It | The Pit Post by John Pitonzo






stood atop the dump with its small, feminine hands pawing the air ready to begin its rant. There was less than a week till election day, and he was behind in most of the polls. He puckered his lips, looked over his multitude, and his brow furrowed as he worked hard to conjure a thought, a word… a most strenuous task for his little rat brain. His followers, from every pest infested highway and byway of the rodent kingdom, were all there: sewer and subway rats, trash can and dumpster rats, tenement and penthouse rats; rat representatives from nearly every town and trailer park in the land. Indubitably, none of them were clean rats. Dirty from the tip of their pink noses to the end of their hairless tails.  And the proud hosts of rather invisible diners – ticks, fleas and mites, transmitters of all manner of infectious diseases. There were all sorts of rats: Fat rats, skinny rats, sexist and racist religious rats; neofascist rats, funny looking rats with bald heads and tetra-gammadion and KKK tattoos; working class rats, some brown and black rats, but mostly pale-skinned rats, pale from a lack of red blood cells and oxygen, a result of their sickly interiors.  All had whiskers and beady eyes. The mountain of garbage was crawling with cockroaches too, the leader’s true kingdom and class, but they were only along for the leftovers to fuel their dysentery dispensers and praise their flaming orange god. The leader, it is rumored, was a white rat early in life, but had grown, as he grew, so pale over time, from living a trashy life, that he tried everything from tanning beds to make-up in order to hide his bilious, yellow hue.  A few Swamp rats sitting up on their haunches in the rear of the multitude, waiting for their leader’s first words, started discussing the color of his face. “Orange rust,” insisted one. “Burnt orange,” squealed another.  A compatriot called him carrot complected, and then one among them, apparently from outside their colony, with the beadiest eyes of all, that hissed with a Russian accent, said, Pale salmon,” and all agreed. And then the leader uttered his first words. The rats all chattered in glee.  The roaches stood up on their hind legs and saluted with their antennae.                             

“Terrific. Terrific day. Thank you.  Thank you rats and roaches. You’re all great.  You are incredible people, even if you’re not really people. Tremendous. It is a big day on the garbage heap. It’s a tremendous garbage heap.  And I created it.  Because I’m intelligent.  Look at me.  The republic is at risk.  A human being is trying to win the election. Imagine that.  A human being.  I’ve worked hard to spread the virus in rose gardens and rallies and human beings are trying to spoil it all. Very few have died.  The Spanish flu thing was fake news.  Middle Ages fake news. The doctors and scientists are all idiots.  Believe me.”  The multitude cheered. The leader continued.  “Believe me.  I can’t lose. Rats in other countries love me. Vladimir loves me.  Kim loves me.  Jair loves me.  Melania loves me.  She loves when I grab her by her whiskers. God, guns and garbage! You’re all super spreaders. Global warming is good for the winter months.  Believe me.  Gotta go now.”  And their revered leader disappeared before their very eyes and the multitude did somersaults in the garbage and erupted into an orgy, while the cockroaches returned to the banquet.

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