Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Narragansett Bay
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Re: marina etiquette question
Like it or not, America is neither communism, where to each according to their need, nor Socialism, which is basically the same but has governors deciding who among them gets rich.
It is capitalism, where you get what you pay for and more effort and higher skill are paid more.
I've settled on this practice. I make sure each dock kid is tipped eventually. I always tip $20, but I don't tip each and every time. If they go above and beyond, they get the 20. If its a passing minor service without effort, nothing. Always tip at the fuel or pump out dock. When they see me getting ready to cast off, they are inclined to come over and ask whether I will need fuel or a pump out. I don't have to track them down to get help landing the fuel dock or getting service. I don't always need help with lines at my slip, but if I do, they walk around the marina to get to me to help. They have zero obligation to do so. That's what I pay between 100 and 200 extra per season for. Compared to my slip fee, that's peanuts.
And another very important point. I am just nice to them. Never scold and always thank them for their help.
Im hapoy to give them a few extra bucks, they are good kids and need the money for school. I'm happy when I see kids working hard. I learned the value of being reliable and working hard when I had my own paper route at 11 years old. 7 days per week, rain or shine. It's a real shame these opportunities don't exist for kids much any more. If I didn't get the job done, I didn't get paid. If I didn't do it well (timely, clean papers, left where they wanted it), I didn't get a tip.
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In the harsh marine environment, something is always in need of repair. Margaritas fix everything.