Sunday, April 21, 1996

KTWV01-Issue 1: What is Kooler Talk?

Hello Web Surfing Stephanians,

First question First

What is Kooler Talk?

Kooler Talk was a college rag which was started in the early sixties by such illustrious names as 62er Sarwar Lateef (of Economist fame and he was then a correspondent with one of the major Indian newspapers), 62er Prakash Joseph (a superb cartoonist and the last I heard was busy marketing Indian textiles somewhere in the US), 63er Montek Singh Alhuwalia (Rhodes scholar and now Indian Finance Secretary spearheading the liberalisation programme) amongst others.

It was named after what took place every night at the Blacksmith, where us "studious hard-working" souls, usually having a rest from our intensive bridge rubbers, would assemble to discuss everything under the sun but studies.

Kooler Talk was a great hit. After I left college in 1963 I do not know whether it continued, and if so, for how long.

I, along with two colleagues, did a couple of pieces for Kooler Talk including one exposure of the misappropriation of some Aid material.

Our trio was called the Heap Gang - Big Heap, Middle Heap and Little Heap. Little Heap was none other than 62er Niranjan Desai, an East African student who later took up Indian nationality and is probably a First Secreatry or Ambassador somewhere by now. Middle Heap was 63er Ajay Verma who joined the Indian Army, survived a war with Pakistan by the luck of a cigarette, worked with Bata Shoe Company and then emigrated to Denmark without a penny in his pocket, married a nice Danish girl, had a couple of lovely children, and last I heard had an Indian Boutique somewhere in Malmo in Sweden. Of course, Big Heap, was me, Jacob Matthanand over the course of the next few issues I hope you will get some idea of life in college, as I saw it, during the early sixties when I was there.

What I would like to offer here is a page for other Stephanians to share the experiences of their years, so that others can enjoy and see how the college grew or shrank, as many do not know much of what has happened once they left their alma mater.

I must especially thank 91er Krishna Kumar (Alumini list) for maintaining the Alumini list, which I discovered while web surfing, and if you have not registered, I suggest that you go to his site and register immediately.

Do let me know how you would like this page to develop and I shall try my best, as I am not a net wizard youngster, compared with most of you and do not have the youthful experience to do anything very complicated on the computer. I am a Mac addict and as a result prepare my web pages without knowing anything very much about scripting. We have great Mac tools with which we just type up a file in a text processor and just drop that file onto a program, and hey presto - the web page is ready. As the text processor does not have a built in spell checker, you may rather frequently come across spelling mistakes - for which I ask to be excused!

Some of the items that I wll cover from the period 1960 to 1963, is the JCR Presidency, the first JCR Evening, the introduction of various competitions in the JCR, the Miss Fresher contests, ragging, stories about the Principal, Dean, some staff members, some students - especially those who are well known characters today, etc. Lot of hard gossip in the usual Stephanian style as I can muster after a period of 33 years in the outside world! And hopefully, plenty of PJs.


Oulu, Finland