The Life and Death of Talos

A remembrance of the larger-than-life programming overlord

Reading Time: 4 minutes

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By Ka Seng Soo

My dear friends, I fear that you already know what has just come to pass. As the program office announced recently, our favorite bronze giant has recently passed, having been replaced by some attempt at a doppelgänger. Now, if you all could just pause your joyous singing for a moment, I’d like to say a few words remembering the great Talos.

Talos, wrought out of bronze by seasoned Stuyvesant veteran Rodda John in spring 2018, was always interested in world domination. Despite his creator’s intentions, he was an ambitious giant. From the moment his enormous twisted claws were affixed to the supercomputer controlling the academic records of all Stuyvesant students, he knew he loved his job. And so, he told his creator. As John monotonically later revealed to The Spectator in a private interview, “Talos had a habit of enthusiastically punching his fist through the ceiling, walls, or really anything in his vicinity each time he finished a student’s schedule. That was when I realized, to my dismay, that the big guy actually had feelings.”

Not only was Talos’s enthusiasm as powerful as him, but it was also infectious. “Talos? I love the guy,” said junior Robotlov Ere. “From preventing me from taking my required AP Spanish class to putting me back in the chemistry class I aced last year, this guy’s the one making sure I don’t take too hard a schedule.” One sophomore even took to putting in 15 versions of each of her very minor program changes, just so she could get some more of his attention.

Even critics of his expressed admiration for him. Another sophomore said, “I’ve always looked up to how deeply I imagine Talos sleeps. If only I could sleep through my programming nightmares as well as Talos sleeps through thousands of programming requests!” One senior claimed that Talos had inadvertently helped him through college rejection season. “Though at first, I didn’t exactly appreciate having to wait two weeks to have the customary number of gym classes, it taught me to meditate! Now, no matter how many assignments, rejection letters, emails, projects, or flying objects you throw at me, I will still remain calm and motionless.” He later added that Talos really improved his English grade due to the plethora of incomprehensible prerequisite lists Talos made him read.

Some even claimed that Talos was the Stuyvesant’s greatest equalizer (okay, maybe the second greatest, after transit issues). Being equally stressful for both teachers and students, it was a real step toward equitable administration. As one parent put it, “Talos brings strong and warm feelings to all of us—some of us our hearts, and others, our heads. Now, will someone please find me a Tylenol?”

However, there was one group of people Talos never did seem to conquer the hearts of. The deans were always suspicious of the bronze giant, whose habit of stealing everyone’s coffee and then running around like an 11-foot tall three-year-old angered many. A rumor begun by none other than Assistant Principal of Security Brian Moran himself implicated Talos in the recent escalator closures. “Ever wonder why the two to three is always broken? It’s because of whatever the [EXPLETIVE] that monster keeps doing down there! He’s not gonna keep smashing his ugly fists through ceilings and escalators while I’m around, that’s for sure.”

Additionally, just the daily upkeep of the giant proved an inconvenience for the administration. “Do you know how many cellphones I have to confiscate and sell on eBay just to pay for this guy’s Starbucks? Half by daily haul, that’s how many,” said Spanish teacher Manual Simon, another dean enraged by the giant.

His stormy relationship with the administration, we believe, may have caused his tragic end. John’s intention to create a programming overlord even more robotic and emotionless than himself had backfired early, perhaps due to the fact that robots can never reach the levels of sleep deprivation and vitamin D deficiency seen in former Stuyvesant students. However, the rift between them was a recent development. “He keeps trying to make me tell him my passw-… wait what is that… AAAHHHHHH!!!” he said in November 2019, before glancing at an enormous figure shadowing the door and running away. John was later rumored to be found entrapped in the lair where he created Talos, working furiously at his forge and computer while the bronze giant banged at the door. Leaked documents between John and other administrators detail secret plans to construct a “small, soft, floofy giant” to take Talos’s place. A manifesto titled Bronze and Gore was believed to be circulated before Talos’s murder, which from the super trustworthy video hacked off of Assistant Principal Francesca McAuliffe’s phone, appears to be executed by a group of nine masked assistant principals.

Considering the truly horrific death of Talos, it is all the more insulting that the administration recently replaced Talos with a nearly identical bronze giant, a rude mockery of the one we knew and loved. Let us not forget the loss of the real and true Talos, the giant with a giant heart. His boundless, ceilingless ambition and magnetic personality are an inspiration to us all, including all of you haters, and we will continue to remember his spirit—even if it means breaking escalators.