Dead Programmer's Cafe

Hey Hey, Ho Ho. One Zero Zero One, Zero!

Unions in New York City are masters of psychological warfare. When they set up a giant blow-up rat (seasonally decked in Christmas tree lights) in front of your business and start singing union songs and chanting chants, well, it’s not a pleasant experience.

The chants are catchy. Here’s my favorite one:

We are the Union, we are the Union
Mighty, mighty Union – mighty mighty Union
Everywhere we go – everywhere we go,
People want to know – people want to know
Who we are – who we are
So we tell them – so we tell them

I culled this great quote from an article at Fastcompany.com:

“Twelve years ago, Mike O’Connor, owner of Big Sky Balloons & Searchlights in Plainfield, Illinois, created the first rat at the request of a union member in nearby Chicago. Said the union man of O’Connor’s first sketch: “It’s not mean enough.” O’Connor added bigger fangs and a pink belly with “festering nipples.” “I love it,” the man said. So did other unions. Today, Big Sky sells between 100 and 200 rats a year–even though it is a nonunion shop itself.”

Bigger fangs. Check.

“Festering nipples.” Check.

The rat is all over the city. Sean of Dust and Rust blog caught one in front of a Duane Reade.

If you decide to organize, I guess you can buy your own over here.