Good tip: Customer leaves 7,471-per-cent gratuity at restaurant

The Globe and Mail


Indianapolis waitress CeCe Bruce got a sweet tip on Wednesday, and this time Jay-Z wasn’t involved.

A regular customer named “Miss Jo” saw the waitress having trouble with patrons at an nearby table and decided to help pay for the service-related headache. Miss Jo left a $446 (U.S.) tip on her humble bill of $5.97. (The math on that? 7,471 per cent.)

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“I was having a hard time at another table, but kept smiling and going on,” Bruce told local news station WTHR.

Bruce, a part-time student, has worked at the Steak ’n Shake restaurant for two years. Initially misreading the tip as $46, Bruce was stunned by the “sweet lady’s” generosity. Spotting the additional digit, she refused to take the offer: “I didn’t think I was worth $400 but, you know, she feels I am,” Bruce said.

Pretty good for Miss Jo, a local volunteer who has since shied away from the spotlight.

It’s a welcome turn as horridly tipping patrons are more often the service-industry story.

Occasionally we do hear about celebrities tipping well, from Johnny Depp, who left a $4,000 tip on a $4,400 bill at a Chicago steakhouse – this after being described as low-maintenance by the owner – to Jamie Foxx, who likes to drop $1,000 tips in $1-bills. Slightly patronizing.

(Predictably more random was actor Bill Murray: After dining on poutine in Philadelphia, Murray tipped his waitress well and then further sweetened the deal with a pair of camo pants delivered to the restaurant from a local army surplus store.)

Back in Indianapolis, Bruce said she would use the tip money to help pay her bills. “You’ve seen how everyone was pepped up a bit,” her manager told WTHR. “It just makes me feel good about humanity.”

As for Miss Jo, the woman just signed the receipt and walked out.

Have you ever pity tipped?