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Don’t get me started on babies and their rides. You must have seen them, even before they leave the elevator, out comes the cell-phone; the parents that is. What do they find to talk about when they’ve just left home? What’s so damned important all of a sudden? Then you realize they are coordinating the assembly point. You turn the corner and all of a sudden there’s a wave of them barreling down the sidewalk. Now don’t call me mean but please ladies, have a heart, New York side-walks may be wide but they really cannot accommodate even two side-by-side comfortably, never mind three. So please Indian file only, thank you.
Also have you noticed the latest trend in these little princess carriages. It’s the tandem version, whereby the youngest gets to sit behind and slightly below the front loader, not much of a view. Now, that’s all fine and dandy if you’re very young and not even awake. But you can’t help wondering lying in the back there about your sibling up-front in the pilot seat. Has he been taking care of business or not? Will he wait until we get inside or won’t he. That’s right whatever you do big fella up front, don’t cut the cheese!
The baby carriages of today have come a long way since I was a nipper. I especially like the MACLAREN, the similarly named Formula 1 motor racing team and sports car manufacturer, but hey we can pretend right? Listen to young kids comparing notes at the park; which one are you in, oh the MACLAREN, what’s it like? It’s awesome dude, it’s got a five point harness, foot-operated brakes, high performance aluminium (it’s an English company), and adjustable seats. This is the “Quest Sport – the lightweight sporty solution for mums.” Everything is a solution these days, have you noticed? But what’s the problem. “What’s it all about?” as Alfie would say.
And they are so big aren’t they? And have you seen how much stuff they take along with them? You will come back alive; you’re going out for a walk, not an expedition to the South Pole. I swear some of the kids are way (or is it weigh) too big to be sittin’ and chillin’ in these baby-buggies. Some of these kids should be walking already! Mom should get the burgeoning butterball out of the sidewalk stroller before they get a hernia pushing them around. Exercise, it’s a good thing.
If you’re going to go into the supermarkets, consider leaving the kids outside, perhaps tied up to the lamp-post, or something, along with the old ladies and their dogs. Unlike suburban big-box stores New York food emporia are not known for their spacious aisles. I’ve lost count of the number of parents or nannies, and there are plenty of those on the Upper East Side, who charge in with these space-hogging behemoths. I once saw a double-wide one of these monsters. A double-wide, have they no shame?
Then there’s the restaurant scene. What is it about little Jonny that he has to be imposed on the eating public after a reasonable hour, like 7.00pm at night. Feed him at home for goodness sakes. Do you really think that a restaurant is a suitable place for a 1-2 year old? Really, you do? How strange. They futz around when they come in, banging into chairs, tables, there’s baby sh...I mean kit everywhere, and it takes forever and a day to settle in. After the obligatory look-at-me cooing over the latest precious, they walk up and down trying to put him to sleep. Why bother? Are we supposed to go gaga just because he’s yours? I don’t think so. He’s not special at all to the rest of us so sit the hell down, and shut up.
And aren’t today’s young people, and indeed their parents, quite self-centered. It is incredible to me to see the nerve with which young kids race into or dash out of elevators, without proper regard for good manners and their elders. No broughtupsy, as we say. And here’s the thing, their parents don’t even bother to reproach them. I tell you, as I alight from the elevator car (what a vision that conjures up) I’m often tempted to give some of them a quick slap upside the head with a rolled up newspaper, or treat them to a gentle nudge in the ribs, or even a well-placed leg. Worse, are those young parents who think that we are all just as interested in little Ashley, outfitted in his Ralph Lauren mini-me Dad’s preppy wear. Look at me; I look like a young dick version of my Dad. Got that right pal.
As the elevator door opens, come along they say, come along, as the little rug-rat races around the lobby, on his scooter. Now, they say, I mean NOW. Meanwhile yours truly and others patiently wait, rolling our eyes, as they hold open the door. The little tykes then bless us with their presence and the parents turn and smile wanly at us, as if to say, aren’t they just adorable. No they bloody well are not, and thanks for nothing. I mean, if you can’t teach them to behave at that age, they will grow up with that in-built, or is it in-bred, sense of entitlement which is very prevalent these days in certain young folk.
Here ends the First Lesson.