The one with the Porn Bacon

I went down for breakfast today, and asked the waitress for a Breakfast platter with Porn Bacon. Luckily she just corrected me, and I tried acting low on English. I won’t be going there again.

I also need a “tip-chart” .. everytime I get the check, I think my facial expressions makes plain the fact that I’m trying to compute 15% of that number. I end up not being able to compute it, and putting a 1 dollar tip for even a 3-4 dollar check. So I think I need a chart of tipping rates hidden in my wallet, which I can just consult, without looking lost.

I really don’t know tipping etiquette yet. This was true for me back in India, where I could easily avoid tipping: I never tipped. Or if the bill was 239, I might have kept 240 and left… or I paid by card, and avoided tipping respectably. After I was done eating, I tried not to make eye-to-eye contact with the waiter. It wasn’t about being cheap, it was just the convenience of not having to think about how much to tip.

In the US, we are supposed to pay 10-15% tip. When you’re already paying in dollars, 10-15% becomes quite significant! Also, I really don’t know whether giving out coins for tipping is a faux pas or not, so I have to round it up to the nearest dollar greater than 15%. (For this reason, the coins in my wallet never seems to be decrease.)

I would have believed that restaurants are places where you can go and relax and have a meal. In the US, restaurants are determined to keep you from relaxing: firstly, each of their items have a hundred configuration parameters, so when you order they’ll ask you a hundred questions: do you want sauce? do you want mayonnaise? do you want onions? home fries or grit? … Just shut the fucking crap up, and give me what you can. And as if that is not enough, they still leave *you* to decide how much to tip. If I start a restaurant, my checks will have “Tip” component written in. It’s 15%: it’s perfectly deterministic baby!

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8 Responses to The one with the Porn Bacon

  1. pratish says:

    Really funny. I think you should take the tip-chart idea a little more seriously !! [:)]

  2. Lakshmi says:

    who are u referring to as “baby”??? a certain loosy soosy???? :) :) am toooooo far away for u to even yell at me:)

  3. Anirudh says:

    tip chart!!! you’ve become worse than the yanks, man! 15 is 10 + 5, you know. Don’t tell me you can’t calculate 10%.

    or you should carry around your dc with you :P (ps: rand() tells me you’re an engineer?)

  4. arnstein says:

    @Anirudh: you gotta calcuate 10%, take half of that, and add the three terms. Alright, I can’t do this until the check comes, because of the taxes, which I can’t guess before hand. So basically I’m done eating and all that, and doing nothing when I get the check. At this point, every five seconds of staring blankly into the check can be significant — and after every five seconds there’s a building up tension — I start losing confidence in my arithmetical abilities — which really worsens the situation. I’m sure you’re better than me at calculating, but I am what I am.

    Which is not exactly an engineer, … although I’m into lots of programming. I actually did my undergrad in Mathematics. :P

  5. Anirudh says:

    “and after every five seconds there’s a building up tension — I start losing confidence in my arithmetical abilities — ”
    I know what you mean ;) heh heh.. good luck with the tables then..

    I read your CV. “Impressive” is an understatement :) Good luck with your future projects
    (ps : I’m a Chinmaya alumnus too)

  6. P says:

    I never liked the idea of tips. If they want amount x, they should simply say so. Saying x*20/23, and then expecting customers to multiply that by 23/20… crazy.

  7. Arpith says:

    http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2008/09/08/opinion/20080908_opart.html

    “Finally, I understand that matriculation at the Elm Street School does not guarantee admission to Harvard or Stanford, or even a future ability to calculate tips. _No Refunds_”

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