Please, leave your messy brat at home.

I won’t wait 24 hours to respond to this story;

He didn’t do that Wednesday after a customer posted a one-star review on the Elements at 8th Facebook page. Instead, Derheim typed a hasty defense of his manager and in doing so ignited a summer blizzard of controversy that could take months to thaw out social media users.

It started when Todd Gannon posted his review on Facebook, mere minutes after finishing his meal. But there was more to it than just a night out for four adults and a toddler.

Gannon, who did not respond to a paid Facebook message asking him to contact me, wrote, “Food was lousy, and the manager followed us out in the parking lot to tell us to bring a toy for our son next time so he doesn’t bang on the table. Thanks for ruining my wife’s birthday.”

His son had done a little pounding on the table, Gannon acknowledged, estimating it lasted 60 to 90 seconds.

In an early response to Gannon’s review, Derheim wrote that Gannon’s 2-year-old had caused $300 damage to the table and invited Gannon to come back and see it. Another response asked Gannon to contact the restaurant with “any offer of restitution.”

First off, let’s get the little things out of the way. I wouldn’t say the food is lousy at Elements, I would classify it as ‘unmemorable’ and not worth the trip. Which is disappointing, because I like the atmosphere and enjoy having drinks there, just eat before or after you leave. It also surprises me, because Pinnacle, who manages Elements, also owns TRE Lounge, which is hands down one of my favorite fine dining establishments, always good service and the food is fantastic, every time. I think some of the issues Elements has is that they are being micro-managed by the Hilton franchise, but that is only an assumption.

As for the kid pounding on the table, there is a simple solution; LEAVE YOUR KIDS AT HOME WHEN DINING OUT! It’s okay to take kids to places that have play lands etc, but it is not the duty of a server to babysit your child, or to get on our hands and knees to pick up little pieces of torn up mac and cheese and cheerios off the floor. When are people going to realize that when your kids are old enough to behave in a public setting, that is the time you take them out to eat with you, not before. Oh, and I have heard all the excuses, my favorite BS line, “We can’t find or afford a babysitter.” Then guess what STAY HOME! There is so many expectations of restaurant employees these days, especially from young parents (who typically are crappy tippers on top of it.) How would you like it if you invited me over for a dinner party to your house, I puked on your table and threw my food on the floor, screamed at everyone, then left. You wouldn’t be happy – THINK ABOUT THAT the next time you dine out with your little Angel. I hope Elements makes the man pay for the broken table, double.

Many people complain that JL Beers is a 21 and older establishment, mostly parents of young children. I think it is pure genius.

11 Thoughts on “The Ugly ‘Broken’ Table

  1. I totally agree. Leave the crib midgets at home until they can behave in public.

  2. I have a feeling that this customer isn’t as innocent as he tried to portray himself. Not that going to FB was a good idea by Derheim, but the vast majority of customer complaints made on social media are great exagerated.

  3. First mistake was bringing the kid to the restaurant. I want to clarify, like I said above, if your children CAN behave, it is okay to bring them along. I have waited on many respectable kids. GOOD parents have the chat with them before going out. I used to wait on this one family every Sunday, 4 boys ranging in age from about 5-10 years old. Very polite, clean, and respectful. Never an incident. One day, the youngest was acting up. Mom gave him the look, grabbed him and took him to the car. Dad paid the bill and they left. Customers also have to realize, besides the havoc your children are wreaking on the staff, you are also being disrespectful to the patrons around you, who are spending their money out to eat to enjoy themselves. I had a customer get up once and tell another table “If you don’t shut your child up, I will.” The tables around them quietly applauded.

  4. Crying Adults on August 1, 2014 at 12:51 pm said:

    I see more adults behaving like the child’s parent. The person who should be embarrassed by the whole incident is the father who wrote the post. If they are so stupid to bring a tired or crabby child to a restaurant they should have to pay for the child’s damage.

    Maybe the child couldn’t eat the food at Elements or wanted to go play in the city’s spray park?

  5. Good Grief! on August 1, 2014 at 2:58 pm said:

    Is the photo above the parent Todd Gannon or his son in the high chair with slop all over his mouth and arms?

  6. Karma on August 1, 2014 at 3:53 pm said:

    I am going to comment on this as I have read the FB comments and would clearly be in the minority if I commented. A couple of revealing thoughts first: we have two kids of our own so we have done this rodeo per say, and I know Randy personally. Am I disappointed how this was handled? Absolutely. No one should be chased out into a parking lot if that is what happened, but that is where it begins and ends with me. First – 60-90 seconds of banging the table? That’s an eternity when you are trying to enjoy a meal. Get the hell up and take your kid elsewhere. Second – if you are going to a place like Elements – get a frickin babysitter. Our kids are older now, but I remember the days when my husband and I rarely got to go out for a nice meal. Can I tell you that a child next to us was the absolute last thing we wanted. Here is a rule of thumb – if you are going anywhere where the average entrée is $10+ – it is not a place for kids. End of story. I remember going to Champps on kids are king night and Ground Round on Sunday morning where kids ate for a penny a pound. Those places are anticipating kids. Regardless – if your kid is disrupting everyone else around you – you do not have the right to subject them or anyone else to that. They are young kids. Kids at that age are not suppose to sit for more than 20 minutes. It is not fair to them. Unfortunately – this is falling square on how it was handled instead of the actions that lead to it. Personal responsibility on all levels should be the focus here. Too bad it’s not.

  7. At that age we could have taken our girls to any type of restaurant. That being said when we went to a fancier place that was our night out and we got a babysitter. We could take our kids to any family style restaurant and we never went to fast food places. In church our kids never got put in the nursery, when there are nurseries in church and playlands in restaurants, how do kids learn how to behave in public places? When the girls were quite young, one Sunday in church a family with five kids sat in the row behind us. They did have a method of entering the pew so that there wouldn’t be much opportunity for the kids to squabble. Anyway this one Sunday I turned my head to whisper something to my husband and just then out of the corner of my eye I saw the mother in back of us take the side of her closed fist and bring it down really hard on top of the thigh of her son that was about 10 years old. I don’t know what he had done, but I bet he never did it again in church. This was back in the early 70s when people could still spank their kids, etc.

  8. Lemming on August 1, 2014 at 11:48 pm said:

    Idiot kids usually = Idiot parent(s) sitting there like a moron while the brat is destroying the table and irritating the crap out of everyone around them. Hey Mom, get off of Facebook for a minute, put your iPhone down and do something with your screaming kid! I’m all for the manager on this one. Leave the brats home! I hate paying 60 bucks to enjoy dinner and drinks with my significant other only to listen to your whiny kid

  9. TY Lemming, thot you would never hear that? Huh?

    While I like to whine as a server, this is really about respect of the other guests. At the church I grew up in, we had a ‘cry room’ for a reason.

  10. Beer Jew on August 3, 2014 at 5:20 pm said:

    It’s getting to the point where you damn near need a Diner Code of Conduct. Expectations that are laid out before you are seated and served. I have no empathy for parents that can’t manage their children in public.
    Having children in tow does not give you carte blanche to let them act up in a public place. A good clop upside the head from dear old dad usually did it for me.

  11. Sheriff on August 5, 2014 at 2:06 pm said:

    Thank heavens! Some place I can bitch about this and not be told how mean I am! When my kids were little, we got a babysitter. If you can’t afford it, trade duties with a friend. I friggen hate going out to a decent meal and listening to someone’s kid. Hubby and I have moved tables exactly because of this

Post Navigation