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Be Kind to Breeders: Babies in Restaurants

Be Kind to Breeders: Babies in Restaurants
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  • Be Kind to Breeders: Babies in Restaurants

    Post #1 - January 12th, 2009, 2:27 pm
    Post #1 - January 12th, 2009, 2:27 pm Post #1 - January 12th, 2009, 2:27 pm
    Be Kind to Breeders: Babies in Restaurants

    As a known breeder, I may be more forgiving of children than those who chose not to go the family route (and god bless ‘em for that), but I think one of the most fundamental social educations a kid can have is going out with parents to a good restaurant . Sitting at a public table is a force for civilization, and the sooner that force is felt, the better for everyone. I distinctly remember driving to a “fancy lunch” in Wisconsin with my grandfather when I was still in single digits; it taught me two important life lessons: one, good food is worth the effort; and two, eating is more enjoyable when you're being pleasant than when you're crying.

    I do get a little irritated in a movie theater if a baby is bawling (more because I feel sorry for the baby – What were the parents thinking, bringing an infant to a grown-up movie?) In a restaurant, though, if a kid is making a little noise, I think that’s just wonderful. We go to a lot of Mexican places, and it’s common for kids to be walking around among the tables. Love of children is strong in Hispanic culture (it’s strong in many cultures, of course, but in some more than others, I suspect) and it seems most parents monitor the young ones (as do the servers and others, including me; I’m honored to offer a watchful eye).

    The Wife and I were at a restaurant a while back, and there was a mother with a baby who was going kind of crazy, crying and squirming. I made a point of making eye contact with the mother and smiling just to let her know I didn’t disapprove of her offspring (and believe me, mothers with crying infants get lots of angry stares, like it’s their fault for not having complete and total control over this fundamentally ungovernable life force). Technically, babies can do no wrong. They’re in a state of nature; their impulses are basic; they’re unhappy, they cry; they’re happy, they laugh, naturally. When you let parents know that you appreciate their wild young ones, even when they’re spiraling into kiddy chaos, the parent will be less stressed, which the kid will sense and sometimes become, in turn, calmer.

    Years ago, when my oldest daughter was a loud little thing, we were sitting in an Asian place on Argyle, and she was making a fuss. I looked up to see Bill Veeck walking by; he had a huge craggy head, kind of a like a walking Mount Rushmore, and when he looked at Abigail and smiled, she stopped fidgeting and whimpering. He kept smiling at her as he said, “Hello little baby.” I thought that was so cool: Veeck wasn’t peeved at my noisy kid; he made a gesture of kindness toward her and us and it seemed to have a (momentary) calming effect upon her. That kind of open acceptance of children made an impression on me, too.

    So if you’re still casting about for a New Year’s resolution, here’s one for you: when dining out, be kind to breeders; chances are very good that you’re probably related to one.

    David “Kids are the best; they really are” Hammond
    “We all have to stand before the kitchen gods.” Chef Jacob Sahaya Kumar Aruni
  • Post #2 - January 12th, 2009, 2:30 pm
    Post #2 - January 12th, 2009, 2:30 pm Post #2 - January 12th, 2009, 2:30 pm
    great post. thank you for putting this "issue" in that perspective.
    R.I.P. jimswside - 5/2/16



    @GrubSeeker
  • Post #3 - January 12th, 2009, 2:36 pm
    Post #3 - January 12th, 2009, 2:36 pm Post #3 - January 12th, 2009, 2:36 pm
    Great post, David. I thought about responding in that other kid thread but had the distinct feeling anything I would say, I had said already. This said it all really well, though. Take your kids where they'll blend in and be welcome. Start them on the process of learning how to behave in restaurants while knowing they won't get it right yet. Don't try to micromanage a two-year-old; it'll only get worse. If somebody gives you a dirty look for being a parent, stick your tongue out at them and at least you'll have made your kid laugh.
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  • Post #4 - January 12th, 2009, 3:03 pm
    Post #4 - January 12th, 2009, 3:03 pm Post #4 - January 12th, 2009, 3:03 pm
    A lovely post with a nice memory, David.

