General Etiquette > Family and Children

Flying shoes--when it's not your child....

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ShieldMaiden:
I went out to eat at Olive Garden last Saturday with two of my girlfriends.  We were seated across from a table where two women and a very little boy (I'd say about three--old enough to talk and run around but still pretty small) were seated.

The boy was allowed to get pretty loud and crawl around their table.  We were able to tune him out and ignore him until the flying shoe incident.

Towards the end of their meal, the little boy was in the middle of the room doing karate moves and making associated noises  ::).  In the middle of an enthusiastic kick his shoe flew off and hit a woman in the shoulder who was eating dinner.

Cue child yelling "MA!!!  MY SHOE!" at the top of his lungs.

The mother, who did witness the shoe hitting the woman because she and her friend burst out laughing, didn't say anything to the child, just picked his shoe up and put it back on him and then sat down and continued with her conversation.  No apology, not even an apologetic look.  The child continued to do karate moves until they finally gathered their things and left.

Is there anything we could have said or done?  The woman who was hit was definitely angry given the icy glare of death she was shooting towards the woman, but she didn't say anything.  Could we have complained to management on her behalf?

Surianne:
Yikes!  I think you could have complained to management, but not on her own behalf (that's for her to do if she chooses).  The child was distracting you as well, even if the shoe didn't hit you, so I think that's worth a complaint. 

Judah:

--- Quote from: Surianne on August 09, 2010, 12:07:18 PM ---Yikes!  I think you could have complained to management, but not on her own behalf (that's for her to do if she chooses).  The child was distracting you as well, even if the shoe didn't hit you, so I think that's worth a complaint. 

--- End quote ---

Absolutely!  I can't believe the mom did nothing.  I definitely would have complained.

NOVA Lady:
I would have complained to management not so much on her behalf (though if I were her I would have gotten extremely vocal about the incident and asked that table to be removed) but because there was risk of it happening again since the party did not contain the child afterwards. I have no interest in getting hit with the child's shoe and potentially injured. I don't like to spend my time eating also keeping an eye out for possible projectiles and would find it hard to relax with him continuing the behavior.

As for the women with him... they laughed??? This mom will be cursed with a life of issues with the child brought on entirely by her own doing. What a terrible person.

Emmy:
Wow, what a SS.  Guess everybody is supposed to think her little darling is adorable.  I don't think you could complain on the woman's behalf, but you can still complain about the child making noise, standing in the middle of the room, and being a general nuisance.  I would also mention you noticed the shoe incident and that another customer was hit to show the seriousness of the situation.  I wouldn't point out which customer and leave that up to her to complain.

If I was the woman who was hit, the first thing I would have to do would be restrain Evil Emmy from doing and saying what I was truly thinking.  Something like that would ruin a meal, especially since the parent (and I use the term loosely) was amused by her son's misbehavior.  The shoe could also easily have landed in somebody's food or on a table which would be very unappetizing and unsanitary.  I would complain to management and if nothing was done, I would either write a letter to corperate (if applicable) or boycot the establishment and write on yelp why exactly I wouldn't visit again.

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