Saturday, May 15, 2010

How about a little consideration?

So, today was our 6th wedding anniversary. We didn't have anything spectacular planned, but we decided to go out to eat at Silver Bay, our favorite seafood place.

We sat down, ordered our drinks, started to have a chat…and then some little five year old bastard decided he was going to start screaming the place down.

I looked over at the table. His parents weren't even acknowledging him. Obviously used to the little shit's shrieking, they just tuned him out. I looked around the rest of the crowded restaurant…there were a lot of pissed off faces.

Here's the deal, people. If you have young kids, especially if you have young kids who can't behave themselves, either hire a sitter or stay the fuck at home. I went out to have a nice dinner with my wife to celebrate our wedding anniversary, not to listen to your little shit scream at the top of his lungs while you do absolutely nothing to shut him up.

Now, I've written about this before, and I usually get a couple of comments from self-righteous parents who claim 'They have as much right to eat out as anybody" and "They pay for their meal, so they have as much right to be there as anyone."

Two words: Bull…Shit.

You see, you taking a baby or toddler to a restaurant is completely out of order, because while you certainly have as much right to eat out as anyone else, by bringing your kids with you, you are spoiling everyone else's meal.

Let me put it another way. How do you think people would react if I went into a non-smoking restaurant, ordered a meal, and then chain-smoked a whole carton of cigarettes at the table…making sure to blow smoke into as many people's faces as possible?

I'd be asked to leave, and quite rightly, because I'd be annoying everyone else. I'd be acting like a selfish prick by putting my comfort before everyone else's. There could be fifty or sixty other people in the restaurant who want to enjoy their meal, but fuck those guys, because I want to smoke. If they don't like it, that's their problem.

But I'm a smoker, right? I have just as much right to eat out as anybody, and I pay for my meal, so I have as much right to be there as everyone else.

In fact, let me put it an even simpler way. Imagine if you went out to eat with your partner, and I sat at the next table, looked at you…and then screamed at the top of my voice for your entire meal. That is exactly what you're doing to us. Maybe not literally, but you're the one voluntarily bringing the screaming into the restaurant and not giving a shit if it annoys everyone else.

I mean, even if you tried to quiet your kid down, or took him out to the car when he started screaming, I'd give you some credit… but you never do. You just tune that shit out, eat your meal and completely ignore the fact your little shit is ruining everyone else's evening.

How fucking selfish do you want to be?

I'll be fair. I'm not saying you can't go out to eat with your kids, just go out to eat somewhere appropriate for toddlers and infants. If they sell meals that come with little toys or there's a playground on the premises, you can take your kids there, let them scream blue murder until their heart's content and no one will mind. If you want to go to a nice, grown-up restaurant…hire a sitter.



UerBlge said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Ok first of all - nice spammer you've got here in your comments section......

Secondly, but more importantly, I wholeheartedly agree with you. I fucking hate it when people let their kids misbehave to the detriment of everyone else in the restaurant. It pisses me off so much my blood almost boils. You're damn right they should get a sitter, or else stay home. That'll be what I do when me and Toby have kids......and trust me when I tell you that any children we have will be well behaved.....i'll make sure of it!

Evan 08 said...

You don't necessarily need to leave the kids at home, but you ARE responsible for their appropriate behavior while in public.

There's nothing wrong with bringing the children along, as long as you realize that you will likely need to spend a lot of your time and energy making sure that the young 'uns behave like humans.

For parents with the "I've got just as much right as you do..." mentality, get over yourselves. You DO have the right to dine out, and you DO have the right to bring your children. But you also DO have the RESPONSIBILITY to keep the kids in line, and you DO NOT have the right to infringe on the enjoyment of others who are eating out.

By the way, for any of you parents who get on a self-righteous kick, take into account that I'm a parent, and I practice what I preach.

Sunny said...

I agree....and they can't say they can't teach little ones manners, either. Our CJ is two- and he sits at the table properly and eats quietly. And wipes his mouth with a napkin after every bite, then he finishes and takes his napkin and wipes the crumbs off the table and puts the napkin on the plate and asks to get down.
It's the parenting that makes the difference. My kids used to get compliments all the time on their table manners when we went out. They had their first visit to the country-club for breakfast with crystal and china and silver when they were 4 & 5 and I wasn't nervous about it a bit because they were so well behaved.
I can't imagine doing that with most of the little kids I see out today.
What are they gonna be like when they grow up??????

Bee said...

I couldn't agree more. I was out for dinner a while back with family and unfortunately stuck beside a couple with two screeching little brats who seemed to think it perfectly acceptable to get down from their seats and bother other diners. The whole time they were tearing around, trying to grab napkins from peoples tables, their parents sat there with "aren't they precious?" expressions or ignored them completely. Later in the evening my five year old asthmatic nephew started to get a little bit wheezy and the mother of the spoilt hell-spawn had the cheek to turn to our table and none too politely ionform us that his breathing was putting her and her husband off their desserts and would we mind taking him outside? I've never seen my sister so angry.

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Scratch the hostile fay said...


(don't take that the wrong way)

I'll be honest with you: my child was not an angel when she was a toddler. We weren't foolish enough to think she was. What she was, though, was SMART. She learned REAL quick that if she acted like that in a restaurant, it was out to the car and she went hungry (till later.)
We tried to teach by example, too. We'd be walking through walmart, and there'd be a brat screaming and throwing a tantrum in the middle of the floor. I'd look at my child and she'd look at me. And I'd say, loud enough for the parent to hear, "Thank you, Megan, for not acting like that." She understood, then, that that was NOT acceptable behavor. When she got a little older, she'd say "you're welcome, mommy." it was so cute.

Seriously, though, I feel for you. If folks can't be responsible for their little ones, why bring them?

I always had a problem with people assuming because I brought mine, I want to watch theirs. Uhm, no. You bring 'em, YOU are responsible for them. Period.

I'm sorry the dinner date got ruined. Maybe a home cooked candlelight dinner would work better next time? ;)

Scratch (who is wondering where the hell her avatar picture went)

Woman atop her Soapbox said...

When my son was young and I wanted to teach him how to behave in a restaurant, we went early, like 5 pm early. I ordered him a salad the minute we walked in because nothing irritates a child more than waiting and his gameboy was in his hand. But he learned how to behave, order and enjoy the company.

Screaming children... get your food to go and get out!