Friday, October 30, 2015

Donut Rat: An Essay on Rodents, Fame, & Free Food

As any regular reader of this blog knows, this site transitioned to almost exclusively music-related content years ago.  Please forgive me, but I feel I have to write about this now.

I shot the Donut Rat video.

If you haven't seen it yet, you can watch it below.

After a Tinder date on Wednesday night, I went down into the subway at East Broadway to catch an F train back to Brooklyn.  As I descended the staircase to the platform, I noticed two rats at the bottom, nibbling on two donuts from Dough.  One of the rats rounded a corner (It later returned, donut-less, charging past me to where the infamous Donut Rat had gone.), but the other started dragging one of the donuts away.  I pulled out my iPhone and captured the moment.  I posted the video on YouTube today.

Certain publications have insinuated that I gave the rats the donuts on purpose to try for some sort of Internet stardom.  One even went as far as to say the video "exemplifies just everything wrong with New York."

First off, I didn't give the rat the donut.  If you know me, you know I'm the last person to waste food.  I'm also the first person to accept free food.  I was scheduled to be off of work on Wednesday, but once I found out the boss was treating us to lunch, I decided to go.  To be completely honest, the reason the video isn't zoomed-in is because in my other hand I was holding a baguette that a bartender in the neighborhood gave to me, as they hadn't sold any cheese plates that night.  In other words, if I were a rat, I would definitely be one that takes advantage of free food on the platform.

After the world's adoration of Pizza Rat, it's easy to assume that I shot this video solely for the opportunity to become "Internet-famous."  Sure, I'd love to be dancing on Ellen, but did I think I would achieve actual stardom for shooting this video?  No.  But it is an entertaining video.  I showed a couple of people at work the following day and they loved it, so why wouldn't I share it with the world?  If one person smiles today because they saw a rat carry a donut, that makes me happy.

I wouldn't mind being famous, but I'd rather it be for something I actually worked on, like the concert reviews on this site that I spend hours writing after scribbling down setlists and notes in the dark during a show.  Or my podcast where I interview musicians after tirelessly reading every previous interview with them I can find, so I don't ask the same questions.  Or my stand-up comedy, which I've been honing for nine years, especially in this past one-and-a-half, where I've been producing the most fun rooftop show in Brooklyn.  I'm busy pursuing these things in my free time.  You really think I don't have better things to do than stage a rat video at 2:30 in the morning?  I went to NYU for Film & Television.  Donut Rat! is not my best film.  My best ones are fiction, and they are ones where I did feed the talent.

I have a lot more to offer the world than a video of a hungry rat.  That's just what I offered it this morning.  If you were entertained by it, great.  If it makes you angry that other people are entertained by it, you are a sad excuse for a human being.

1 comment:

  1. As one of the coworkers who saw the video and loved/was totally grossed out by it...This is truth. I had leftover lunch today and was pissed Dustin wasnt there to give it to. He will eat anything..esp if its free. Btw was the Ginger bowl from Roast.