Ratty Date: [RAH-TEE DAYTE] (n.) A pre-arranged social appointment set for a particular time in the Sharpe Refectory with a person of salacious interest.
It’s the end of the year, and whether or not you’re a senior, you still have have the urge to get scrambling. Plus, chances are, you’ve got some leftover meal credits that you may as well use up. So what better way to combine the two than the Ratty Date?
Ah, the Ratty Date — it has a lot of potential to be casual, comfortable, and/or confusing, and at some point during your Brown career, at the end of the year or not, you just might encounter it. If it sounds confusing, scary, or even strange, fear not. BlogDailyHerald is here with some helpful tips for how to face this prospect.
1. Clarify that it is, in fact, a date. It’s the Ratty, not Al Forno, so it’s entirely possible that when that cutie in your Bio class asks you if you wanna hit the Ratty after class for lunch, it’s just friendly. But don’t be too discouraged; just because it’s at the Ratty, it doesn’t mean that it’s not necessarily a date.
2. Guest swipe your date if you did the asking. This might sound ridiculous, and your date might refuse you, but the offer will be taken as charming.
3. Sit in one of the nooks. Don’t sit with your entire group of friends, your teammates, or your a cappella group. Doesn’t matter if it’s the front nook or the back one, but a table for two will be much more likely to score you good conversation, flirty eyes, and maybe even a leg graze. Oh, and the potential for another date (maybe even off campus!).
4. Pick the shorter lines. The Ratty will always be here, and you can come back later if you just must have some of the popcorn chicken. But unless your date is also waiting in a long line, it may be worth it to forgo your favorite Ratty dish. Let us remind you that as much as we love it, it is a dining hall, and if this person you’re eating with is someone you’re actually into, it’ll be worth it to skip the line and go for the salad bar.
5. Stay focused. We know that the Ratty can be an overwhelming combination of last month’s hook up and that annoying kid in your English section, but don’t keep darting your eyes around the room and looking past your date.
6. It’s fine that you’re at the Ratty, but don’t act like you’re somewhere that you’re not. We like Ratty dates; they can be fun and cute, but don’t pretend like you just pulled out the most suave move written in the book. Face it and embrace it: you’re at a campus dining hall.
7. Realize that this is a very, very public date. Be prepared for people to double take, turn to their friends, and potentially spend a portion of their lunches considering whether or not you and your date are in fact on a Ratty date. Also be prepared for having several text messages asking you what’s up. If you can’t accept this, either go somewhere else, or go at 3 pm when you’re less likely to run into half of the people you know.
8. Watch what you eat. We understand that you love to make your signature tunafish and red onion sandwich with melted feta cheese and tabasco sauce on it, but you might want to stick to things that won’t make your breath smell worse than your roommate’s lacrosse gloves.