People leave their credit cards behind at the bar nearly every night. We don't judge; we've all done it. Sometimes people decide to pay their tab with cash and forget to grab their card. More often, someone's just had too much to drink and walks out without paying their tab.

Usually, the person quickly realizes their card is missing and calls back that night or the next day, comes in to pick it up, and all is well. Just so you know, our staff will go ahead and run the card to pay their tab so we can balance our cash register; they'll usually also add a 20% gratuity to the total.

Occasionally, though, the card sits. And sits, and sits. And no one ever calls or comes back to get it. Eventually, when we've collected a pile of cards that are seemingly abandoned, we shred them.

What should you do if you discover you left your card at the bar?

Call the next day. Stop by the bar during regular hours to pick up your card. Bring your photo ID with you; we want to protect our customers and be sure we're giving the card to the right person. Be polite to the bartender.

What not to do?

Don't wait two days to call the bar, especially when you're from out of town and you're leaving Lawrence in the next hour. Don't track down the manager's cell phone number and bother him at home. Don't argue and complain about the amount of your tab. You'd be surprised how often this happens; remember, you were the one drunk enough to leave your card behind, so it shouldn't surprise you that you don't remember ordering all those drinks. We don't add phantom drinks to your tab.

And don't feel bad about forgetting your card! Don't be embarrassed and you don't have to apologize. It happens to the best of us.