Yes, Hall of Famer Warren Sapp went to a restaurant on Tuesday. Yes, he stiffed the waitress. Yes, he wrote “boys don’t tip” on the credit card receipt.
Sapp has admitted it on Twitter, claiming that the food was “horrible” the “service was worst,” and that the waitress “kept calling us boys.”
It’s impossible to know whether Sapp’s decision was justified without having all the facts. But it’s probably never justified for a waiter or waitress who was stiffed or undertipped to disclose it to the world on social media. That’s the quickest way for a waiter or waitress to no longer be a waiter or waitress.
Sapp surely knew there was a chance that something would be made of his decision not to leave a tip, as evidenced by the message displayed largely on the receipt and the signature signed with a flourish. Regardless, that piece of paper never should have been disclosed publicly unless Sapp chose to do it himself.
While we’re on the topic (and since it’s slow right now), the decision to stiff a waiter or waitress shouldn’t be taken lightly. It’s a tough job, and some patrons make it tougher by taking full advantage of the ability to boss another human being around for 30 minutes or so. Most waiters and waitresses receive less than minimum wage, under the assumption that the difference will be made up via the non-mandatory social convention of leaving at least 15-20 percent of the pre-tax bill on the table or on the credit-card receipt.
Some people leave more. Some people leave less. Some people pay their bill with a credit card and leave the tip in cash on the table, creating the impression based on the receipt that they left no tip. Regardless, the process of whether and to what extent someone tips should remain private — because restaurant owners don’t want people to choose to eat elsewhere for fear of deciding not to leave a tip (for whatever reason) and then being called out publicly for it.
Bottom line? Sapp may or may not have been in the right. The waitress was definitely in the wrong. And we actually found something to write about on July 2.