The side job: WURwolf brings joy

'My identity as a human being is secret. But WURwolf is alive and well.'
Photo: Spreadthewurd

Who: The WURwolf:
What: The WURwolf is the WUR mascot
Why: He keeps everyone entertained and he’s allowed to get into mischief
Fee: €15 per session (30 min-45 min)

You’ve got to make ends meet somehow. We can all borrow from Uncle Duo, but there are also students who earn money in unusual ways. In this series, we put some interesting side jobs in the spotlight. This time Resource talks to the WURwolf. This mascot comes to life not at full moon but at events such as openings, receptions and the AID.

‘I lead a double life. Most of the time I am a student, but from time to time I turn into the WURwolf. My identity as a human being is secret. It’s not important. I want to uphold the fairy tale of the WURwolf: Wolf is alive and well! As Wolf, I can only use sign language, but that works perfectly well. Students like to give me a high five and have their picture taken with me. Even Louise Fresco, the former president of WUR, came and gave Wolf a fist bump.

The Wolf does like mischief

As Wolf, I get to places I don’t get to as a student, like the festive opening of Aurora. Or on stage with the DJ, to dance. Wolf was kidnapped once. A white van drove onto the grass near Forum and I was bundled into the back of it. It turned out to be my transport to a beer cantus.

‘The suit gets terribly hot, though. It’s got a little fan inside it, but I still sweat buckets. It’s heavy too. You’ve got to be fit to do this job. I was WURwolf once when it was 38 degrees. Then I had to take off the suit within 15 minutes, for safety’s sake. Wolf is always accompanied by someone who makes sure things run smoothly and that the WURwolf doesn’t faint, for instance. Or fall down the stairs. You look out through the mesh of the mouth, so you can’t see very well. But I’m an experienced and mature Wolf nowadays, and I can move about very well in the suit.

‘Another nice thing about it is that Wolf doesn’t have to follow all the normal social rules. As Wolf, I sometimes walk into a random classroom where students are doing group work. I shake hands with everyone and they’re all amused. Or I steal someone’s pen and just go off with it. Wolf does like getting into mischief. By the way, we are looking for more partners in crime, students interested in doing this too.’

Are you or do you know someone with an unusual side job? Send an email to steven.snijders@wur

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