Seeking hotel cryptographer
July 28, 2010 7:35 PM   Subscribe

I'm staying in an Embassy Suites hotel in Chicago this week. Today, I returned to the hotel to see that on three of the lower floors, each room had a stack of exactly two identical chairs placed outside the door. This struck me as really odd. What does it mean? Is it some kind of code for housekeeping or management? Photo here for reference.
posted by AngerBoy to Grab Bag (15 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Random guess: Maybe the hotel is getting new chairs for all the rooms, and the delivery people haven't gotten to the upper floors yet?
posted by amyms at 7:38 PM on July 28, 2010

On second thought, you could always call the front desk and ask.
posted by amyms at 7:40 PM on July 28, 2010

Response by poster: Hmmm. Possible, I suppose. I'm staying on the 12th floor, and those metal/vinyl numbers look much cheaper and crummier than the nice wooden chairs we have in our room.

And isn't just calling and asking sort of like cheating at this game? ;O)
posted by AngerBoy at 7:41 PM on July 28, 2010 [1 favorite]

Best answer: It's a job interview thing by a bunch of businesses. Space for up to two candidates while another is being interviewed for a short time.
posted by Inspector.Gadget at 7:46 PM on July 28, 2010 [2 favorites]

If they're metal and vinyl, maybe they're meant for people who want to sit outside their rooms, like smokers, for example. Maybe they just got the chairs and haven't finished putting them outside all the rooms, or only got in part of the shipment so far.
posted by ishotjr at 7:47 PM on July 28, 2010

Response by poster: Hmmm, that's possible. I checked the list of events for the day, and one of the listings on there is a recruiting group for lawyers. Maybe they booked three floors for the interviews? That seems like a lot, but I guess it's possible.
posted by AngerBoy at 7:50 PM on July 28, 2010

Yeah, I agree with Inspector.Gadget - that's what I remember from many years ago - standard meeting room chairs for interviewing - one for the current interviewee, one for the one waiting out in the hall.
posted by nightwood at 7:50 PM on July 28, 2010

This is really interesting: If you substitute letters of the alphabet for the positions of the chairs (i.e.: chairs facing 1 o'clock = A, chairs facing forwards = B and so on), the chairs spell out


(I agree that the chairs are for interviewees)
posted by iconomy at 7:58 PM on July 28, 2010 [3 favorites]

I bet they're cleaning the carpets in those rooms.
posted by crunchland at 8:01 PM on July 28, 2010

AngerBoy said: And isn't just calling and asking sort of like cheating at this game? ;O)

Oh, sheesh, just call and ask already, so the rest of us don't have to refresh the page in suspense!

P.S. AskMe is not a game, young man! [insert wagging finger here]
posted by amyms at 8:03 PM on July 28, 2010 [1 favorite]

I looked up the number, called, asked, and now I know what the chairs are for. Cool.
posted by halogen at 8:26 PM on July 28, 2010 [3 favorites]

Response by poster: LOL. Nice work, halogen.

I went down to the front desk and asked too.

Want me to tell you? I'll begin accepting generous financial bids now.

Okay, just kidding. It turns out that there's a large recruiting event here that Loyola law school is holding for its patent law program. That's what the chairs - and the HUGE number of hotel rooms - are being used for.
posted by AngerBoy at 9:43 PM on July 28, 2010

Best answer: Arggg you figured it out! I was just coming to say that it's the Loyola Patent Fair

It is the recruiting event for wanna be patent lawyers.
posted by Arbac at 10:12 PM on July 28, 2010

Glad you got the answer, but there is another possibility. The same setup only with one chair per room is used when giving oral exams to large groups. The examiners are in the room and the examinees wait outside for proctors to usher them in and out at the appropriate times. The oral portion of the exam for board certification in anesthesiology is given that way, for example.
posted by TedW at 6:03 AM on July 29, 2010

Response by poster: For the record, here's a shot of the same rooms, with the chairs occupied by young, sweaty, black-suited attorneys.
posted by AngerBoy at 8:21 PM on July 31, 2010

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