Toronto's unofficial mascot is the raccoon, but it really should be the rat
It is well known that Toronto is unofficially represented by the raccoon (or if you’re a millennial, the trash panda) but as times change and the city becomes more of a struggling mess, another city-dwelling critter seems to speak to our bigger struggles.
Introducing the all mighty rat.
Now please, before you send me any hate mail, I understand the raccoon is a very popular and loved animal here in Toronto. And I understand that New York City is already known for its rattiness.
But, please, hear me out.
There is no doubt rat sightings in the city are happening on a day-to-day, minute-to-minute and second-to-second basis.
Rats seem to be recent arrivals in a lot of places now. Not sure where you live but in Toronto they apparently had started to come out during the pandemic when restaurants were closed and were looking for food elsewhere. Also new construction disrupted where they were living.— lanamy01 (@cochraf) October 11, 2022
Whether it's swarming outside Yonge and Eglinton or scaring commuters at Victoria Station, you cannot deny Toronto is full of rodents. Who hasn't seen a rat duck behind a dumpster at their favourite bar or restaurant?
During the last two years with waves of lockdowns, the rats' population quickly increased as they made use of the empty streets and restaurants.
But let's take a closer look at what the rat represents and how that can be applied to our city.
Walking the streets of Toronto alone at 5am and the scariest thing about it is all the rats 🤮🤮— nic 🎃✌️ (@blankthh) September 18, 2022
According to the Chinese zodiac, the rat is suspicious and alert, all virtues needed to survive in this everyday hellsscape that's called Toronto.
But more importantly, rats are outcasts. Scrappy little underdogs that are always looked down upon and cast away.
Doesn't that sound like what Toronto goes through every sports season on the international stage? Or when discussed in every other part of the country?
Rats are resilient and can represent strength, seeing as they often outwit any attempt to get rid of them.
Seeing more rodents in the neighbourhood? Find out how to prevent an infestation and keep your property and business rodent free. https://t.co/gQAr8UlssU— City of Toronto (@cityoftoronto) October 11, 2022
Who doesn't think a person into Toronto isn't either of those two things, constantly putting up with shitty transit, skyrocketing rents and the everyday struggle of affording to live in the city we love.
It takes strength to live here, no doubt.
While the raccoon is cute and appears to be cuddly (do not attempt to cuddle a raccoon) I say it is time the city embraces its rodent roots and let the rat take over.
And while we're on the topic, rats are also very cute.
It's rat attack time, folks!
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