    My husband and I have always taken our kids to restaurants. I think our daughter was less than 4 weeks old when we took her out with us the first time (to a diner). I also remember taking her outside of our favorite neighborhood Thai restaurant (Bangkok House, RIP) as she screamed her head off after eating something way too spicy for a toddler.

    Children learn how to behave in a restaurant if they are taken to one and told what is expected of them. When our children were 11 and 8, we traveled to France. In Paris, we ended up at a rather nice and quite expensive bistro near the Invalides. Our daughter and son were struck, impressed, even mystified by the outstandingly polite behavior of the French children out with their families. They tried hard to emulate it—we spent a good deal of effort at French institutions, including museums and restaurants, trying not to be loud Americans, and here the contrast with American tourist behavior was stark. They’ve never forgotten the meal, and it’s still their touchstone for good public behavior when dining out, more than 7 years later.

    Of course, you cannot take a baby out, as David so rightly points out, and expect it not to cry. Fellow breeders, know your child and know the place you are going to. As has been pointed out often, ethnic restaurants such as Thai, Chinese, and Mexican, are usually extremely tolerant of children and their childish behavior.
  • Post #5 - January 12th, 2009, 5:01 pm
    Post #5 - January 12th, 2009, 5:01 pm Post #5 - January 12th, 2009, 5:01 pm
    David Hammond wrote:Be Kind to Breeders: Babies in Restaurants

    So if you’re still casting about for a New Year’s resolution, here’s one for you: when dining out, be kind to breeders; chances are very good that you’re probably related to one.

    David “Kids are the best; they really are” Hammond


    I've got no problems with kids ..... as long as they are someone else's.

    My only question is .....

    Do they have to wear a jacket and tie when they go out? :mrgreen:

    SSDD
    He was constantly reminded of how startlingly different a place the world was when viewed from a point only three feet to the left.

    Deepdish Pizza = Casserole
  • Post #6 - January 12th, 2009, 5:06 pm
    Post #6 - January 12th, 2009, 5:06 pm Post #6 - January 12th, 2009, 5:06 pm
    I agree, in theory, that it's O.K. to have fussy kids or babies in certain restaurants. Personally, when I hear a baby cry now, I just smile that it's not by problem to deal with, after having raised three. However, I have to say that my wife and I essentially stopped going taking our kids to just about all restaurants until they reached an age where they understood how to behave. It simply took away our ability to enjoy the ocassion. Regardless of who is right or wrong, we felt that we'd be imposing on others if our kids starting to cry, and we just didn't want to do that. Take out was just fine until our kids could understand the phrase we used to use: "restaurant voices!"

    Jonah
  • Post #7 - January 12th, 2009, 6:20 pm
    Post #7 - January 12th, 2009, 6:20 pm Post #7 - January 12th, 2009, 6:20 pm
    Thanks, David - it's good to remember that kids of almost any age can be unpredictable, and a little patience goes a long way. I am certain that Sparky has a better sense of food and culture than his peers because we drag him to so many places to try new things: we were playing the freerice geography game, and I realized he has a much better sense of the world than I did as a kid, largely based on our dining habits. I know we are often asking some indulgence from the rest of the world, but that cultural education is extremely precious to me. Of course it's important to know your own kid and make allowances for what they are and are not able to handle.

    I like to think a small inconvenience to the world at large is well-balanced by the next batch of young adults having a thorough understanding of culture, food, and courtesy - and like any education, the earlier the lessons are learned, the better.
  • Post #8 - January 12th, 2009, 10:36 pm
    Post #8 - January 12th, 2009, 10:36 pm Post #8 - January 12th, 2009, 10:36 pm
    We were at Spacca Napoli on a Saturday/Sunday afternoon. A family was there. The gentleman went to the restroom and the lady I guess needed a break. She proceeded to let her child wander away from the table without keeping an eye on him. If you have ever been there, you know how small the place is, so it is not like she did not realize he was no longer seated at the table (IMHO).

    He was darling, about 36 months, perhaps 48. He had managed however to position himself behind another patron's chair against the wall. The poor guy had no idea the kid was there.

