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Mystery of the Lyubov Orlova
January 23, 2014 6:54 AM   Subscribe

Experts say the ship, which is likely to still contain hundreds of rats that have been eating each other to survive, must still be out there somewhere because not all of its lifeboat emergency beacons have been set off.
posted by Chrysostom (93 comments total) 16 users marked this as a favorite

 
It's finally going to reach land, and it will be empty except for one rat the size of a Buick.
posted by Faint of Butt at 6:58 AM on January 23 [23 favorites]


Woo! Free boat!
posted by Naberius at 7:00 AM on January 23 [11 favorites]


Sounds like a great opportunity for a little target practice for the navy.
posted by Thorzdad at 7:01 AM on January 23 [1 favorite]


Mystery of the Lyubov Orlova

Not to be confused with Lyubov Petrovna Orlova (Любо́вь Петро́вна Орло́ва), the first recognized star of Soviet cinema, famous theatre actress and a gifted singer.

For the ship which bears her name, see MV Lyubov Orlova, and a chronology of events on Maritime Matters -- Update: May 24, 2013: The Canadian Coast Guard says it has received no reported sightings of the LYUBOV ORLOVA since March 12, she is presumed sunk.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:02 AM on January 23 [3 favorites]


Built in Yugoslavia in 1976, the unlucky vessel was abandoned in a Canadian harbour after its owners were embroiled in a debt scandal and failed to pay the crew.

The authorities in Newfoundland tried to sell the hull for scrap – valued at £600,000 – to the Dominican Republic, but cut their losses when it came loose in a storm on the way.

Sending the ship off into international waters, Transport Canada said it was satisfied the Lyubov Orlova “no longer poses a threat to the safety of [Canadian] offshore oil installations, their personnel or the marine environment”.
The hell, Canada? "It'll sink. Or something. Maybe? Current is favorable to Canadian interests, regardless."

Also a reminder that what's true for day-sailers and other small vessels is also true for big ships: it's always a buyer's market for used boats.
posted by notyou at 7:05 AM on January 23 [8 favorites]


It's finally going to reach land, and it will be empty except for one rat the size of a Buick.

Cannibal rats? One giant rat? Does no one recall the rat kings of yore? Not mere creepypasta-bait, but actual, historic creepypasta.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:06 AM on January 23 [7 favorites]


This begs to be made into a horror movie
posted by hat_eater at 7:07 AM on January 23 [2 favorites]


This begs to be made into a horror movie

Ghost Ship 2: The Rattening
posted by filthy light thief at 7:09 AM on January 23 [12 favorites]


I was a little dissapointed to read that the ship was not abandoned on the high seas after being overwhelmed by a cannibal rat infestation.
posted by Dr Dracator at 7:10 AM on January 23 [7 favorites]


I can totally see this appearing in Shane Carruth's The Modern Ocean.

Should I gather that there's no international maritime law that covers situations like this?
posted by rock swoon has no past at 7:10 AM on January 23


I've been replaying Dishonored recently, so this especially fires my imagination.
posted by codacorolla at 7:11 AM on January 23 [1 favorite]


There are many accounts of "ghost ships"; during the days of wooden tall ships occasionally a vessel would burn to the waterline but float, often on its cargo, an invisible navigation hazard which would on occasion do real damage to another craft.

Fascinating story. I hope this one ends well.
posted by kinnakeet at 7:11 AM on January 23 [1 favorite]


Should I gather that there's no international maritime law that covers situations like this?

The ancient principle of "finders, keepers" applies.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 7:13 AM on January 23 [2 favorites]


Okay, I can understand how the owners abandoned it instead of paying their crew. I can even understand it coming adrift in a storm. What I can't understand is how a ship that big could slip out of harbor (without hitting anything or going aground? really?) and then be lost --- didn't anyone notice?!? Someone saying "Ooooh looky, there's an unmanned unclaimed ship sailing away, why don't I keep an eye on it until I can claim it under salvage rights?" would've made more sense.
posted by easily confused at 7:15 AM on January 23 [3 favorites]


I'm a bit confused why this thing has got lost. There are radar satellites up there that can spot ships, and while there are a lot of ships to spot there are also AIS satellites that can identify which ships are in a particular area. I'm sure this particular ship's AIS isn't working any more, but that's OK - you just look for the large drifting target that doesn't have AIS on. Are there too many of those to track?

