Simon Gura ∙ 11/28/2020 ∙ November 2020
“What will happen when the lockdown is lifted?” This is perhaps one of the most common questions surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, the answer to which could radically reshape the world, from the global economy down to how we live and work. Undoubtedly, we will face challenges upon our return to in-person school beyond readapting to our “normal” routines.
Here at The Radish, a journalistic organization which strives to explore the unexplored, expose the unexposed, cover the uncovered, and redact the unredacted, we are proud to bring you a report on one of the most pressing, yet underreported, issues facing post-lockdown schools: pests. Due to the absence of custodial staff, pests have been multiplying at unprecedented rates, and are estimated to reach record levels by the time students fully return to in-person school. The longer we wait, the worse it will get. Now, one might ask, how is this different from any other infestation? Why can’t we just poison them? Isn’t the pest population already at the highest possible levels? In any other circumstance, we at The Radish would stand with the skeptics—if it weren't for one important detail: this time the pests have a plan.
Our award-winning senior field reporter, Jimothy McDingus, M.D., Phd, LLC, broke into BTHS last Tuesday to assess the situation. The first things that three-time Nobel Laureate McDingus noticed were the floors, strewn with droppings of one of the greatest menagerie of pests the world has ever seen. Rodents of all shapes and sizes scampered across the floor, their movements only barely audible over the hum of a grossly inflated roach population. However, 1974 triathlon champion, Jimothy McDingus, would not be deterred by anything as he pressed on deeper into the school. Upon passing by a river of raw sewage flowing out of a 3rd floor water fountain, McDingus noticed something strange: it appeared that the rats and roaches had worked together to construct a makeshift bridge over the toxic waters and were constructing fortifications in room 3N1. However, deciphering this irregular behavior was not beyond the skill of legendary exobiologist, Jimothy McDingus, who was able to establish contact with the leader of the vermin.
His excellency, Roach Lord David III, Head Master—who goes by Roach Lord Dave for short—explained the developments that had gone on in our absence. In the school’s never-ending quest to appease our corporate overlords by burning as much oil in our boilers as possible, they decided to turn the heat up to ninety-seven degrees Fahrenheit, instead of the usual eighty-five. This, combined with an absence of custodial staff, created the perfect conditions for a roach population boom. After using the situation to broker a treaty of alliance with Tech’s rat population, consolidating his hold over the building, Roach Lord Dave’s true ambition was now attainable: to extend his dominion over all of BTHS, once and for all.
While His Excellency gave no specific details on his plans to keep people out of Tech, it's hard to imagine just how difficult it would be to drive at least seven million intelligent roaches and their rat allies out of what appears to be fortified positions scattered across strategic locations throughout the school.
Will we have to wear masks when we return? Will classes be smaller? How will college admissions change? Will the dominion of His Excellency, Roach Lord David III, Head Master, continue to dominate the school? It's these questions, and so much more that will define our post quarantine life. However, until that fateful day arrives, we can come no closer to answering these questions as you or I could come to the accomplishments of Roach Duke Jimothy McDingus.