There has been so much controversy about the new restaurant trend of not allowing children, that I figured I’d jump on the bandwagon.
As a back-of-house staff member for 5 years, and front-of-house for another few years, I can attest to the disdain many have for children in general… especially ones eating out with parents that seem disinterested in their doings. From throwers to screamers, children are not always needed at dinner. It’s a fact. Addie was wonderful when Dave and I went to The Melting Pot (mmmmmm!)… she was still quite young, and the dinner was paid for as a gift from Dave’s boss, so perhaps we didn’t mind the two times she cried. She quickly recovered from her meltdown, and other diners smiled at us with genuine warmth. We made the decision to bring her on a weeknight, and we went before 8pm… but if we were spending our own $150, would I want to hear a screaming baby? Nope.
While banning children under the age of 8 (how’s a kid to learn?), I can understand having a Friday and Saturday evening policy, or serving just a specific clientele. This is both practical and legal (despite what some might think, you can deny service for a number of legal reasons). That being said, after reading THIS article, I was in tears with laughter.
A customer who supported La Fisheria’s new ban on children after 8 had this to say on their Facebook page
I am all for this… I had a very special life event ruined at a more gourmet restaurant by a screaming baby that was the same pitch as a dental drill. The parents ignored the child and continued to eat.
While a screaming child is certainly a downer, I doubt a child can ruin a life event for someone… seems like there’s an underlying issue there. It made me laugh. Hard. Pardon me, Reader, but I haven’t enjoyed a hot shower or time alone in the bathroom in over a year, and no life event- be it birthday, anniversary or holiday- has been ruined. No amount of tears from my child or another has ever in my life ruined anything, in and of itself.
As a society, we need to teach our children how to eat out at gourmet restaurants (yes, Addie ate at a few DC restaurants mainly reserved for adults, with few incidents- all of which were solved with a walk), how to respect adult time, and the answer is not always NO, sometimes it’s not right now. And that, Mom and Dad, just has to be enough. I do not support the idea of banning, but I support the food industry and business as a whole- remember that this decision is often not against children but for the establishment’s customer base.
Take some time off of warring, and treat yourself to one of the many establishments banning children. Enjoy a meal where the only bothersome noise is coming from the patron who has clearly had too much to drink, is cursing a bit and whose laughter is making your pulse race. That is something that can ruin my night… you can’t even coo sweetly at the dude. He’s just ignorant. Maybe his parents never taught him how to eat out?