There seems to be a theme among my passengers. Some passengers fall into the category of “too poor to tip,” while others are “too rich to tip.”
Yesterday was an interesting day, nothing particular happened but there were seemingly random events that led me to ponder this subject. There were three passengers who have no idea how they influenced me and this post.
Too Poor to Tip
I was driving southbound on I-5 when I received a ride request. It happens often. I was just about to miss the exit to get off the freeway so rather than risking it, I went to the next exit and with the help of Google Maps, I found my way to my passenger. He was standing on the side of the road. He was wearing a Monster Energy drink baseball style cap. I pulled up to the side of the road, unlocked my doors and he hopped in my car. I asked him how his day was going. He was polite but quiet. The passenger obviously did not want to talk.
We rode to his destination in complete silence. I believe he was texting or looking at Facebook while I drove. It does not matter to me whether we talk but it makes for a better and less awkward ride if we do. We arrived at his destination. A very high-end country club in Del Mar. As we arrived he tugged on my shoulder and gestured that I should pull over at the service entrance. He got out. The man did not tip.
Poverty is a State of Mind
I am not saying everyone has to tip, that is not my point. Tipping is representative of something more significant. It represents how you feel about life and about people who serve you. When you tip you signal to the world (or karma if you will) that despite your present circumstance you believe in an abundant life. If you believe that, then you will never be lacking. You are never too poor to tip.
Too Rich to Tip
As coincidence would have it, I returned to the same exclusive country club to pick someone up. I thought it was interesting that it happened on the same day. If it would have been two different days I most likely would not have seen the significance. The man I picked up had played a round of golf. He was a nice man. His car was in the shop. I was taking him to La Jolla. We talked on the way about our wives (nothing bad sweetheart), about golf, and about school among other things.
It is Not What You Know But Who You Know
Apparently, Marshall Faulk was at the country club that day although my passenger said he did not see him. Michael Jordan is also a member there among many other famous people. My passenger told me that a normal club has between 500-700 members, this one only had about 180. That’s how exclusive the club.
He started a publishing company thirty-years ago that publishes trade magazines. There was a lot of traffic and although his destination was not too far, it took us nearly thirty minutes to get there. We arrived at his residence without incident. He also did not tip.
Abundant Attitude Leads to More Abundance
This man obviously had money. Although you could not tell by looking at him, you could tell by where he golfed and where he lived that he was not lacking. I am sure the argument could be made that because he had worked hard for his money that he wanted to keep it. That’s true, but at the same time if you believe in an abundant life, then tipping only increases your wealth not subtracts from it. It may not be that you are rewarded with money, but maybe something that otherwise would not work out does.
Too Cheap to Tip
I picked up a woman at her place of work. She is an operations manager for a company that manufacturers swim suits and rash guards for the government (i.e. lifeguards, the coast guard, etc.). We had a “pleasant” conversation about Google Maps and how it is not always right. She told me how happy she was because her boss was out of town. Her boss takes a lot of vacations. None of which are work related. All of them he deducts from his business as expenses. He also uses the business to pay for his wife’s plastic surgery (I’m no tax attorney or CPA but I’m pretty sure that unless you are a model plastic surgery is not deductible).
How You Treat Others Says More About You Than About Them
Perhaps what troubled me most was how lavish he was with his life, yet how cheap he was with his employees. My passenger told me she had not received a raise in three years! The employees have not received a raise in three years but the company had been very profitable (because of her position she had seen the profit and loss statement).
I understand that it is the CEO’s right to decide when raises are given, however, it is contemptuous to live like a king while your employees struggle needlessly. It says a lot about this man’s character.
Interestingly enough when we arrived at her destination, she tipped. Despite her circumstances, she valued my services above and beyond what Uber required her to pay.
Final Thoughts On Tipping
I am not saying that you must always tip. I am saying that tipping or wanting to tip (for those times when you truly cannot afford to) is representative of your attitude about life and people. It means that you value others above the service they rendered. Tipping someone means that you believe in abundance and wish to share that abundance with others.
You are never too poor, too rich, or too cheap to tip.