We've seen rats run wild on subway escalators, go postal inside train cars, and even liberate subway station booths. But a rat somehow making its way inside a MetroCard machine? That, my friends, is a new one.
The MetroRat was allegedly spotted by a straphanger at the 18th Street subway station in Chelsea around noon about...a year and a half ago; it only went up on Subway Creatures' Instagram account today though. Nicole Ranucci, who says she took the video, told Gothamist she could see the rat's tail dangling down into the change & receipt slot. "The rat dropped into the receipt holder from within the machine," she said. "I noticed as I was using [the machine], no one else in the station seemed to notice it as it was the middle of the day. I believe the rat did get out on its own but I can't be sure as I needed to catch the train, but I'm sure it did because it kept lifting the door to try to escape."
She added that she was "equally shocked, terrified and completely curious how it could have possibly gotten in there." Much like everyone else who saw her video:
— Corey Johnson (@CoreyinNYC) March 12, 2019
— John Morris (@SubwayTidbits) March 12, 2019
My Why I Am Leaving New York essay: https://t.co/Cr8jPwS8uP
— David Freedlander (@freedlander) March 12, 2019
Some people were understandably skeptical that a rat could have ended up inside a machine on its own, especially in this post-Zardulu world of fake viral rat videos. (Yes, Pizza Rat was a hoax... read the manifesto.) So as with everything you see on the Internet these days, take MetroRat with a grain of salt lest we find out in a month that Zardulu's been doing her thing again...as this tweet from Monday implies...
Been a while pic.twitter.com/ioMG0D9Gmg
— Zardulu Citrinitas (@zardulu) March 12, 2019
Even if it is a viral hoax—which, let us stress, it very well could be!—MetroRat has almost certainly taken the subway more than Gov. Cuomo, and therefore should be put in charge of the MTA.
this is directly because of that video of ppl singing robyn on the subway platform https://t.co/4JQSS8NuYU
— Desus Nice (@desusnice) March 12, 2019
An MTA spokesperson told Gothamist, "This is very troubling and we’re looking into how it could’ve happened, including the possibility that someone may have planted it. This is clearly an anomaly and the recent Subway Action Plan, Group Station Manager program and deep clean program have been helping to get stations significantly cleaner."