Once Wooster, Always Wooster

by Yussi Pick

As soon as you know of Wooster, you suddenly meet people, who also have a connection to Wooster. That’s what they are saying, right? And indeed, from my first week in the U.S. I could prove this saying right. I was on my way to Stanford. When the plane started to decend in Salt Lake City, where I had a layover, I started to chat with my neighbors, a 80 year old father with his 40yo son. I told them, that I was going to be a Teaching Assistent at a small College, south of Cleveland. You probably won’t know it. The town is called Wooster. Of course they did know it. The fathers grandfather applied for a job as a janitor in Wooster, so that his kids could go there without tuition.
In Stanford the head of the foreign language center took me aside and told me: “You know, I graduated from Wooster. And I tell you something: As soon as you know of Wooster, you will meet people all over the world, who know Wooster.” She didn’t know that she didn’t have to convince me.

Fast Forward.

I am back from Wooster and was spoiled for a year with great Prof-student relationships, so I’m sitting pretty pissed in front of a closed office. Office Hours at the University of Vienna don’t actually mean, that the professor really is in his office. More on that probably in a later post. I’m only back for two weeks but Wooster already seems far far away and needless to say, I long forgot about what they were saying. Until another prof walks by. Without a lot of thinking, I burst out: “May I ask, why you are wearing a College of Wooster T-Shirt?”
He was the German Language Assistent in Woo not shorter than 28 years ago. It’s true, what they are saying: Once Wooster, always Wooster.