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did you change your mind

recent postings about individual manners (building a sandwich) or tipping etiquette, or restaurant responses (spilled water) have made me give a lot of thought to these issues, but I find most of the time, while I do see other points of view, it is rare for me to actually change my mind. What about some of the rest of you? Have you been persuaded, re-educated, coerced?

maybe i am more inflexible than i thought...... how disturbing

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  1. I can't say anyone's ever changed my mind, but it's enlightening to see other points of view. I have to admit I'm a bit addicted to the Julie & Julia related arguments and do find some of the arguments there quite persuasive. Some threads about organic cooking/cost issues do also provide some invaluable tips as well.

    3 Replies
    1. re: queencru

      I was actually thinking about this very thing today! Reading through a few of the more vigorous discussions on Chowhound, and engaging in a couple myself, has brought me to the conclusion that, in general, by the time one is an adult one's opinions and perspectives are pretty much set, for better or for worse. I've been persuaded a few times and have changed my opinion on a couple of occasions, but overall my foundational points-of-view remain the same. I wouldn't necessarily call this inflexibility (bad connotation) but rather certainty. I've spent a lifetime honing my values, determining what matters to me and what doesn't, and it's going to take more than an brief electronic exchange to amend that. For me, arguments that are well-reasoned, logical, and based on fact rather than emotion have the best chance of changing my mind. However, having said all that, if someone posts about a new world's greatest (fill in the blank) I'm gonna try it. Oh, and exilekiss' postings on the California board will make me do just about anything, even if I think it's wrong.

      1. re: SDgirl

        "We have no permanent habits until we are forty. Then they begin to harden, presently they petrify, then business begins. " -- Mark Twain

        1. re: jmckee

          Ha! Mark Twain is the bomb (to borrow from the young people). I'm way past the petrified stage and well into the business stage.

    2. ya I've had my opinion changed here by others' arguments . . . usually it's b/c a piece of info has been offered I was unaware of.

      1 Reply
      1. re: cinnamon girl

        This is as it is in life. If missing a key piece of info we may come to the wrong conclusions.

      2. You know KM your timing is perfect. Jfood has spent the last two days on conference calls trying to convince others on his point of view and having others try to convince him of theirs. So far he has about an 85-15 split. Still quivering on the 15%.

        So as he wrote and read these same threads he sees the POV of others on the water thread and can be sympathetic to that issue. The "dark" grilled sheese he has absolutely no sympathy for the contrary POV. The build your sandwich does not have that restaurant-customer issue so he couldn;t care less.

        So yes he has been persuaded a few times over the years, greatly appreciates the other POVs,educated in all of them but never coerced.

        1. Rarely do I change my opinion but often I feel better informed and perhaps more sensitive to opposing points of view. I don't often write but I do read most threads, and I do find them educating. Often I will think to myself, wow, I never realized how much X, Y or Z could bother someone. On the other hand, sometimes I am amazed at how worked up people can get over seemingly trivial things. It can cause me to stop and think twice about getting bothered by something trivial. So maybe I won't change my opinion about the immediate issue, but I may ponder a future issue more thoughtfully before forming a solid opinon.

          1. I don't often have my mind changed, but I often find I can better define my reasons for thinking a certain way. There are posters that are more eloquent at expressing their reasons and I find myself thinking 'that's it exactly!'

            1. Yes, I've had my mind changed on certain subjects. But the biggest change is gaining perspective on issues. After reading so many opinions I realize eating is not as black and white as I once thought and no experience is truly the end of the world.

              1. I've had my mind changed a couple of times. Usually it's about ingredients or cooking methods. (A recent thread about onions as ingredients has changed my mind a bit and made me decide to try something different.)

                I have pet peeves: threads that involve "cheapery;" either "excuses" not to tip well or at all. Also, diners who feel that a small mis-step merits the restaurant "comping" all or part of their meal.

                1 Reply
                1. re: shaogo

                  I find that I change my mind on issues where you can be persuaded by a preponderance of logic or new information. On the types of issues you get here, not so much, because they are more matters of etiquette and/or preference. Most of these kinds of preferences are pretty deeply ingrained; I find it hard to imagine someone starting to stack plates or something because someone has persuaded them it's better than not doing it.

                2. I did change my mind about tipping for takeout. I had never really thought about the work involved in prepping takeout orders before reading the takeout threads, and generally didn't tip for takeout at all. Now I think about tipping more. In situations where the person who prepped the order is likely making the server wage I tip, usually 10-15%. It honestly had never occurred to me the person taking my order and packing it up had to take time away from more profitable customers.

