Software for the finest computer – The Mind

Posts Tagged ‘check’


Posted by Tim Bryce on February 8, 2010

One of the most embarrassing customs we have in this country is fighting over the bill at a restaurant. It’s one thing for someone to pick up the check in its entirety, quite another when we start to fight over who should pay what. When someone picks up the whole check, it’s usually done for business purposes, a date, a celebration, or as a term of endearment (meaning, “I enjoy your company and it would be an honor if you would allow me to pay the bill”). Under this scenario, the other party will inevitably reciprocate the next time you go out. If they do not, it’s time to find another friend.

Aside from this, the real problem comes when we try to split hairs over the check. The bill should, of course, be reviewed for accuracy, but I have been with people who like to put everything under a microscope and fight with the waiter or waitress over every nickel, thereby turning a pleasant evening into an uncomfortable inquisition. It’s one thing to be frugal, quite another to be cheap (Jack Benny preferred the word “penurious”).

I never understood the logic of having one bill for a large group of people who are going to pay separately. Inevitably, someone appoints him/herself as the head bookkeeper and instructs everyone what they owe, rather loudly I might add. Everybody at the table then knows who the big spenders are, as well as the tightwads. Why not have separate checks and save everyone the embarrassment? It might be a headache for the waiter or waitress, but no more than having someone run a P & L statement on you over the PA system.

Most of the time, people will simply split the bill evenly, which is easy for the waiter to do, and provides an equitable solution for all of the parties involved, unless one of the parties is keeping a scorecard on who ate and drank what, thereby feeling cheated by a 50/50 split. In this situation, have the waiter split the check accordingly and avoid creating any ill-will.

The last thing that could potentially turn ugly when multiple parties are involved is calculating the tip. Under a 50/50 split, both parties should theoretically give the same amount (assuming they are both satisfied with the service provided). If one person gives more than another, than the waiter will most likely think one person is cheaper than the other (or more generous than the other depending on your perspective).

When we share a meal with others, the general idea is to relax and have a good time. Consequently, paying the bill should be handled with finesse and grace, not embarrassment. Perhaps the best way to develop indigestion is to fight over a lousy bill which would certainly defeat the purpose of going out together.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is the Managing Director of M. Bryce & Associates (MBA) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 30 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at

For Tim’s columns, see:

Copyright © 2010 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.


Posted in Family, Food | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »


Posted by Tim Bryce on July 17, 2009

Over the years I have had the pleasure of watching several fine young men grow into adulthood. Inevitably, they become serious about a woman and consider marriage. On more than one occasion I have been asked what they should be looking for in a woman, e.g., a potentially good mother, cook, sex partner, or whatever. I flippantly advise them to “check her teeth,” which is an expression I picked up from a horse trainer years ago. Now, please, I do not mean any disrespect to women by this remark. In fact, I recommend the same thing to young women considering a husband, “check his teeth.”

I was advised by the trainer that you should, of course, review the animal’s papers, check it with your hands, study how it walks and rides, see how it responds to the human voice, and inspect its hooves, but checking the teeth says a lot about the health and treatment of the horse. In other words, carefully study the animal before you buy it. We should do anything of substance likewise, be it an automobile, a boat, or a major appliance or piece of equipment. Too often people become enamored with the advertising sizzle and overlook the actual state of the object and end up with something they regret later on.

The same is true in marriage. Too often people overlook deficiencies in the other person and becoming preoccupied with the other person’s sexual prowess or money. Only later do they realize they should have done some more checking on the other person and some soul-searching. The divorce courts are littered with millions of couples who didn’t do their homework properly and paid dearly for it.

Over in the Middle East, Saudi men can still practice polygamy, whereby they can have as many as five wives; one as his principal or senior wife, one to do the cooking, one to do the cleaning or to teach, one to raise the children, and one for sexual pleasures. The wives don’t always get along with each other which is why the man may have to pay for multiple houses for his different wives to live in, which sounds like a pretty high price to pay for a man not being able to make up his mind.

In this country, we practice monogamous relationships, at least we’re supposed to in marriage. In most marriage vows, we promise to love, honor and obey until death do us part, which implies marriage is for a long time. Unfortunately, there seems to be fewer people these days who take this obligation seriously and change partners like they change clothes. Then again, I guess this stimulates the economy as it keeps a lot of attorneys, judges and law clerks gainfully employed.

We would have a lot fewer divorces in this country if we just took the time to study some teeth. Maybe the expression “look before you leap” would be more appropriate, but I have found “check his/her teeth” makes a more indelible impression on the young person.

Such is my Pet Peeve of the Week.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is the Managing Director of M. Bryce & Associates (MBA) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 30 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at

For a listing of Tim’s Pet Peeves, click HERE.

Download Tim’s new eBook (PDF), “Bryce’s Pet Peeve Anthology – Volume I” (free) DOWNLOAD).

Copyright © 2009 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Posted in Life | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

%d bloggers like this: