Deacon Profile: A Bostwick Rat


Aine Pierre, News Editor

Reuben the Rat was born in the shadowy, musty basement of Bostwick Hall and has never seen the sun. He learned English by overhearing 18 years worth of drunk midnight conversations over Moe’s, which he later would eat (and then learn not to). His life goal is to enroll in Wake Forest as a business major and eventually become the first rodent president of Wake Forest, with the possible exception of Washington Manly Wingate, whose special identity is unknown to this day.

What does a day in your life look like?

It really depends on the day and the time of year. For example, during midterms season, I’m basically a zombie. I mean, honestly, how can you expect a rat to sleep through the sound of every student in the hall crying themselves to sleep? Then there’s the weekend, when everyone is either getting drunk and screaming at the top of their lungs or trying to woo someone — it’s just exhausting.

The summer months are very peaceful for me, though. Without students, I can melt into the basement in peace, and I don’t even really mind the mold — although, you would think they would have taken care of that by now. But on most days, I get up, I eat some crumbs off the floor of some crusty kid’s room and then take a nap. Sometimes, I even attend a couple of lectures on the topics that I’m interested in.

What are your academic interests? Have you ever thought of pursuing a degree?

I’m really interested in politics, business and health and exercise science (which, I suppose, is ironic for a disease-carrying rodent. The other two are kind of spot-on if you stereotype me as a typical rodent). There was a class on corruption that I found really interesting, though I generally do not like the use of rat metaphors for when they mean something bad, like “I smell a rat.” Give me a break, you smell a human — humans suck, we’re just trying to eat.

I’ve definitely given thought to pursuing my doctorate degree. I want to go into education administration, and so I would need some level of higher education for that. The thing is that rats generally are not, how shall we say, accepted in the academic sphere. But I’m getting my application together to actually apply to Wake Forest for this year. I’m actually getting my top 10 list together. I have considerable legacy, as my entire family going back hundreds of generations were residents of Wake Forest. We even came over here from the original campus — here’s a picture of my great-great-yada-yada grandfather and grandmother on the original campus in 1834. We were here before you, and we will be here after you.

After undergrad, I’m thinking of travelling the world. I hear rats in New York City get decent pizza and not what the Pit passes for it, so I’m excited to travel there. And then, I want to come back and become the first non-human president of the university.

Why do you want to be president of Wake Forest?

Honestly, have you seen this place lately? All you humans are running around, partying and poisoning yourselves and just wasting your academic potential. I want to impose a rigorous academic curriculum and make you humans understand what it’s like to crawl to survive, to live in the shadows, to climb up and make something of yourself.

Also, there needs to be more cheese on this campus. Like, a lot more. So that’s my platform — human suffering and cheese. Oh, and I think we need to get rid of Moe’s. I mean, how do you people eat that stuff? I’m genetically conditioned to eat raw sewage and even I had diarrhea for weeks.

Okay … so, who do you see as your role models?

Well, I really look up to Remy from the documentary “Ratatouille”. I watched it a couple of months ago, and it’s fantastic! It really showed me that we rats can make something of ourselves. We can break all the expectations and truly do something great in this world. I admire that. Although, I think Remy was too nice to humans. Like I said before, suffering is how we’re going to get out of this crisis of confidence humans are facing.

Why do you have so much animus toward humans?

Please understand, I don’t hate humans. We rats need humans to survive (who else’s crumbs are we going to eat?), which is why I fear for you all. You all have become too soft. I recently read “The History of the Decline of the Roman Empire” by Edward Gibbon for a class I was taking (really, it was some doe-eyed freshman in Bostwick taking it, but I was doing the lion’s share of the learning while he drooled in front of the screen), and I get it. You can’t let yourself be taken to pleasure. Do you know how much debauchery I hear in a night? It really makes me fear for the future.

You speak (and clearly read) very well. How did you learn English?

Network television, reading the Old Gold & Black until I cried and drunk conversations with roommates. I basically learned English the way Frankenstein’s Monster did. There was also this ethereal bisexual stoner a couple of years ago. One night she got so high that she actually decided to talk to me. We had a lot of fun. We would talk whenever she got high, and we had a good rapport going. Then she got a boyfriend and spent all her time while high with him. I did learn some choice expressions from that interaction, especially when they broke up at the end of the year. But anyway, yeah, that’s how I learned.

Anything else to add?

Honestly and all jokes aside, just stop discounting things that aren’t like you. You know, we have souls, too. There’s so much time spent in this world looking down upon beings that we never get to see how everyone is exceptional. Anyone can be anything. I mean, they made cauliflower into pizza right? The only thing that’s impossible is Moe’s ever being good. I mean, seriously, people.

Editor’s Note: This article has been edited for brevity and clarity.