Tuesday, July 21, 2009

It begins with a bug and a word...

Many people think bed bugs are fictional creatures of nursery rhymes... simply imaginary bugs that you "don't let bite when you are sleeping tight." This, however entertaining of a rhyme it might be, could not be further from the truth.

My interest in these disgusting creatures began a month ago with the smallest thing imaginable: a bug. I had discovered I had bed bugs in my apartment here in Chelsea, New York. As my land lord explained this to me I scoffed at him, "Do I look like a child? Bed Bugs don't exist... except in the minds of children after their parents tuck them in!"

Let me explain to you right now that the constant itching and worry that you're being eaten alive pales into comparison to the complete and utter shock you feel when you discover that bed bugs are more than a nursery rhyme. I shall no longer be surprised if I meet a giant egg man named Humpty Dumpty. But I digress.

As the natural field reporter that I am, my interest was immediately perked: where did these fascinatingly gross and imaginary creatures come from? And better yet, who am I allowed to blame for giving them to me... and my search began with a word. Bed bugs are gross, so is New Jersey. It doesn't take a rocket scientist, nor an experienced journalist such as myself, to realize the correlation.

To find the source and the culprit I immediately traveled to the grossest and most imaginary state there is: New Jersey.

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