The tip of a lifetime was actually the “tip” of the iceberg.
A Pennsylvania pizza restaurant, famous for being mentioned on the acclaimed comedy series “The Office,” is suing a customer for $3,000 after the patron left that amount in tips but then asked for it back.
“It’s just a little aggravating right now. It’s been causing a lot of nonsense and drama,” Zachary Jacobson, manager of Alfredo’s Pizza Cafe in Scranton, told local news station WNEP of the act of kindness-gone-awry.
Jacobson said the restaurant is now suing the customer and noted they all “thought somebody was actually trying to do a good thing.”
The gratuity fiasco began back in June after one of the pie purveyor’s patrons, named Eric Smith, left waitress Mariana Lambert an eye-popping $3,000 on a $13 bill. The customer, who had ordered only a plate of stromboli, had reportedly left the potentially life-changing gratuity as part of a social media trend called “Tips For Jesus.”
The story went viral with countless people on social media commenting on the so-called act of kindness.
While initially skeptical given the insane sum of money, staffers were ecstatic after the credit card payment went through on their machine.
Needless to see, Lambert was initially floored by the seemingly generous gesture, especially given how restaurants were still reeling from the COVID-19 closures. “It really meant a lot to me because everyone’s going through stuff,” she gushed. “It really touched my heart. I still can’t believe it. I’m still in shock.”
However, the staffer’s gratitude quickly soured after the restaurant received “something in the mail that Eric was disputing the charge for the tip that he left,” said Jacobson. This was despite the fact that the restaurant had already paid Lambert the gratuity, leaving them approximately $3,000 out of pocket, WNEP reported.
Alarmed, Alfredo’s reached out to Smith on Facebook in the hopes that the whole thing was a misunderstanding, but the restaurant reneger has stopped replying to their messages.
“We thought somebody was actually trying to do a good thing,” lamented Jacobson. “And then now we are, what, three months later? Not even, and there’s nothing.”
Left with no other recourse, Alfredo’s decided to take Mr. Smith to court with the goal of recuperating the $3,000.
“Unfortunately, we had to file charges through the magistrate’s office because now we’re just out of this money at this point,” said Jacobson. “And he told us to sue him. so that’s what we’re going to end up doing, I guess.”
He added, “I hope that he owns up to his actions and comes forth and does pay this because you shouldn’t have done this if this was the end result.”
Alfredo’s is perhaps most famous for being mentioned in Season 4, Episode 3 of the iconic NBC comedy series “The Office.”
During that episode, entitled “Launch Party,” Dunder Mifflin office manager Michael Scott announces that he bought Alfredo’s pizza for all the employees.
However, they become dismayed after it’s revealed that didn’t Alfredo’s Pizza Cafe — their preferred choice — and instead opted for the allegedly inferior Pizza by Alfredo, which Kevin analogizes as a “hot circle of garbage.”