Is it just nobody's job - or is it that the people who are doing the job aren't allowed to talk about it?
posted by Devonian at 7:16 AM on January 23 [2 favorites]


It didn't "slip out of the harbor", it broke loose while being towed to the DR for scrap, the company decided to cut it's losses and let it go. (sometimes it's nice to actually RTFA, or you become easily confused, know what I mean?).
posted by HuronBob at 7:17 AM on January 23 [7 favorites]


This ship pre-dates AIS and only military satellites - who have an idea where to look in the vast, vast ocean - could spot it unaided.
posted by digitalprimate at 7:18 AM on January 23


What I can't understand is how a ship that big could slip out of harbor (without hitting anything or going aground? really?) and then be lost --- didn't anyone notice?!?

Well, it WAS a harbour in Newfoundland. These jokes, they write themselves!
posted by jimmythefish at 7:18 AM on January 23 [4 favorites]


Because it wasn't enough for us to offer the world Justin Bieber, Stephen Harper and Rob Ford, please accept these cannibal rats as a token of our esteem. Now if we can just convince all three of these people that this would be the perfect time to take a cruise ...
posted by maudlin at 7:20 AM on January 23 [7 favorites]


Ghost Ship 2: The Rattening

In May 2002, a bulk carrier with a load of grain is abandoned due to rat infestation.
One year later, crew of a small yacht drifting in the middle of the ocean with broken mast spots a dark shape on the horizon. "A ship! We're saved!" (trigger warnig: lots of mice)
posted by hat_eater at 7:21 AM on January 23 [10 favorites]


This is a spectacular opportunity to test out Raoul Silva's theory about how to get rid of rats: "You just leave it. And they begin to get hungry, then one by one, they start eating each other, until there are only two left. The two survivors. And then what - do you kill them? No. You take them, and release them into the trees. Only now, they don't eat coconut anymore. Now they will only eat rat."

Maybe this ship will make landfall with only a pair of carnivorous super-rats left, and those super-rats will end up eating every other rat in Britain.
posted by Dasein at 7:21 AM on January 23 [5 favorites]


Coverage from Gcaptain ends March June2013 so I suppose it went down - they would have covered any news.
posted by hat_eater at 7:26 AM on January 23


If we leave the ship alone for a few million years, we may end up with a race of sentient rats, like Cat on Red Dwarf.
posted by rmd1023 at 7:32 AM on January 23 [1 favorite]


Ghost Ship 2: The Rattening

Or the romantic comedy SqueakWrecked. Can they learn to love again while cast adrift with thousands of adorable rats? Alternative title: The Truth about Rats and Cogs.
posted by GenjiandProust at 7:35 AM on January 23 [10 favorites]


Hopefully, the British Isles have a well-thumbed copy of How to Avoid Huge Ships at hand, and are ready for this situation.

Personally, I would recommend veering to the south/southeast, and allowing the Lyubov Orlova to pass to the north. This would have the added bonus of bringing the UK into warmer waters and providing a much more balmy January.
posted by Naberius at 7:36 AM on January 23 [13 favorites]


What was that SF story where Britain started drifting across the sea, eventually running into New York? I feel like it was in Omni.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:44 AM on January 23


"Full steam ahead! We are going to ram these bastards!"
Her Majesty meant the rats, of course
posted by hat_eater at 7:49 AM on January 23


So you mean "these rat bastards"?
posted by filthy light thief at 7:53 AM on January 23 [3 favorites]


The ship has been rechristened the SS NOPE!
posted by dr_dank at 7:55 AM on January 23 [4 favorites]


OK. So, I've never pondered this before (because, as far as I know, I'm not insane), but could a small population of rats breed successfully enough to become their own food supply? If so, that really, really creeps me out.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 7:57 AM on January 23


I'm sure that if this thing does come into national waters, it'll be spotted (if it's not already known to those who worry about such things) in plenty of time to be taken into tow or blown out of the water as a hazard to shipping.

