Anyone who has been on SFU’s Burnaby campus for more than a semester has seen them. Beat up, out of place, left out in the cold. This campus is a graveyard for forgotten chairs, and most students have just gotten used to seeing them around.
But for two students, they didn’t just see garbage — they saw an opportunity.
Having begun just a few weeks ago, the Instagram account SFU Chairs has already amassed upwards up 200 followers. Over 20 chairs have been featured, and each comes along with a lengthy description, sometimes from the perspective of the chair itself.
Sitting down with The Peak, admins Josh and Brendan — who asked that we didn’t use their last names — tell us how they got the idea for the bizarre account.
“When we first started in September, [we noticed] there were just a bunch of chairs in the pond, and we were like, ‘why are there so many chairs there?’” says Brendan. “Then we started noticing them everywhere,” adds Josh. “As as we started to get to know the school more, we ended up seeing more.
“We thought that it was something that people noticed but didn’t really pay attention to that much, so by us pointing it out, it would be funny.”
Contrary to what you might think, the two don’t actually find all of the chairs themselves — many are sent to them by other students. “Once we got 100 followers, we started to get submissions,” Brendan says, adding that “quite a few” of their posts have come from DMs from followers. “Some people are just looking around for them, I guess.”
Three Migos. Hella bad n boujee type shit. Waiting for that new joint to drop she gonna be flame af. These dudes be making all the fire shit since idk when. Who knew chairs be so dope on the mic. @metroboomin be producing for these fuckers n shit. Damn tho they been on since Offset been out the Feds. He the one boolin on the right there. Creds to the pap @hanna_jackson_ for sneaking these dudes pic. #chairsofsfu #sfu #migos #flame #culture #175 #tshirt
A photo posted by Chairs of SFU (@sfuchairs) on
When they do find chairs themselves, though, they have to meet a specific criteria. “The more random it is [the chair], the better — out of place, or beat up, not correct,” says Josh. Brendan adds that a chair is perfect for the account “if it’s all broken and it looks like it’s been there forever.”
There’s also a method to the text descriptions that come with each chair. “It’s kind of ironic humour. It’s online slang,” says Brendan. Josh adds that followers “probably have an image of us that sounds like how those people would talk, but that’s not us at all.”
As for the future of SFU Chairs, neither one is ready to give up the account just yet. “We’ll stick around with it for a little bit. It’s fun. If you find a chair, it’s fun to post it online — you can get a cool angle of it,” says Brendan. SFU Chairs is also accepting submissions from students, and encourages others to join in on the fun.
“We have quite a few banked up, so we can go for a while.”