction listener
Towards the end of Steve Dublanica's hilarious and information filled Keep the Change: A Clueless Tipper's Quest to Become the Guru of the Gratuity, the author provides a list of people known as "bad tippers". To my chagrin, both academics and information technology workers made the list. Does this mean that academic technology are the worst tippers on the planet?
One thing that I am sure of after reading "Keep the Change" is that all of us should become much better at tipping. Some of the surprises for me in the book are how many people depend mostly on tips to make a living. Everyone from cab drivers to furniture delivery people to hair stylists depend largely on tips to make ends meet. I had always known that restaurant people (waiters, bartenders etc.) work mostly for tips, but I had not realized that bathroom attendants, shoe shine workers, and the people at the car wash also rely on tips to such a large degree.
My biggest tipping inadequacy, one that I pledge to correct, is how I tip the people who clean hotel rooms. I've always left a twenty at the end of my stay. Turns out that hotel cleaning people in large hotels, the same hotels that we stay in during academic tech conferences, are often randomly assigned to a new room each day. So if you leave a tip at the end of your stay the person who cleaned your room each day might not get any money.
What we should be doing is leaving a daily tip, and putting it in an envelope. And the open bar at the ed tech vendor sponsored events - tip the bartender. (On that note…bartender tips are 20% of the drink cost, not a dollar per drink).
We first met Steve Dublanica in Waiter Rant, and if you enjoyed that book (I did), and are interested in the sociology and economics of service occupations, then you will enjoy 'Keep the Change'.
The author's exploration of the various service economy professions is enlightening. The overall thesis of the book is tip more and accept "tip creep." This hardly makes one a tipping guru. The author doesn't address the real tipping quandaries: do you tip on takeout? buffet service? What should one tip a golf caddy? I was expecting a more balanced approach distinguishing proper tipping situations from those where tips are requested without any real work, skill or service being provided.
The author of this book used to be a waiter and wrote Waiter Rant, which is an excellent book also. As a former waiter, he is expecting to be tip every single time.
Keep the Change can be a little outrages. I personally don't feel that I should tip for every single services, like the mailman, but I also think that tipping should be given when service is needed.
For instant, I was at a high end restaurant with my caregiver and the waiter offered to give my staff a break and offered to help me with my dinner. It might been a slow night for the waiter, but I felt like he had my best interest for me and wanted to give my staff a break.
We tipped him heavily because he went out of his way to accommodate my needs.
Really good book. I just learned when you tip at Starbucks, the workers gets taxed on the tips. At the end of the day, they collect the money from the tip jar and send the tips to corporate and they will add the tip in each employee paychecks and get taxed.
I also learned the kick back system, where everyone in the service pool, gets their share of the pie.
Awesome book and it is very entertaining.
Very entertaining, although Lexus drivers are Not bad tippers. It is mentioned more than a few times, evidentally 411 from a -few- Valets. Guess whos tip just shrunk!? Otherwise, it's a fun listen. YES PEOPLE ... YOU TIP THE HOUSEKEEPING STAFF!!!
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