I drink my coffee lukewarm with cream, most often. And sometimes bad coffee just tastes good – you know, like diner coffee or church coffee or my grandma’s Folger’s… sometimes it just hits the right spot. See? Not everyone who works at Starbucks turns out to be a coffee snob.


 Joel Osteen has been at Conseco Fieldhouse the past couple of days. I must be out of the Christian loop because I’d never heard of him. Anyway, I worked last night and… it made me sad and angry. The customers we had, all of Joel’s patrons, as it would seem, were terrible. No one smiled. NO ONE tipped. They argued. They complained. Very few thanked us sincerely, or thanked us at all, for that matter. Casey leaned over to me and whispered, “These church people don’t tip very well, do they?” I apologized on their behalf. It reminded me of an editorial I wrote for the Andersonian back in school. I surveyed and/or observed a bunch of people I knew and found that as many as 25 percent of them didn’t tip at all when they went to restaurants.

What the hell?

It makes me wonder if they would have treated us better if they had known I was “one of them.” And it makes me even more reluctant to tell people I’m a Christian. I just can’t comprehend it. What do you gain by treating those who serve you poorly? Does it make you feel powerful? Does it make you feel superior? Or are you just too blind to it to even notice anymore? I know this is nothing new… people are always complaining about how Christians act in the face of the world. But somehow I had come to hope that maybe we as a body were growing out of that. When I’m singing praises in church and I look at the people around me, I could never imagine that these joyful, friendly men and women would be the same ones to turn their noses up at a lowly Starbucks barista.

It’s not about tipping or not tipping. It’s about treating people like they mean something. It’s about making an effort to be pleasant. A smile means a whole lot more to me than $1.

I’m just getting tired of people who don’t care. There’s a lady in my office who will brightly ask me how I am and keep walking. Or that girl I ran into last week who forgot she even knew me. Or that guy who’s all flirtatious and fun when he sees me, promises to call, and then never does. I know I’m not perfect at this either… but I’m seeing it more all the time as I get older and it hurts.

Short version review: Listen to KT. Sometimes bad coffee = good. Smile. Tip. Care. The End.



9 thoughts on “

  1. I think christians are too spoiled. They get free grace, why bother about tipping the waitress? That and christians are some of the most self centered lot. It does suck! I am sorry, and I know, tips aren’t the important part of it. When you don’t want to tell someone you are a christian because they will think you …. not because they will throw you to the lions.

  2. As a Houstonian, I am all too familiar with Joel Osteen. He moved into the old Houston Rockets’ stadium that seats some ungodly (get it?) amount of people. 16,000 at a time. What’s worse is the name “Joel Osteen” is plastered in giant letters on the side of the arena. How his followers can handle his smarmy face and awful drawl is beyond me. I suppose they resort to tipping badly and acting rudely. I would too. Somehow his fate got switched with someone else’s. He should be selling life insurance in Alabama.

  3. I’m lame. I just saw the Royal Tenenbaums for the first time recently because I was 11 when it first came out and when I was 11 the only movies I liked were action movies. And the only reason I saw it was because a friend of mine is like, practically obsessed with it and I wanted to know what he thought was so great about it. Now I’m addicted too, heh .
    ~The Aut~

  4. Sadly true about the Christians and not being nice. I think they(we) get so stuck on our moral high ground and the fact that WE have the answers that we forget that the rest of the world cares more about how we treat them in the little things than what we know about the big things. So we’ll never reach anyone that way. I am always sad when I am the first one to put a dollar bill in the Starbucks’ tip jar and it’s like, 3PM.

  5. In response to your comment, I would not be farting in front of a cute nurse.  Or an ugly one.  The point is, if you are ever in the hospital, it is not automatic free-for-all or excuse to be shameless, indecent, and exhibitionistic for no reason. 

  6. I’ve heard it too much not to be true.   Church people (as opposed to Christians) don’t tip very well.    Sometimes I think church is for people who can’t handle Christianity.   

  7. I am not going to single out Christians as the culprit for bad tips. It’s interesting to hear your survey about 25 percent not tipping at all, but what would make this sort of investigation complete, is to survey those outside the christian realm to find out what their percentage is, so that you may compare it to people, in general.I always tip 20 percent, unless they do an unsatisfactory job, where then, I still tip 10-15%, which may be over-gracious of me, but hey, that’s what it’s all about. Grace.My tipping habits though could be called biased because I have worked in the service field as a busboy at a country club, as well as having lots of friends who were servers and hearing their stories. I would like for you just to believe that I had these good tipping habits before I knew any of that though (which is true).I don’t expect a woman to be perfect. You’re right, a woman does not have to be perfect, because no one is. Now this is going to sound real self-centered or egotistical, but I’m really trying to come in at a selfless and caring angle by saying that I wish I could duplicate myself for some of the women that I have met in my life. (hear me out) I see women treated so badly by their boyfriends, dates, fathers, and wish that I could give them someone who does care about them, like I do for my blessed girl. I definitely know the type of people you’re talking about in the work setting. I’m such a genuine person, and a lot of these people just have no interest in others’ interests, is the best way to put it.I wish you the best in everything you do, because you sound like a great person!

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