Free Hugs?

This article from the Leader-Post made me curious: how do the prairie dog readers feel about getting free hugs? The LP talks to Dahlila Kreiser, who spent this past Friday giving them out on the Scarth Street Mall:

Reactions to Kreiser’s offer were, predictably, mixed. Some smiled and kept on their way. Some took the long way around Kreiser to avoid an unwanted embrace. One woman even told Kreiser what she was doing was illegal. Of course, Kreiser was only hugging those who approached her since, as she put it, “I don’t have any interest in being punched in the face.”

Personally, I don’t really have any interest in being hugged by a stranger, despite my time spent in various Catholic youth groups back in the day. Whenever I see Free Hug people on the U of R campus, I generally avoid them. At the same time, they aren’t trying to force themselves onto me and seem just generally harmless.

I never saw Kreiser – I’m rarely on the Scarth Street Mall unless I’m going to the prairie dog‘s offices – so I didn’t get the chance to witness any of the free hugging. Did any of you folks? Did you actually receive hugs? What’s the verdict?

Side note: in the photo, Kreiser is seen giving away a hug, but she didn’t put down her “FREE HUGS” sign. Was she giving awkward, pseudo-one-armed hugs all day?

Author: James Brotheridge

Contributing Editor with Prairie Dog.

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