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Childless Bitch: 'Stay Out of My Restaurant'

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Editors' Note: The Bitch is back, ready to irk us again with another tirade. This time, she sets her sights on our kids' restaurant behavior. If you see her at your local eating establishment, buy her a drink—it's tough eating every meal alone.

childless_bitch_restaurant.jpg

Last night, I dined at a four-star restaurant with a surprise guest sitting at the table to my left. This 'surprise guest' was a 3-foot tall, rude, smelly, loud, and unwanted addition to my menu. Ring a bell? Well, it should because it was...YOUR child.

What the hell is going on in this world?! Mothers of America, you are clearly confused... again! Thank goodness I'm back and ready to clear things up. Bring your exhausted faces closer to the computer screen. Are you ready? Are you listening? Here it goes...keep your children out of restaurants!

As good as you've become at lying to yourself, little Rugrat can't sit through a meal lasting longer than 10 minutes. He is running around the restaurant screaming at the top of his lungs, and every time the waiter comes to the table he belts out something along the lines of, "This food sucks! I want hot dogs!" While you can't see your child scaling the back wall - for some reason, I can! Silverware should be used instead of fingers, and until he understands the difference between a Play-Doh craft project and a three-course meal, keep it at home.

Now, because I understand keeping your children out of all restaurants is a lofty request, it has come to my attention there are many culinary chains available and particularly welcoming to children. While I can't bring myself to understand why in God's name anyone would open, work or invest in such a place, I see the need for it. So, because you are such a 'busy' mommy and have self-diagnosed 'momnesia,' it only makes sense that you can't differentiate between Wolfgang Puck's newest culinary destination and the Wal-Mart Food Court. So, to help the breastfeeders (and save the single nation), I have created a little test to easily determine which restaurant is right for you and your monster squad.

It's Friday night! Hooray! And because Jimmy passed his weekly spelling test, you want to take the family to dinner. Double hooray for you! With a particular restaurant in mind, and before driving the minivan ANYWHERE, answer 'Yes' or 'No' to the following questions:

  • Are plastic take-home cups, crayons and breadsticks complimentary with my child's order?
  • Does the hostess respond by laughing when asked if making a reservation is possible?
  • Are there readily available booster seats in the restaurant and changing stations in the bathroom?
  • Are the words 'endless pasta,' 'buffet' or 'kid meal deal' anywhere on the menu?
  • Can I find a discount coupon to this restaurant in my Sunday circular?
  • Is the 'linen' on the table really paper for my loved-ones to scribble all over?
  • Are the menus laminated, and yet still stained with old macaroni & cheese?
  • Are prizes given for the most tickets earned at the end of the meal?
  • Does the restaurant's name end with the word 'Factory?'
  • Is a valet service not provided and only 2-hour parking in a large lot next to the Cineplex available?
  • Are the waitresses on parole, still in high school or members of AARP?
  • Is the décor rainforest or circus-themed?
  • Is there a restaurant mascot?
  • Do the only condiments for the table come in plastic packets?
  • Next to the exit, is there a gumball machine?

If you answered 'No' to any of the previous questions, local numbers to Pizza Hut can be found at pizzahut.com. It's time to bring the tradition of Friday Night Pizza Nights back to the homes of America!

For those of you self-proclaimed 'foodies' who, pre-preggers, I would normally find dining next to me - this message especially goes out to you. If you are 'above' eating at places you might find off the NJ Turnpike, you are obviously not cut out for motherhood. The only famous chef you'll be running into these days is the King of Cans...Boyardee. Which brings up a great question, why are you even eating out at all? Doesn't giving birth to that 'bun in the oven' automatically qualify you as a cook?

And for those of you concerned about the nutritional value of the children's menu options, I did the legwork for you. Did you know Denny's has a Veggie of the Day - it's called the "Moon Crater Mashed Potatoes." What's the big deal anyway? I thought the Nintendo Wii solved the child obesity epidemic?

After all this, if you are still confused, might I remind you of something called Take Out?

Bon appetite and cheers to your Bloomin' Onion!
-CB


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32 comments so far | Post a comment now
SugarPlumFairy March 17, 2008, 11:51 AM

This woman is hilariously critical and mean. I absolutely love her!

achiro March 17, 2008, 12:28 PM

What a pitiful woman….I bet you everything she’s single—who would want to be around her??

Lamb28 March 17, 2008, 12:32 PM

Mothers, not all of us childless women feel the same as she does. 8 out of 10 times, I love being around children. Whether I’m on a plane or in a restaurant, your children are usually very sweet and funny. There are always exceptions and you know what kids I’m talking about. Rest assured, I like seeing children in stuffy places like a 4 star restaurant, it usually makes for some unexpected drama!

