What the hell, co-worker?! No tip for reasonable service?

This is a minor pit, but the incident made me go :eek:, then :smack:, then :mad:

A senior company guy “Greg” (travelling) was visiting recently. He took a few of us out to dinner (company expense.) Right away, he started in on the waitress, “Beth”. Calling her name, loudly, from across the restaurant. Complaining about her within earshot.

Now - he was sober. Completely sober. And while the waitress was young and a bit flighty she wasn’t horrible or anything. We got drinks. We got food. Both were decent. She was friendly enough. Maybe we waited a bit longer than I would prefer for drinks, but she was working double-duty as waitress and bartender.

This wasn’t bad service. It wasn’t great, but for a mid-week night, mid-scale chain restaurant - I had no complaints. I mostly ignored his shtick because he likes to play the “fake asshole.” As in, usually it really is fake and an act.

The real climax was after we had finished eating. “BETH!”, he bellows, from across the restaurant: “I NEED THE CHECK NOW!” Beth brings us the check. Greg picks it up scribbles on it (he’s expensing it, not paying himself), and says loudly so everyone can hear: “Let’s get out of here. I don’t care where we go, but I’m not putting up with ‘Beth’ any more.”

I saw “Beth” look pretty unhappy when she saw the check. I got to my car when one of my other co-workers laughs.

“Greg didn’t tip her!”

“Are you serious? That was like a $140 bill! We were there for like two hours!”

“Dead serious. I saw him write the zero. chortle” (BTW, I ain’t happy with this co-worker either)

What. The. Fuck. I’m pretty damn picky about restaurant service. But there is bad service, and I know it when I get it. This was a bit inexperienced, but it wasn’t bad by a long shot.

I was pretty ashamed for what he did. I walked back into the restaurant, my own head held low. I found “Beth” and apologized. The only cash I had was a twenty, so I gave her that and thanked her. She seemed pretty embarassed; I was even more so. $20 on $140 is less than I would normally tip, but I had gone in expecting dinner to be covered and that was all the cash I had.

But really. She didn’t do anything wrong. You make 10x what she does, and she pays her rent with tips. And it’s not even your money! This was a legit business expense, and the business expects you to tip! Why you gotta pick on her and make her feel like shit?

Straight low-class.

Guess he’s not much of an actor, and is just a “real asshole.”

Secret self-loathing.

The funny thing is - “asshole” is his default interaction. I’ve gotten used to him, so I take it all with a grain of salt. And what’s crazy - he’ll be a jerk in person, needle you, berate you if you do something wrong - but then behind your back to your superiors he’ll go to bat for you, saying nothing but good things and speaking nothing but praise. He’s an inverse two-face. It’s like he’s uncomfortable with direct interaction so defaults to an “asshole” act but when you’re not in the room he defends you.

That’s kind of why this was a shock. I expected him to be an asshole to the waitress, but usually he’ll be an asshole but then leave a very nice tip. The zero tip was like, WTF?

Now you know what kind of person he really is. That’s useful information, if he’s your superior.

Quite frankly, he sounds like a garden-variety “me important, you lowly servant” douchebag. Waitstaff are mostly powerless when their customers act like assholes, and he knows it, and gets off on knowing that this person was helpless to react. There also may be some gender stuff here, too, but it may just be that he treats vulnerable people like crap because he knows nobody (not them, and not you) will call him on it.

That was awesome of you to go back to the waitress. It’s what I would have done, too. Maybe ‘acting’ like an asshole is so he can cover up that he really is one. And he might just schmooze up around superiors to make it look like he’s a great guy. I definitely wouldn’t count on him to cover my back on anything important.

He’s a real asshole, not just playing one. Tips are what servers really work for. He worked her hard, abused her and paid her nothing. He’s a nasty piece of work.

And you did the right thing going back and giving $20. Good for you. You will never manage a Wall Street investment bank, but I’ll buy you lunch when you get to Antioch.

I vote he is a asshole also. He will defend his staff, because he thinks their mistakes reflect badly on him, but when push comes to shove you will throw you to the wolves.

Or, more likely, he is the paternalisitic asshole kind (very common in mid level bosses), abusing his own people while protecting them. With little people from outside, he sees no needs to be protective at all.

This is a dangerous personality type, destroying self esteem of those around him, yet bonding the person he is destroying to himself.

yup…he is a dick.

and you certainly did the honourable thing. For all that I hate tipping with the heat of a thousand suns, I still do it when it is expected and try to at least appear not grudging. And when someone acts like that…I’d like to think I’d do exactly the same as you. If only to convince myself that “I am not them”

Around the office he needs to be known as Mr. Pink.

Ditto the “good for you” for tipping the waitress. Can you call the place and talk to the manager? You couldn’t give her more money than you had on you, but you can tell her boss she did a good job with an asshole patron. And you certainly know her name. "Beth!"

Another vote for “real asshole.” If you consistently act like an asshole, you’re by definition an asshole.

I never thought I’d say this, but I think kanicbird is right on.

As everyone has said, if you consistently act like an asshole, it’s not an act. Guy seems toxic as hell. Keep your distance.

I expect the only reason he goes to bat for his people with other managers is that he’s an empire-building asshole. If other managers are criticizing his people, it reflects badly on him and so he defends them.

This. And another vote for “He’s really an asshole, not just playing one.”

Don’t depend on Greg for a job reference when you are not “his” anymore, GameHat.