Hey guys! Below are the actually pictures and transcriptions of my field notes. Don’t even try to read my handwriting because it is terrible.
I take a seat in the middle of the pit and begin to observe the immediate area around me. The pit is a strange assortment of things. The ratio of green couches to blue chairs is uneven, 8:12. Each blue chair is adorned with a pattern of colorful circles: grey, green, blue pin stripe, green pin stripe and yellow pinstripe. An assortment of lights hang from the mustard yellow wall. They are in a cluster of green, white, and orange. Emblems from the school’s clubs and societies line the wall. Two stick out: the Cinema Workshop and the Asian Cultural Association. Four squares cut into the ceiling, creating geometric shaped windows. A set of misplaced risers are positioned behind me. A few feet away from that are a set of carpeted stairs in the shape of an isosceles triangle, getting smaller on their way up.
My attention is drawn to the carpet. It continues the neutral color scheme with a green, gray and black design that is simultaneously orderly and chaotic. Crumbled bits of paper are thrown haphazardly on the ground, forgotten. Two bits of paper–different sizes, litter a leather bound table/ottoman. A third piece of paper lies at the foot of the table/ottoman. It’s a bit thinner and uneven than its counterparts. A Minute Maid apple juice bottle is abandoned near a hunter green couch.
Adjacent to my position is the Jazzman’s Cafe & Bakery. It sits in the darkness of the pit, practically melting into the Pit’s archway which doubles as a staircase. Beneath the arch are three sets of stairs that lead to different places in the Student Center. One of the staircases leads to the first floor, while the other goes nowhere.
Students filter in and out of the area intermittently One boy in a purple hoodie, hovers by the stairs near the marketplace. His skinny jeans and thick, black ripped glasses give him the look of a hipster. He talks on the phone, occasionally taking a sip from his Coke cup.
Down in the pit, a boy with short brown hair chews on a pen as his unblinking eyes stare at a smart phone. I believe it is a Samsung Galaxy. His fingers skate across the screen. He is dead to the world. When he vacates his seat, it is taken by a girl with blonde hair. She too is on a cellphone.
In the corner of the vicinity is a girl with raven hair. It is knotted in a top bun. She is elegantly dressed in silver tipped, black ballet flats. She stares at her silver netbook, occasionally thumbing through pages in her pink plastic binder.
The music from the Coca-Cola machine near the Marketplace right across from the pit draws me in. There is something so enchanting and whimsical about it. There’s a childlike yet, chilling quality to the tune, almost like a movie trailer.
As I begin to walk around, I notice a group of three similarly dressed boys sitting on a collection of couches in the middle of the pit. One greets the boy with a colorful hoodie with the phrase “Nice hoodie.” They are quite loud. Their voices consume the entire pit. Another boy joins them. His blonde hair is wild like a lion’s mane. He too favors a black hoodie. He wears Nikes. The boy adjacent to him wears a grey pair, creating a mirror image. They use the table as a footstool.
At the same time, a girl with long brown hair sits on the top steps near the Marketplace, talking on her cell phone. She is absorbed on the conversation, chewing and tugging at her hair. I think she catches me looking at her, but I cannot be sure. She just might be staring into space.
Sneakers squeak against the hard metal of the same staircase, the echoing gets louder as the wearer walks away. A black boy joins the girl on the steps. Their fingers interlock and they share a close, unspoken bond while the girl carries on her phone conversation.
Even from my new position in the pit, I can hear the sporadic and often times ridiculous conversation of the boys. It takes over the area. I then walk to the arch way. Two lights are out and I take note of the stacks of chairs arranged neatly on the side. I almost try talking to someone but they look at me in a standoffish manner. I decide that it was better to step away.