Which, now that I think about it, is better than the Bedbug Table.
Also, this makes me think of the phrase "the curtains don't match the drapes" - which is not actually the phrase, is it? It's more like "the curtains don't match the rug" or something like that, I think.
And anyway, this has nothing to do with curtains. Nor really the rug. Or it sort of does. Depending.
Also, I'd like to point out that while I wind up in a lot of penisy genitally kind of conversations, I am not always the initiator. I don't know if this matters to you, but I just want to have that out there. OK?
What this post mostly has to do with is this: BEDBUGS.
Which we do not have. We don't. Really and truly.
But because of these friends, on my last trip to NY, staying in a Hilton, I set my suitcase on the desk, and immediately hung my clothes in the closet not touching anything. My typical behavior is to just let my suitcase explode organically as I try to figure out what to wear.
Also, I only changed in the bathroom, perched on the tile floor. It was very hard to force non-maternity panty hose on a preggy belly balancing on one foot and holding onto the sink.
The price of paranoia. And not being organized enough with hose for business meetings.
I tiptoed across the room in my underwear. I don't know why, but it seemed like the less surface area on the floor, the better. I wore disposable socks from the doctor and threw them away on my way out the door.
Thus visiting the bedbug capital of the world seemingly unscathed.
But anyway. We had dinner with friends last night who had bedbugs. They have just, after months and months and two expensive rounds of house treatment, just gotten rid of them.
Doesn't just hearing the word bedbug make you all clenchy?
The wife, M, said there's such a stigma attached that she's just been telling everyone to get it all out in the open. Kind of like when she got out of prison.
I'm just kidding. She hasn't been telling anyone about the bedbugs.
Oh, I crack myself up. However, candid as she may be, I told her I'd write about them anonymously.
So - get this - the second treatment, which has a one-year warranty - leaves residue on the floors, walls, everywhere. And you cannot clean or mop for two months or it voids the warranty. Nor can you move any of the furniture. For a year.
What they said was that you move out for the weekend, the bedbug people come in and put all this (ostensibly child- and pet-safe) chemical all over the house. And then after 48 hours you move back into your house, unpack, and start living your normal life.
In fact, you have to. Because you are the bait.
The bedbugs have to think life is back to normal so they come out of hiding and head towards you and then walk all over the poison and die. And you have to wait for their sticky sticky eggs of evil to hatch so they can do the same.
I dislike insects and suspense and I think this combination would pretty much kill me.
So far, it's been a couple weeks, and they haven't been bitten once.
Now, there we were, last night, discussing this over Thai food at this nice, low key place with very friendly service. We always seem to wind up there when the four of us meet for dinner.
We were across the table from them, listening intently. For my part, I was slack-jawed, goose-bumped, with arms clenched tightly across my chest.
It's the universal pose of warding off evil, no?
And then our friend M said, "But they don't bite palms of hands or genitals!"
"They don't bite hands or genitals?"
"Or maybe it's that they do...The bedbug guy said something in particular about the hands and genitals...but I was too upset to process it."
"Genitals seem like a prime target. All that blood flow. I'd want to know."
Unfortunately, this was said in the moments juuuust prior to the moment that our server chose to refill our water glasses. So he was reaching in, hovering across the table, as M said:
"Anyway, my genitals are always covered when I sleep, making them hard to bite." She looked across at us and shrugged. "I don't know about your genitals."
And our server, this very gracious man, paused, ever so briefly, mid-reach.
He kept the same smile, but you could tell that he'd heard, processed, and couldn't quite decide if it was better to just keep pouring, or back away.