If you needed an excuse to stay home for Easter and avoid traveling, look no further. The TSA hates the holiday and would sooner detain the Easter Bunny than let him carry his decorated eggs through security. Don't get me started on the pat-down the poor guy would have to endure. "That's not a carrot, officer!!"
Valerie Baul, a radio personality from Kansas who dresses like a bunny to spread cheer and laughter, knows first hand just what the Easter bunny might experience. She spent three hours in the Philadelphia International Airport holding cell for pissing off a not-too-friendly TSA official who didn't find Valerie and her bunny costume funny ... at all.
Valerie, or the "Bunny Lady" as she's known, was wearing fuzzy pink rabbit ears at the time of the incident, and was carrying a basket of colorful eggs. After the Bunny Lady had made it past security and her eggs were safely back in her possession after going through the x-ray machine, a TSA official asked the Bunny Lady what was in those eggs, anyway?
The Bunny Lady had no choice (she's a member of the clown family, after all) but to demonstrate what the eggs could do. She explained to the officer:
"They're eggs filled with confetti. You want to see what's inside? Here you go, you win, let's find out together." And I put it on her head. And I didn't think anything of it.
The agent wasn't amused that she was sprinkled with confetti. The Bunny Lady was handcuffed and put in airport prison -- a place I, like the Bunny Lady, have survived. It wasn't because I had an expired Visa, or illegal drugs in my purse, but for a similar (if slightly more offensive) reason than the Bunny's. They took the Dr. Pepper out of my purse because obviously it was more than three ounces of liquid, which I couldn't argue with, then after I went through the metal detector, it was sitting right there, on their console, slightly sweating with the heat of the experience on its cold can, just begging to be enjoyed by yours truly who had forked over $1 for a deliciously refreshing treat, forgetful of the 'no liquids' policy. I reached for the soda, which was, turns out, a big no-no.
As the Bunny and I both now know, confetti-spreading and soda-retrieval are quick ways to get yourself a private tour of the TSA's maniacal underbelly. (Let it be known that while I was being questioned, the Dr. Pepper was again put in arm's distance of my reach. They are really in tune with torture methods.)
The Bunny Lady is due in court in Philadelphia in September on misdemeanor assault charges. In the case of the Bunny Lady vs. the TSA, the verdict goes in favor of the defendant. Bunny ears + confetti = good time, not jail time.
Beware if you're traveling this Easter, and for the love of Cadbury Eggs, do not crack open any confetti or a Dr. Pepper in the security line.
Do you think the TSA is justified here in prosecuting the Bunny Lady?
Photo via guy schmidt/Flickr