Which is s shame. I for one welcome the Ratocpalypse.
posted by Devonian at 7:58 AM on January 23 [1 favorite]


but could a small population of rats breed successfully enough to become their own food supply?

That's like a perpetual motion machine made out of rats. Entropy doesn't work that way.

Though if you had some plants, and some insects to eat the plants, and then the rats ate the insects, it could probably work as a semi-closed system with the rats as the apex predator of the whole thing.
posted by Kadin2048 at 8:00 AM on January 23 [4 favorites]


Too long without a Nosferatu link or two.
posted by muckster at 8:03 AM on January 23


> but could a small population of rats breed successfully enough to become their own food supply?

If it was a closed system like an ocean liner adrift that would be a perpetual motion machine.

i. e. no.

Presumably there is some nutrition in wood, paper, dead seagulls plopping onto the deck and whatnot so it isn't a completely closed system. But there will be very hungry and cannibalistic rats present with no human provisions getting periodically stocked.
posted by bukvich at 8:04 AM on January 23


I think I will just leave this here.
posted by adamvasco at 8:12 AM on January 23


Where I worked, there was this teacher who kept animals in her classroom, and was also very neglectful of them.

One day, I went through her classroom and noticed two rats in a cage. A few weeks later I went through again, and noticed one rat, and then one rat leg and one rat nose, sorta sticking to the outside of the cage, as if the consumed rat was trying to get away from his/her stronger cage mate.

Some things just stay with you.
posted by Danf at 8:12 AM on January 23 [3 favorites]


Ultimate case of NIMBY (for backyards that equal territorial waters). But really, is dumping your trash in the ocean ever a good answer?
posted by immlass at 8:13 AM on January 23


If millions of rats stream off a derelict ship and lay siege to your lighthouse, who better a companion in terror than Vincent Price?
posted by Iridic at 8:16 AM on January 23 [4 favorites]


The last man on board was probably Willard; his favorite rat was Ben. (Cue Michael Jackson)
posted by TedW at 8:17 AM on January 23


The Call of Cthulhu game scenario just writes itself...
posted by happyroach at 8:27 AM on January 23 [3 favorites]


Lyubov Orlova even tweets! Although the account was mostly active during the time when the Orlova was taking up space on St. John's harbourfront and no one knew for certain what was going to happen to it. And many of the jokes are perhaps too local for a non-Newfoundland audience.

The ship left harbour in the perfectly normal fashion for ships to leave harbour, by the way. The storm that broke it loose from the tug that was taking it to the Dominican Republic happened quite some distance out to sea (I want to say at least a few hundred kilometres).
posted by erlking at 8:33 AM on January 23 [2 favorites]


Metafilter: a perpetual motion machine made out of rats
posted by statolith at 8:38 AM on January 23 [7 favorites]


Should I gather that there's no international maritime law that covers situations like this?

Seriously, what the hell? You can just push something you don't want out to sea and say "fuck it" ?
posted by odinsdream at 9:14 AM on January 23


Rat pirates ahoy. My timbers have been fully shivered.
posted by colie at 9:25 AM on January 23


Seriously, what the hell? You can just push something you don't want out to sea and say "fuck it" ?


Yeah, honestly, that's what I've been doing with all my garbage for the last 15 years. I just load it onto a little life boat and push it off the coast. I figured everyone did that? No?
posted by kbanas at 9:29 AM on January 23 [1 favorite]


I was meaning to post to AskScience on reddit about this ship. Asking how long, if we assume a closed system, could a population of, say, 5000 rats actually live if all they had to eat was other rats?

