Bedbugs, pinkeye, diarrhea

Make it stop.

Sometime soon I hope to have a day – nay, an hour – where I don’t have to deal with the words “bedbug,” “pinkeye” or “diarrhea.”

As you may have gathered from my prolonged silence, it’s been a hell of a couple of weeks. First of all, a dear friend of mine became quite ill with the “collywobbles” about 10 days ago, as well as an ominous rash on her leg that turned out to be some sort of creeping staph infection. Luckily all hands were available to ferry her post-haste to the nearest ER and I’m pleased to report that she is on the mend. (Now, if she could only get her cat to stop chewing her IV line…)

About the same time, I came down with a lovely case of pinkeye, which, though annoying, was easily dealt with:  a quick visit to the walk-in clinic and some nice drops from the pharmacy and my nictitating membranes (alligator third eyelid thing, for those of you not following my metaphor, here) were feeling better almost immediately.

Good god, I've got green-eye.

Bedbugs, however, are truly a plague sent from Satan himself. Apparently it’s been a bumper year for them in the city where I live, thanks to an early spring (the same early spring that sent the birch trees exploding in clouds of pollen and sent sales of Claritin through the roof). And thanks to the brilliant strategy employed by our building’s halfwit management company, which consisted of a) not telling anyone else about an infested unit, and then b) secretly spraying only that unit so that the bugs simply moved on to less toxic pastures, the entire building, including Casa Smiter, is now crawling with these ugly little brutes.

Here, little bedbug....

I will say only this: you do not ever, EVER want to get bed bugs.

Yes, I know there are worse things going on in the world right now (oil spills, volcanic ash, the usual melange of rape, torture and war) but when the thought of climbing into one’s formerly comfy bed, replete with the 400 thread-count sheets and a tasteful selection of books on the night-table, holds about as much appeal as leaping  naked into the dumpster behind a homeless shelter, life can feel grim indeed.

Anyway, Spray Day is tomorrow. Casa Smiter has been sealed & caulked (an alligator with a caulking gun would make General Patton himself grow pale, trust me). Diatomaceous earth has been dusted liberally around. Belongings have been cleaned & packed into sealed storage bags & bins. Cat is slated to be checked into the Kitty Spa first thing tomorrow and, after piling all my furniture in the middle of each room (really, the fun just never stops…) I myself will abandon ship and decamp first to the laundromat (again) and then to work, where I hope not to be strewing bedbug eggs wherever I go. (Except maybe near the desks, or purses, of the Giggly Gossip Girls…)

Hang on, just let me get my suitcase.

And then, let the foul chemical Armageddon fall upon these pests in all its fearsome glory.  I say that as an alligator who recycles and brings her own bags to the supermarket. Waterboarding is too good for these things. Smite them all, painfully and at great length!

Lest I end on an unhappy note, however, I will hasten to add here that all has not been all gloom and doom. Another friend had a couple of scary medical tests last week, the kind where a technician presses a tender bit (or, in her case, two tender bits) of one’s personal anatomy between two sheets of glass and says “hold still” while scuttling from the room, and I’m delighted to report that all is clear.

And really, in the larger scheme of things, that’s the sort of stuff that really matters.

But still, bomb the bedbugs. It will make me feel so much better. Hell, it will make us ALL feel better.

Smiter out.

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