Saturday, April 9, 2011

On the importance of tipping your bartender

Today was a slow day on the slopes.

Slow because the warm spring weather is melting the snow base into a heavy, sticky slush that creates a lot of friction under snowboards (or skis, if you prefer that more traditional sport), and causes the rider to lose a lot of momentum really quickly. Imagine skiing in ice cream. That was the consistency today. Each turn today required some serious muscle to cut into the dense snow, and by the fourth run, I could barely move my quadriceps. The advantage of this extra friction meant that I was able to tackle really, really steep terrain, without fear of picking up too much momentum, but it exhausted me.

So eventually, with the heat and the exertion, I become physically tired, (though not tired of looking at the girls skiing in bikini tops), and I decide to go into the pub for a slice of cheese pizza and a few beers. The patio door was wide open, and out on the deck, a bearded dude in sandals was playing some Jimmy Buffet songs on his guitar. I ask the bartender for a pint of a local beer, and so does my significant other.

The bartender serves us two plastic cups filled with ale, and says "That will be 10 dollars please." Mind you, this was a delicious, hoppy brew, one that was in fact worth 5 dollars per pint. Not some piss-yellow watery beverage that some unscrupulous mega-breweries market as 'beer'. I hand the bartender a ten-dollar bill, and two singles, which she thanks me for.

As I lift my wobbly, thin plastic cup from the bar, I accidentally spill a few drops. I then reach quickly for a paper napkin.... and accidentally knock down my significant other's cup, and out comes splashing all that good beer on our ski pants and all over the bar stool. 'Crap!', I thought. I stand there for a minute, trying to attract the barmaid's attention. Finally I ask her for a towel, and I wipe off the mess. As I look up to hand the towel back to her, she presents me with a replacement pint, free of charge.

I am guessing that if I hadn't tipped her, I would have had to pay for it.

Tip your bartender well, it will pay off.