Brooklyn Bar’s New ‘Last Call For Babies’ Reminds Me What A Horrible Idea Babies In Bars Is
If you live in Brooklyn, you will occasionally see a baby in a bar. There are plenty of bars and beer halls throughout Brooklyn that welcome babies. Well, ‘welcome’ is a strong word – we’ll just say they won’t kick you out if you have a baby in tow. You may not believe this is even necessary, but several bars in Brooklyn have initiated a “last call for babies.” No babies allowed after 8 p.m. The story about this new curfew has reminded me what a horrible idea it is to have a baby in a bar.
To be fair, I’m not really talking about the I’m an infant. I don’t speak. I am strapped to my mother or father’s chest variety of baby. It may be weird to see, but sleeping newborns don’t impose on anyone around them. It’s when parents roll their giant strollers into bars or let their toddlers run around that I go absolutely ape-shit.
Okay, I should give some context. I was a bartender in Brooklyn for almost a decade. We too, had a no children after 8 p.m. rule. You would be surprised how many times we actually had to enforce it. Especially on the weekends, parents didn’t seem to have any problem spending hours on end lounging around the bar – their kids crawling all over the place like it was Chuck E. Cheese. This was strictly a bar, too – there was no food served and we barely offered anything that didn’t contain alcohol.
First of all, bars are terrible places for babies to be crawling around. They’re filthy. By the light-of-day, these parents seemingly had no idea how much puke had been on these surfaces, glass had been broken, and other gross things that I don’t even want to mention had happened in the space where their child was playing. Not good. I had an awesomely passive-aggressive way of dealing with this crowd. Whenever someone would come in and be inconsiderate to all of the adults trying to enjoy themselves by letting their toddlers run around like wild banshees, I would play some really violent, curse-filled gangster rap or something totally sexually age-inappropriate, like Biggie’s I’m f-ing you tonight. That usually worked.
I get that parents need a break, too. Believe me – I am one. But on the rare occasion that I get to leave my child behind and actually go to a bar myself, the last thing I want to see is someone else’s child running around. If I need to get away from my own child – who I love more than anything in the world and who was sliced from my womb – do you think I want to be around yours? The answer is no. I don’t.
A bar is a safe haven for adults. It’s where you can go and be almost 99% sure that you won’t trip on a Batmobile replica, or hear the song “Don’t Bite Your Friends.” We need to honor that sacred space. Seriously.