Taxing Times for Three Stooges

So three guys go into a restaurant: Larry, Curly, and Moe.

Moe has the most money, so he agrees to pay up front. Larry and Curly like that.

They sit down and figure, what the hell, Moe's treating, let's order the shrimp cocktail appetizer.

Moe's a little surprised, but he's OK.

Then Curly says his throat is parched and he’d love some wine. The finest bottle he can find: a $500 Burgundy, 1984 -- great year.

Moe gulps.

Larry realizes this place has the best prime rib, so he orders the Super-Duper King Rib Special.

Moe gulps again.

Wouldn't you know, Curly orders the exact same thing and wants to know if the waiter can throw in the lobster with that.

Moe is starting to sweat.

After they've all chowed down and assuming there's no way either of his tablemates could fit so much as a cup of coffee, Larry and Curly surprise Moe with a request: They want the $30 Chocolate-Cake-From-Heaven Special.

Moe acquiesces.

But not before Larry and Curly let him know that their dinner was a little cold and, in Curly's case, the lobster a little tough.

Moe can't believe it.

Then comes the bill.

Moe puts on his glasses and he moans -- or is that a belch?

As he writes out the credit card receipt, Larry takes a look at the tip Moe writes down.

"Surely you can do better than 15 percent," he asks Moe.

"Yea," says Curly. "The service was great. Don't be so cheap."

"You can afford it," Larry says.

"Come on rich guy," Curly chimes in. "We didn't come to this fancy restaurant to have you embarrass us."

So Moe, against his better judgment, leaves a 20 percent tip.

The waiter picks up the bill and sniffs: "All my hard work and a lousy 20 percent tip?"

Moe is incredulous! "Twenty percent ain't too shabby, my friend."

"Yea," the waiter says. "But you're rich. You can afford it."

Moe is dumbstruck. He walks out the restaurant with his friends, where Larry has the nerve to tell him, "This place ain't too hot... I thought you'd take us some place nicer."

"Yea," Curly added. "I was never so embarrassed until I saw that poor waiter's face and your ridiculous tip!"

"But you weren't paying," Moe shouted.

Larry and Curly just shrugged their shoulders: "The rich, ain't they got gall?"

Lesson learned: Only in America can the rich who pay, be made to feel like stooges who don't.

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