Jim Thome is returning to Cleveland, prematurely ending the city’s celebration of LeBron James being named the fourth worst celebrity tipper. Recently, there was a discussion about tipping at the old ballpark in the Baseball Think Factory lounge. I have had similar discussions with other people, and since my faithful readers often look to me for proper ballpark etiquette, it is probably time I lay down some ground rules on tipping.
First of all, I do not believe in tipping; I believe in overtipping. People in the service industry work their tails off; I worked many shitty jobs in that industry when I was younger, so I have first hand experience. However, every damn food counter seems to have a tip jar these days. Hey Pimple Face, you don’t get a tip for asking if I would like to Supersize my meal, especially in the drive thru.
Secondly, anytime someone pours you a drink of alcohol, you tip them, no matter the price. If the price is too steep to tip, then don’t buy the drink. However, I don’t adjust the tip for price at the park — the beer guy gets two or three bucks no matter if is $6.50 or $13.00. While I believe in overtipping, pouring me a draft doesn’t qualify for a massive tip. Since I don’t believe in tipping at standard food concessions, I don’t buy beer there.
I don’t buy food at standard concessions for that matter, mainly because the food sucks. The people at the barbecue pit get tipped — wrapping bacon around my dog is a divine act and should be rewarded. Vendors who walk down the aisles get tipped — the cotton candy guy loves me. He knows not to block my view, which is more than I can say about the soda and pizza guys. If I did buy from those ass panthers, they wouldn’t get tipped for blocking my way.
I don’t tip ushers; they try to curtail my fun all too often. I don’t tip charity stands either, which has become a Southern California trend. They are working for charity, not themselves.
Basically, it is the beer guy, the barbecue, and the cotton candy guy (when my kids are with me). Everyone else better just leave me alone.