Juniors and seniors look back nostalgically at the times when Stav made sense. Four columns of tables with three aisles. Some peripheral spots and upstairs seating. Busy, but not so packed you couldn’t move. It was organized, easy to find your friends, and had plenty of spots. But Stav took a real nose dive during the pandemic. Trying to find good seating was near impossible with — warranted — social distancing rules that highly limited the number of people per table and distance between them.
Coming back to school, many Oles anticipated a return to the old Stav setup, only to be blindsided by a hall full of diagonal tables and no explanation. While you can once again crowd around a table with 25 of your best friends, good luck actually getting to your seat. There are no breaks in between the tables, making navigation through them unnecessarily difficult.
The Battleship method of finding your friends has been obliterated. When there were four columns of tables and about ten rows of tables, you could simply name the column (A, B, C or D) and then the row. Now what? “Vaguely to the middle left back but a little to the right” does not save me the embarrassment of wandering around the caf trying to find my friends.
Why was this set up chosen? Will we ever go back to the old ways? Is it all just an elaborate prank? Maybe the authorities felt we needed a little uncertainty in our lives. While I don’t particularly like the new set up, I do enjoy a good mystery.