Lamb28 March 17, 2008, 12:34 PM

Mothers, not all of us childless women feel the same as she does. 8 out of 10 times, I love being around children. Whether I’m on a plane or in a restaurant, your children are usually very sweet and funny. There are always exceptions and you know what kids I’m talking about. Rest assured, I like seeing children in stuffy places like a 4 star restaurant, it usually makes for some unexpected drama!

Kelley March 17, 2008, 1:41 PM

Please. I’ve been to many a restaurant with my now 2-year-old son, and while i will concede that certain establishments are not ‘kid-appropriate,’ I hardly think it ANYONE’S right to tell me where, and when, I can take my child.

I can tell you that in HUNDREDS of times we’ve been out to eat, not only has my child never been running wildly through a restaurant, I’ve never witnessed another child doing it, either. If my child decides it’s time for a tantrum, we go outside to spare the other diners’ ears. However I fail to see how my child’s playing with his food, or squealing with delight is anymore disturbing than your cell phone, or black berry ringing every 10 seconds, and you chatting LOUDLY for the entire restaurant to hear. Not to mention the revelry of drunkards at the bar.

Sure, when I’m paying $150 a plate at Ruth’s Chris, I don’t want to hear a tantrum, but guess what? Kids are a part of life, and for parents without ready access to a babsitter, dinner out is about the ONLY Friday night activity on our list…Lest we interrupt your movie theaters as well.

notamommynotakidhater March 17, 2008, 2:29 PM

Our author’s anger sure came through! But the retort by Mom’s Logic was just as immature. It’s NOT painful eating alone, ladies. It’s enjoyable when others in public don’t make it a nightmare, regardless of their age.

I have a saying when people ask if I hate kids. Absolutely not. I hate their parents.

I have no children. But I enjoy children just fine when they are well-behaved—much like I enjoy anyone else.

But see, here’s the point I think our writer was trying to make, i know it’s certainly mine:

My problem isn’t with your child being loud or running around everywhere. It’s with you.

It’s with the parents who flat out ignore a child crying, or throwing a tantrum, or just acting like a normal kid.

It’s with those parents who seem to think it’s MY job to watch and put up with the behavior.

Hey…it’s not okay for ME to behave that way in public. Why children seem to get a free pass in that department is amazing. Parents, you ARE responsible, plain and simple.

Don’t have children if you can’t take the responsibility of watching them—yes—24 hours a day. Bummer, I know. But don’t make ME the babysitter because you couldn’t reach one. Unless you plan to pay me to watch your child throughout MY dinner that I pay for. This isn’t your living room. Behave accordingly. And remember, kids who constantly behave badly in public are allowed to get away with it at home, far as I can see. Back in my day, if I pulled the crap kids today are getting away with, I’d have been spanked then and there. (I realize that option is not necessarily available to parents nowadays)

I also fault owners of businesses who let kids—should I say parents of kids—get away with this misbehavior. Those folks should remember those kids aren’t going to generate the revenue they need to stay open. And owners need to step up and protect EVERYONE in there.

Rarely do I see a child well-behaved. They act, much like their parents do, as if they’re sitting at home. Well hey, I’m not about to tell you how to raise your child, but I also don’t go screaming and whining and throwing things and defacing public property when I’m out. And if I did, I’d expect to be held accountable.

The prevailing attitude I see among parents these days is “so what?” Now look…I understand you have to tune it out to a great extent at home. Kids can be draining. But that’s also why it’s a 24-hour-a-day responsibility. You don’t get the night off from that just because we’re around. I’m not your babysitter.

I have no problem letting a parent know to quiet their child and settle them down. I don’t direct it to the kid—they’ve obviously been taught that misbehaving in public is quite alright. But I will tell that mommy to rein it in the same way I’d complain to the theatre manager if teenagers or adults were talking loudly during the movie. And i DO think I very much have that right, when I’m paying good money as well. You think you get to ruin my experience because you popped one out? Wake up. You’d get just as annoyed at the neighbors blaring music at 2:00 a.m., would you not?

I’ve often said that restaurants need to follow some theatres’ leads—create a family day or at least a family room. With soundproof walls. Everyone with a kid eats in there. Together. Loud, obnoxious, throwing things, pitching fits, etc. And let’s see you tune it out then. And those of us—single or married or even parents ourselves—can eat and shop in peace.

Not EVERY parent thinks it’s okay for kids to misbehave, so to immediately and snidely label someone who disagrees that kids run the world as lonely, angry singles is way off the mark.

I may have kids one day, but let me tell you—I’ll NEVER think it’s okay to let him run wild. I won’t wander off to look at stuff while he or she runs around the building, far enough away to be kidnapped. I will ensure that they understand please and thank you, and that you don’t just get what you want because you want it. I won’t tune them out to the extent that I can’t hear normal conversations, because they’ll be taught how to behave when mommy is doing other things.

