“This went on for months, until the restaurant reopened for full service in July,” says Jodi Davis, who remembers the customer as a man of few words named Dan, and only because that’s the name he signed on his credit card slip. “It was huge. People like him kept us going.” Dan the Fifty Dollar Man, as he came to be known, put “wind in our sails.” Such stories warm the heart and remind us that although your tip doesn’t have to be enormous to make someone’s day, it definitely helps. No one would argue though that the number of zeros in such tales makes for a great story. One of those was even made into a movie: it was so like a romantic fairy tale with a happy ending. But it was all true.
The 1994 movie “It Could Happen to You” starring Nicolas Cage and Rosie Perez is based on a true story of Robert Cunningham who was a regular at “Sal’s Pizzeria” and his favorite waitress Phyllis Penzo who had worked there for more than 20 years. One day, instead of leaving a tip, Robert offers Phyllis to share a lottery ticket. They pick the winning numbers together. Several days later, Robert finds out that he has won 6 million dollars and calls Phyllis to tell her that 3 million of it are hers. The lottery pays them $285,715 annually for the next 21 years.
If you want to learn more about tipping etiquette, click here