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Onion Article: 10% Tip Teaches Waitress Valuable Lesson


Customer reduced her tip to communicate his dissatisfaction and raise awareness in areas in which he felt her performance was lacking, calling it a "wake-up call...was just trying to help push Carla along the path to achieving her full potential as an employee."

Waitress who received the 10% tip expressed enthusiastic gratitude for the "immense personal growth" the gesture will offer her.

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    1. re: c oliver

      O'Connor said he first considered reducing his usual 15 percent tip for the waitress when Hyams failed to replace the cream packets for his coffee while he looked over the restaurant's extensive list of lunch specials. But it wasn't until Hyams neglected to ask if he needed extra ketchup that O'Connor made the decision to let his "money do the talking."

      'Connor said his overall goal was not only to receive better service, but to help Hyams become a role model for her two teenage children, Tyler and Michael.


      I don't know if it is fiction or not, but the first thought that popped into my head after finishing reading the crap(article)....is that it was a puff piece and the author must have paid the waitress to go along with it.

      I mean really.....withholding a portion of a tip due to cream packets and ketchup...role model? What's the moral here.....if you clear the table of every little scrap and replace with fresh packets and know to always offer extra ketchup....you will be a better person......or simply a better waitress? Excuse me, but with reference to the cream packets, what is the server a mind reader? I don't see where the writer remotely asked for more replacement and in fact, he was reading the menu by his own account. Also with reference to the ketchup....by all apearences from the picture provided for the piece the place looks like a typical diner. A bottle of ketchup is not enough for one person?

      Not to denigrate and waitress or server.....as my entire life has been associated in the restaurant and food industry and I have tremendous respect for all employees in the business......but I hardly think Ms Hyams wants her kids to limit their possibilities to diner service beyond college years....all parents, I believe want more for their kids.......

      1. re: c oliver

        Yes, it's fiction; that's the brilliant thing about The Onion -- they do satire so well. This was absolutely hilarious!

        1. re: pikawicca

          I've heard of The Onion but never read. I'll remedy that. It was brilliant :)

          1. re: pikawicca

            Ouch.....I feel like I've been made a fool.....

            1. re: fourunder

              Nah. BTW, this is from their annual food issue. Haven't read any articles yet but the headlines are lol-funny.

              1. re: fourunder

                I pick up The Onion whenever I see it at a couple of places I walk by or frequent. It's almost always a good read, particularly when life isn't making sense, things are getting too serious, or just when one needs a good laugh.

                I don't know its history, but I started to see the paper more and more a handful of years ago. With all the unbelievable but true outrageousness that has been status quo in Washington (think of all the material George Dubyah & crew were handing to comedians, satirists) and elsewhere, The Onion's style capitalizes on how often the line between reality and satire is often a big blur. The Onion's writers are pros at straight-faced satire. If you don't read the articles within the context of The Onion (as is the case with this post's article), it is so easy to be convinced - at least initially - that it's for real. Take a look at the current headline of "The Onion." I think to most, it's satire, but to a true Chowhound, it's a reality that we live any time we go on a road trip - maybe not for Wendy's (or sometimes even this can be true, given the other choices :))


                Think about it - we avidly seek out better food choices prior to hitting the road. It's a built-in given for us. We seek out recs on other boards, scrutinize them, print them out, map them out, etc. What "normal" person would do this? Viva le Chowhound!

                1. re: bulavinaka

                  Started by students at the University of Wisconsin in the 1990's.

          2. ""It's days like this that I thank God I get paid less than minimum wage and can rely on a built-in economic incentive to keep me motivated during those 16-hour double shifts.""

            Funny stuff!

              1. Very funny.
                (If some of you have never heard of the Onion, you should check it out.)

                1 Reply
                1. re: NYCkaren

                  What really caps it for me are the photos. Just priceless.

                  1. re: pikawicca

                    OMG - too funny. I liked the parting comment "Next - how to save money by writing your own books!".

                    I love this site!

                    1. re: Sal Vanilla

                      I also love the fact that ONN now has Bobbie Batista as an anchor for quite a few of the news stories! Don't know how many of you remember her, but if you watched CNN and CNN-HLN in the 80's and 90's, you couldn't miss her! I read a few months ago that she decided to do these Onion spots knowing people might think she's really desperate for a job, but she's just doing it for fun as a satire of modern-day dumbed-down cable news - she left CNN in 2002 and went into academia at Emory.