(And I know what you are thinking: “Wait till you have them, and you’ll see what it’s really like.”

That’s where you are wrong. Ask your grandparents how often they got away with the kind of public behavior we see now. Chances are they didn’t—even at home. So ladies it IS possible to teach your children how to behave appropriately, and how to deal with situations as they arise rather than ignoring it and expecting us to as well.

Remember, we’re single—our ears are functional.)

I’ll go to the movies on family day, a day just for families with small children.

I’ll go to family-friendly places for that one night out if I can’t find a sitter.

But most of all I won’t be too worried about public misbehavior, because they’ll know if they act up, they can sit in the car with me just as easily.

Moms, you simply have to accept responsibility for a lot of this. Being tired is no excuse. Should have thought of that before having kids then. Your job is now constant caretaker, and guess what, you get few nights off. We get that (hopefully your husbands are helpful in that department). But take the extra time to raise kids from the get-go to behave as appropriately as possible.

And then, when they simply act like kids, who do get cranky, who do throw things, who do bang the glasses together because they like the sound, simply remove them from the room for a few.

And most of all, if you blew off everything else I said, just do this: SHOW EFFORT TO CONTROL THEM.

I guaranTEE you, I PROMise you, you’ll get a LOT less dirty looks—because our irritation isn’t with kids, like I said—it’s with parents who blow it off and MAKE it OUR problem.

You get sympathy from us when you show that you’re trying to control it. Not when you ignore it.

~And just to clarify, we ALL should behave in public accordingly. Drunks and people who yap on their cell phones loudly at a dinner table or even in the grocery store are just as rude in my book and should be told so. They aggravate me just as much.~

laura March 17, 2008, 2:30 PM

My mother-in-law insists on going to child-inappropriate restaurants for special occasions. Though the kids at the table are my nephews not my own children, I can’t help but feel guilty that they are distracting to other diners. My first child is due in October. My plan is going to be when my mother-in-law suggests an inappropriate restaurant for a family event I’ll just let her know that I’m going to get a babysitter and leave my child at home—hoping this will clue her in to choose more appropriate restaurants. If she doesn’t, at least I won’t feel bad about my child disturbing other diners. I know if I’m paying $30+ for my entree I don’t want to deal with children acting like children (nor do I think children should be expected to behave like adults).

dixiegirl March 17, 2008, 4:04 PM

Ha ha! Just because of this letter, the next time we go out to eat, I’m taking my 3 year old to the most uppity, fashionable, quiet, and upper crust restaurant I can find (and still enjoy the food). Too bad my son is very well behaved 99% of the time.

Rachel March 17, 2008, 5:45 PM

My six year old daughter has eaten at many four star restaurants. She has been doing this since she was very small. She is well behaved, quiet, orders her own food and never asks for more than a piece of paper (which I provide) and a pen. I see nothing wrong with children in nice restaurants. BUT, I do wish more restaurants would offer interesting, palette stimulating food for smaller appetites and that people with ill behaved children would take them home. I hate going to restaurants with screaming children in them and I can only imagine people without children get annoyed too. It’s not just in fancy places that children need to behave. Children are part of our society and the sooner they learn social etiquette the better. Not everywhere is a playground.

pattymama March 17, 2008, 8:01 PM

Although the childless bitch was a bit harsh, let’s face it, a lot of parents take their kids out and let them go wild. Bad parents give us all bad names and I have been on a date with my husband (which we all know is rare) and have been bothered by children running around our table.

Abby March 17, 2008, 8:23 PM

This woman is my hero! I was just at a sushi place, and had a child sitting at the next table. He complained the entire time about the ‘weird fish,’ and even threw a roll on the floor! Children should be eating mac and cheese, not sushi.

Jen March 17, 2008, 8:42 PM

While I think the article is harsh and over the top, I do agree. I have a 3 month old who is generally sweet as pie in a restaurant but on the couple of occasions where there’s been a problem my husband or myself have had our meal boxed to go and gone outside to wait for the other to eat and pay the check. It’s really not OK for us to let our children ruin other people’s meals at fancy places. If you’re going to spring for a fancy restaurant, spring for a sitter, you’ll have a much better time yourself!

Stephanie March 17, 2008, 9:53 PM

Is it just me or does this seem REALLY made up? It seems to me that there is a writer at Momlogic that ‘acts’ the this childless b—— just to get people all fired up. I have been to many resturants and for the kid to be running around like that… it must be at a Chucky Cheese or something like that. MomLogic - why would you even print this garbage? It is stupid and you are just trying to get a rise out of people…. sad.

