We’re literally surrounded by rats of all sizes and nature. There are the benign ones and there are the aggressive ones, the evolved scum-lords and the camouflaged saintly ones, the suave intelligent brains and also the dodos of our society!

‘Rats?’ asked Specky, ‘you mean the rats that climb up the sewage pipes and gnaw away our precious curtains at times. I hate them. But I really did not know that they too had so many categories and castes.’

‘Ah! Never underestimate the attraction of a word like reservation,’ I said, ‘these rats that I am talking about are no less and are always ready to pounce at any advantage they sight.’

It was only when I saw her curiosity getting intense that I revealed to her the real meaning of rats in my mind.  I wrote this on a piece of paper:


Specky seemed happy to read the list and asked, ‘Interesting species of rats. I’m happy it includes the netas, babus, and even the techies.’

We do have an abundance of rats running all around us and these are just a few of them. I remember having first had this rather ratty thought during a monthly conference where a regional manager boldly misspelled ‘corporates’ as ‘corporats’ and I had actually guffawed loudly and said, ‘Yes indeed, the business world is full of rats and that explains why we have such stinking policies.’ That manager did take some time and effort to be placated but by then I had resolved to dive deeper into the murkiness of a ratty world some day.

And today is the day when I bring out the rats in the open. We  are living in a society that is so plagued by rattiness that it has become necessary to start calling a rat a rat and not a bloody mouse anymore.

‘These rats,’ I then explained, ‘come in all sizes and have the attitude that gets them riding the Page 3 headlines all the time. They walk away with all the goodies. In fact, they get their choicest goodies created and then they walk away with them with a nonchalance that is so enviable.’

Yes, the world has changed a lot ever since the population of these rats has gone up… and now this rise in numbers is going up exponentially. Everyone wants a part of this pie, as they have realized that this pie isn’t just a statistical way of projecting an untruth. This pie is as real as the real can get. The rats were always looting us and this hasn’t changed a bit. It is just that now everyone wants to graduate to being a rat and get into their loot-mode.

Will the rats realize that it isn’t possible to go on looting forever… and that you can loot only if there are people worthy of being looted. Something tells me that this is always a one-way mutation of society and that it is time for the rest of us to let our tails out of their recessive hiding and join the Gangs of Rattipur!


Arvind Passey
Written on 08 September 2013