Thursday, July 30, 2015

Let's talk about tipping...

Let's talk about tipping...


Tipping is important and you’ll understand its importance once you understand the low wages servers make in restaurants. When you’re stingy with your tipping, you are causing a dent in their lifestyle. I can see what you’re thinking, “Why should you care?” Simple answer, because you’re not a self-centered asshole……that’s why! If someone is going to devote time to making sure your dining experience is perfect the least you can do is leave a decent tip. Seriously guys, who is a better wingman than a server who knows how to serve without inconveniently interrupting your conversation with a potential hunny?  And ladies think about the bartender who treats you and your friends like Beyoncé clones during ladies night. It’s not just serving food and drinks ladies and gentlemen, you must understand that when you’re tipping!

Walking into a restaurant, a normal tip starts at 15%. 15% is what is given for just putting food on my table and making sure my water cup doesn’t go empty. 15% doesn’t imply that the service was bad; it just says it wasn’t spectacular enough to garner a higher percentage of the bill.

I’m a southern man at heart, whose life goal is to have a reserved seat at my favorite restaurant for my wife and I. When I go out to restaurants I like the waiter/waitress to engage in conversation with me. If I’m out of town I view them as the expert of their city, and will often ask them to suggest other activities while I’m in town or ask for suggestions on the menu.  If I feel above standard service was provided, I provide a tip into the higher side of 20% of the bill. I’ve also been known to tip more than the bill. One time, while sitting in a waffle house in Phoenix, I had the pleasure of having a waitress from Mississippi. We shared a 30-minute conversation about the magical feeling you get when having your grandmothers grits. Sometimes, your heart leads you to give more than the standard tip amount, follow this notion. I’m not saying make this your normal tipping behavior. However, if you meet a special waiter or waitress do your part and give them a monetary blessing. There’s no better feeling than paying it forward if you’re capable.

When do you tip?

If you’re dining in a restaurant, you should tip! Pick up orders do not count in this, unless there’s above standard service being offered. I’ve picked up orders and the cashier offered assistance to my car, which in my eyes, warrants a tip. If I’ m just picking up a meal then no, I don’t tip.

If you’ve been invited to dinner to discuss business, you don’t tip! Don’t even offer!!  Thank the host for your meal and get up from the table and send a thank you card later. You’re the guest and its extremely awkward asking the host about assisting with the bill. Seriously, nothing annoys me more than the “Are you sure about that?” No, I just grabbed the bill and placed my card down for practice. Shut the hell up and be thankful clown! On the flip side, if you’re hosting a dinner don’t expect others to pay the tip. Don’t invite people to dinner if you can’t afford to finance the entire meal. Yes, you can always go Dutch but make sure this is pre-determined before even arriving at the restaurant. 

Bad service.

In the unfortunate situation you feel you received bad service, before you decide on the tip, you must be realistic as to why you felt the service was bad. Simply stating the waiter/waitress was busy does not define a bad dining experience. Sometimes they do not have the time to engage in lengthy conversation and must get orders in a timely manner. Try to show some compassion for them and have your order ready. But if the service was truly bad, tip the 15% and the next time request a different waiter/waitress. Never get up from the table and leave nothing!

It is not necessary to tip to validate your wealth. At the end of the day, the wealthy and not as wealthy should receive the same care when it comes to dining experience. Regardless of your income, tip as necessary and within your means. Exceptional service= exceptional tip, crappy service= average tip.  Regardless of the service, always tip.






" This aint got nothing to do with money" - Ladies Night

I may or may not have recorded this video on VHS during my childhood.  This has nothing to do with living the #Newcheap life but its a great song! Enjoy this great display of  #womanpower !!!


Not @thenewcheap Approved - Most Expensivest Shit

A repeat offender,  2 chainz and GQ return for their web series Most Expensivest Shit. In this episode they discuss a $14,000 chair. Listen I wouldn't buy a $14K chair if you told me it came with Beyoncé.  But for  those who can afford it and choose to buy it, go for it my G. This isn't New Cheap approved but enjoy watching how the other side lives.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Firefly Music Festival 2015

Firefly Music Festival

Whenever a 60 year old man is knocking on your door, requesting that you get out of bed to join the party... You know it's gonna be a good week....

Firefly Music festival, is by far one of my favorite music events to attend. This year me and four other working class adults took to Dover Delaware to act as if we were hippies blowing in the wind of love, peace and happiness. Even though I fancy myself a good writer, I wouldn't do the experience  justice.  So I've provided the 1568 productions recap video for just a glimpse of the amazing time we had during the festival.

                                                          FireFly Music Festival 2015

Okay now what everyone is here for, how in the hell did we do this without even putting a dent in the summer fun  budget?? The number one rule is splitting everything! To properly do this you'll need a program manager, to keep everyone in the loop on what needs to be paid and where the money is going. Good thing for this group we had 3 of them. If everyone pays an equal share , everyone's dollars can go further.