My guess is that starving rats will opportunistically eat baby rats first, so no more than a generation. But I'm still curious.
posted by Space Coyote at 9:36 AM on January 23 [1 favorite]


You can just push something you don't want out to sea and say "fuck it" ?

Sovereign states pretty much can, right now. Private owners violate the International Marine Organization conventions by doing so, but if the owning entity collapses or isn't in the state where the abandonment happens, there's not a lot to be done. In the absence of a owner, all a state is responsible for doing is maintaining safety of shipping routes, that is keeping shipping lanes clear of hazards to other ships. Towing wrecks out to sea is, right now, allowable under the current conventions for national governments.

There are movements afoot to change that, but that's still under discussion.
posted by bonehead at 9:41 AM on January 23 [1 favorite]


This will get adapted in to one helluva horror film.
posted by Theta States at 9:43 AM on January 23


Yeah, I'm a little disappointed in Canada for just going, "eh, not our problem anymore," and washing their hands of it.

But then I remembered this is Stephen Harper's Canada, and has been for eight years now. God knows how much cultural damage could have been inflicted in that much time on the country I knew and loved in the early aughts. The remaining residents of the Maritimes have probably resorted to cannibalism by now.
posted by Naberius at 9:46 AM on January 23 [1 favorite]


the "eh" is ironic in this instance.
posted by Naberius at 9:51 AM on January 23


One more example of how the ocean is really, really fucking big.
posted by gottabefunky at 10:11 AM on January 23 [1 favorite]


Well, it is outside the environment.
posted by bonehead at 10:19 AM on January 23 [2 favorites]


I agree with Thorzdad; this seems like a great opportunity for the Royal Navy to show that they can find and sink the sucker.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 10:28 AM on January 23


maudlin, it sounds like the SS Justin Bieber* has been holed below and is taking on water. I'd keep an eye on him though, he may be getting ready to slip quietly out to sea...


*It really does sound better when you say "JustAINe Bee-BEAR" in a big Quebecois accent.
posted by sneebler at 10:29 AM on January 23 [3 favorites]


it sounds like the SS Justin Bieber* has been holed below and is taking on water

for so many reasons, you owe me a new keyboard and some monitor wipes.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 10:50 AM on January 23 [2 favorites]


WHEN YOU SEE WHAT THESE RATS HAVE ACCOMPLISHED USING ONLY CANABALISM AND WILLPOWER, YOU'LL SWOON!
posted by blue_beetle at 11:01 AM on January 23 [2 favorites]


easily confused: "What I can't understand is how a ship that big could slip out of harbor (without hitting anything or going aground? really?) and then be lost --- didn't anyone notice?!? Someone saying "Ooooh looky, there's an unmanned unclaimed ship sailing away, why don't I keep an eye on it until I can claim it under salvage rights?" would've made more sense."

Tide comes in, tide goes out - no one any idiot can explain that.

And, having been around when numerous boats were lost down the Allegheny River during a flood - mind you, tracking boats on a flooded river is about 1000x easier than tracking them in the ocean - I can assure you that when water's force is enough to take your boat away from you, mere mortals are not in a position to get in a skiff and row after it.

After a couple days at sea, with a low reclamation value, an ocean to search, and no proof the boat is still afloat... there's not a lot of incentive for anyone to search for it. It's not like it's carrying the gold of the conquistadors.

(In the case of the river boats, a combination of salvage/thefts and insurance claims made searching the banks and lowlands for a boat not really worthwhile to many owners. One stayed grounded on the banks near my condo for months.)
posted by IAmBroom at 11:08 AM on January 23


Movie ideas:

"After a collision with a shipping container at sea, a resourceful sailor finds himself, despite all efforts to the contrary, staring his mortality in the face WITH RATS."

"A FedEx executive must transform himself physically and emotionally to survive a crash landing on a deserted island WITH RATS."

"A fleet of ships is forced to do battle with an armada WITH RATS of unknown origins in order to discover and thwart their destructive goals."

"A civilian diving team are enlisted to search for a lost nuclear submarine and face danger WITH RATS while encountering an alien aquatic species."

