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Fri Jul 31, 2015, 02:24 PM

Where in the World Is Tips for Jesus? (the person who has left a total of $130K in tips for servers)


The most inscrutable rich person in San Francisco has surprisingly pedestrian taste in coffee. We’re talking utilitarian, non–name brand, get-in-get-out java at a downtown coffee shop with acceptable but not outstanding Yelp reviews. In this Blue Bottle–or–bust town, you’d expect something fancier. Especially because the man who picked out this humble rendezvous has become internationally famous as the nameless mastermind of a syndicate that’s left nearly $130,000 in ultra-outsize tips—all accompanied by the cryptic insignia “Tips for Jesus”—at restaurants and bars in more than a dozen cities in the United States and Mexico over the last six months. Globe-trotting mega-benefactors: They're just like us.

Sitting at an outside table, the tipper—who would speak to me only in exchange for complete anonymity—explains that it all started back in September, at a bar in Ann Arbor, Michigan, after a college football game. He has, as he says, "been fortunate" in life, and he and his friends have long been tipping generously. But for some reason—he doesn't actually remember all the details now, he says, mild sheepishness spreading across his face—they decided that afternoon to give their server a $3,000 tip on an $87.98 check and, crucially, to post a photo of the receipt to Instagram.

We know what happened next: Over the ensuing months, tip after exorbitant tip was left in cities across the continent, all for absurd amounts and all with “Tips for Jesus” scribbled ebulliently on the check—in pen at the start, and then later via a custom rubber stamp. By late November, the tipper or tippers had given away $50,000, the Tips for Jesus Instagram account had racked up tens of thousands of followers (71,296 at press time), and the whole thing had become a bona fide Internet phenomenon.

The religious press seized on Tips for Jesus as an example of Christian generosity. (It’s not. “The movement we have started is intended to be agnostic," the tipper emphasizes.) College football fans speculated about the tippers' apparent Notre Dame, USC, and Stanford allegiances. Servers across the country began pleading with the tippers over Instagram to stop by Harmony Tea Room in Westwood, New Jersey, or the Hooters in Aurora, Colorado. A multitude of media outlets posited theories—some of which, I can now confirm, are accurate—about the identity of the Tips for Jesus ringleader. Every time a new tip came along, a flurry of news stories and blog posts would emerge, all undoubtedly fueled by the fact that the operation—if you can call it that—is completely and maddeningly bizarre.

more at link

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Reply Where in the World Is Tips for Jesus? (the person who has left a total of $130K in tips for servers) (Original post)
steve2470 Jul 2015 OP
harrose Jul 2015 #1

Response to steve2470 (Original post)

Fri Jul 31, 2015, 03:05 PM

1. Can't people keep their damned religions to themselves?

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