    My 83 year old Mum-in-law began to play a bit of peek-a-boo with the kid, I think she thought the patron knew the kid was there. Much to his unhappy surprise when he realized the kid was there, he looked at us and said "it is not appropriate for this child to be here. Alright, time to reveal the big tah-dah. I am African-American and my Mum- in- law is a real (born in England) Anglo. I just responded the kid was not ours. The angered patron then said then where are the parents. I responded how would I know. The lady at this point realized there was a problem, and came and retrieved the little boy.

    My Mum-in-law, the lady (I guess it was his mother, because I definitely was not) and some other patrons all thought this guy was horrible. In fact the lady made no attempt to apologize whatsoever, instead she directed a look towards us as if to say oh he is such a (insert favorite Illinois politician's racy word of choice in wire taps here) donkey (biblical word for it).

    I did not. At no point, did he direct any of his ire to the kid. The kid stayed right there behind the irate patron's chair the entire time. The child did not appear frightened, just confused as to why the game had stopped and the irate patron was speaking loudly .The kid had no idea this was about him, because it was not. It was about the grown-up that decided to let him roam.

    I don't think it is safe for kids to roam around in food establishments. Even when I worked at Cafe Express in Evanston( almost 20 years ago), I always wondered why anyone would want to let their child roam around where there were hot beverages, hot food, glasses, knives, etc. An accident is just waiting to happen.

    So while being kind to breeders is definitely the way to go, it is up to the breeders to make sure they do not let their kids roam, even if it is a Mexican, Thai, or Chinese (hot soup anyone!) restaurant.

    I believe that all of the folks who responded previously on this thread are thoughtful and this would not have happened with their children.


    Safety First,
    Ava-"If you get down and out, just get in the kitchen and bake a cake."- Jean Strickland

    Horto In Urbs- Falling in love with Urban Vegetable Gardening
  • Post #9 - January 12th, 2009, 11:15 pm
    Post #9 - January 12th, 2009, 11:15 pm Post #9 - January 12th, 2009, 11:15 pm
    pairs4life wrote:So while being kind to breeders is definitely the way to go, it is up to the breeders to make sure they do not let their kids roam, even if it is a Mexican, Thai, or Chinese (hot soup anyone!) restaurant.


    There are some restaurants that are more accomodating to kids bouncing about. A bunch of us met up tonight at Sahara Kabob; it's a small place; there were three kids walking around the two large tables that were occupied by our group and one other; they seemed perfectly safe, everyone keeping an eye on them and comfortable with their energetic playing around. Obviously, there are some places (McDonald's being an extreme example) that are just fine for kids to range at will and others (Alinea being the other extreme) where such walkabouts by anyone of any age group would be out of place.
    “We all have to stand before the kitchen gods.” Chef Jacob Sahaya Kumar Aruni
  • Post #10 - January 12th, 2009, 11:54 pm
    Post #10 - January 12th, 2009, 11:54 pm Post #10 - January 12th, 2009, 11:54 pm
    David Hammond wrote:
    pairs4life wrote:So while being kind to breeders is definitely the way to go, it is up to the breeders to make sure they do not let their kids roam, even if it is a Mexican, Thai, or Chinese (hot soup anyone!) restaurant.


    There are some restaurants that are more accomodating to kids bouncing about. A bunch of us met up tonight at Sahara Kabob; it's a small place; there were three kids walking around the two large tables that were occupied by our group and one other; they seemed perfectly safe, everyone keeping an eye on them and comfortable with their energetic playing around. Obviously, there are some places (McDonald's being an extreme example) that are just fine for kids to range at will and others (Alinea being the other extreme) where such walkabouts by anyone of any age group would be out of place.

    I was aghast at my own sister, while dining out with the whole family last week at a popular steakhouse. At the end of our meal, she let one of her toddlers wander freely in main aisle between the tables and the open kitchen during a hectic Friday night service, while most of our group said their goodbyes. I could not for life of me understand this completely naive (i.e. irresponsible) behavior on my sister's part. Hello?! This is a restaurant, not your living room.

