Sunday, August 12, 2012

Diner Check Incident

Had a strange incident at diner this evening. An old university friend who has lived in Europe for some where near 15 years has been back in the country and has brought his family to the same family orientated beach resort town that I am currently at with my family and my wife's extended family.
Anyway we were at dinner with my old friend and we were joined by one of his current friends and fellow ex-patriot whose parents live a few hours away from the shore town we are in.

So everything goes smashingly, the guy seems nice, we talk about where they live, how it compares to the USA and other places economically, educationally, etc. Our food is all on the same check, so I figured out my tab, which was only for myself and one of my sons, we were eating in sort of a food court setting so my wife and other son had picked up food elsewhere and brought back it to sit with us. So our tab was $16, and even though the service sucked I tipped $4 making for a nice even $20.
The friend of a friend thinks out loud stating his salad with his daughters two kids meals plus three drinks came to around $20.  Now I know that is completely wrong, the salad was around $7, the kids meals were at least $4.50 and drinks were $2 each, so even without a tip, which I know Europeans often do not give, so giving him the benefit of the doubt for that, his tab was still over $20 not including tax and the none existent tip.

So after I hear him say that I think I give him a mild really look, and he then asks how much is the total bill. So I hand him the bill and my $20 hoping that he will get the hint that I am paying $20 for two people, maybe ante up a little more for your three meals or you will be sticking me and or our mutual friend with covering part of your bill and tip.

He takes the check and my $20 bill, adds up his portion again and says yes, $20 should cover it and gives the check and my 20 to our mutual friend, who kicks in $40 and gives it back to me. I tell the non-payer, "Hey man you forgot to pay," non-payer, "No I didn't I gave you a $20," me, "No you didn't that is my 20, and he just paid 40," non-payer, "I held the 20 in my hand," me, "That was my 20 I handed it to you with the check," non-payer, "Did you drop my twenty or forget to pay?" Me looking in my wallet, "No I had 21 dollars in my wallet and now I only have $1," the tiniest bit of doubt seeping into my mind ... (Which crept in again as I was falling asleep writing this, I hate self doubt. Double checked with my wife in the morning and I had only given her $20 not $40 last evening so back to my rant) ... remembering I had two $20 bills in my wallet before giving one to my wife I was sure he did not pay. He finally capitulated and said, "Fine I will put in another $20," though he still thought that he had paid already by calling it "another $20." I after the non-payer left I told our mutual friend, "Yo, your friend thought I was trying to rip him off ..." Mutual friend seemed to think it was funny, as I should, if I were not so neurotic.