How do you say genius in Italian? Because that may be just the word for the one restaurant owner who came up with an inspired method of dealing with kids’ behavior at his upscale eatery in Padua, Italy. He simply rewards the parents — when their kids behave well, that is.
Instead of incurring the wrath of parents whose kids are rudely running amok and wreaking havoc by chastising them, tossing them out or denying children entry to his establishment altogether, restaurateur Antonio Ferrari has instead begun offering diners with well-behaved children a 5 percent discount.
Ferrari extended his first “polite children discount” about six months ago, when a family with especially well-mannered children dined at his establishment, and he has had occasion to offer it only twice subsequently. Alas, he told the Times of London, the infrequency of the discount underscores “how rare good behavior is.”
Ferrari says that he has seen behavior slipping among children at his eatery — with kids darting around, knocking things over and deliberately making a major mess in the bathroom — positing that parents today seem to be “losing control over their children.”
Still, he was pleased with the most recent recipients of the discounts, saying that not only had the children not been given phone or tablet screens to occupy them, but one kid was even working on math homework at the table.
Perhaps the bookish youngster was figuring out how much 5 percent off the top of the check might be.