Recently, I repositioned a small table while studying on campus. A nearby custodian kindly explained that the table couldn’t be moved because the rug underneath was special. I willingly complied, but he expounded that snagging the carpet was unthinkable because this rug had cost $8,000. I was stunned. If the dollar amount doesn’t stagger you, think of what it has the potential to represent: 4,000 boxes of ramen. 50,000 loaves of homemade bread, several traditionally overpriced engagement rings. A year of graduate study. Even if I didn’t per se object to such repulsively wasteful ostentation, the situation is objectionable. The area is an openly accessible, popular study spot, continually full of students. If there is a place for that carpet, it’s elsewhere. Moreover (to express my full range of feelings on the matter) it’s an ugly rug.
So, it presents no benefit to anyone. It’s so unnecessary that we’re not permitted to use it. It obstructs the use of tables and chairs in an otherwise utile space. Coup de grâce, its appearance serves no purpose beyond reminding us of William Morris’ principle, “Have nothing … that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful,” or of the D&C 49 warnings that read, in part, “Wo be unto man that … wasteth … and hath no need.” Obeying true principles of provident living and good taste best honors this university’s vision and history.