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Almost Everyone Sucks in This Tale of a Man Who Tipped 74 Cents on a $119 Meal

Anthony Dierolf isn’t sorry about the bad tip, even after being shamed online by a New Jersey state senator

Everyone gather ‘round, it’s time for a game of AITA (Am I the Asshole): Tipping Edition.

In one corner, we have Anthony Dierolf, a self-described regular “Joe Schmoe” from Pennsylvania who recently left a 74-cent tip on a $119.26 bill at a New Jersey restaurant.

And over here, we have New Jersey state senator Declan O’Scanlon, who named and shamed Dierolf on Twitter on August 13, calling him a “jerk” and posting a photo of the receipt that shows Dierolf’s name and debit card information.

Dierolf told the Asbury Park Press that he and his fiancée had capped off a weeklong vacation in New Jersey with dinner at the Colts Neck Inn. Service was “terrible,” he said. Here’s his account of the meal:

He said they sat for 10 or 15 minutes before a server came over, and thought about walking out. Though there were no more than 20 people in the restaurant, the service was slow throughout their meal, he said.

At one point, he said, Dierolf waved over the hostess because the server was absent and focused on a bigger group of customers. Dierolf and his fiancée had drinks, spinach artichoke dip and pork chops but gave up on dessert.

Dierolf was unrepentant about his 74-cent tip, which he achieved by rounding up to the nearest dollar. “If it’d been $119.99, it’d been a penny,” he told the Press. “It is a terrible tip, of course … But when I get treated like a terrible customer, I just really reflected it back on her.”

The server who had the misfortune of receiving a 0.6 percent gratuity, Ashley Sculthorpe, said she was shocked by the amount: “Everything was great according to him, I asked him multiple times. They said everything was fine until I picked up the bill and they left me 74 cents.”

O’Scanlon, a regular at the restaurant, heard about the atrocious tip the following night, prompting him to call out Dierolf on social media. Despite mixed responses, including some accusing him of doxing Dierolf, O’Scanlon doubled down with an appearance on a local radio station to talk about tipping and “calling people out when they act like asshats!

Dierolf, meanwhile, told the Press he is talking to lawyers to find out what legal action he can take against what he said was the senator’s inappropriate decision to publicize his personal information while calling him a jerk.

So who’s the asshole here?

Folks, this is a classic case of ESH (Everyone Sucks Here).

Dierolf, YTA (You’re the Asshole) for leaving a 74-cent tip for any meal, let alone one that cost $119. If he had problems with the service, he could have spoken up, rather than seethe silently through the evening, only to leave virtually zero pay for the server’s work (even if, hypothetically, the waitress had been inattentive, she still took their orders and gave them their food, which absolutely counts as some amount of labor). With a minimum tipped wage of $2.13 in New Jersey, servers rely on their customers to earn a living. Yes, this sucks and is just another reason why the American tipping system is bad, but until we raise the minimum tipped wage or get rid of tipping entirely, maybe don’t be an asshole by tipping 0.62% instead of anything in the double digits.

O’Scanlon, YTA a little bit for posting the guy’s debit card information (have you ever heard of blurring out identifying info, or idk, cropping?), but YTA big time for being one of 14 Republican senators to vote against a measure that would’ve raised New Jersey’s minimum wage to $15 by 2027. “This law will have disastrous consequences for our business community and minimum wage workers,” O’Scanlon condemned the bill in a statement. “It simply goes too far too fast.” It is fine and good to treat servers with dignity and to tip them well, but doing so while opposing systemic changes that would enable service workers to earn more is … ironic, to say the least!

In conclusion: ESH!!!

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