Column: Last orders for children in the bar

Pubs are no place for small children
Pubs are no place for small children

Aren't you wonderful, bringing your little floppy-haired moppets to a restaurant. You really are great parents. Well done you.

After all, it's so important that your little ones don't miss out on a wonderful experience, sitting in their high chair, flinging their toy cars around and screaming their angry little faces off.

Here's the thing. The day that society finds it acceptable for grown men to loaf around a toddlers' ball pool smoking dope and watching porn on their iPhones will be the day that I'll hold my hands up and say, yes, by all means, sit your two-foot tall social hand grenade within earshot of me while I'm eating, drinking and, most importantly, paying to get away from people like you and your kids.

The Germans have got it right. When a little kid is being a pain in the arse in public they shush them. Total strangers think nothing of a good old "SSHHHH!" if Maximilian gets a wee bit too screechy on the U-Bahn.

In fact in some parts of Germany if your delightful little poppet plays up too much on a Sunday your neighbours can and will call the local plod out and get you to shut it up so they can enjoy some peace and quiet on their day off.

Anyway, the reason for my shocking temper tantrum is we've just had a lovely holiday in Cornwall. We're well-mannered people who have inside voices and children who know how to enjoy themselves without behaving like they're on the Stretford End in the 1970s.

When they were little and narky I wouldn't have dreamed of dragging them into a grown-up world of pubs, bars and restaurants. It wasn't our turn back then. We served our suspension on picnic benches and kid pubs without complaint.

For someone who has written a column about parenting every week for the last 11 years I have an unusual attitude towards children. With very few (two, mine) exceptions, I hate them. Little kids are like explosives. They're noisy, dirty and they smell.

I don't know who's the worst, parents who yell at their kids in public like a demented drill sergeant or the ones who smile and pretend like everything's OK while their overindulged little Bamm-Bamm does his "Hulk angry" impression because his chicken nuggets have been dipped in breadcrumbs and not batter.