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About Adelstein

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  • Birthday August 6

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  1. Never mind that; he was a usurper because Maegor was the rightful king.
  2. Yeah; obviously I'm coming at this from a non-American angle. It seems like it's only relatively recently (possibly an American influence) that tipping has even become an overt thing in bars and pubs: previously if you wanted to reward the barman you'd add "one for yourself" to the round. Tipping outside the food and drink industry is still very uncommon, in my experience at least. But it's one of those areas that seems to be becoming a minefield. Judging just from this thread, people feel very strongly that they should be tipped; on the other hand, there are a lot of people who are very awkward about that sort of thing and wouldn't feel comfortable accepting a tip, let alone offering one and being turned down. I'd be mortified for the rest of the day! I just don't feel like an American tipping culture is a positive direction to be heading in. Maybe it works over there (although, again, on the evidence of the thread, it seems there are a fair few glitches in the system) but it's not something I really want to see here. I'd rather just that everyone was paid an appropriate wage in the first place, did their jobs properly, and then I don't have to worry about it every time I use a service.
  3. Well, that's the thing. I feel like I'm getting mixed messages. On the one hand, it's "treat serving staff with respect; their job is hard." I'm fully on board with that. I try to treat everyone with respect anyway. But I don't see how that necessarily translates to "pay them". If I stop to give a tourist directions in the street, a sincere thank you is appreciated. If he tried to pay me, I'd be insulted. I feel like the respect angle is a red herring. The customer should treat serving staff with respect regardless of any tipping policy. It doesn't mean that the customer should be solely responsible - on a discretionary basis - for paying their wages. And if it's not discretionary, why not just stick it on the bill? As has been mentioned above (and not really addressed) there seems to be no rhyme or reason to which jobs get tipped and which don't. Why is it that it's almost mandatory to tip serving staff, but in the case of some professionals it's actually illegal for them to accept one? They're both ultimately in service positions. At least in the UK it's almost entirely confined to restaurants and the odd bar/pub, so although it still doesn't really hold up to close scrutiny at least the circumstances in which you encounter it can be more easily controlled.
  4. What about people who treat the waiting staff like crap, then leave a large tip to "make up for it"? The two are not mutually exclusive. I would like to think I've always treated waiting staff with respect, no matter how poor the service or how large a tip I left. If I'm being judged solely on the depth of my pockets when it comes to the tip, I might as well get value for money and torment them all evening.
  5. In cost terms, yes. But at least a rise in menu prices (or a compulsory service charge) would be consistent. Right now, it seems, in the US the customer is expected to pay the entirety of the servers' wages on top of what the menu says they should pay for their meals. I don't really see why that's a better system, or any fairer, than just paying for the whole experience in one go and for management to pay the servers an actual living wage. All it does is shift the onus of responsibility for maintaining the serving staff onto the customer rather than the employer, which seems to me to be the wrong way round. I also find it difficult to understand why there should be some kind of special case made for serving staff at restaurants. Or for that matter why you need to tip a taxi driver for the service you're already paying him for, assuming it isn't a special case. There are some cultures where they don't tip - there are some restaurants that serve the food of such cultures over here at least where they expressly ask you not to tip - and they seem to get along fine. If you want to eat in that restaurant again, you need to leave a tip. If you're aware of the general social situation, you need to leave a tip; it's not just whether your friends think you're a tight-wad, it's on your conscience as well. But I don't see why it should be your job to make up for the way the labour laws and tight-fisted management conspire to pay their hardworking staff a net salary of bupkiss and why you're the one who ends up feeling guilty if you don't. In fact, though, tipping doesn't bother me that much, but then the UK isn't a particularly tip-heavy society and I'm pretty sure (confirmation would be nice) serving staff here have to be paid at least a minimum wage whether they get tipped or not. I will tip, and it annoys me when I'm out with people who don't, because either I have to shell out more or get tarred with the same under-tipping brush as them. But when I think about it logically rather than just "this is what we do" it makes no sense, and I can completely understand those people who resent the system.
  6. Just because someone famous said it doesn't mean it's valid or true. No; it's just annoying and means I'm more likely to ignore your posts altogether regardless of the quality of their content, because life's too short.
  7. Unless simple ignorance is in play, the fault for poor communication generally rests with the writer, not the reader. From a personal perspective, while I understood your posts, the lack of capitalisation made them unnecessarily hard to read. I don't know whether that's a political statement or not, but it seems wrongfooted.
  8. Tipping only really seems to be a thing here at restaurants, although you sometimes see tip jars elsewhere (usually pubs/bars). I'm pretty fastidious about leaving a tip at restaurants, but some (more stingy) people I know don't really do it. This tends to lead to problems where you're out as a group and someone refuses to contribute to a tip, meaning you either under-tip or one person is tipping disproportionately. (Especially when you've already paid for part of their meal, but that's a different issue). Some restaurants have a service charge that they add to the bill automatically. For some reason this always enrages me, especially since the service charge is usually given as 12.5% rather than the standard 10%. It is discretionary, but asking for the service charge to be removed is just awkward. The thing is, too, that with rounding up going the way it does, if I'm eating alone or as one of two, I'm actually more likely to leave a tip in the region of 15-20%, especially if I've enjoyed my meal, so by including the service charge they're both annoying me to the point I might not eat there again and actually screwing themselves out of money. I don't know why it's a restaurant-only thing, either for me or for society in general. I don't have a problem with it, and it's certainly taken less seriously here than in the US, which is good. I don't really want to see it spread into other fields, though.
  9. House: House Byttern Sigil: Two lemons and a fish-hook on a field of silver (white) Words: Ever Vigilant Unofficial motto: Even odds are fools' odds. Location: Dornish Marches Seat: The Beacon Sworn to: Storms End Ancestral weapons: Steel poleaxe, named Mercy. Steel knife with an amethyst set in the pommel, named Spite. Blood: Andal, with substantial Rhoynish influences. Religion: The Seven. Founder: Tommen Byttern Current lord: Edmyn Byttern History: The Bytterns claim descent from the Andals, although regular marriages with Dornish houses have lent a Rhoynish cast to their colouring and features. Ser Tommen Byttern, long in the service of the Storm Kings, was finally granted his lands and title in the Dornish Marches by King Arrec. A King of the Reach once commented that Tommen Byttern was such a sour man he must eat only lemons. Upon grant of his title, Tommen added two lemons to his house sigil in acknowledgement of the Gardener joke. Despite its sigil, the house is better-known for its orchards than its lemon groves. (There are actually no lemon groves, although Byttern lords have been known to claim that lemon trees grow over their family graves). Their castle is well inland; its name originates from a comment made by King Arrec that the Bytterns would serve as his "beacon" for an attack from Dorne. Byttern warriors are known to prefer raiding and ambushes to open battle, as the house can muster only relatively few warriors. However, many Byttern lords throughout history are remembered for reckless attacks or hopeless last stands against forces many times their number. Ser Constant Byttern was once heard to remark before a battle that it was better to be thought a fool than a coward. He is also said to have added after the battle that all heroes were fools at heart. Despite this reputation, the house is fond of sending younger sons to the Citadel to forge maesters' chains. When this practice was once enquired after, Lord Jon reportedly replied, "we may be fools, but I'll have no-one say we're stupid fools". Allegiance: In the War of the Five Kings, House Byttern declared first for Renly. They supported Stannis following Renly's death and remained loyal to his cause after the battle of Blackwater.