Thursday, July 22, 2010

Year of the Water Balloon

In the annals of acrimony, snickering, snobism and downright flim-flammery that is the junior/senior status between BYU in Provo and BYU-Idaho in Rexburg, this year may become known as the Year of the Water Balloon.

BYU-Idaho students tried to organize an “epic” water balloon fight this past weekend, pitting students from the west side of town against those from the east. Because they wanted to hold it at a public park, they were thwarted at the last second by the Rexburg Police Department, concerned over safety, the lack of a park use permit and other legalities.

This past Wednesday, the Rexburg City Council banned “epic” water fights, not going as far as to ban “epic” as an adjective, however. Pity they couldn’t take a stand on the larger issue.

This Friday, BYU-Provo students will stage a record-breaking 120,000-balloon water fight on campus, under the aegis of the student activities program and with the blessing of the university.

Only time will tell if the uppers at BYU-Idaho would allow such a battle on campus, though it’s not clear right now that anybody’s formally asked them. And when they are asked, I’m not sure they’ll say yes unconditionally.

Truth be told, when water fight organizers are talking about water balloon launchers and other hardware, you know people will get hurt and that property might be damaged. Organizers of the Rexburg event said that yes indeed, people had gone to the emergency room the last time they held such a fight.

So probably the high-powered weaponry is out.

But they’ve got a chance of the university saying yes. They ought to ask.

I'd comment on the maturity of such events, but then again I participated in many campus snowfall fights at the University of Idaho.

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