Dear Abby: My wife and I go out for lunch quite often. Our check is typically about $15, to which I customarily add a 15 percent tip.
My problem is the food servers who ask if I want my change back. This puts me in an awkward situation because it appears that the server is expecting a $5 tip, which in my opinion is too much for a $15 check.Abby, this happens all the time, and it's getting me steamed. I think it's totally improper for a food server to ask for a tip and to specify the amount.
How would you handle a situation like this?
- Steamed in Boston
Dear Steamed: I would tell the server that, yes, I wanted my change. Then I'd leave a 15 or 20 percent tip, depending on the service I'd received. Although in the past, servers have written to tell me that the question is asked to save a trip back to the table, I consider it to be presumptuous.
Dear Abby: This letter is in response to "Lost in North Carolina," who has herpes.
I am fortunate to be in a relationship with a fine woman who knows how much she is worth and brings joy and a great attitude into my life and the lives of her children. Yes, she has herpes. She had it long before I met her. She had so many of the important qualities I was looking for in a woman that it was not an issue.
With proper care and proper precaution, "Lost in North Carolina" can have a normal life. Sign me . . .
- Holding the Hand
of Someone Who's Been There
Dear Holding: I subscribe to your philosophy for successful living - and it applies to more challenges than herpes. Thank you for a helpful letter.
Dear Abby: I have a problem that may not seem like a big deal to most people, but it really bothers me.
I meet people, and the next time I see them, they do not remember having met me. While I can't always remember the name of a new acquaintance, I can at least remember having met that person.
Abby, it's a blow to my ego when someone has no recollection of having met me. I admit that I am on the shy and quiet side; perhaps that is why I'm not remembered.
Is there anything I can do to make a lasting impression?
- Mr. Forgettable
Dear Mr.: A good way to be remembered is to pay a new acquaintance a compliment. You need not go overboard, but everyone appreciates being complimented.
To receive a collection of Abby's most memorable - and most frequently requested - poems and essays, send a business-sized, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $3.95 ($4.50 in Canada) to: Dear Abby's "Keepers," P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Postage is included.)
1997 Universal Press Syndicate
All of the Dear Abby columns for the past several years are available online. Search for "DEAR ABBY" in the Lifestyle section and the Deseret News archives.