    Servers and runners move fast through that space -- frequently carrying big trays full of hot items -- which obstruct their view of what's immediately beneath their feet. Since my sister seemed to be completely ignoring her child and her child's welfare, I gave my niece an earnest look and reminded her, in a serious tone, that she needed to stay right near her mommy. Sadly, typically, my comment only drew attention to myself, as suddenly I became the bad guy for taking a forceful tone with my niece. At that point, I slung my coat over my shoulder and headed, without words, for the exit . . . past the calm, open area by the host's stand that would have been a perfect place for saying goodbyes.

    I'm all for kids in restaurants and I'm very proud of my 11-year-old son, who comports himself fairly well in restaurants most of the time. We've dined out him with us since he was very young and he takes pride in being a restaurant-savvy kid (he recently began a meal by asking our waiter if the lobster was fresh or frozen). But beyond anyone's enjoyment, though, it is about safety first. We'd never put him in harm's way.

    As is so often the case, it's actually the parents that bear watching. There really are no bad kids, just bad parents.

    =R=
    Another beer before happy hour to put me in the mood for drinkin', uh huh huh, oh, forget thinkin' --Beaver Nelson

    I find it a matter of note that in New York or Terre Haute, school cookies always seem to be oatmeal --Mr. French

    I just wanna live until I gotta die. I know I ain't perfect but God knows I try --Todd Snider
  • Post #11 - January 13th, 2009, 9:16 am
    Post #11 - January 13th, 2009, 9:16 am Post #11 - January 13th, 2009, 9:16 am
    I used to be the person who shot dirty looks at kids just for existing. I will apologize abjectly here and hope to improve my karma a little, because of course we are now hoping to start a family (ha ha ha, oh life).

    Once I discovered that engaging a tot was more effective than scowling at them, my restaurant experiences improved dramatically. I see that I am not alone in this tactic!
    As a mattra-fact, Pie Face, you are beginning to look almost human. - Barbara Bennett
  • Post #12 - January 13th, 2009, 9:28 am
    Post #12 - January 13th, 2009, 9:28 am Post #12 - January 13th, 2009, 9:28 am
    Figure I'll stoke the fire here. To some (breeders who haven't bred maybe?) sitting next to a crying or misbehaved child is like sitting next to someone smoking. They're there and you may reluctantly accept it... but you wish they weren't.

    Before I get ganged up on, please note that I said "crying or misbehaved" not children in general, which I like, especially with some garlic and butter.
    "In pursuit of joys untasted"
    from Giuseppe Verdi's La Traviata
  • Post #13 - January 13th, 2009, 9:56 am
    Post #13 - January 13th, 2009, 9:56 am Post #13 - January 13th, 2009, 9:56 am
    Don't have kids, love 'em, don't mind if they're noisy. But I'm with Ron: don't let them run around in a restaurant! People who want to get a rest from their kids need to hire a babysitter, not bring them to a restaurant and ignore them. A lot of my friends quit going to certain kinds of restaurants for a while until their kids were old enough to sit still, and I really respect that.
  • Post #14 - January 13th, 2009, 10:02 am
    Post #14 - January 13th, 2009, 10:02 am Post #14 - January 13th, 2009, 10:02 am
    bibi rose wrote:Don't have kids, love 'em, don't mind if they're noisy. But I'm with Ron: don't let them run around in a restaurant! People who want to get a rest from their kids need to hire a babysitter, not bring them to a restaurant and ignore them. A lot of my friends quit going to certain kinds of restaurants for a while until their kids were old enough to sit still, and I really respect that.


    I agree,

    Now that our daughter is in the "semi-terrible two's" stage, we know where we can, and where we cannot expect to eat for the next year or so. With that said we never let our daughter run around any restaurant. We know that sitting still is not easy at that age, so we are quick to take turns to take our daughter away from the table if the need arises.

