Like their human counterparts, New York City rats are both bold and clever. That was proven this week, when the rats took steps in damage control after there was some press about new ways to handle rodent infestation in the subway. The little creatures felt their reputation was at stake and quickly took the situation in hand. The results were almost immediate.
In The New York Times on Friday, there was an article, "For Some Subway Riders, an Abiding Appreciation of Rats," detailing emails from people sympathetic to the plight of the rats! The emailers argued for the right of rats to live, one writer even reporting that she had a pet rat at one time.
Spoof reporter Gail Farrelly set out to find out how the rats had managed to engineer this fantastic press; she was able to reach Rhoda Rodent by telephone. Ms. Rodent is the chief public relations representative for the NYC rats and maintains a pristine office under the tracks at Grand Central station. She said that what she did was contact numerous known supporters (people who had rats as pets, animal advocates, etc.) and asked them to email The New York Times with their views. Mission accomplished.
Unfortunately, Ms. Rodent had to cut short the telephone call with Farrelly. She apologized but said it was an emergency. On the other line was an official from BP wanting to engage her services to give the company a crash course in damage control and reputation restoration.
He needed her help -- pronto!