As some of you may know, I recently went back to work. I'm a hostess at the very same restaurant that I worked at 9 years ago. This is also the same restaurant that I continued to have stress dreams about as recently as three weeks ago. Anyway, today I was at work, and I had an encounter that left me positively baffled. A party of four came in, and requested a table (not a booth.) Yadda, yadda, yadda, restaurant logistics, blah, blah, blah. I took them to the only table that I had available at that time. It was a perfectly lovely table, centered in the middle of section D and all. I gave them their menus, plus the spill about our specials, and left them to their delicious seafood. As I was walking away, I heard one of the men mutter, "Oh, great. There's two of them." The "them" he was referring to? Children.
Now, I will be the first in line to duct tape the mouth of a child that is screaming in public. But these two kids were seated at separate tables, and they were just chilling. Not screaming, not banging things on the table, not flinging scrumptious cheesy biscuits through the air (also known as everything my kids would have been doing had they been there.) None of the party asked to be moved, so I really didn't think anything else about it, other than having a nasty little inner chuckle when I sat another table with two kids in that same section. What? I'm supposed to make them wait for a table because you don't want kids near you? Not likely.
As they were finishing up their meal, one of the women in the party came past the host stand on the way to the restroom. She stopped when my manager asked her how her meal was. And you know what her complaint was? That we didn't have an adults only section. She said, "Why don't you make an effort when you see a group of people without kids to seat them where there aren't any kids near them? Because, children?" She literally paused and shuddered here. "We just don't like them." Um...what?!
There's a reason that my manager makes the big bucks, because all I could do was look down at the ground and bite my lip. (I've been told that I make faces that convey exactly what I'm thinking, so I have to avoid eye contact quite a bit.) He kind of chuckled with the woman, and was all, "Yeah, that would be nice." It got quiet, and I guess she could tell that we thought she was a monster, because she made a hasty retreat. They left a few minutes later, and that was that.
Except it wasn't, because all I could think about was the audacity of those people. As if they were in any way deserving of special treatment. As if families with small children should all be tucked away in a hidey hole in the back of the restaurant. I just don't get it. Seriously, the freaking balls on some of these people! Am I the only one who finds this so irritating? Because it certainly would not be the first time I got all bent out of shape over an imagined transgression. Let me know in the comments, would you? Thanks. You're a peach.