"After his son is captured in the Great Barrier Reef and taken to Sydney, a timid clownfish sets out WITH RATS on a journey to bring him home."
posted by blue_beetle at 11:12 AM on January 23 [2 favorites]


Is there any precedence for who's legal liability this thing is if it manages to cause damage?
posted by codacorolla at 11:15 AM on January 23


HOLY SHIT DOES THIS STRIKE ME WITH TERROR.

If you want an experience you'll remember forever wait for tonight, turn out the lights, cuddle up with someone you love, and listen to this radio show from the 30s about giant nautical rats on abandoned ship. It'll put a whole new spin on this story.
posted by Blasdelb at 11:16 AM on January 23 [6 favorites]


Seriously, some of the greatest radio of all time.
posted by Blasdelb at 11:26 AM on January 23


(In the case of the river boats, a combination of salvage/thefts and insurance claims made searching the banks and lowlands for a boat not really worthwhile to many owners. One stayed grounded on the banks near my condo for months.)

That's a real problem in my neck of the woods, as well.
posted by TedW at 11:30 AM on January 23


A romantic ensemble comedy! We'll call it Rats, Actually. One of the vignettes can be about two rats who are part of the same Rat King having a whimsical will-they-or-won't-they courtship! And all of the different plotlines will seem to be completely unrelated at first but there'll be a showstopping tour-de-force ending that ties them all together!*

*SPOILER: everyone gets eaten by rats
posted by prize bull octorok at 11:39 AM on January 23 [5 favorites]


Benny Andajetz: "but could a small population of rats breed successfully enough to become their own food supply?"

Kadin2048: "That's like a perpetual motion machine made out of rats. Entropy doesn't work that way."

For some reason this triggered a vision in my mind of a giant blob-like super-organism composed entirely of rats that moves about by birthing layers of new rats in the intended direction of movement while internally consuming away an equivalent number of old rats on the opposite side.
posted by Hairy Lobster at 12:04 PM on January 23 [6 favorites]


I shuddered at the thought of ravenous rats swarming some unwary Irish village after the ship violently runs aground on the coast. I'm going to stop thinking about this now, because I'll cry.

But well-played, Canada! Between these rats and Bieber, it's no more "Mr. Nice Country" for you, eh? Any more shenanigans like this, and US trekkers abroad will need to find another country's flag to sew onto their backpacks.
posted by droplet at 12:19 PM on January 23


"hundreds of rats that have been eating each other to survive"

Wait - when did we start talking about my workplace?
posted by symbioid at 12:27 PM on January 23 [1 favorite]


In May 2002, a bulk carrier with a load of grain is abandoned due to rat infestation.

Genetically modified grain.

To make matters worse, a lonely seaman was teaching some of the rats to fish before the boat was abandoned.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 12:33 PM on January 23 [1 favorite]


Ray Walston, Luck Dragon: To make matters worse, a lonely seaman was teaching some of the rats to fish before the boat was abandoned.

Actually, it would make matters better. See, the rats are no longer stressed due to a lack of food, but have come to enjoy the freedom and bounty of the sea, no longer treated like vermin by humans, or relegated to a low-level rung on the food chain by cats, dogs, wolves and larger predators.

When the boat of mutant rats finally contact a salvage group, they wish only to be left alone, and maybe to get a shove towards a warmer climate. But unable to communicate with people in any understandable way, the rats are seen as freaks of nature, only fit to be exterminated.

Luckily, a young person on board realizes the rats are peaceful and wish only for a quiet existence, and (s)he sabotages the salvage team's efforts through some slightly wacky antics, and helps the rats get their push southwards. In the end, the salvagers realize that the rats were only to scrounge a place in the world, and wish them well as they float away.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:42 PM on January 23 [2 favorites]


Luckily, a young person on board

Wesley, of course.
posted by Naberius at 12:49 PM on January 23 [1 favorite]


Actually, it would make matters better. See, the rats are no longer stressed due to a lack of food, but have come to enjoy the freedom and bounty of the sea, no longer treated like vermin by humans, or relegated to a low-level rung on the food chain by cats, dogs, wolves and larger predators.

