Wet Rat is a WFMU-influenced, avant-garde band from Cornwall, N.Y. Band member Mike, age 17, called during the 5/23/06 show to discuss their music and read some of his poetry. Tom had his finger poised above the GOMP button, but became strangely intrigued by the band name.
Mike described Wet Rat as the most ridiculous music imaginable, especially the outlandish lyrics by "Little Dill". After pledging that his poem is suitable for on-air recitiation, Mike reads his haiku:
I see the cold air
The cold grass on my hand
Wow, I’m drunk on WFMU
Tom's pleased that he and the station might have something to do with the success of Wet Rat and hopes they won’t forget them when they make it big. Tom wants to put Wet Rat in a Smash or Trash segment, and Mike thinks it’s "ridiculously awesome". He says "word", and Tom can think of a few words in response, but he will not say them because he’d be hypocritically toilet-mouthed as a result. One word is "you" and it’s connected to another word that Tom can’t articulate on the air. Some FOT chatters want to vote for Smash or Trash based simply on the call, which Tom disallows. Tom does prefer Wet Rat to the bush-league, lightweight, soft-serve Gnarls Barkley album. Mike the Associate Producer gives Mike from Wet Rat the mailing address for sending the CD.
Mike called back later in the showto respond to criticism of his haiku from a caller named Laura. He reiterated that their songs have nothing to do with the poetry he read. He simply wanted to express himself to WFMU and, like Jim Croce, he needed to do it with his art.
Tom announcess that he’s a Wet Rat fan and he’s ready to hear their tunes. Mike says the songs they play try to change what people think of music -- their stream-of-conscious approach is highly original and can turn anything into a song. They even changed the "Happy Birthday" into something completely different. His friends in the background are causing a ruckus by turning the radio up too loud, and it turns out that they are also in Wet Rat. One of them is the drummer and the other is Dylan, their Jim Steinman-like hitmaker, who also acts out their songs when they play them.
The Return of the Wet Rat
Mike from Wet Rat called during the 8/22/06 show to dredge up Tom's Kevin Smith takedown, which led into a discussion about his lack of belief in Christmas. Mike appeared to reject the materialistic nature of the increasingly-secular holiday, believing that "humans can achieve something much greater."
He then reminded Tom and listeners that Wet Rat can convert any situation into song and said he would send Tom a tape to prove it. Tom notes that he never follows through on his promises to send him music. Mike blames this on difficulty tracking down a couple of his friend who have the Wet Rat material and the ability to burn it to CD. He vows to send Tom music in the coming week.
Tom tells him that the band blew their momentum -- they were once a known Best Show commodity, but then fell off the face of the Earth. Mike explains that his absence was due to a vacation to Sierra Vista, Arizona. Tom speculates that he’s a rich kid. He disputes it, saying he worked hard to earn the money for the trip. It's unclear if the work involved washing his father’s Bentley. Tom concludes that he's coated with the "stink of laziness" for not sending the music, and GOMPs him for being soft-serve.