When Orkin released their 2011 list of top bed bug cities in the U.S. they could have just said, “These 50 cities have a lot of bed bugs,” but that kind of non-hierarchical statement smacks of socialism. For us, living in the meritocratic United States, ranking is nothing to fear. In fact it is a good thing; it inspires us to improve ourselves.
That’s why it is so crucial that we in Baltimore know the unvarnished truth, namely that our city ranks exactly 18th in nation in bed bug infestations. It’s a sobering statistic, sure, but when we bear in mind that we were tenth on last year’s list, we are right to feel proud of our dramatic improvement.
Now, I know that local politicians will rush to take all the credit for Baltimore’s bed bug decline, but the honor belongs to us all: you, who removed all material articles from the area around your bed, including clothing, towels, sheets, pillows, blankets and small rugs, and sealed them in clear plastic bags; you, who sealed up additional bed bug hiding spots with spackle; you, who applied double-sided tape along the floorboards all the way around the room and on the legs of bedroom furniture — some of you probably even set fire to things precious to you, all in the name of eradicating this most maligned pestilence. Thank you, all of you; you have made Baltimore a better place to go to bed.
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