Little Joe's Wedding Anniversary: Can He Afford the Steak Dinner?

Little Joe's Wedding Anniversary: Can He Afford the Steak Dinner? By: Dr. John E. Ware, I 

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

Little Joe's wedding anniversary is coming up this Friday and he wants to do something special for his wife. He is contemplating taking her out to a fancy restaurant for a steak dinner.  After researching restaurants, little Joe finds that the steak dinner costs $50 per plate. Little Joe lives check to check and will only have $210 to his name on Friday. The cable bill is $99 and also due on Friday. He is considering just drinking water so he does not have to pay for drinks. Little Joe needs help determining if he will have enough money to take his wife to dinner and pay the cable bill, so he calls his best buddy the Accounting Kid. The Kid evaluates the situation and comes up with this:

The steak dinner will cost little Joe $124: $100 + $6 (6% sales tax) + $18 (18% gratuity) = $124

$210 cash on hand - $124 dinner = $86. Little Joe is short $13 and will not have enough money to pay the cable bill on time if he goes to dinner ($86 cash after dinner - $99 cable bill = -13).

If little Joe does not pay the cable bill, the cable company will disconnect his services and he cannot watch a movie with his wife after dinner.

Should little Joe pay the cable bill this month?

Little Joe will have enough for dinner, the cable bill, and five dollars in his pocket if he does not leave a tip ( $210 cash on hand - $106 for dinner - $99 cable bill = $5). 

Should little Joe leave a tip? 

The Kid conducts a little research to develop an alternative course of action for little Joe. The local grocery store has a special on T-Bones and Ribeye steaks for $4.99 per pound, ready-made salad for $3.99, 5 pound bag of potatoes for $2.99, and decent bottle of red wine for $20. Little Joe already has some butter, cheese, chives, and sour cream in the refrigerator for baked potatoes.  The cost to cook dinner at home is $36.96 ($4.99 x 2lbs of steak + $3.99 salad + $2.99 potatoes + $20 bottle of red wine = $36.96).

Little Joe will be able to pay the cable bill, provide his wife with a good steak dinner, and have $74.04 in his pocket if he goes to the local market instead of the fancy restaurant  ($210 - $99 - $36.96 = $74.04).

Should little Joe take his wife to the fancy restaurant or celebrate their anniversary at home?


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