I was brunching so hard yesterday when the buzziest buzzkill of all-time sat down next to me: group of three adults with a baby. I thought to myself, “Alright, Will, this won’t be so bad. Everything will be fine.” But before long, the woman seated next to me had this little mongrel sitting directly on the table where he sloppily ate Cheerios and made weird baby noises that I’m unaccustomed to because I rarely chill with babies.
“Are you alright?” I asked the person across from me while I hate-drank my grapefruit beermosa.
“No, this is fucking awful,” she responded amidst shooting lighting bolts out of her eyes at the troll crawling all over the table and spitting up on itself while we tried to stomach our brunch.
So there we sat, splitting overpriced avocado toast and pancetta Eggs Benedict while these new parents ran a damn daycare out of table 14 for the duration of our meal. As I signed the check and pounded the remains of my cocktail, I had a burning feeling of hatred for this this innocent child that had completely (and unintentionally) ruined what I consider to be my most sacred event of the week: brunch.
See, this little guy, he had no idea what he was doing. As his mom shoved cereal into his mouth and let him play with every utensil as if she had brought them in her toy bag, he ignorantly did what all babies do: be a baby. So as I was fostering all this hatred for a 14-month-old who didn’t know any better, I had the realization that the real people I should be spewing hatred for are the parents.
It’s not that I hate babies — I actually love them — but I only love them in the appropriate setting. If I get invited to a dinner party or barbecue at someone’s house, I expect my friends with newborns to let those little dudes tag along. After all, they’re probably still too young for a babysitter and new mothers and fathers want to show off the literal fruits of their labor.
But, somewhere along the way, babies started popping up anywhere and everywhere. Airplanes, restaurants, bars, movie theaters. Fucking everywhere.
When I’m sitting on a flight and a new mother walks on with her 8-month-old daughter, you can almost audibly hear every passenger give a heavy sigh and a “Are you fucking kidding me?” as she attempts to shove the diaper bag and collapsable stroller into the already jam-packed overhead compartment. We all sit there saying, “please don’t sit next to me, please don’t sit next to me,” before the plane takes off and our pleading turns into, “please don’t cry, please don’t cry.” And guess what — they always cry. Because they’re delicate little creatures on loud-ass air torpedoes going 700 miles per hour. Frankly, I usually want to cry on airplanes too, so I can’t even blame them.
Furthermore, when I’m at a bar at 4 p.m. on a casual Saturday, don’t post up next to me your kid strapped into its Baby Bjorn and then hush me when I say “hell” or “damn.” Yes, I realize I’m not supposed to be swearing in front of children, but in that same breath, your kid has no business being in an establishment where everyone’s modus operandi is pounding drinks that can’t be sold to anyone under the age of 21. Like, what are you doing trying to get a buzz on in public with your kid strapped to you? I have trouble keeping track of my wallet when I’m buzzing, and I’m not trying to tell you how to parent, but I don’t think it’s the safest thing in the world for you to be putting back bloodies with that delicate of a being attached to your person.
Please, just please, choose an alternative location to entertain your child who is completely unaware of his or her surroundings. A park, a McDonald’s PlayPlace, a playground, whatever. Just not a place of business populated with a bunch of people who are absolutely dreading the thought of having a kid because of some drunken mistake they made a few weekends ago after Ubering home with their dance floor makeout.
I’m not trying to tell anyone how to parent, but like, maybe just get a babysitter. And if your child is too young to be left with a babysitter, what makes you think they’re old enough to be at a nice restaurant or quiet movie theater? We all make personal sacrifices. It just so happens that while my sacrifice is splitting a tab where I didn’t get as much as everyone else, your sacrifice is staying at home until your kid is old enough to behave itself in the presence of other adults who are trying to relax.
So, next time you think it’s a good idea to bring your kid to a highly-regarded brunch spot on a Sunday morning, have some sympathy for the rest of the world. Have some sympathy for the people with hangovers that may not want loud crying noises or distractions in the corner of their eyes throwing up on themselves. Take into consideration that your 18-month-old may harsh the mellow of my $18 breakfast, and that no waitress wants to deal with a baby taking up a valuable spot at a table that most people are waiting 45 minutes to drink bottomless mimosas at.
Just for God’s sake, stop bringing your baby everywhere. .
Also read My Dream Job Is Being A Stay At Home Dad.
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