    I have an issue with parents who just turn a blind eye towards their childrens behavior when it is inappropriate in a restaurant or other places. The worst I expereinced was on a red-eye flight back from a Vegas trip, I had some guy who ignored his infant who cried the entire flight back. Most of the other passengers were about to wring this guys neck until the stewardesses stepped in and took over tending to the child while the guy napped.
    R.I.P. jimswside - 5/2/16



    @GrubSeeker
  • Post #15 - January 13th, 2009, 10:09 am
    Post #15 - January 13th, 2009, 10:09 am Post #15 - January 13th, 2009, 10:09 am
    I have a son, so I guess that makes me a breeder as well. However, in my opinion, if an infant is really wailing, or a child is out of control, then I think it is the parent's responsibility to remove the child from the restaurant environment. Restaurants are for good food, good conversation and an atmosphere that one can enjoy. Why should all the patrons of a restaurant have a dining experience ruined by one child? David, you scoundrel...you just love to push buttons!
  • Post #16 - January 13th, 2009, 10:10 am
    Post #16 - January 13th, 2009, 10:10 am Post #16 - January 13th, 2009, 10:10 am
    If most parents were as thoughtful as some of you, I wouldn’t mind kids in restaurants. Unfortunately, my experience is the opposite. I cringe when I’m being led to a table and see young children seated nearby. And I will ask for another table. Some parents think it’s cute when their little tyke bangs his spoons and screams. I don’t. Keep in mind; depending on the establishment, I’ll keep my trap shut. Some places are more kid-common than others.

    I admire those of you who are using a dining experience to educate your kids about things beyond the table.

    While we’re on this subject, can we add “breeders” to the banned words list?
    "Your custard pie, yeah, sweet and nice
    When you cut it, mama, save me a slice"
  • Post #17 - January 13th, 2009, 10:35 am
    Post #17 - January 13th, 2009, 10:35 am Post #17 - January 13th, 2009, 10:35 am
    You know what, I can only recall a single time, ever, when a child seriously interfered with my meal at a restaurant. And a lot of my dining out is in places like Hawaii where a high percentage of diners are on vacation and have kids with them, regardless of the restaurant. I can recall a lot more times when an adult was drunk or just acting really bad-- the most vivid in my mind being a family that chose Retro Bistro in Arlington Heights as a place to conduct contentious family business. Everybody in the place looked uncomfortable that night.

    I totally agree, "breeder" is a horrible word. I realize it was used ironically here and does not reflect any assumptions, but anyone who would actually say it is by definition quite ungenerous to children. You can have trouble with certain behavior by kids and not be anti-kid. (I happen to agree with Ronnie that there are no bad kids but there certainly are some bad parents out there.)
  • Post #18 - January 13th, 2009, 10:45 am
    Post #18 - January 13th, 2009, 10:45 am Post #18 - January 13th, 2009, 10:45 am
    razbry wrote:I have a son, so I guess that makes me a breeder as well. However, in my opinion, if an infant is really wailing, or a child is out of control, then I think it is the parent's responsibility to remove the child from the restaurant environment.


    Tough to argue with that. When children are out of control, they should really not be among other people, kids or adults. A little noise from a kid, however -- laughing, a few bangs with a spoon, talk that maybe is as yet "uncivilized" -- I'm cool with that, and my guess is that you would be, too. Not everyone is, of course.
    “We all have to stand before the kitchen gods.” Chef Jacob Sahaya Kumar Aruni
  • Post #19 - January 13th, 2009, 10:46 am
    Post #19 - January 13th, 2009, 10:46 am Post #19 - January 13th, 2009, 10:46 am
    I'm with DMChicago, I will ask for another table. Don't have kids, don't mind kids, but prefer to be surrounded by adults when going out for the evening. I am always amused by breeder's that take their kids to bar/restaurants, that are small, and are then offended by bad words. I see this all the time in Bucktown, you have young kids running around the bar area, and guys watching sports cussing up a storm and the parents all offended, asking them to tone it down. I recently had dinner with long time friends, and we were sitting in a corner by ourselves until a family sat down next to us, this was around 9:30 pm on a Friday night, my friend was on a roll about work, bad day etc, lots o cussing, and when I said, hey, there is a kid behind you, she said, I am an adult at an adult place, having drinks, paying the bill, I will speak however, I want too. Okay....
  • Post #20 - January 13th, 2009, 10:49 am
    Post #20 - January 13th, 2009, 10:49 am Post #20 - January 13th, 2009, 10:49 am
    is swearing really acceptable in public places.. kids being around or not?

