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Who decides?


… many campus buildings were constructed in eras quite different from our own, at times they were decorated in ways that seem problematic in a modern context. The same is true of some of the monuments that are found on our campus. How do such forms of decoration, conceived in an earlier time, affect our capacity to be a fully inclusive community in this century? And what should be done about historical images that portray Williams as less welcoming than we are or aspire to be?




College Censorship Anniversary



On or about two years ago today, Williams College began to censor historic artifacts founded by previous generations of Ephs. This mural in the log came from the World War Two generation. A war memorial that depicted Chief Hendrick Theyanoguin standing over a map being inspected by Ephraim Williams on the morning of the Bloody Morning Scout, during the battle of Lake George in 1755. Hendrick and Ephraim were both killed in combat during this joint reconnaissance mission.


Reopening The Log

From The Eagle:

Williams College officials are considering a student-generated proposal which would result in regular hours for the Log, a small white college-owned building on Spring Street that once functioned as a social center with a pub-like setting.

Since it closed in 2007 to coincide with the opening of the Paresky Center on the campus proper, students have regularly expressed a yearning for the Log’s reopening, saying it would fill a void in the social life of many college students.

This proposal, submitted by members of an association of students dedicated to improving the college and student life known as the Gargoyle Society, laid out limited hours and days of operation, with a short menu of beer and wine, and a limited menu of sandwiches.

Was this proposal really driven by the Gargoyles? If so, kudos.
Read more


The Once and Future Log

In what seems like a twice-per-decade occurrence, students are involved in an effort to revitalize The Log, which, apparently, has lay virtually dormant since 2007.  Sometimes these efforts will go strong for a year, but inevitably interest / enthusiasm seems to wane as the generation motivated enough to establish a new tradition (which oftentimes is quite popular) graduates.  More details, and a petition drive, can be located at the Willipedia page on point.

If President Falk wants to make an instant impact on campus, some creative thinking about how to better utilize one of the very best, if not the best, social spaces on campus would be a great place to start: in particular, some sort of mechanism to keep momentum and funding in place from year to year would be ideal … perhaps using The Log more during the early weeks of First Year, to establish its value early on in students’ tenure at Williams.  No student space has remotely the same character or history, not to mention a perfect location on Spring Street.

Fortunately, it seems like there is a lot of student enthusiasm and commitment behind this latest effort.  Maybe Ephbloggers with fond Log memories could share their thoughts on the best past uses of the The Log?  A history of what has worked, and what hasn’t, over the years at the Log might help guide current students in their efforts.  The biggest problem will, of course, always be the drinking age, which is what destroyed the Log as a central part of campus social life, to begin with.  Any viable plan for the Log HAS to feature a wide array of options that will be equally attractive whether or not alcohol is involved.

I believe that weekly Pub Trivia, mentioned in the WSO thread, is a great idea that would attract a lot of students to the Log.  In the fall, football and pizza / wings Sundays would likely be popular; so would, I imagine, a March Madness set-up.  Anyone else have thoughts for ideas that would attract those under and over 21 alike?


The Class of 2007 Arrival

The class of 2007 arrived yesterday. You too can relive your College years by checking out the main information site. Don’t forget the schedule of events here. Assuming that they are on track, the first class meeting has just finished and students are heading back to their entries. Note that they sang “The Mountains” — the Blog gets results! ;-)

Alas, there are still some glitches. The transportation advice is unchanged from last year, but, presumably most of the incoming students should be better informed.

Most amusing part of the site are the excerpts from the “Bell Book” — which I do not remember from 19 years ago —- on Freshmen life. My favorite entries were:

Common Room (com’on Eileen) n. a much loved and used room that will replace the old family den, living room or room that you generally hung out in before you came to college. As relaxation spaces go, it is the best. With your help, it is usually replete with your favorite curl-up-and-nap-couch, some primary-colored bean bags, an outdated TV (with SEGA and VCR attached), several outdated issues of Glamour and school-issued Lava lamp (I jest).

The Log (a rustic gathering place) n. an incredible log-cabinish space on Spring Street which is filled with old pictures, dark wood, food, and large, crackling fires (in the fireplace). Home of the “Log Lunch,” a Friday event involving soup, bread and a guest lecturer speaking on some interesting topic like “Biking up Mt. Everest Barefooted” or “Recent Trends in Rainfall at Hopkins Forest.”

But the whole thing is quite amusing.


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