My friends and I rented an RV. Why an RV? Because of the five people in our group three were girls, so we chose to get an RV over forcing them to live out the classic game Oregon  trail  for the week. RVs can be rented everywhere, but if you have one that you can borrow from a relative by all means go for it! If your split the cost of what a hotel would've cost by five people we obviously came out on top with choosing the RV. We also made the decision to stay in the premium camping area of the RV section. This allowed us to have electric, sewage and water hookups. Sure we paid a little extra for this luxury upfront but by day two it had already paid for itself. If we would've tented, we would've had pay 5 dollars per shower. We cooked all our own food, so we weren't tempted to buy food from vendors at the marked up prices. And have you ever used a porta potty??! Nuff said!  The extra money was well spent! Also, one day we got rained out. If we had camped out using a tent we would've had to sleep in our cars during the storm instead we went back to the RV and played classic 80's music all night.

The Food
Prior to the trip we made a foodlist just as I had seen on my childhood vacations we packed enough for every meal during this trip. Inside the festival a burger and fries cost you $13....  You spend all week eating inside the festival, you're sure to go broke!!  So pack your food and cook at your RV prior to going inside the festival. You're at a music festival so you'll want to try some of the food, reserve that for the last day once you've had a chance to scope out the offerings. Rather than making an impulse buy, you'll have all week to decide what it is you want.

The Booze
Buy your drinks before you leave your town! Anytime a bud lite cost $9 I know the world is coming to an end. Seriously how are they going to charge $9 for the nastiest beer in the world?? I wouldn't drink bud lite if Beyoncé told me it was her favorite drink and any man she seen drinking it had the key to her heart. I would walk away and leave the beautiful Beyoncé with her shitty beer. I digress, but it's important to understand the mark up on drinks inside of the festival. So if drinking is your thing, stock the bar before you arrive at the festival. You're allowed to drink all the way up to the entry gate so please take the chance to make a roadie before you leave the RV. Now I know being in the sun can drain your buz and require you to need another drink. So when this happens choose wisely for your drink option. At the festival there was a flying dogfish special addition "firefly ale" . So naturally I had to try it, I mean hell it was named after the concert. When I needed a cool adult beverage I choose  this rather than having a beer that I could drink any other time in my normal day to day life.
A few other helpful tips.....
Buy the biggest first aid kit you can find. Injuries will happen due to the lack of sleep and increase in booze consumption. So it's important to be prepared. If you wait to the festival to purchase the needed items you'll end up paying the cost (literally). 

Also freeze everything!! It's difficult to keep ice for five days. So my suggestion is to ice everything! All of the water you buy should be iced prior to the festival. By the time it thaws out in the cooler you'll be ready to drink it. It also allows you to buy less ice prior and during the concert.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Aunts and Uncles have all the FUN


It really means something when someone is comfortable with you caring for their child. Seriously, it is big deal, this person is trusting their little human to be in your care unsupervised. Once that cheerful smile and reassuring “absolutely I’d love to” moment has worn off, you must now find an activity to entertain the little one. The trick is to find something fun and exciting to without spending an entire inheritance on one afternoon.


In my younger days, Chuckie Cheese was the first thing that popped into my mind with my nephew. I would spend around $20 (shoutout to my plug) each time in the hopes that the nephew would exhaust himself. This worked for some time until my nephew said those fatal words, "Uncle , I’m too old for Chuckie Cheese". Entertaining your nieces and nephews is important because you always want them to have fun with you. But how do you avoid over paying just to keep the kid busy?? Below I’ve provided tested and approved ways to have a good time without over spending.


Inspire the next Basquait

I watched my nephew yesterday and took it as a challenge to ensure he had a good day. We started the day off with painting. Kids love painting and it allows them to show their creativity. Self-expression should be encouraged from an early age and embraced. There is no greater moment than watching a kid hold up what they created once they’re picked up from your house. Crafty activities are great because children enjoy them and it does not cost you an arm and leg.


 The Pool

Nothing tires a kid out like being in the sun all day. I can remember being ordered outside all day until the streetlights came on. I thought this was an attempt to keep us out of the house all day not realizing it was truly an attempt to tire us out. If you don’t own a pool call your friend with a pool. He's going to repay that favor of you helping him move in by allowing the kid to burn off energy. Hell you may even get some lunch out of your friend during this pool day!


Take a Hike

 If you’re lucky to live near a park or hiking area, take full advantage while you babysit. If you’re the aunt or uncle, it’s important to create situations that cultivate open communication. This hike allows you a chance to ask them anything and gives you a chance to drop a few gems on their young minds. You can show them what else life has to offer outside of their Gameboys and Iphones. Make the most of this time because it’s a rare moment to have their undivided attention away from all the gadgets. There are so many activities you can do at a park. You can play sports, fly kites, have a picnic, and even do more arts and crafts.


