Earl and I eat out quite a bit. Why? Because we’re lazy. We’ve worked all day. We’re not in the mood to cook. So we take the easy way out and we head to one of the local restaurants. It happens a couple of times a week.
Since we’re rather well versed in restaurantese, we’ve had the opportunity to see some very odd things in our travels. There was that time at Mc Donalds in Horseheads when two men dressed up like the Blue Brothers came walking out of the bathroom with toilet paper dragging from their feet. At that same visit, a woman stood her toddler up on the service counter, complete with saggy diaper, and told him to keep his clothes on. (Apparently the kid liked taking his clothes off in public. Perhaps he’ll be a congressman someday.)
Tonight we watched a similar scene.
We were seated at a table in this diner wannabe type place called Zebbs. The corner was occupied by three women, all around my age or so, and three children. The youngest, a girl, was seated in a high-chair behaving herself quite well. The two other children were boys, probably four or five years old. Though they weren’t twins, they were dressed alike with matching shirts. One had very thick glasses. He amused himself and those around him by jumping up and down on the booth seat shouting “I’m bad! I’m bad!”. Did Mother stop him from this outburst? Of course not. She pretty much ignored him and let him carry on.
He was the tame one.
When the server came out with their food, I breathed a sigh of relief since it was obvious that the kids would be occupied with their monster meals.
Boy number 2 proceeded to make like a plant and sit on the back of the booth, wedged where the two windows met to form the corner of the restaurant. He amused himself by flapping the vertical blinds back and forth. When that didn’t grab Mommy’s attention, he proceeded to jump ONTO THE TABLE.
This got Mom’s attention where she threatened him with a timeout and then proceeded to carry on her conversation, unphased by the fact that her child had practically walked across the dinner table. Afraid of this always scary threat of “timeout”, the kid jumped to the back of the booth where he made like a bat and sat upside down while enjoying his meal.
I have fairly accurate memories from when I was a child. On the rare instances we did eat out and actually sat in the restaurant (usually we sat in the car outside of Carrols or Red Barn), I don’t ever recall ever having to be told not to walk across the table. Especially while food was on it. Perhaps my mother will chime in and correct me on this, but I’m pretty confident that I didn’t do any acrobatics in a restaurant when I was a kid. If I had lept across the booth of a restaurant, she would have smacked me six ways to Sunday and I would have remembered.
I wonder what tonight’s terror is going to be like when he’s grown. Maybe I witnessed the making of the next flying Wallenda.