The only thing more horrifying to see in the produce section besides a dearth of green bananas (they gotta last through the week!) is a giant, content-looking rat. MyUpperWest caught one of the offenders in the isle of the Fairway Market at 74th Street and Broadway around 12:40 a.m. this morning: "I spent the next 20 minutes watching in wonderment as at least two rats (although I’m pretty sure there were three) darted back and forth across the aisle."

MyUpperWest says they spotted a mouse trap nearby, but that's probably what the rats use to keep the papayas from rolling away while they browse the prepared foods section. A spokesman for Fairway responds to the sighting:

Thank you so much for letting us know about your encounter with the furry critters who, thanks to all the nearby construction, somehow have gotten into a Fairway Market on the upper west side of New York City at 12:40am. This is unconscionable for us at Fairway Markets and we have brought this not only to the attention of the Store Manager and our Quality Control team but also to the attention of senior management. We are already in the process of conducting a thorough investigation and are taking immediate steps to remedy the problem.

Construction is the oft-cited cause for the Upper West Side's "rat epidemic," including the Rat Crossing District on West 56th. Most of the commenters take it in stride ("The good part is that you know they're not using tons of poisons around the food you buy and eat.") with the notable exception of this Caesar dressing conspiracy theorist:

When they changed their Caesar dressing recipe for the prepared salads, it seemed a kind of bellweather. It used to be tasty and nuanced. Now it's more a gloop of fatty Miracle Whip. The rotisserie chickens aren't as lovingly-prepared either.

Also on the grassy knoll? Master Splinter and some mayo-based Caesar. Thankfully, the Fairway Rats don't appear to be staffing the place like at the Taco Bells of yore. And remember the rat zoo?