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An Open Letter about the Auburn Chairs

To whoever took the chairs,

I am passionate about many things. Chai tea lattes, newspaper articles, and Disney movies, to name a few things. So naturally, when I noticed the chairs that had been placed near the Greenspace for everyone’s enjoyment had gone missing, I wanted to do something about it. After talking to many friends who also love the chairs, I knew I had to do something. 

Just as quickly as the month of September came and went, so did the chairs outside Au Bon Pain. Other students who had become accustomed to the outdoor gathering area were also confused at the lack of outdoor seating in that area. It was as if the chairs had disappeared overnight, literally carried off with the month. The last time I saw them was when the eBay truck came to visit our campus. The chairs mysteriously disappeared after that day.

I, along with other students who have come to love the outdoor sitting area, am left with many questions. First, and the most important question, is what happened to the chairs? Were they part of a month long project? Is there some crazy chair thief who sneaks off in the night with outdoor lawn furniture? Or was this part of an experiment to see if students would use chairs if they mysteriously appeared?

If this was for a project, then it was successful. The first week the chairs were available, people were uneasy about the change and wary about using them. But it didn’t take long for students to gather in this area. I often saw students studying or eating lunch in this area. Some sat with their headphones in and people watched while others sprawled out and studied near the Greenspace.

My roommate and I definitely enjoyed the chair area. 

We loved having a place to sit outside and enjoy the Greenspace. We just sat there after completing a class assignment and watched the clouds. 

Everyone relieves stress in different ways. Some play sports or work out. Others have hobbies like knitting or stamp collecting, or they’ll watch movies with friends. The chairs allowed students to destress by people watching, cloud watching or whatever they’d do.

It gave students a place to hang out on campus and enjoy being outdoors. Some would rush by this spot, but take notice of the sitting area and know to come back later. I saw a group of students use it as a meeting spot, a place of congregation, to play a card game of some sort. 

It became enough of a phenomenon that people posted about it on Instagram. The only evidence I have of its existence (other than my own pictures), or a lead as to whom was in charge of it, is this Instagram account.

But I’m left with unanswered questions. I know I can’t be the only student missing the chairs. With the fall weather finally coming to campus, it would be nice to have a place to sit near the Greenspace. Or, it would be great to see other organizations follow this initiative and add more outdoor oriented activities and seating for the Greenspace.

I’d love to see a bin full of outdoor games, like frisbee or hula hoops or a football, for students to borrow when they come to the Greenspace. Or folding chairs that students could borrow, or even blankets to sprawl out on. If you’re reading this and you have any information regarding the now missing chairs, please bring them back. 

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