This would have made a much better sequel to The Secret of N.I.M.H. than that forgettable direct-to-video offering.
posted by radwolf76 at 12:57 PM on January 23


ravenous rats swarming some unwary Irish village

It'll be like The Fog, except that the fog is rats.

In a perfect world the government would be taking steps to ensure that this happens.
posted by aramaic at 1:15 PM on January 23


ravenous rats swarming some unwary Irish village

Declan, tell yer feckin friends to ring before they drop by.
posted by Divine_Wino at 1:27 PM on January 23 [4 favorites]


See, the rats are no longer stressed due to a lack of food, but have come to enjoy the freedom and bounty of the sea, no longer treated like vermin by humans, or relegated to a low-level rung on the food chain by cats, dogs, wolves and larger predators.

Ship of Rats? A little Art House number, I'm thinking six hundred displaced rats being deported from Yugoslavia to Canada with little idea what might be waiting for them there.

Not commercial enough? Okay, how about, this ship, it has toxic waste, maybe radioactive? You see where I'm going with this.
posted by IndigoJones at 1:30 PM on January 23


Interesting story, but I'm a bit confused as to how the article in the original post came to be. According to other pieces linked in the comments, the last anyone knows of the ship was March, 2013, when emergency signals were heard from a device that only starts transmitting when it comes into contact with water. This seems like strong evidence that it's sunk, and it sounds like everyone has presumed as such for months. So why is the Independent now, in January, writing this up in a way that suggests the ship is still floating and likely to show up off the UK coast any minute?
posted by dnash at 2:10 PM on January 23


So why is the Independent now, in January, writing this up...

Well, they's immigrant rats, ain't they? Scamming off the dole and such.
posted by aramaic at 2:13 PM on January 23


I thought each lifeboat had its own beacon, and not all of them had gone off. Unless rats ate the remaining beacon(s)?
posted by rmd1023 at 2:17 PM on January 23


The Smithsonian tries to ruin everyone's fun.
Off the coast of England there is a ship. Well, there are probably many ships, but this ship in particular is interesting because it has no people on it. It’s a ghost ship—a 1,400 ton ocean liner of a ghost ship. If you believe the headlines, it’s full of cannibal rats, and it’s heading for England. Neither of those things are true. ...

The cannibal rat theory comes from Pim De Rhoodes, a Belgian salvage hunter, who told tabloid The Sun, “There will be a lot of rats and they eat each other. If I get aboard I'll have to lace everywhere with poison.” De Rhoodes has no actual information about whether there are rats on the boat, or whether they're diseased, cannibalistic or perfectly civilized.
posted by maudlin at 2:29 PM on January 23 [2 favorites]


In the movie version The Smithsonian would totally get eaten by the rats right after being all dismissive about them and we'd be all HAHA YEAH SUCK IT UPTIGHT KNOWITALL SCIENCE JERKS.

Then they'd call Pim De Rhoodes out of retirement for one...last...job.
posted by prize bull octorok at 2:34 PM on January 23 [5 favorites]


So this is how The Strain begins.
posted by homunculus at 3:27 PM on January 23


There was never the least attention paid to what was cut up for sausage.... There would be meat that had tumbled out on the floor, in the dirt and sawdust.... There would be meat stored in great piles in rooms; and the water from leaky roofs would drip over it, and thousands of rats would race about on it.... These rats were nuisances, and the packers would put out poisoned bread for them, they would die, and then rats, bread, and meat would go into the hoppers together.

Upton Sinclair, description of sausage-making in his muckraking novel, The Jungle.

Is this the rat ship thread or the Danish hog slaughter thread?
posted by bukvich at 3:34 PM on January 23


MetaFilter: Hundreds of rats that have been eating each other to survive.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 5:42 PM on January 23 [1 favorite]


So, wait a sec -

I can flag my rustbucket ship as Eritrian or Somalian or South Ossetian or something, get paid by big corporations to load it to the gunwhales with toxic waste and radioactive scrap for legitimate disposal, and just abandon it in the middle of the Pacific?


