Notes From The Grinder
Today, I decided to write a few personal opinions and a few rules of thumb, if you will, about tipping, based on my tipping experiences and observations. First of all, I played a lot in India, and I noticed that nobody tips there. I racked my brains over this and reached no conclusion, other than the assumption that it’s ‘a cultural thing’.
So, my sample pool is from my observations in Texas and here, in Ohio. Tipping consistently and judiciously is both wise and ethical. You have to be an invisible tipper as a poker player, just like you have to be invisible as a casino dealer. What that means is, you have to be both unnoticed and appreciated at the poker table, without being in the spot light among dealers and players, either as a miser or as a money-throwing machine. You have to strike the right balance between being a Dealophile (an excessive tipper) and a Chrematozeusophobe (scarce tipper)– two words I coined, and own the rights to, for the purpose of this discussion.
To find an exact “in-between” is an art that requires dodging a lot of goating. You are going to be goated if you tip too much or too little. My two cents? Tip a dollar for a pot above $8. Tip a dollar. I repeat. Tip a dollar. You win $20 – tip a dollar. You win $50 or $200 – tip a dollar. Dealers and players “will” goat you with stares and taunts. Nevertheless, casinos and their dealers know for a fact that it is totally appropriate, in fact wise, to tip ‘a consistent dollar’.
You watch High Stakes Poker. Players sit with half-a-million at the poker tables. They still tip $5 every time they rake a pot. They don’t act like drunk dealophiles and tip a thousand. It doesn’t matter who says or thinks what . . . just tip a dollar; its fine! Most of these goatings are going to be heard in the form of dumb wisecracks from the “Poker-God-Fearing Clan”.. These simple-minded folk will more often than not give you some garbage about Karma or Poker Gods. Nope.. Not true. You will not run good if you tip well, and vice versa. Those beliefs “are” rural. . . dumb . . . superstitious. Consistently tip a dollar, and you will be fine. Dealophilia is Negative EV.
Good Luck at the tables!