I feel like I need to start this rant article with a disclaimer, in the interest of fairness.

There are many wonderfully generous and kind people in Lubbock, Texas. You, the person reading this, are probably one of them. And if that's true, you'll likely agree with me.

With that said, here it is: Lubbock, you have got to stop treating people in the service industry like garbage.  It's such a bad look on you, a bad look on our town, and very bad karma to you.


I have many friends in the service industry, whether they wait tables, bartend, do hair/ nails, etc. The stories are endless about rude, entitled customers and bad to non-existent tips. Yes, I know tipping culture in the U.S. is currently out-of-bounds, but I'm talking about industries in which a tip has always been an expected part of the transaction. From what I've heard, it's been an exceptionally great year for exceptionally bad customers in the 806.

So, why are Lubbock people tipping so poorly and acting out of pocket? I think it's gotten worse this year because prices have gone up across the board, yet folks still want to have everything they've had before. But instead of, let's say, going out to eat a little less often, they are choosing instead to stiff the wait staff, or worse, act up in the hopes of getting a comped meal/ service. I suspect this behavior is worse in Lubbock because of our "biggest small town in the world" status. I assure you that behavior doesn't fly in more, shall we say, cosmopolitan cities.

I also suspect it's the product of our high restaurant per capita situation as well. With endless options, you can act like a fool at one place and then just mosey to the next, right? Wrong. If you think people in the service industry don't talk to each other, you're wrong. If I acted the way I've seen many Lubbock people act in restaurants, I'd be afraid to bite into any dish I didn't make myself.

I know BK says we can have it our way, but if you are in the wrong, that's still on you, not on your server/ service provider. When you don't tip at a restaurant, you are stealing from your server, as they must "tip out" bar staff, the host person, etc. You've also made them work for nothing, as their measly hourly rate barely covers their taxes.

I think some of the problem is just plain ignorance, too. I overheard a person saying that they always tip 10%, like that was a great kindness. The standard tip for good service is 20%. Did you get subpar service? This is how to handle it:

If you received poor service, it is better to talk to the manager than skip on the tip. Leaving no tip does not correct the problem of poor service.

Also, keep in mind your server isn't at fault for things that happen in the kitchen, the loud kid at the next table, or if you just didn't like your food. They are also not responsible for your bad day, your bad attitude, or any other reason you're being rude, entitled, and awful to your server. Seriously, don't embarrass yourself like that.

Lubbock is full of good people, I truly believe that. I also believe that we can always be better. If you "don't believe in tipping," or can't afford to tip, then don't use the services that traditionally call for tipping. You can cook for yourself and cut your own hair.

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