There were five of them. A mother, father, and three boys ranging from 15-ish to I’d say 8. And it was horrible.
The two youngest were whining from the moment they came over and sat down. The middle one because he was hungry, the youngest because he was bored but his parents were insisting he do his homework. The homework is where it all went downhill. It was geometry or some crap, involving angles. The oldest didn’t whine, but did go wandering down the terminal a bit looking for something to occupy himself. I approve.
The youngest was sitting next to me, rocking back and forth with his knees in the air propping up his textbook. The whining only increased once he touched the book. The primary cause of the whine was that he was asking the father the answer to the problem at hand regarding how the angles work. The dad (the only point for which I’ll give him credit) told the kid that the answer was in the book and the kid would have to find it himself.
Then the mom came along and immediately revealed to me the source of the kids’ nasty habits, as she whined at the kid (didn’t tell him to, she whined at him) to sit on his bottom and read like a human being. Didn’t work the first time so she whined until it happened. While this was going on the middle one was whining at the mother about being hungry, and not wanting the snacks they already had, and whining more because the oldest one came back with snacks. This prompted the dad to point out that he got snacks because he had his own damn money to spend. This made the middle kid whine louder because apparently one or two individuals in the family owed him money.
Anyway. The mom snatched the textbook from the youngest intent on finding the answer for him that he still didn’t have. Meanwhile the oldest kid took the middle kid with him to go wandering, which was nice. Mom started whining about not being able to find the answer. The dad, frustrated, grabbed the book in turn saying he’d seen the answer in it just shortly before. Meanwhile the little kid was goofing off and the mom was whining at him to sit still. Good job lady.
When the older and middle kid got back without food yet not whining, the dad told the oldest kid to find the answer and go over the answers that they had, all of which were wrong apparently. The mother insisted that the little kid owed the big one big time, except for that it was the parents that were getting his answers wrong. About this time the gate attendant announced that we were changing gates again, from A5 to A4, which is literally a 30 foot walk. All of them, in unison, let out an Awwwwww! whine, three of them saying “Not again!”. I know it was three times because the oldest kid, who is apparently more mature than the other four, pointed out that three had done so despite the fact that it was, indeed, a 30 foot walk.
I didn’t hesitate to pack my stuff and depart, and decided to stay standing when they did find a spot to sit. Fortunately on the plane they were a good 12 or so rows behind me.
Immediately behind me was a crying 1 year old. I feel bad for the mother there, she was doing her best and was apologetic. The kid was cute: his crying would be interrupted now and then as other passengers and the flight attendants would stop by to try and get a smile out of him, which did occassionally work. For a minute. On the final approach he settled down as he could see more out the window and I thought the worst was over, but as soon as we were off the runway he went full force.
Still, I prefer that to the whining.