The Octo-Wedge, also known as the Fire Place Room, is located opposite of the Information Desk in the Campus Center. It features a closed-in, gas-fueled fireplace and many comfy chairs and small tables. Matt Zielonko also lives there.
The basis for the room's nickname is mix of simple geometry and historic WPI social phenomena. The "octo" part comes from the room's shape. The "wedge" part has to do with another famous WPI area, the Wedge. A group of students used to populate the wedege and lower-wedge late at night. These students came to known as wedge rats. Once the lower wedge was renovated however, they sought another common yet physically separate space to occupy. This new space was at the time known as the Fire Place Room. Once it became obvious that this was the new home for the wedge-rats, the current nickname of Octo-Wedge was born.
Differences from Wedge
The Octo-Wedge is of course different from the Wedge and Lower Wedge in many important ways. The most noticeable being that fact that the Campus Center is closed at night whereas the lower wedge was always open and thus was a late night hangout for wedge rats. Also the Octo wedge is furnished with the same tables and chairs that are featured on the third floor of the Campus Center and are much nicer than the furniture in the Wedge (the lower wedge was almost entirely un furnished. Finally the Octo Wedge is much smaller than the Wedge or Lower Wedge and so cannot be home to many of the large scale fun-type activities that used to occur in the old locations.
Generally, there is a very high concentration of musical theater students in the wedge. There is a diverse mixture of Masque, Vox, a cappella, Glee Club, and Alden Voices students, all generally coexisting. It is an excellent opportunity to observe musical theater kids in the wild. It is also one of the only habitats where musical theater kids are known to be "chill". The musical theater kids have their own sub-culture. They often will share memes with each other and create arrangements, but usually very little work is done. Due to the close-knit nature of the Octo-Wedge, diseases are very easily transmitted from one person to another.
At the end of B term around the holidays, the musical theater kids will partake in "Trash Santa", like Secret Santa, but with a twist. Participating members have half an hour to an hour to get a gift for their drawn name, but they are not allowed to spend any money on said gift. Gifts in the past have ranged from a whole set of DAKA cutlery and dishware to a musical note taped together out of utensils.