Thursday, April 15, 2010

Day three, locations six and seven

We observed the chair in 2 separate locations, between the hours of 2:45 and 4:15 on Thursday. For the first 45 minutes, the chair was placed directly in the center of the Benson/Tribble outdoor study area, at the convergence of 4 walkways. This central location, in addition to the fact that many students were just getting out of class at 2:45, made for a lot of strange looks towards the chair initially. This was to be expected, as the chair was nowhere near any other chairs, and is, admittedly, quite ugly. While many people slowed their walk to examine the chair, very few stopped, with some exceptions of course. All in all, 5 people physically sat in the chair during this time. I didn't expect many, so 5 was right around my estimate. At Wake Forest, where the social stigma is so great that many people refuse to cut across the quad, so as not to be judged by their peers, the idea of sitting in such an unsightly chair in the middle of a walkway is ridiculous. Also, the chair’s position was completely exposed to the hot sunlight of the day, unlike the other umbrella-covered tables in the area. The students that did sit in the chair only stayed sitting for a few seconds at the most. What may have been even more interesting than those who sat in the chair was those who walked by without the slightest trace of noticing. I found this fascinating that such a blatant and ugly disturbance to The Everyday garnered zero response from so many people.

Location #6:

Corresponding Photos:

At 3:30, we moved the chair to the Benson patio and had fairly similar results. Although this was a time in between classes when there was a bit of a lull on campus, the chair was now in a sitting area amidst other chairs, and therefore it didn't seem as strange for those passing by. People found it more realistic to accept that another chair, however uncomfortable it appears, was placed here, rather than in the middle of a walkway. What was an interesting observation, however, was the fact that the other students sitting at Benson kept shooting dirty glances over at the chair, as if they expected it get up and walk away. All in all, during the 45 minutes on top on the Benson patio, we had 5 more students sit in the chair, and they seemed more at ease than the few who had sat in it while on the walkway. They also sat on it for a longer period of time than at the Tribble/Benson location. One final observation I noted was that no adults of any kind made any slight attempt to sit in the chair whatsoever.

Location #7:

Corresponding photos:

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