Tipping at Starbucks

This morning I slumped into the kitchen, pulled open the refrigerator door, and saw I was out of milk. Perfect! I would have to stop by Starbucks for my morning cup of motivation.

Eh, it could be worse, right?

At Starbucks, the guy in front of me ordered his coffee and paid with a hundred dollar bill. Wow. Impressive. Not because of the hundred dollar bill, but because someone actually had paper money. I know leafy-green spendy-money still exists but I rarely see it anymore. Much less Benjamins.

The hundred dollar bill surprised the cashier too. She did not have enough money in the till to accommodate such a large denomination. She called over another barista for help.

I felt the lady behind me shift uncomfortably.

The guy looked into his wallet, but that was the smallest he had.


We were all as unimpressed as a teenage girl who has just suffered a dad joke.

To help offset the change due he added a breakfast sandwich to his order. Between that, and raiding the second till, the baristas were able to break his hundred.

His drink and change came at the same time. The gal working the register put the change in one hand, the guy making drinks put his coffee in the other. Hundred Dollar Bill, as I took to calling him, looked from hand to hand as if he’d just been handed a pine cone and a framing hammer. The lady behind me sighed, breaking him out of his stupor. He dropped the coins into the tip jar, stuffed the bills into his pocket, and stepped back from the counter.

It was my turn to stand there frozen, looking on stupidly like a possum trying to snarl down an oncoming semi. Really, dude? You’re going to make them scramble to accommodate you and you only give them the coins.


The lady behind me sighed heavily, as if to commiserate my disgust, but really to remind me to get my ass in gear.

I ordered my drink then stepped into the restroom while they brewed my cappuccino. By the time I returned my drink was waiting patiently on the bar. I was still righteously indignant from Hundred Dollar Bill flaunting his wealth, so I grabbed a seat, got on the WiFi, and composed this screed.

Can you believe the nerve of that guy?

Huh? What’s that? What did I leave the baristas for making my drink? For the use of the facilities, the wifi? Uhm… erhm… Nothing.


I guess we know who the real dick was, huh?

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