The W Family Chronicles


Posted on: January 4, 2008

Those who know me well know that I am *super* anal about safety with my kids.  J is still in an “infant” convertible seat in the car and C is still rear-facing at 18 months because it’s just so much safer.  Helmets while riding bikes, trikes, scooters, etc. are non-negotiable.  So when I go out to eat, I expect there to be a *safe* highchair.  That means it must not be on the verge of falling apart, and if it’s not one that we can put our highchair cover on (those wooden ones work, but the plastic ones do not) it absolutely MUST have a strap that can be fastened.  I have walked out of restaurants if they do not have a safe highchair for us.

So Tuesday night we decided to go out.  The place we wanted to go was closed (New Year’s Day) so we settled for Applebee’s as it is closest.  Despite the fact that last time we were there they did *not* have a safe highchair, I thought we’d give them another try.  I had complained both to the local manager and via their website, received an email (which turned out to be a form letter, as I have since found out) and assumed they were going to take care of it and purchase new highchairs…they are less than $50 each and I think that’s pretty inexpensive for the peace of mind they offer parents, right?  Considering a family of 4 can easily drop $50 on a meal there, I’d say they more than make the money back and it would be a no-brainer to keep safe highchairs there, right?


So we go in, and he pulls out one of those nasty plastic highchairs that we can’t use the highchair cover (with it’s own straps) on.  AND the clips have been cut off the straps so we can’t fasten C in.  Now, he’s generally well behaved, but let’s face it…even the most perfect 18 month old occasionally decided they no longer want to sit in their highchair.  So I mention that the highchair won’t work and the host tells me that’s all they have.  Meanwhile, several other parties have entered behind us and I feel like we should just sit down and not complain, but I hold my ground.  I ask him how we’re supposed to ensure his safety.

“Oh, most people just watch ’em real good.”

WHAT?!?!?!?  ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME???  I am *super* vigilant about my children’s safety.  Even while strapped down, I watch them closely in restaurants.  But all it takes is a split second…D and I both get distracted by J, or we get involved with our food, or we’re trying to get all of our stuff together to leave…and he’s up and out of the highchair.  Falling on his head, grabbing a knife we put on the other end of the table, whatever.  That little strap isn’t a substitute for vigilance, but it does slow them down a bit and gives you the extra peace of mind to relax and enjoy your meal.  Isn’t that what eating out is all about?

And several other customers were as shocked as me by what he said (they told me so…one said it “irritated the snot out of him” to hear something like that and it was “obvious that man had no children”) so it wasn’t just me.  The validation definitely made me feel a bit more justified at my reaction.  So I reported this on their website again.  And got the same letter back this time.  Clearly they don’t give a damn about a child’s safety there.  We won’t go back…and the irony is that I *despise* Applebee’s…but it’s the closest “sit down” restaurant to us and the easiest to take the kids to.  Next time I’ll make the drive to a place that cares or stay home, which is probably better and cheaper anyway.


1 Response to "Crapplebee’s"

[…] really the way to do it?  I’ve been fairly opinionated on some of our local establishments (Crapplebee’s, anyone?) and I worry that becoming less anonymous might open me up for […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

W Family Players

D is the dad, the husband, and the breadwinner. All around nice guy and good at pretty much everything he does. It's disgusting, really. But makes him worth keeping around.

M is the mom, the wife, and the hopeless housekeeper. At least the kids' heads haven't fallen off yet. Beyond that, she sucks at the "stay at home" thing. Oh, and she's the blogger.

J is the big boy. Born October 11 2002, he is in kindergarten and loves it. Now 6 years old, and too smart for his own good. Talks a lot but extremely entertaining.

C is the little boy. Born June 26, 2006, he went through a lot in his first year but is doing just fine now. The only blond in the family, so his paternity is routinely questioned by rude strangers.

V is our baby girl. She is brand new and arrived in January 2009. So far everything is going well. We're thrilled to have added the final piece to our family puzzle. And yes, she WILL be the final piece!


%d bloggers like this: