I'm not tipping him! By Michelle Janssen

I thought I would be really nervous about going overseas on my own, but I only checked my packing list, to do list and budget about 873 times before leaving for the airport.

I waited in the pick up area at LAX and about 17 shuttle buses went by before mine got there. Then when he finally arrived, it looked like I was going to be the only one on the bus. “Great,”I thought, “Now I’m going to be stuck alone with the bus driver who was probably late because he was disposing the bodies of other Australian girls travelling on their own”. And so began my journey to Downtown LA with five middle aged, very Australian (read:bogan), possibly drunk-on-cask- wine women.

With their jewellery clattering away (I think they were wearing ALL the jewellery they owned) and sporting far too much perfume to cover up cigarette smoke, the ladies began analysis of ‘When is it right to tip?” I sat silently with my $10 tip in hand for the rest of the trip and listened to this conversation:

Bogan Lady 1: We’ve already paid for this trip. Why should I tip? Slightly Less Bogan Lady: Because that’s what they do over here Sharlene/Darlene/Sharon/ (didn’t quite get the name) Bogan Lady 2: Well, you don’t do it in Australia, so I’m pretty sure I’m not gonna do it here. Bogan Lady 1: Yeah, I’m not f****n’ tippin’ him.

Poetry. I finally jumped out of the bus and the driver left me with the parting message of, “Don’t go too far east at night. It’s like a whole other world out there”.

in Los Angeles, CA


In her 20s, Michelle is a modern woman walking confidently about town, casually using her fly buys rewards card to feel like a true grown up. Her goal is to be a combination of Oprah &Tina Fey.

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