Food and Inconveniences at City’s Restaurants

As a parent of a 3-year-old boy, I have been nagged over and over again by the lack of changing tables in most of New York City’s restaurant bathrooms. It is really a pest. This city is not a child-friendly place, but there is something called “customer convenience” that restaurants may want to keep in mind to attract parents to their venues.

In the last three years I have encountered many awkward situations in restaurants, but these are what I call “The Five Most Ridiculous Scenarios”:

1. No changing table is the Men’s Room: what is a single dad or “daddy out with baby and the boys” supposed to do?

2. The advent of kid-friendly restaurants without changing tables: many Burger King and Pizza Hut restaurants market play areas and kid meals but provide no changing tables in their restrooms.

3. Apple Stores without changing tables: Steve Jobs declared that they had not had many requests for them, and then went on to add that they collect a “pungent odor.”

4. An innovative restaurant in Greenwich Village serves gourmet baby food but only has THREE high chairs and NO changing tables.

5. A restaurant in the East Village that has a toilet at the top of three steps without a seat cover: How is a parent supposed to implement “guerrilla parenting” techniques like changing the baby on top of a closed toilet seat when not even that is provided?

…and then people complain about parents changing baby diapers in public. Sometimes the circumstances leave you with no other choice!

About Jose Bayona

Journalist based in New York City.
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