A friend alerted me to this article which claims that “…bedbugs are more likely to leave you alone the longer you stay at the bar.” Many might like to imagine Graduate students conducting research while plastered and subjecting equally smashed unsuspecting undergrads to bed bugs. This, sadly, isn’t the case. Though I do not have any undergraduate workers, the ones I have observed working in our bed bug lab are not treated thus and I imagine those at Nebraska (the site of this research) are treated similarly. Poorly paid. Overworked. But very much appreciated! It’s all for Science!g
I have a number of problems with the MSN article, not the least of which is that they spelled “bed bug” incorrectly. It’s TWO words people! No, my major issue with their “reporting” is their complete misrepresentation of what the research actually stated. The researchers tested blood of varying BAC (Blood Alcohol Content). They mixed alcohol with the blood to obtain, 0.010, 0.025, 0.050 and 0.100 levels of BAC. For reference, in my home state of Washington 0.08 is the legal limit to drive. I don’t know about you, but that use to be more than a couple drinks for me…not that I would have ever been an irresponsible youth and drive after drinking. Nope. Never did it…but I digress…
What the researchers found was NOT that the bed bugs (TWO WORDS!!!) left you alone the more you had to drink but that they simply did not feed on the blood as readily as they would on non-alcohol treated (i.e. the control) blood. With each increase in BAC, the treatment bed bugs ate less than the control bed bugs.
For better reporting on this research, check out the HuffPo article.
For some Bed Bug Grammar Semantics visit the amazing BugGirl’s post.