Aggressive note left on picnic table sparks furious debate: 'Entitled'

·3-min read

A note imploring people not to "ruin" a four-year-old's birthday party got some riled up on social media, after a group unofficially reserved a picnic table at a park on a public holiday weekend.

People seemed more offended by the "rude" note than the party calling dibs on the table.

"Reserved for a birthday party. Please respect the space we have set aside and do not use our tables," the note left at an American park said.

"This is a 4-year-old's party. Don't be the one to mess it up. Thank you."

The person who shared it on Reddit said it happened at a busy park on Saturday over the Labor Day weekend.

Labor Day is observed in the US and Canada and falls on the first Monday of September.

Pictured is the picnic party and the table at the park
Someone set up for a picnic party and then left the park, only to leave behind a note asking for people to be respectful. Source: Reddit

The park had been open for four hours, all the other tables were occupied and there was no sign of the party. The person who shared the photos to Reddit said it seemed "super entitled".

The person who shared the photos was also at the park that day for a party with 10 kids. They got there when the park opened to snag a table.

"It's the fact that the note was written aggressively while also depending on other people’s decency to allow them to bend common courtesy that I found annoying," they said in the comments.

The majority seemed to agree that setting up the tables, leaving the park and writing the note asking people to "respect" the space they had dibs on isn't cool.

"Bro. Just use the table and if they show up say you're here for the party," someone said on Reddit.


A few people likened it to leaving towels on chairs at a public pool. One person said some pools will now allow for people to leave their items unattended on a chair for two hours. After that, they will be moved.

"That’s the way to do it," one person said.

The party eventually showed up, six hours after the park opened. They played loud music and in turn got a talking to from the park rangers. Several families apparently set up camp right next to their tables.

Would the official dibs hold up in Australia?

A few people on Reddit said perhaps the people there for the four-year-old's birthday should have gone through the official means to book a table.

However, according to the original poster on Reddit, this particular park does not take reservations.

There are parks around Australia where you can book a picnic area if you don't want to try your luck and hope there's a table on the day of your outing.

At the end of the day, by calling dibs like this, you're relying on other people to not disrupt your plans, so it's probably best to either make an official booking if you can through the council, or get there early to secure a spot.

Most councils and specific parks around Australia will have information on their website, so it's worth checking online.

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