Fighting Fire With Fire

| | Right | August 13, 2008

(A father is letting five kids make a complete mess of the restaurant. They’re ripping napkins and using it as confetti, breaking chopsticks and screaming their little heads off.)

Me: “Sir, I’m going to have to ask you to tell them to stop doing that. They are disturbing the other customers.”

Father: *beaming* “No.”

Me: “No, as in, no, you won’t tell them to stop it?”

Father: *still beaming*“Yes.”

(I have to get back to work at this point and sure enough, the kids keep misbehaving. Several customers complain to me but I have no authority to throw them out. The last to complain is a table with about eight young guys.)

Customer #1: “So there’s nothing you can do about them?”

Me: “I’m so very sorry sir, but no. I can get you a drink from the house to make up for it.”

Customer #2: “No, that won’t do.”

Me: “Well, I can see if I can get you a free dessert…”

Customer #2: “Not what I meant. Can’t you get your boss?”

Me: “I’m afraid he’s not in, sir.”

Customer #1: “Well, we won’t accept any free stuff. I bet that would come out of your pay.”

Customer #3: “Hold on…”

(The customer gets up and the others immediately follow him to the noisy, messy table. They’re now surrounded by eight tall, young men who look mighty pissed.)

Customer #3: *to the father* “Tell them to stop it.”

Father: *still beaming* “No.”

Customer #1: “You’re upsetting the waitress.”

Father: “Do you guys even work here?”

Customer #1: “No, we’re from that prison up the street. We’re out on parole. Funny coincidence, we all served seven years for kidnapping and murdering a bunch of noisy brats and a jerk who made minimum-wage waitresses cry.”

(At this point the kids become very, very quiet and the other patrons start giggling and staring.)

Father: “You’re lying.”

Customer #4: “Wanna take that chance, buddy?”

(One more lecherous grin was enough to send the whole bunch of misfits scurrying to the exit. My knights in shining armor actually got applause from the other diners and a free meal from me.)

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  • Trillium

    While I understand why things are as they are in child-raising, truth to be told, a kid is not just his parents’ “property”, so to say, they are also members of the community. Just like I hate parents from stories that go “Don’t you dare tell my kids how to behave!” when those kids upset the peace or ruin merchandise or something, I hate parents that think they hold no responsibility for their kids actions.
    What I’m saying, there should be some sort of legal responsibility for raising your kid a lawless piece of crap and allowing one to behave like that. While it is a rather slippery slope and extreme care must be taken to avoid sliding down, there really should be some repercussions, and heavier than just punishment for (admittedly insignificant) damage the kids cause in each particular case. By raising your kid an asshole you aren’t just responsible for the damage they cause due to your negligence, but for all the damage they will cause when they become adults disrespectful and disruptive to the world at whole.

    Sorry, rant over. This father just pissed me off.

    • ChocSprinkles

      I couldn’t agree more. We live by a lake and one day we caught a little girl (about 10) kicking the crap out of a duck. We rushed over to stop her and her Starbucks drinking, yapping on her cellphone, not paying attention to her brat mother came over screaming at us, swearing up and down the kid was just petting the duck. It felt good to tell her off.