health concerns

Williamsburg’s First Mechanical Bull Claims First Victim

It's always fun until someone gets hurt.

It's always fun until someone gets hurt.Photo: Matie Sokoler/Courtesy of Gothamist

Last night wasn’t the first time we’ve signed a waiver during the course of our Grub Street duties (there was that Hill Country challenge … ), but it was certainly the first time we drew blood. So much blood. If we’re a little slow today, it’s because we’re still recovering from an unfortunate encounter with Williamsburg’s first mechanical bull. As Gothamist has noted, it’s penned up in the back of Viva El Toro, a cavernous Mexican joint that just opened next to Radegast. Be very, very careful when you ride this beast — or, like us, your graceless dismount may result in an injury so horrid that we cannot show it here (hence the photo of the innocuous cowgirl).

As we type this (wincing in pain with each keystroke), the sheen of Neosporin does nothing to obscure a gash across the middle of our fingernail where nail has separated from cuticle, in the manner of a Mayan torture victim. Of course, New York Magazine insures our blogging hands for $20 million (we’re like Liberace and Keith Richards that way), so we’ll just patiently wait for the newly loosened half of our fingernail to fall off or be torn off in an excruciating manner, then wait for it to grow back, and be okay. (And we’ll take this as a cue not to run with the bulls in Pamplona this week.) But if you’re not as lucky, you may want to examine Viva’s waiver, wincingly retyped below.

In consideration of the services of Viva R.D. Corp., their agents, owners, officers, volunteers, participants, employees, and all other persons or entities acting in any capacity on their behalf (hereinafter collectively referred to as “VIVA”), I hereby agree to release, indemnify, and discharge VIVA, on behalf of myself, my spouse, my children, my parents, my heirs, assigns, personal representative and estate as follows:

I acknowledge that riding a mechanical bull entails known and unanticipated risks that could result in physical or emotional injury, paralysis, death, or damage to myself, to property, or to third parties. I understand that such risks simply cannot be eliminated without jeopardizing the essential qualities of the activity.

The risks include, among other things: falling off of or being thrown from the bull whcih could result in musculoskeletal injuries including head, neck and back injuries.

Furthermore, VIVA employees have difficult jobs to perform. They seek safety, but they are not infallible. They might be unaware of a participant’s fitness or abilities. They may give incomplete warnings or instructions, and the equipment being used might malfunction.

I expressly agree and promise to accept and assume all of the risks existing in this activity. My participation in this activity is purely voluntary, and I elect to participate in spite of the risks.

I hereby voluntarily release, forever discharge, and agree to indemnify and hold harmless VIVA from any and all claims, demands, or causes of action, which are in any way connected with my participation in this activity or my use of VIVA’s equipment and facilities. Including any such claims which allege negligent acts or omissions of VIVA.

Should VIVA or anyone on their behalf, be required to incur attorney’s fees and costs to enforce this agreement, I agree to indemnify and hold them harmless for all such fees and costs.

I certify that I have adequate insurance to cover any injury or damage I may cause or suffer while participating, or else I agree to bear the costs of such injury or damage myself. I further certify that I am willing to assume the risk of any medical or physical condition I may have.

In the event that I file a lawsuit against VIVA, I agree to do so solely in the state of New York, and I further agree that the substantive law of that state shall apply in that action without regard to the conflict of law rules of that state. I agree that if any portion of this agreement is found to be void or unenforceable, the remaining portions shall remain in full force and effect.

By signing this document, I acknowledge that if anyone is hurt or property is damaged during my participation in this activity, I may be found by a court of law to have waived my right to maintain a lawsuit against VIVA on the basis of any claim from which I have released them herein. I further assume full responsibility for any liability on account of losses of wages due to personal injuries or any other medical expenses or damages to myself.

I have had sufficient opportunity to read this entire document. I have read and understood it, and I agree to be bound by its terms.

I hereby certify that I am over 18 years of age.

Viva El Toro: Williamsburg's New Mechanical Bull Destination [Gothamist]

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