I'm pretty sure that anyone reading this knows full well that I am a mother.. If not, I am! I have an 8 and a half year old daughter, who is pretty freaking brilliant.
Of course, she's not always been an 8 and a half year old. It doesn't feel all too long since she was an 8 and a half month old, let along an 8 and a half day old. Life is much easier now she's articulate, and she can say "I'm hungry/tired/bored/in the mood to make noise for the fun of it" rather than being a baby whose "wahhhhhh" could mean any of the above, or more.
I was on the bus last week to see the fabulous Kei who blogs over at Unfortunately Oh, with the wee one who had a day off school due to ridiculous rules regarding vomit. (TL;DR - 48 hours away if you puke in case it's contagious... Buffet Table Lunch and Bouncy Castle fun = vomit that isn't contagious whatsoever), and there was a mother on the bus with a little baby, I'd guesstimate between 4 and 8 months old? She wasn't in a good mood (the baby, though the mother wasn't too chipper at the beginning of this tale either), and was having a bit of a whinge. Not a full on screaming meltdown, but enough of a whimpery whinge that I could hear it sat 2 rows behind them.
Unfortunately for this poor woman, there was an elderly couple next to her, who were complaining about how noisy the baby was, and how in their day children were seen and not heard (which my Grandmother has reliably informed me is Grade A horse shit. Babies have always cried).. Their moaning though, was infinitely more annoying than the noise of the child.
So when we were coming up the road to my bus stop, I crouched down to the little girl and said "oh sweetie, I felt just the same when I woke up this morning, i hope you're feeling better this afternoon" and smiled at the mum and raaaaather loudly told her "Every baby has done the same, and anyone moaning has probably forgotten what it was like to be young, and should really shut up".. Cue "how rude!" and general tuttery from the elderly couple.
It's been a long time since I was a baby (29 years infact, as of next month), but I imagine it must be frustrating. They're unable to vocalise anything beyond a cry, and us pesky adults aren't always able to interpret that wahh correctly the first (or even first 3) times...
I'm not saying that the whinging of the baby was the most melodic, enjoyable sound in the world, but it's a fact of life, and I've heard grown humans make more annoying sounds. If you use public transport then occasionally there will be a tired and cranky baby, a stressed out toddler, a grumpy child whose had a long week at school... but you deal with it. A bus journey doesn't last forever (even if it feels like it sometimes), if you want to travel with a guarantee of no noise from other members of the public (whether they're 6 months or 60 years) then learn to drive, and travel alone.
I'm not saying everyone has to love every child ever, but that crying baby will more than likely be accompanied by a frustrated mother, who already feels bad enough about her crying child, and she won't need snotty comments from some miserable sod.