Lori March 18, 2008, 12:19 AM

Honestly, I think this has become an epedemic in our country. For some reason parents have not seen the importance in teaching children manners, to respect, that they will not always get their way, that everything is not “fun”, that if they act badly there will be negative consequences for their behavior such as having to walk out of a store or leaving the park…these kids grow up to be adults that behave the same way.

When I see or hear children acting out of control in public, weather it be in a restaurant, a store, a park…ect..and the parent does nothing to deal with the behavior except to “bribe” them into being “good”, it does make me angry at the parents…I actually feel sorry for the child…first of all because they have not been taught appropriate behavior…second of all, it sets up the child to be not liked. In a sense I think us parents handicap our children when we fail to teach them the tools of behavior inside and outside of the home that is consistant!

I have raised 5 children and have now started raising 2 more. I know all too well how children can act up at the worst times and it isn’t always convenient for me to have to drop everything in order to teach them how to behave but it’s my responsibility as a parent.


Lesley March 18, 2008, 9:42 AM

You don’t have to worry about our family of 6 going to a fancy restaurant. We would much rather hang out and eat pizza and play games with the kids. ;0)

RK March 19, 2008, 7:46 AM

Kudos to you, notamommynotakidhater! You said it well.
The only way I take my 2-year old to a restaurant is if he’s well-rested, generally in a good mood, and if I bring something to (quietly) entertain him. I do like to occasionally take him out to eat because it’s my responsibility to teach him how to behave in public places, including restaurants. It is never OK, though, to teach these lessons at the expense of other diners, so if things ever did get loud or obnoxious (which so far they have NOT) I would, without a doubt, leave. And I have to say that I agree with one point the Childless B—— made: there are some restaurants that clearly don’t want children there; if they don’t have highchairs or booster seats, take the hint and eat somewhere else!!

monika March 20, 2008, 9:24 AM

Dear CB, go get some professional help

Maleana March 20, 2008, 1:27 PM

The article seems just a bit harsh to me. Being a waitress and also being a mommy of two I don’t think that it is appropriate for anyone to say where I should be able to take my children to eat. I also don’t think that it is appropriate for parents to let their children run wild while they sit seemingly oblivious chatting like nothing is wrong. I also don’t think it is appropriate to sit your children at a separate table and ignore them. Your waitress is not your babysitter for the evening. I think that it is each parents responsibility to control their kids so that their is a good eating atmosphere for everyone, but also those that do not have children should be a little more understanding because goodness forbid you someday have a child of your own, I won’t role my eyes or my snide remarks about you or your child.

Pen4Me March 29, 2008, 10:52 PM

The way I see it, CB, the author of the article is not on a tirade nor on a mission to irk the mothers of America. Although her format is loaded with sarcastic-wit, I think she is attempting to provide some valid and sound advice. Not to mention that she’s hilarious. Regardless if you agree or disagree, you can still find the humor in her presentation of the material, which rather you want to admit it or not, has a ring of truth throughout.

Mothers, no correction, Parents should be responsible for raising respectable and well-mannered children but in order to do so, the parent must actually believe children should be taught to and actually use their manners. Unfortunately, there are far too many parents who seem to be under the impression that their “little Suzy or Bobby” have some inalienable right to act a pure-d-fool whenever and wherever they please and let the world beware. Wrong!

As pointed out in several of the responses to this article. There are two in particular I agree with, Lori who posted on 18 March and especially “Notamommynotakidhater” posted on 17 March. It is the parent’s responsibility to raise their child and everyone else shouldn’t have to suffer because they can not or will not make the effort to do so.

For the most part, I think CB is hilarious and entitled to her opinion as we all are. I also think a number of individuals who have taken offense to her opinions are perhaps guilty of allowing their child(ren) to behave like heathens. Getting an attitude because someone isn’t ignoring the antics of your child’s bad behavior isn’t the solution, perhaps taking the time to instill some values, respect and manners would be beneficial. Children are basically a sponge and will absorb anything you teach them, so teach them respect, manners, and some self control. Not how to bitch, moan and groan to get their way or to throw a fit when they disagree or wish to have their way. Keep in mind, your child is a reflection of you. Take the time to teach them, the rewards are endless.

I am a Mother, a Nana, a sister, and an aunt; so I know of what I speak. I have raised my own and help to raise a number of other children. They were taught and learned manners early on and continue to utilize them to this day.

I am new to this site, so it’s possible that I will be commenting on older articles; bear with me.





Anonymous April 7, 2008, 4:08 PM

>

Hey editor! When you say things like this, it makes you seem a bit.. pathetic. I bet CB is on a lovely date, out with her friends, or maybe with her family.

If a 4-year-old is your only companion, perhaps you should re-assess your life, no?


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