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American travelers in Europe experience a great deal of trouble from the
omnipresent need of tipping those from whom they expect any service,
however slight. They are very apt to carry it much too far, or else
attempt to resist it altogether. There is a story told of a wealthy and
ostentatious American in a Parisian restaurant. As the waiter placed
the order before him he said in a loud voice:
"Waiter, what is largest tip you ever received?"
"One thousand francs, monsieur."
"_Eh bien_! But I will give you two thousand," answered the upholder of
American honor; and then in a moment he added: "May I ask who gave you
the thousand francs?"
"It was yourself, monsieur," said the obsequious waiter.
Of quite an opposite mode of thought was another American visiting
London for the first time. Goaded to desperation by the incessant
necessity for tips, he finally entered the washroom of his hotel, only
to be faced with a large sign which read: "Please tip the basin after
using." "I'm hanged if I will!" said the Yankee, turning on his heel,
"I'll go dirty first!"
Grant Alien relates that he was sitting one day under the shade of the
Sphinx, turning for some petty point of detail to his Baedeker.
A sheik looked at him sadly, and shook his head. "Murray good," he said
in a solemn voice of warning; "Baedeker no good. What for you see
"No, no; Baedeker is best," answered Mr. Alien. "Why do you object to
The shick crossed his hands, and looked down at him with the pitying
eyes of Islam. "Baedeker bad book," he repeated; "Murray very, very
good. Murray say, 'Give the sheik half a crown'; Baedeker say, 'Give the
sheik a shilling.'"
"What do you consider the most important event in the history of Paris?"
"Well," replied the tourist, who had grown weary of distributing tips,
"so far as financial prosperity is concerned, I should say the discovery
of America was the making of this town."
In telling this one, Miss Glaser always states that she does not want it
understood that she considers the Scotch people at all stingy; but they
are a very careful and thrifty race.
An intimate friend of her's was very anxious to have a well known
Scotchman meet Miss Glaser, and gave her a letter of introduction to
him. Miss Glaser, wishing to show him all the attention possible,
invited him to a dinner which she was giving in London and after rather
an elaborate repast the bill was paid, the waiter returning five
shillings. She let it lie, intending, of course, to give it to the
waiter. The Scotchman glanced at the money very frequently, and finally
he said, his natural thrift getting the best of him:
"Are you going to give all that to the waiter?"
In a inimitable way, Miss Glaser quietly replied:
"No, take some."
"A tip is a small sum of money you give to somebody because you're
afraid he won't like not being paid for something you haven't asked him
to do."--_The Bailie, Glasgow_.
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