HELOISE: Does tip on bill include alcohol?

Dear Heloise: I read the restaurant tipping hint in the Houston Chronicle. The reader suggests doubling the tax as an easy way to figure out the tip. Warning: This will work only if you don’t order alcoholic beverages.

There is no tax on alcohol (Heloise here: This is not the case everywhere and in every situation), and since it’s customary to tip on the entire bill, doubling the tax definitely will shortchange your server. I hope you’ll set the record straight. Wait staff members usually work for less than minimum wage and depend on tips. They deserve to be tipped on the entire bill.

G.A. in Houston

Of course wait staff should be tipped accordingly! As mentioned in the original column, sales tax varies across the country. Some restaurants tax beer and wine, and some tax liquor, which may be absorbed by the establishment (you will not see it on the bill).


Dear Heloise: My wife is hearing-impaired and had to have the volume turned high on the TV, which is very annoying. And, I’m sure like a lot of couples, we often disagreed on what programs to watch. Well, I went out and bought an additional TV for the family room. While there, I found the savior, remote headphones. Now my wife puts on her headphones and turns the volume as loud as she wants (the TV is muted so I can’t hear). I turn my TV on to the ballgame, and everyone’s happy. We get to watch TV together. We haven’t argued in 15 years.

Scott V., via email

Dear Heloise: Dressing for church one Sunday morning, I found that the pin I intended to wear in the collar of my blouse was too heavy. I put the blouse on and, with the collar in the correct position, put the pin through the collar and the blouse, and it worked perfectly. Hope someone else will be able to use this suggestion. Thanks for the years of helpful hints.

Becky Seymour, Clinton, La.

Dear Heloise: Instead of buying expensive seed-starter packs, buy disposable pans with plastic lids at a dollar store, fill old cardboard egg containers with potting soil, place inside pan and plant the seeds. Put a plastic cover over loosely until the seeds sprout, and you have a very inexpensive seed starter kit.

Tim from Colorado

Dear Heloise: For people in the hospital, I always take a gift of lip balm, hand lotion, a deck of cards, dice, notebook, pen, crossword, word search and a coloring book and crayons. Many people are confused by the last two items but if you are lying in bed with nothing to do, be creative!

My aunt loved it because it gave her something to do when her grandkids visited.

A Reader, Sanford, Mich.

Send a money-saving or timesaving hint Send a money-saving or timesaving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000, fax it to 210-HELOISE or email it to Heloise@Heloise.com.

King Features Syndicate