Acting Out Runs In The Family

, , , , , | Right | August 17, 2019

(I am a patron eating breakfast, and I see a large man with a very young child. The man is sucked into his phone, completely ignoring the child, except to hush him when he seeks some attention. This goes on for half an hour; the child is fairly well-behaved but clearly bored out of his mind. Near the end of this time, the child gets more rambunctious and the man starts pushing him in addition to hushing him. Before I leave, I walk over.)

Me: “Excuse me, sir, just a slight tip; if you’d pay some attention to him rather than playing with your phone, he might act out less, and you might not feel it’s necessary to lay your hands on him.”

Man: “And who the h*** are you? I raised six kids before; I think I know more about parenting than you! You should just shut your mouth, and please don’t ever go up to people at a restaurant like this; it’s rude.”

Me: “And I’m certain that at least the ones who you raised before you had a smartphone are probably model citizens like you, and think that violence or neglect towards their children is okay, but calling others out on unacceptable behaviour isn’t. Sir.”

Man: “I’ve got half a mind to kick your a** right now!”

Me: “Do you really think that’s an appropriate example to set for your son, sir?”

(He starts getting redder and sputtering so I decide I should make an exit.)

Me: “But you’re right about one thing; it really isn’t my business how poorly you raise your child. Have a nice day.”

(On the way out, my waitress stopped me to thank me for speaking to him. She had entertained the little boy some and he reacted very nicely to her, but she was frustrated by the father ignoring him, as well.)

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