You know what really grinds my gears? It's the way they treat you in restaurants.
First of all, everything is over priced. I get so pissed when I see on the menu that they want $12 for a Reuben sandwhich and fries. I mean WTF?! $12 for a lousy sandwhich and some crummy french fries. Totally outrageous. Oh, and let's not forget the meal tax. I don't really know how they operate outside of California. Sure I've been out of state in recent years, but not often. Remember, California is a pretty big state. Number three, as I remember.
Anyway, here they can't tax food, but they can tax the labor it takes to prepare and serve that food, and that's what they call the meal tax. It's ten percent.
Let's also remember that the servers expect a tip. You can't blame them. At places like Denny's or IHOP, they make minimum wage and depend on tips to make a living.
The point is, everything adds up and can get surprisingly pricey - even at the cheaper places.
What gets me is, with all the money you'll be shelling out you go inside, then you have to wait to be seated. Sometimes a little wait, sometimes longer - especially if you're dumb enough to go out to eat on a holiday.
Once you get to your table, you have to wait some more. When the server does come they bring menus - unless the place you're at keeps menus at the table at all times.
When they do come, you usually haven't all decided what you want, but you usually order drinks then. It's a good thing most places have free refills on soft drinks because you're usually finished with your Coke by the time they come back to take your order.
Now the real wait begins. At least 20 minutes if you're lucky - and don't forget - you're hungry and that makes it even harder. If you're a smoker, this is a good time to light one up. Problem: Here in California, smoking inside in any public place - including bars - is prohibited. You have to step outside regardless of how hot or cold it is, or if it's raining.
Finally the food comes. You're starving. Then all of a sudden something noxious hits your nose. You know what that smell is. You wonder where it's coming from. Then you notice the couple at the next table have their baby with them. BINGO! You found the smell. The thing is, you notice the couple is sitting there enjoying their meal like they don't even realize their baby has pooped it's diaper. How can you possibly enjoy your meal with that wafting across your nostrils? The parents may be so used to the smell that either they don't notice, or they have learned to "ignore" it and not let it bother them.
Since some people can be real douchebags about stuff like this, I just make a complaint to the manager. I mean some people might think I'm the one being the douchebag, but I paid good money for this meal. How can I enjoy it with the smell of sh*t fouling the air? It's not the fault of the baby. It's the fault of the parents who just let the baby sit in soiled diapers because they don't want to change the baby right away and come back to a cold meal.
Well too damn bad. Maybe they should have thought about that before bringing junior along. I mean why did they bring the kid anyway? It's not like the baby is eating restaurant food. He's either still nursing, or eats baby food.
I understand that a nursing baby needs to stay close to his mother. I understand that nursing is better than formula, but it won't hurt the kid to have one or two meals with formula. I mean face it parents. Your baby is going to have to have formula sometimes. If the mother has a cold or the flu she can't breast feed or the kid will get sick. When you go out to eat, leave the kid at home with a sitter and some formula. It won't traumatize him and turn him into an axe murderer.
And that brings us to the other reason they brought the baby along: They didn't want to pay a babysitter. Is my dinner supposed to get ruined because you're too cheap to pay for a sitter? JEEZ! Maybe money is tight and you can't afford a sitter. Okay, I understand. But at least be thoughtful of other people and change your kid's diaper when he craps in it. The restaurant will reheat your food in the microwave. Hey, he's your kid so take care of him.
What really gets me is when I do complain to management and they do nothing. BTW telling the parents their kid is disturbing other people and they say, "Tough shit" and management walks away, that's doing nothing. Yes, I expect them to throw the douchebags out if they won't take proper care of their kid - and changing diapers is part of proper care.
When that happens, I've been known to get up and walk out and refuse to pay the check because my meal is spoiled.
As to that "It takes a Village" crap, it's your kid, YOU take care of them. I didn't have kids specifically because I didn't want to be saddled with child care. So parents DO YOUR JOBS - and one of those jobs is seeing your kid doesn't annoy other people.
That's what really grinds my gears this week.