I appreciated your editorial about the college needing more openness with regards to tuition. I think, however, that there are much more pertinent issues to address that the college has been even less open about. I am speaking, of course, about their decision to put a new floor in Baxter Hall. I have very fond memories of getting dragged around on the old Baxter floor and receiving serious rug burns. I’m sure my bloodstains were still on that worn old checkered carpet. Now, certainly, I’ve only seen a black and white photo of this new floor, but let me give you a constructive aesthetic assessment: it sucks. Why was the administration’s decision made under such a veil of secrecy? I’ll tell you why. Had the administration made their plans known before hand, they would have faced a massive demonstration, the likes of which they haven’t seen since the ’60s.
Why, the hallowed Bible of all Williams tour guides even has a section that deals with lore about the old rug. That is how hallowed a shrine it was at our institution. Last year, when our Winter Carnival had become a mockery of what it once was, Homecoming had equally been a debacle, and all other Williams traditions had fallen into obscurity, I would walk into Baxter, feel that rug under my feet, and say, “Well at least we have you, old fella.” And sometimes, late at night, when the moon was shining over Baxter Lawn, and the wind was blowing through the trees, I thought I could hear it respond. Now, I don’t even have that rug to hang onto.
Dan Williamson ’01 (at Oxford)