Really!!!-Pet Peeve 0f the Week #7

Filed under:2004,Rants — posted by JAWjaw on 8/8/2004 @ 9:02 am

Tipping on Okinawa is usually reserved for businesses frequented by Americans. I tell my regulars that I don’t think it is necessary to tip. If a customer does decide to tip, it is supposed to be in gratitude for good service rendered, not a bribe for special treatment in the future. Yet some people try to claim that I should provide them special treatment because of the amount of tipping they have done. The usual claim is that they have tipped over one hundred dollars in the previous month.

1) People should have a realistic idea of how much the service person makes in tips prior to making such a claim.
2) A service person usually knows exactly who does the tipping and approximately how much.
3) Not all service persons can be bribed into doing what is disadvantageous to the equal and fair treatment of all customers.

Chow Time

Filed under:☽2004,Culture — posted by JAWjaw on @ 9:00 am

With Obon approaching, I am reminded of the first time I helped my mother-in-law with setting-up the dinner table. Coming from the U.S., I am accustomed to having a dinner napkin as part of the dining set-up. Well, my mother-in-law handed me the usual paraphernalia associated with Japanese dining, a bowl of rice, chopsticks, and tea. I was setting the table, when she called for me from the kitchen. I had placed the rice and tea on the table, but didn’t know where to place the chopsticks. Since a napkin wasn’t available and I didn’t want to place the chopsticks directly on the dining table, I quickly stuck them in the rice and returned to the kitchen to further assist my mother-in-law. Then next thing I knew, there was a loud exclamation of shock being exuded by my father-in-law, who had entered the dining room. The loud yelp was immediately followed by a roaring burst of laughter from my mother-in-law who had gone to find-out what the problem was. My husband came running into the kitchen quickly explaining that the manner in which I had placed the chopsticks in the rice bowl was reserved for honoring deceased ancestors during Obon and funeral ceremonies. With the locals being as superstitious as they are, my father-in-law was totally stunned when he saw his rice. Needless to say, I have never made that mistake again.

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