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How much should you tip?

Yo yo yo, money nerds. Good morning. Welcome to Apex Money. Welcome to Thursday. Welcome to Spring. Let’s take a look at the stories we’ve collected for you today.

Our first piece isn’t about money at all, but it’s my favorite article from the past week. It’s interesting and well-written.

The mad perfumer of Parma. [The New York Times gift article] — “The Covid boom casually defied the entire history of perfume, in which aromatic substances have primarily been used for purposes of targeted seduction (ensnaring a mate), general attraction (wanting other people to think you smell nice) or ritual (anointing the dead, appeasing gods, expelling demons). Locked in their homes, people discovered en masse that perfume could also be a private aesthetic experience, a hobby, a form of entertainment.” [True story: One of my friends here in Corvallis is a perfume nut. His enthusiasm has prompted me and Kim to dive into this world too. I’ve been testing ~36 different samples for the past few months. I even wear a different scent to bed every night!]

How much should you tip? Five people share their tipping habits. [Time] — “If you feel like you’re being asked to tip more often than ever, you’re not alone. A November report by the Pew Research Center found that 72% of Americans say that tipping is expected in more places today than it was five years ago…To better understand tipping culture, TIME asked five people to track their spending over the course of a week, and share what they tipped on and why.”

Three secrets to being rich. [The Wealthy Accountant] — “The good news is that there are only two real ways to build financial wealth. Both are easy to apply. There is a third way to become rich that builds wealth fast and creates a much bigger pile. We’ll save the super-charged wealth building secret for last.”

How the cult of busy-ness took over the world of work. [U.K. Independent] — “Once, a leisurely life was the ultimate status symbol, but now that has been flipped around: busyness has become a status symbol…This focus on constantly doing has spilled over into our personal lives too (we all have that one friend who would love to see us but things are just so hectic right now, though they might have a brief opening in mid-July).”

I wish I had a video to share with you today, but the truth is that almost all of my video-watching time lately has been spent on art. I have another watercolor class coming up in early April, so I’m refreshing my skills. And I spent ALL DAY today researching (and “theorycrafting”) a personal palette of colors for my upcoming class — very much like this. It’s fun! (But that means I’m not watching any videos worth sharing with you folks.)