Sunday, July 31, 2011

Half-Baked Parents

I own a cupcake shop now. Been in business almost a year. It absorbs nearly all of my time, which is a familiar chant from small-business owners. And it is the reason why I have abandoned this blog for so long. Sorry, folks. I just don't have time to bitch about anything anymore.

I know many of you couldn't be happier!

But lo and behold, I discovered yesterday that I still have a lot of whining in me. We have a promotion going at the shop, whereby we are offering cupcake-decorating classes for both kids and adults. So yesterday, we have our first class. Several children walk in -- with their parents. They look about 6 or 7 years old. An older woman in her late 50s then joins us. And at the last minute, a little girl runs in who is about 5. She is all by herself. Surely, I assumed, her mom or dad can't be too far behind. I waited. And waited. But no one else came through the door.

So I asked "Riley" where her mommy was. She said that her dad just dropped her off and left. Left?? Well, when would he be coming back, I asked. Riley replied, "He said in an hour."

What the "F?" And by "F" I mean "Father."

What kind of half-baked parent drops off his adorable 5-year-old daughter at an unfamiliar place with total strangers and just leaves? Doesn't even bother to come in to introduce himself, or at the very least, ask me if it would be all right if Riley stayed here without him? Of course, I would have said, "No!" After all, I am running a gourmet cupcake shop, not a daycare center.

I asked Riley if her daddy dropped her off at places a lot. She said that he did. At gymnastics and Toys 'R Us.

I was astounded!

Doesn't this "father" ever watch the news? Doesn't he know that children are getting abducted and murdered, the Casey Anthony case aside, in what seems like a peak hunting season for sexual predators?

I had half a mind to call the police. For Riley's sake. I mean, yeah, there would be some drama as the police questioned her dad. But I couldn't shake the thought that maybe I would be saving Riley's life down the road since abandoning her seems to be a habit of his.

But I didn't call the police. For Riley's sake. I thought it best to talk to him when -- and IF -- he picked her up. So the class ends, guests leave, and 25 minutes later Riley is STILL waiting for her ride. (Notice how I didn't say "father." Just "ride.")

The door opens and in walks her mom. Where is dad? Now the plot thickens. So Riley's mom and dad actually made arrangements with each other: Dad would drop her off and mom would pick her up. A conspiracy of stupidity.

Remember . . . she is only 5 years old!

I gave mom a piece of my mind and, hopefully, made her think twice about being a more vigilant parent.

Still, I wonder . . . should I have called the police? Was it my obligation to protect Riley from her negligent parents?

What would you have done??

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wonder what kind of liability you assumed as a business owner - knowing how things are today, you probably should have called the police for your own protection for sure, and definitely for the kids protection.

Giving the mom a piece of your mind is honorable but likely won't change anything.