                  5 Replies
                  1. re: mpjmph

                    Yeah, I think tipping is an example where someone can be swayed by new information; many people are somewhat unaware of how it works in different instances. (However, people trying to do this sort of persuasion have to be careful that they don't sound condescending-- "You must not be aware.."-- or like they think the general public has an obligation to know about the innner workings of the industry.)

                    1. re: bibi rose

                      Yeah, I think tipping is an example where someone can be swayed by new information;

                      I disagree with this thought completely. It is my experience you either believe in the concept of tipping, or you do not. People who do, do so as generously as they can at the moment. People that don't will either completely ignore any generosity amount...or find a way to make excuses or find miscues to defend not tipping at all or appropriately. This goes for people of meager means or wealthy. When you are cheap...you are cheap... and even winning the lottery will not change you a bit.

                      1. re: fourunder

                        I agree with you that a cheap person is just a cheap person, not likely to change their ways. But I do think there are a lot of cases where people are just clueless and don't know hoe their tipping practices impact others. When they learn more they change. I for one hadn't thought about the person packing the to-go orders being a server with a tip-dependent wage. When the info was presented I changed my tipping practices.

                        I caught the tail end of Oprah yesterday. She was interviewing the guy who wrote Waiter Rant. When she asked him why tipping less that 15% is considered a punishment he explained the lower minimum wage for servers and the practice of tipping out. It was clear from the audience reaction that many of the people there had no idea that servers were so dependent on tips, several audience members said they planned on tipping more, or at least paying more attention to how they tip.

                        1. re: mpjmph

                          several audience members said they planned on tipping more,

                          The cynic in me is curious how many on national television would admit to tipping nothing at all or considerably less after all the informationis now known to them.....:o)

                          btw...I have been in the restaurant, service and hospitality industry all my life...both as an owner and employee (my family's business was restaurant ownership)....and I will tell you 15% is not punishment.......but maybe deserved and or proper for service provided. Many servers do not deserve anything above a nickle due to their attitudes....My belief is the percentage should be at or near 20%...but not automatic for everyone......Service has to be very poor to be stiffed. Servers will always tell you anything less is an insult. My suggestion is to tip what you feel is appropriate.....not what others believe.

                      2. re: bibi rose

                        I think you're right. I come from a 15% area and while I typically tip more, I was not aware that there were some other areas where 20% was considered the minimum.

                    2. Buy me a few whisky's and I'll cahnge my mind!

                      1. When I read this board I am just speechless about what minor insignificant issues will set people off enough that they post a question.

                        1. Yes, my mind has been changed on numerous occasions but the greater take-away is to keep a sense of humor. I had no idea how sensitive people are about their beliefs. The diff btwn discussing & defending ones "mind" is truly interesting to me.

                          So thank you CH's for enlightening me and reminding me how much a sense of humor pays off.

                          1. I remember receiving A LOT of hate on another board because I tipped 17% on a $120 bill instead of 20%.

                            Being the naive idiot that I am, I started tipping 20%.

                            A few months ago, my other half told me that I was a fool, most people only tip 10%!!! And that 15% is generous, 20% is for exceptional service and a business expense account. I disagreed with him saying that most people tip 20%, THE INTERBUTTS TOLD ME SO.

                            A few weeks ago, we asked a mutual friend, a server in a very well known, popular restaurant, what the average tip was. Mind you, this restaurant is in the wealthiest part of LA, and he had no reason to lie to us. He told us 10%!!! He said that when the bill is over $100 or it is mostly drinks, the tip is almost ALWAYS 10%. Then he went on to tell stories how cheap most people are, it was a real eye opener.

                            To answer your question: have I been re-educated? Unfortunately, yes, but I was mislead. Don't always believe the internets. Words are cheap.

                            Do I still tip 20%? No, I only tip 20% at restaurants that we're regulars and they provided good service. I've tipped 10% lately for bad service, something I wouldn't have dreamed of doing before.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: SmokeyDoke

                              "... we asked a mutual friend, a server in a very well known, popular restaurant, what the average tip was..."

                              Is there some reason you aren't naming the restaurant?

                              1. re: SmokeyDoke

                                maybe, but everyone I know in LA pays a minimum of 15%, 20% for a decent restaurant. But this is kinda off topic.

                              2. Absolutely. Every single time.

                                I especially appreciate when after someone points out the error of my tastes or thinking and when I don't get it, they follow up post after post after post until I am educated. I was once quite the unmannered, clueless diner.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: rworange

                                  But how do you taste anything with your tongue stuck in your cheek like that? ;-)