Children’s Museums

One of my favorite things to do with kids is teach them things while having fun. Most cities have museums with an emphasis on children. I love going to the science museum where they have different attractions each month with a hands on approach for all ages. The best thing about these museums is their usually FREE.


 Make cookies

 I love oatmeal cookies and I would reconsider an enemy if you tell me they too love oatmeal cookies. Yes, it is that serious to me. And what do kids love more than cookies??? So making cookies with kids is sure to be a hit. The only battle you will have with this is who gets to lick the spoon/bowl at the end. Sure you could buy cookies from the store or you can take those few extra minutes and create a special moment……




Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Don’t concern yourself with 50 Cent’s financial situation

If it’s one thing I know about Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson it’s to never count the man out. Anybody who can survive getting shot nine times deserves the benefit of a doubt.  So when I heard of 50 Cent filing for bankruptcy I was shocked but not alarmed. If people really think Curtis Jackson is going to be moving back to Jamaica Queens their sadly mistaken. Even if he is actually broke, he still will be able to tour and benefit off his image as a hip hop icon. It is for that reason that I will mind my own business and stay out of 50’s….. And I think you should do the same. Donald Trump himself has filed for bankruptcy multiple times and he’s still around to offend brown people across the United States. So if Curtis actually needs another chance, he will get it. 

Too much time is spent counting other people’s pockets. Why should you be worried about 50 Cent’s money? To quote the cute kid from the viral YouTube video, “worry about yo self”. Once the situation is final, read it to learn something that could benefit your own personal financial situation. But don’t read about the 50 news for gossip....

Friday, July 10, 2015

No Fast Food For 100 Days!!!

Let’s be honest, if we sat down and tracked how much we spent eating out it would be embarrassing. Yea I know how healthy Chipotle is supposed to be but those guacamole toped bowls can definitely take a hit on your bank account.  Imagine how much money you could save if you cooked meals instead of succumbing  to the bright lights of fast food joints. So here at the New Cheap, we’ve came up with the 100 Day challenge of no fast food (Yes, Chipotle is fast food).  This challenge is designed to add dollars to your bank account while removing pounds from your waist line. If you’re up to the challenge, screen shot the 100 Day challenge post on our IG with the hashtag #100daysofnofastfood!

How many times are you gonna go to Vegas?


Vegas is amazing. It's an adult Disney land, where ANYTHING you can dream up can actually take place. All you need is a lack of morals and the funding to make all of your wildest desires come true. I myself have my own Vegas story, a wild summer night in the city of sin. I won't get into details, but a few years ago I took a trip to Vegas with one of my best friends who frequented the Oasis. He was able to show me all of the nooks and crannies most tourist never get the chance to see. It was an amazing time! I learned why you shouldn't step foot into any of the  pools while in Vegas, ate sushi for the first time and had a conversation about Outkast as we drove down the Vegas strip (PG version). This was all done in 24 hours. I seriously spent one night in Vegas. Woke up the next morning and took my butt back to LA. I've had opportunities to return, a friend of mine is from Vegas and speaks great things about what I missed in my short visit in an attempt to encourage another visit. But I'm GOOD on the part 2 of the Hangover series. Why?? I live on the east coast, so I would have to fly to Vegas just for Vegas. Seriously, I would have to fly across the country just to watch some "celeb" DJ play a pre recorded set while adults drink their children's school clothing fund away.... I'm good on that! I've done it one time and I don't need to do it again. my west coast brothers and sisters this isn't directed to you!! If you live in LA ,Phoenix or surrounding areas by all means you should be a frequent visitor to the Devil's Oasis! It makes sense, it's a short drive, you know how to get in and out the city without catching something or losing your savings account. But if you've ever been to Vegas, you've seen someone who flew in and has successfully lost their dignity before they left baggage claim. It's unsettling to watch someone fall from grace faster than Brittany Spears in 2007. So west coasters help me encourage the east coasters to stop with the repeat visits. I love Vegas, I also love my Aunt Sandra's cooking but I know I can't eat it everyday if I want to live past 40.
What if I told you that you could fly to another country for the money you spent on repeat trips Vegas?? Seriously the money you spend on travel to Vegas could allow you to get some stamps in your passport! A vacation is doing something  that allows you to experience culture,  shows you a different way of life from your own. A vacation is eating KFC in India without hot sauce.  Life is all about growth my friend and it's time to grow up. So how about growing up and taking a vacation you can actually tell your children about one day...

It hurts to say it but......."you should buy these sneakers"

This will be the last time that I will ever tell you to purchase sneakers...... document this moment! But you need to buy these Kendrick Lamar designed Reebook classics. WHY??? With the help of Reebok Kendrick has provided  a product that aims to bring together the two most notorious gangs in the world. This is an amazing undertaking for someone so young, when most of his peers seek to benefit off  of the gang culture's self destruction. I support Kendrick's effort and I plan on showing that support with my money.  Because if Kendrick can get Crips and Bloods to wear their enemies colors, he can also get me to part with my money on new release sneakers......