                  2. The Onion seems to be on a food jag. Here's a report on KFC that's good for a chuckle.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: pikawicca

                      They are not really on a food run. I posted on here the Taco Bell human feedbag story several months ago. That is The Onion's collected food stories from the past.

                      Having seen these stories some time ago, now I'm having a second laugh seeing the righteous anger and indignation reactions on this thread! = )

                    2. omg that was so funny! What rock have I been living under, I've nerver heard of this publication, I bought the story hook line and sinker. Totally judged the guy because 10% is just wrong and 15% is outdated, as I read on about the stupid packets I then went into WTF mode.
                      Thanks for the laugh!

                      1. This post reminds me of the good old days -- back at the law office where we used to read the Onion for its posts from a Hubert or Herman who apparently worked at an Office Depot type place. He would regale us, in total street talk, w/stories about office picnics, the latest shipment of fly file folders, etc. Absolutely hilarious.

                        8 Replies
                        1. re: Sarah

                          I loved that guy - he worked for A/R! "Repin my ** dawgs in the ** Accountz Receivable 'hood!" I'm an accountant (an auditor for a CPA firm, but still) - I can laugh at myself! I can't imagine laughing along with my co-workers at it though - they wouldn't find it funny! Sigh..

                          I also loved the regular columns from Jean Teasdale - she always talked about how romantic her "hubby" supposedly was, the cute things her kitties did since the last column, her latest encounters with angels, etc... Foodwise, she was always falling off the wagon with her diet (by eating a tub of Duncan Hines frosting while watching "Titanic", etc.) and always going on about what a "chocoholic" she was - finding joy and inspiration as her life went further downhill... It's funny because every local paper has a column like hers - usually a mom or a dad talking about the cute things their spouse and kids did recently, going on about how they're getting older and fatter, how they are re-evaluating their life, etc. Everyday life, some humor, ending on an upbeat note! She's just like that!

                          I remember back in 2002 the Chinese state newspaper published an actual news story, almost word-for-word from the Onion! Congress was going to move to Charlotte or Memphis, unless Washington provided them with the kind of high-tech, world-class building that matched their world-class status as a legislature. One important demand was a retractable dome.

                          1. re: deibu

                            Glad to find someone so sympatico! Tried to pull up some old Onion articles w/ "Hubert" or whatever his name was, but no luck. His description of the food at a company function... priceless!
                            I could definitely see where the Chinese press could be confounded/flummoxed by the Onion -- but then who wouldn't be, unless you had a twisted sense of humor!

                            1. re: Sarah

                              Congress is threatening moving to a new city to get a retractable dome and other goodies, that's their best story ever. Obvious analogy to sports teams doing it. When that Chinese paper reprinted the story as real news and were later called upon it and laughed at the world over, they still wouldn't fully back down. They said the whole thing proves that in America they'll print anything regardless of its truth in order to make money. Still didn't get it.

                              So I hope those who were angry and then embarrassed over my posting this "news" can get over it. They have company!

                              1. re: Leonardo

                                I liked the headline of "Depression seems to hit losers the hardest" and "Trekkies are protesting new Star Trek Movie because it has a good story that makes sense"

                                1. re: phantomdoc

                                  No, no, no. Best story ever, from September 2001: "God Angrily Clarifies 'Don't Kill' Rule" http://www.theonion.com/content/node/...

                                  Quote: "Somehow, people keep coming up with the idea that I want them to kill their neighbor. Well, I don't. And to be honest, I'm really getting sick and tired of it. Get it straight. Not only do I not want anybody to kill anyone, but I specifically commanded you not to, in really simple terms that anybody ought to be able to understand."

                                  1. re: Nettie

                                    Ha! lol...How about this one from their archives (now discontinued) of 1941:

                                    "History Channel Film Crew Sets Off for Europe to Start Filming"

                                    or from 1958: "Another Godamn Movie From Abbot and Costello Released."

                              2. re: Sarah

                                Herbert Kornfeld, of Accounts Receivabo. My favorite Onion thing ever. Met an unfappy end in 2007...

                          2. jfood cannot see the onion through his firewall but he remembers a similar piece a few years ago. They do a great job in a lot of their satire.