Without a doubt, everyone has been talking about the opening of Stanford’s new Lathrop Library, a spanking facility featuring a fresh 24-hour study room and Stanford’s Asian Studies collection. And sure, the fate of the J. Henry Meyer Library is a topic of great discussion as its withered concrete husk remains in the center of campus, useless. But, let’s not forget that there’s another withered husk, and this one is telling time!
Enter the Jane Lathrop Memorial Corpse Pendulum, a clock that uses simple physics and the decaying body of Jane Lathrop Stanford to great visual effect. The fixture, a gigantic Foucault’s pendulum, is meant to give visitors a physical representation of time’s passing and also to honor the legacy of one of our school’s co-founders.
The Flipside caught up with J.L.M.C. Pendulum architect Daniel Choat, to learn more about how this wonderful project came to fruition. “This was a huge mistake,” said Choat in pained tones, “We’ve done a truly horrific thing here, I don’t know what we were thinking.”
Next stop: Lathrop Social Media Specialist Cyndi Lauper! The morose 32-year-old sat down with us at Old Union to mull over the Social Media campaign associated with The Pendulum. “We messed up, and we messed up big. No one wants to see a 100-year-old body swinging around in the lobby of a library,” said Lauper. “And I definitely shouldn’t have tried to trend the hash tags #whatsupJane and #corpseo’clock. That was in poor taste.”
Although the Corpse Pendulum is only expected to last this 2014-15 year (thanks to the high cost of maintenance), this reporter is planning on watching every minute of that year swing by from as close as possible!