UC-Berkeley Easter Egg Hunt , Enter at Your Own Risk

A recent children’s Easter egg hunt at UC-Berkeley required parents sign a waiver before their children could participate.

A recent children’s Easter egg hunt at UC-Berkeley required parents sign a waiver before their children could participate.

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UC-Berkeley Easter Egg Hunt , Enter at Your Own Risk

-By Curtise Mang

A recent children’s Easter egg hunt at UC-Berkeley required parents sign a waiver before their children could participate.

A waiver?  It’s an Easter egg hunt, it’s not like the children were going to be traveling through plutonium.  The event was broken into three age groups and took place in roped-off flat grass areas. Yet, UC-Berkeley felt the need to explain the potential hazards to the parents and have them sign off before their kids could participate.

According to Reason.com, the list of possible harm included “1) minor injuries, such as scratches, bruises and sprains 2) major injuries such as eye injury or loss of sight, joint or back injuries, heart attacks, and concussions to 3) catastrophic injuries including paralysis and death.”

Death?  Okay, so maybe there was just a little plutonium. Nevertheless, I did a quick map check and confirmed that Berkeley, California is nowhere near Afghanistan or Syria, where “catastrophic injuries including paralysis and death” are more likely and just being alive comes with a warning label.


Entering the event became a bit more problematic as the exchange below demonstrates.

Parent: We are here to have my son participate in the Easter egg hunt. He’s pretty excited.

Worker at the registration table:  And we are excited to have him.  Now, if you will just read and sign this waiver form?

Parent: Huh? Waiver form? This is the children’s Easter egg hunt, correct?

Worker: Yes, Ma’am, although we prefer the phrase Spring egg search.  Easter has such a religious connotation and we here at UC-Berkeley strive to be very inclusive.  And we don’t discuss hunting in any form on campus.  It sends a lot of students to the nearest safe space.  

Parent: So,why do I need to sign a waiver form?

Worker:  You haven’t been to one of these before, have you? 

Parent: No.  My son, Bickley, just turned three.  He’s a little rambunctious.

Worker: That’s it! That’s exactly it.  There may be other rambunctious kids out there and we want to make sure that no serious injuries occur.  So, please read and sign this waiver form please.

Parent (reading the waiver form):  Loss of eyesight?  Catastrophic injuries?  Death? We’re not here to invade Venezuela, just hunt for Easer eggs.

Worker: That would be safer, you’d have helmets.  But we do have bubble wrap.  It worked great when the Students of Underrepresented Races, Cultures and Ethnicities Club had their Spring egg search here recently.  All went fine until they lodged a complaint because some colors were underrepresented.  For instance, they found no burnt sienna colored eggs and hardly any aqua.  They weren’t happy at all about that.  

But they didn’t get as cranky as the Engineers for a Sustainable World did.  They were upset that we didn’t use eggs from free range chickens. They tried to storm the dean’s office.

Parent: I can understand that.  I buy eggs only from free range chickens.

Worker: We used only chocolate eggs, ma’am.

Parent: Oh.

Worker:  They threatened to have my licenses pulled. After that ruckus, I was the one who needed bubble wrap.  Well, and the dean.

Parent: You need to have a license to do this?

Worker: Licenses. Plural, ma’am.  I must have seven of them.  This is UC-Berkeley, you need a license to grant somebody a license.  Bubble wrap, ma’am?

Parent: No, thank you. We’ll risk it.

Worker: Hence, the need to sign this waver.  Please.

Parent: This is still ridiculous; my son is not going to die.  Nor will he become blind.  I’ll sign your damn form.  Will the Easter Bunny at least be here?  Bickley is excited to see him.

Worker: Yes, that’s why the security detail is here. And we prefer the phrase Second Quarter Hare. 

Parent: It doesn’t quite roll off the tongue the way Easter Bunny does.  

Worker: Well, no, but here at UC-Berkeley we believe that words matter, and we want to be inclusive. Furthermore, we don’t refer to it as any specific gender.  We’re non-judgmental.

Parent: That’s just dumb.

Worker: Don’t be a hater, ma’am.

Parent: So, why is there a security detail?  

Worker: The Campus Coalition for Religious Freedom has threatened to disrupt the activities today. Easter is a Christian holiday. They think the Second Quarter Hare is a religious symbol.  Even though we don’t refer to it as the Easter Bunny, they aren’t buying any of it.

Parent: Actually, the Easter Bun, er, Second Quarter Hare is a secular symbol. And why would the Campus Coalition for Religious Freedom oppose religious freedom?

Worker: It’s Christianity, ma’am.  The rules don’t apply to Christianity.

Parent: That’s pretty dumb too.

Worker.  We can’t take chances.  We’ve heard they’ve put out a hit on the hare.  We’re just talking precautions.

Parent: Have you thought about bubble wrap?

Worker: Yes, as you will see once you get in there.  Bubble wrapped from head to toe.

Parent:  This has gotten very complicated.  Did you ever attend an Easter egg hunt when you were a kid?  

Worker: Sure, who didn’t?

Parent: Did you ever get hurt?  Lose an eye? Have a heart attack?

Worker: Nope. Never. Except that one year when I got more eggs than my older brother.  After we got home, he beat me up.  He used to beat me up a lot.  Honestly, he still beats me up.  I wish I had bubble wrap.’

Parent:  Well, Bickley is an only child.  Nobody is going to beat him up when he gets home.

Worker: Glad to hear it, ma’am.  Could you talk to my brother?  He’s got an anger problem.

Parent: No, thank you. We just want to get some Easter Eggs.

Worker: Spring eggs, ma’am.  

Parent: Whatever.

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