    in bars I go to I have seen swearing patrons warned, and then asked to leave for swearing. Kids or not many find loud swearing unacceptable.
    R.I.P. jimswside - 5/2/16



    @GrubSeeker
  • Post #21 - January 13th, 2009, 10:51 am
    Post #21 - January 13th, 2009, 10:51 am Post #21 - January 13th, 2009, 10:51 am
    nicinchic wrote:I am an adult at an adult place, having drinks, paying the bill, I will speak however, I want too. Okay....


    I'd rather be seated next to a whiny kid than your friend.
  • Post #22 - January 13th, 2009, 10:53 am
    Post #22 - January 13th, 2009, 10:53 am Post #22 - January 13th, 2009, 10:53 am
    Jazzfood wrote:Before I get ganged up on, please note that I said "crying or misbehaved" not children in general, which I like, especially with some garlic and butter.

    That comment deserves to ganged up on. Garlic and butter? C'mon, chef! Clearly lemon and capers is more appropriate.
  • Post #23 - January 13th, 2009, 10:53 am
    Post #23 - January 13th, 2009, 10:53 am Post #23 - January 13th, 2009, 10:53 am
    I agree, it was uncomfortable for me, which is why I said something.
  • Post #24 - January 13th, 2009, 10:57 am
    Post #24 - January 13th, 2009, 10:57 am Post #24 - January 13th, 2009, 10:57 am
    jimswside wrote:is swearing really acceptable in public places.. kids being around or not?

    in bars I go to I have seen swearing patrons warned, and then asked to leave for swearing. Kids or not many find loud swearing unacceptable.


    Well, I think there's a difference between someone swearing at the top of their lungs loudly and adults not being able to engage in private conversations because their words may be overheard by a kid. I admit that I swear probably too much, I'm working on it, though I don't think I use those words in inappropriate contexts but it is a free country where free speech presumably reigns so I tend not to overpolice or get overoffended by these things.

    Having said that, I have seen a disturbing trend of kids being in bars past 9 pm. I think this was spurred on by the smoking ban because previously, the smoke cloud kept a lot of kids out. But, please, parents, bars are still adult places, even if they serve food, so like the movies, past 6:00, they probably shouldn't be there otherwise they are likely to hear or see inappropriate things.
  • Post #25 - January 13th, 2009, 11:05 am
    Post #25 - January 13th, 2009, 11:05 am Post #25 - January 13th, 2009, 11:05 am
    aschie30 wrote:
    jimswside wrote:is swearing really acceptable in public places.. kids being around or not?

    in bars I go to I have seen swearing patrons warned, and then asked to leave for swearing. Kids or not many find loud swearing unacceptable.


    Well, I think there's a difference between someone swearing at the top of their lungs loudly and adults not being able to engage in private conversations because their words may be overheard by a kid. I admit that I swear probably too much, I'm working on it, though I don't think I use those words in inappropriate contexts but it is a free country where free speech presumably reigns so I tend not to overpolice or get overoffended by these things.


    Having said that, I have seen a disturbing trend of kids being in bars past 9 pm. I think this was spurred on by the smoking ban because previously, the smoke cloud kept a lot of kids out. But, please, parents, bars are still adult places, even if they serve food, so like the movies, past 6:00, they probably shouldn't be there otherwise they are likely to hear or see inappropriate things.


    I can drop the F-bomb with the best of them, but rarely when out in public. I dont bat an eye when I hear swearing in public, although I think it sometimes is a big tell on the person doing the swearing in some cases.

    I do commend places that kick the people who swear out(its their place they can serve or not serve who they please).

    As far as kids in traditional bars, they do not belong there no matter what time it is in my opinion. Much less the parents who let their kids sit at a seat at the bar where it is allowed.

