If you ask most people how, why or when they think the practice of “tipping” (not relevant to cows unless you are eating them) originated, you may get a lot of different answers (assuming the responder cares).

Generally speaking, this article on Yahoo! covers the majority of theories.

But, it’s wrong (the article – not tipping).

David Sugarman (my Jewish business mentor from Los Angeles who once told me: “Brian, you could sell used cars to Ford”) once filled me in on the historical facts around tipping. Interestingly, that collaborated what my Grandad had told me. Then later, Aubrey Nelson, that biographer and skalawag, came up with a similar theory.

So, it’s true.

David Sugarman was always right (remind me to tell you the story about David, his sail boat, me, and the art of selling – and, listening).

To wit…

Tipping, as we know it, originated in New York around the turn of the century when leading Wall-Street Barons would reward good service with a tip – a few dollars and advice on a specific stock to buy.

The lucky waiter would then rush down to Wall Street, hand a trader his money, and “bet” on the stock. The best results were realized when the waiter also let the trader know whom had given them the tip.

This was also a foundation for insider information and trading.

Peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

Brian Patrick Cork