The heated exchanges on the tipping thread of a few days ago reminded me of something that's been bothering me. I have noticed in places with a counter and a cash register and self-service, there is almost always a can by the register with the word "tips" on it.
I'm talking about establishments like sandwich shops, burrito counters, coffee houses and other places where they stay on their side of the counter and you stay on yours, and you bus your own purchases over to your table or out to your car.
Is tipping proper and approriate there? Or are these shops just being cheeky and trying to engineer a cultural shift or promote a false assumption that would extract more money from the customers?