I love Marketplace and Kai but he'll always be downgraded a notch in my book based on his GIF pronunciation evangelism. History will judge him harshly on this account.
I work for an engineering company and the definition of business casual here has the stereotypical engineer "flair" to it. I'm slightly ashamed to admit I'm wearing a short-sleeved white dress shirt with pleated khakis today. All I'm missing is the skinny tie and the horn-rimmed glasses. I also own at least 20 knit polo shirts, half with corporate logos on the breast.
Considering all that I did this past weekend I came off quite light. Friday I took off work and went to Chicago with a friend to catch one last Cubs game for the season. He paid for the tickets and wouldn't let me reimburse him since I drove, paid for parking ($5), and the CTA ($9). I bought one Old Style and a hot dog ($16) at Wrigley and coffee ($3) on the way home. Saturday I woke early and picked up coffee and scones ($9) at my local cafe and went downtown to the Dane County Farmers Market with a friend. I didn't buy anything but did enjoy the people-watching. I left my car at the ramp all day for $5 and met up with some others for lunch ($20) before the UW football game. We then walked to the pre-game tailgate where I had two beers ($13) and listened to UW Band. After the football game we stopped in for a drink on the walk back and I bought the round ($22). I called it an early night and skipped dinner with everyone else. Sunday I met up with an old friend for brunch and she insisted on paying as a birthday present despite the fact my birthday was over a month and a half ago. Then I drove down to visit my folks and help out with some yard work in exchange for dinner that night. Aside from the driving I didn't spend a cent.
I had a super cheap weekend mainly because I came down with a cold during a work event in Minnesota and spent all of Friday night sleeping it off. On Saturday I had relatives come up from IL so I spent all day at my parents' place visiting with them. That night I went to a friend's cookout and brought some beer ($35) for the UW-ASU game. I went home before the epic screwjob by the refs, so at least I didn't go to bed angry. Sunday I met up with my relatives for breakfast then picked up bulk coffee ($31). I thought about meeting up with a few people at a bar to watch a football game but the lingering fatigue from the cold caused me to call it a night.
@Stina I went to UW as well. I started in 2003 at $28K with bonuses and probably hit the average around three years as well.
I generally offer to pay, less out of a sense of old-fashioned traditionalism but more to disguise my poor arithmetic skills.
I worked in a deli for a few years in college. The pay was above minimum and we put a tip jar out at the register. The credit cards receipts also had a tip line. The deli was counter service but we brought orders out and bussed tables. Most people tossed change in the jar or didn't tip at all. I didn't take it personally if people didn't tip, even when we had tennis teams of 10-15 come in, order with a litany of substitutions, then decline to tip on the final bill. We might have bitched about it afterward while mopping the floors but that's the extent of it. That dude absolutely deserved to get canned.
When I was twelve my family took a summer vacation to D.C. and I had my first interaction like this. We were in between Smithsonians and we'd gotten a couple slices for lunch on the Mall. I was finishing my can of root beer when a man came up to me and asked me if I was "done with the soda?" I didn't quite pick up his accent correctly and I thought he asked me if I was from Minnesota, so my response of "No, Wisconsin actually" just ratcheted up the confusion. After he left I told my father about it and he explained that he wanted the can for the aluminum. I felt so bad and ran back to give the man all of our cans.
I love Mallards games. I was at Opening Day this year in the Duck Blind with a group of friends. I enjoy watching the actual ballgame but the beer and the people watching are the real draw. And the Stoddard's brats - I've been to dozens of games over the past eight or nine years and I believe I've always gotten whichever specialty brat was on the menu. A Stoddard's jalapeno brat with a Great Dane Old Glory APA is quite a winning combination.