This is the perfect fundraiser for that secret volcano lair I've always wanted...
posted by codswallop at 6:16 PM on January 23


Maybe the Australian government has purchased it (no one would ever know) to tow back asylum seekers illegal immigrants/ queue jumpers/ economic migrants.
posted by Mario Speedwagon at 11:05 PM on January 23


Movie ideas:

"After a collision with a shipping container at sea, a resourceful sailor finds himself, despite all efforts to the contrary, staring his mortality in the face WITH RATS."
...

Works with fortune cookies too. All of them.
excerpt:

Your true love will show himself to you under the moonlight WITH RATS.
Conquer your fears or they will conquer you WITH RATS.
You only need look to your own reflection for inspiration. Because you are Beautiful WITH RATS!
Good news from afar may bring you a welcome visitor WITH RATS.
When all else seems to fail, smile for today and just love someone WITH RATS.
A single conversation with a wise man is better than ten years of study WITH RATS.
Happiness is often a rebound from hard work WITH RATS.
Do not follow where the path may lead. Go where there is no path...and leave a trail WITH RATS.
Back away from individuals who are impulsive WITH RATS.
Do not fear what you don't know WITH RATS.
The object of your desire comes closer WITH RATS.
If you wish to know the mind of a man, listen to his words WITH RATS.
The most useless energy is trying to change what and who God so carefully created WITH RATS.
posted by sebastienbailard at 3:58 AM on January 24 [1 favorite]


i just have to let you know that this thread is really top class entertainment, one of the best on MeFi WITH RATS
well maybe that's because my favorite pastime is relaxing in a friendly environment WITH RATS
that's why I'm now sitting in my comfortable chair at home WITH RATS
although i might sooner rather than later need some help WITH RATS
posted by hat_eater at 5:05 AM on January 24 [1 favorite]


whether they're diseased, cannibalistic or perfectly civilized.

There'll be a rat officer class with a special decanter for their after dinner port.
posted by colie at 5:14 AM on January 24 [1 favorite]


MetaFilter: WITH RATS
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 6:02 AM on January 24


Lyubov Orlova even tweets! Although the account was mostly active during the time when the Orlova was taking up space on St. John's harbourfront and no one knew for certain what was going to happen to it. And many of the jokes are perhaps too local for a non-Newfoundland audience.

Sure dats nudding b'y. Have yerself a gawk at @RatsOfOrlova. (Warning: Cannibal rat twitter contains strong dialect)
posted by gohabsgo at 6:34 AM on January 24 [2 favorites]


Le Monde doesn't hesitate to throw cold water over all the fun, and thinks the ship most likely sank some time ago, some 2400 km from Ireland.
posted by dilettante at 8:55 AM on January 24


Le Monde doesn't hesitate to throw cold water over all the fun, and thinks the ship most likely sank some time ago, some 2400 km from Ireland.

So you're saying that now we have to deal with aquatic-canibal rats? If they master flight too then we're doomed!
posted by blue_beetle at 10:05 AM on January 24 [1 favorite]


This Pim De Rhoodes seems like an interesting character. He bought his own abandoned ship, the Commandant Fourcault, and turned it into a "floating diving base, a adventure ship, but mainly a luxurious house". And his ship is for hire for your next adventure.

Apparently he's gone out a few times with his ship hoping to find the Lyubov Orlova to claim it for salvage.

Dreamers have to dream.
posted by eye of newt at 4:27 PM on January 24


Rat islands ‘a laboratory of future evolution’: University of Leicester academic predicts rats will continue to grow and fill a ‘significant chunk’ of Earth’s emptying ecospace
posted by homunculus at 5:20 PM on February 4


Pet Rats Photographed with Miniature Teddy Bears
posted by homunculus at 1:53 PM on February 6 [3 favorites]


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