"Monsieur, you for-got zis," my waiter said with the most stereotypically snooty French diction, handing me my folded bill. He was insulted by my gaucheness. I was insulted by his aversion to deodorant. We were even.
While the "no-tipping" movement is gathering steam in the States, it's been commonplace in Europe since… well, forever. Dining out there is free of the mental math, or the guilt of judging your servers. In many parts of Europe, being a server is a legitimate, respected, and salaried profession.
"In France, many people are working in restaurants because they want to work in a restaurant," said Daniel Eddy, executive chef of NYC's Rebelle. Eddy worked at Spring restaurant in Paris, so he knows the score on both continents. "It's not just about easy money, they're there for a love of food, or of wine, or the industry in general."