A restaurant in the US is charging some of its customers for their inability to control their children while they dine there. Hidden away at the bottom of its menu, the Toccoa Riverside Restaurant tells its diners of its “adult surcharge” — adding three dollar signs next to the words: “For adults unable to parent.”- Sky News, 29 October 2023
Media Statement Issued by NORM’S DINER — NOWHERE FINER!
Hi folks. Norman Catchpole here. Some customers have been bellyaching lately about the adult surcharge policy we operate at our restaurant. I’d just like to set the record straight on that, then I want to get back to doing what we do best at NORM’S DINER — NOWHERE FINER! That's serving up the best darn food in the whole of Georgia, if you didn’t know already.
First up, our adult surcharge is not a new policy, contrary to what the bellyachers have been saying. We introduced it last year after a ten-year-old girl fired a bread roll across the room and hit my wife Lucille smack in the eye. Next day, she looked like she’d been in one helluva fight, and folks who hadn’t heard about the bread roll stopped talking to me on the spot.
Shortly after that, we had to close the restroom so Norm Junior could clean up the cubicle door. It was plain as day who’d drawn the big pair of titties, but the kid’s mom — a real Buckhead Betty — said no way, her Kevin wouldn’t do such a thing. I said, “Ma’am, do you see anyone else in here with ink on their fingers and a leaky marker pen sticking out of their back pocket?” She still wouldn’t accept it, so I had to walk her to the restroom and point out where young Kevin had thoughtfully signed his name under the drawing.
That’s when we decided that if folks were going to make us babysit their kids, we’d darn well charge for the service. And we think $40 is a fair price.
Here are five things we won’t tolerate.
1. No Disrespecting the Staff
Last week, some kid referred to me as ‘lard ass.’ I’ve also been called ‘fartknocker’, ‘dickweed’, and ‘poopy breath’ to list just a few. All of our staff have been called similar things. Savannah, who turned eighteen last week, was told ‘You suck dirty donkey balls.’
Lucille was madder than a wet hen when she heard about that, I’m not going to lie. That kid came mighty close to getting a jug of cold custard tipped over his head. In the end, Lucille just smiled at the father and said, “Your potty mouth little brat just cost you forty bucks, sir.”
2. No Bad Language
Bad language doesn’t have to be aimed at the staff to earn the surcharge. Other guests shouldn’t have to listen to your kids bad-mouthing each other while you sit looking at your phone. I can’t believe that some of you allow your kids to call each other ‘pube-head’ and ‘buttmuncher’ without stepping in, but that’s just the times we live in, I suppose. Well, here’s the news, people. Not stepping in now comes at a price.
3. No Running Around
Kids running about a place where hot food is served are a hazard to our staff and themselves. We expect you to keep your little princes and princesses in their seats. We provide books, puzzles, and crayons to help with this. If those aren’t enough, we’ll happily provide you with free zip ties to fasten your kids to the chair. You think I’m kidding?
Okay, I’m kidding. We charge for the zip ties.
Okay, I’m still kidding. There are no zip ties, but let your kids run wild and we’ll slap you with the surcharge.
4. No Messing Up the Restrooms
My staff aren’t paid to wipe your kid’s ass or clean up after them. That’s your job. We expect you to supervise your kids in the restroom. If you don’t, we’ll do an inspection and react appropriately. Any piddle on the floor or seat — a Code Yellow, we call it — and you’ll be liable for a $20 surcharge. Code Browns will cost you the full $40 and a lifetime ban from the restaurant.
Norm Junior didn’t study Catering and Business at college just to shovel shit.
5. No Eating Food You Didn’t Buy Here
If you let your kids eat food they haven’t bought from us, we’re going to charge you for using our facilities. Last week, we had a whole family sitting down to eat a McDonald’s Happy Meal they’d bought in the drive-thru across the way. That didn’t make me very happy, that’s for sure.
And don’t tell me little Jonny has to eat your homemade sandwiches because he has a nut allergy. Firstly, our chef has all that allergy stuff covered on our award-winning menu. Secondly, I’ve just seen Jonny standing over by the pinball machine eating his way through a big bag of salted pistachios, so I’m not buying that allergy crap.
That’s about it from me. Last week’s media coverage wasn’t great PR for us, but one monkey don’t stop no show as far as I’m concerned. We’re going to continue with our adult surcharge. If you don’t want to pay it, then just keep your kids in order.
Or go across the car park, get a McDonald’s and eat the damn thing in your car.