    Now that bars are non-smoking a table at a bar area at a restaurant for some reason seems ok to me while waiting for a table or reservation.
    R.I.P. jimswside - 5/2/16



    @GrubSeeker
  • Post #26 - January 13th, 2009, 11:11 am
    Post #26 - January 13th, 2009, 11:11 am Post #26 - January 13th, 2009, 11:11 am
    My son swears like a sailor and he's never been asked to leave any establishment. :wink:

    =R=
    Another beer before happy hour to put me in the mood for drinkin', uh huh huh, oh, forget thinkin' --Beaver Nelson

    I find it a matter of note that in New York or Terre Haute, school cookies always seem to be oatmeal --Mr. French

    I just wanna live until I gotta die. I know I ain't perfect but God knows I try --Todd Snider
  • Post #27 - January 13th, 2009, 11:25 am
    Post #27 - January 13th, 2009, 11:25 am Post #27 - January 13th, 2009, 11:25 am
    I honestly cannot remember one time when someone else's children have irritated me at a restaurant.....my own two year old boy drives me crazy though. I can't believe my boy and girl are from the same genetic stock.....hey...wait a minute.....
    i used to milk cows
  • Post #28 - January 13th, 2009, 12:11 pm
    Post #28 - January 13th, 2009, 12:11 pm Post #28 - January 13th, 2009, 12:11 pm
    Again, it's all a matter of what's appropriate where-- and when. I've taken my kids to Kuma's-- at 5:30 on a summer's day, when I knew we'd have the back patio just about to ourselves. But I certainly wouldn't try to dine with them inside at 8 pm, I'd be creating a bad situation for them and for anyone around us, and I most certainly would regard any unpleasantness that resulted as my fault, not the kids' and not the other patrons'.

    It was also different when we had one, instead of two. I could take Myles by himself anywhere, because he'd charm the waitstaff (I still aimed to do so early in the evening, however, when places were fairly empty and the staff was still unrushed enough to want to be charmed). Get two of them, though, and their potential for causing a ruckus increases geometrically (it's just about guaranteed that a second child will start out life louder and more competitive for attention than one alone, and Liam certainly lives up to that), so my baseline for what's appropriate is certainly a place with more noise and commotion to absorb what we add to it. Which is why Myles ate at A Tavola once, but Liam gets to eat at Smoque....
    Watch Sky Full of Bacon, the Chicago food HD podcast!
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  • Post #29 - January 13th, 2009, 1:03 pm
    Post #29 - January 13th, 2009, 1:03 pm Post #29 - January 13th, 2009, 1:03 pm
    aschie30 wrote:
    jimswside wrote:is swearing really acceptable in public places.. kids being around or not?

    in bars I go to I have seen swearing patrons warned, and then asked to leave for swearing. Kids or not many find loud swearing unacceptable.


    Well, I think there's a difference between someone swearing at the top of their lungs loudly and adults not being able to engage in private conversations because their words may be overheard by a kid. I admit that I swear probably too much, I'm working on it, though I don't think I use those words in inappropriate contexts but it is a free country where free speech presumably reigns so I tend not to overpolice or get overoffended by these things.


    I agree, there is quite a difference. I swear, have no desire to "work on it" (my vocabulary is extensive, but sometimes nothing suits like an F-bomb) and while I would not intentionally speak in such a way as to pollute little ears, it does happen sometimes. Generally, if it's "kid hours" I'd take greater care to watch my language, but if it's later in the evening, then not so much. If I'm talking in a normal tone of voice at 9:00 at night in a pub, then that's different.

    On the flip side, I find people who go out of their way to be offensive in front of children to be reprehensible, so I guess I am not completely degenerate :wink:
    As a mattra-fact, Pie Face, you are beginning to look almost human. - Barbara Bennett
  • Post #30 - January 13th, 2009, 1:32 pm
    Post #30 - January 13th, 2009, 1:32 pm Post #30 - January 13th, 2009, 1:32 pm
    Suzy Creamcheese wrote:On the flip side, I find people who go out of their way to be offensive in front of children to be reprehensible


    Sounds like some kind of APA-classifiable disorder.
    “We all have to stand before the kitchen gods.” Chef Jacob Sahaya Kumar Aruni

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