BENGALURU: Scooby pen drive, caller tune, laptop and phone covers, a tooth brush, books, clocks, dolls, pens, pouches, puzzles, shades, trays, masks...this is just a part of 26-year-old John Giftah’s collection. Like many ’90s kids, this Bengaluru-based boy grew up watching the animated character, but while many outgrew these characters, Giftah continues to idolise Scooby Doo to the extent that he’s introduced as the ‘Scooby Pastor’ at church. “Many don’t even know my real name,” he says.
Recently, on Scooby’s 50th anniversary, Giftah released a special mono-acted talk show on YouTube where he mimicked Scooby’s voice. He also a runs a fan page on Facebook called ‘Scooby Doo Fans of Bangalore’ which currently has over 1,200 followers.
Growing up, Giftah spent time alone and often considered ‘Scooby Doo’ as his best friend, and in due course developed a special bond to this show and started writing a lot of stories. When his uncle gifted him a Scooby Doo toothbrush, little did he know he would treasure it for life. When he couldn’t use it any longer, it went into his large collection of memorabilia.
Giftah, who has come to be known as a ‘Scoob-o-pedia’, rattles off trivia about his favourite character. He tells us that one of the proudest reasons to be a Scooby Doo fan is that the character holds the record for the largest number of episodes in any cartoon in history. With every series having its own speciality, Scooby Doo is the only cartoon which even had its own Olympics in the series Scooby’s all star Laff a Lympics, the new Scooby Doo movie series had special celebrity guests like the Harlem Globetrotters, Don Knotts, Jonathan Winters and others who lent their own voices for the show.
For the engineer, Scooby is an inspiration and a stress buster from whom he has learnt to be brave and take risks. “I vividly remember this one time when I was feeling low about myself because of some comments. That day, I happened to watch an excerpt from the Scooby Doo movie. Even though I had watched that movie a million times, this time , I was touched by it when Velma encouraged shaggy and Scooby who were down saying, ‘Guys, each one has a special role. You don’t have to be like others. Be confident in running your race,’ and that made my day,” he says, adding, “The more I see Scooby, the more I just fall in love with him.”