What’s up with the ping pong tables?

By Charlie Minucciani

The ping pong table in Arend Hall at Whitworth University, Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2022, Spokane, Wash. | Caleb Flegel/The Whitworthian

Ping pong is one of the few game tables provided in residence halls all around campus. People are constantly using them, whether it’s for personal use or for prime times. However, in a recent ASWU meeting, three separate on-campus senators discussed problems facing their residence halls’ use of ping pong tables.  

 A common concern among senators was the state of the ping pong balls. Kenzie Quinn, the Ballard senator, said that “…the ping pong table always seems to have missing ping pong balls.” While the balls were usually found in the room, especially under couches, this wasn’t the only report of an issue like this. Lotanna Akukwe, Oliver senator, said “…the first week, we did have a particular issue of there being no paddles or balls… I don’t think there were any paddles, or ping pong balls even in the RA closets.”  

While Oliver Hall now has both ping pong balls and paddles, it begs the question: why do they always disappear? 

Another issue that arises with the ping pong balls is the fact that they often get damaged or misshaped. Quinn said, “I’ve totally whacked it too hard, where I’ve dented the ball or something, and it’s never been back to what it was.”  

In Arend, it’s not just the balls that get damaged, it’s also the net. Samie Schaffer, Arend senator, said “The table itself, [is] nice. The net is not nice… one of the poles is a pen.” She attributes both the aggressiveness of players and the fact that the net is too big for the table to the decline of the net’s state. 

Ping pong tables seem to be well-used by Whitworth’s constituency. All three senators recounted seeing people in their lounges constantly. Schaffer said the Arend lounge has “a community where we spend a lot of time in our lounge, and even if there’s a prime time going on… people are always in there.” 

Even some of the residence hall events involve the tables. “I think there was also this ping pong tournament prime time the other night, which was very fun for the residents,” Akukwe explained.  

With the amount of interaction between people and the ping pong tables, it’s understandable that there is damage and missing equipment. Quinn said, “we’re all college students, we’re gonna break some ping pong tables, as much as we hate to admit it.”  

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