How to spread bed bugs, in three easy steps!

by nobugsonme on August 14, 2008 · 12 comments

in bed bug bites, bed bug epidemic, bed bugs, craigslist, furniture, misinformation, moving, new york, new york city, queens, spread of bed bugs

Question: Do you live in Astoria, Queens and have bed bugs?

Want to move out of your bed bug-infested apartment and avoid the hassle of destroying and tossing out your infested furniture and other items, including a futon and a captain’s bed, and stuffed animals?

Want to expose lots of people and their neighbors, co-workers, relatives and friends to bed bugs?


Here’s what you do:

1. Place ad on Craigslist offering nearly all of your possessions for free.

I apologize if this is a duplicate. I thought I posted it but now I can’t find it, so I’m trying again

FREE STUFF!!!!!! I am moving Saturday morning, so everything needs to go ASAP. Please email me to arrange for pickup. This list is *NOT* inclusive. As I pack, more stuff is being added…

2. Include detailed list of items available and warnings that the items have been exposed to bed bugs in your infested home.

I have to start with the warning: the home these items come from have bedbugs. HOWEVER, many of these items were from rooms where I never saw any evidence of bugs or will be easily cleaned. I just don’t have the time to do it myself!

3. Wipe your hands clean and don’t think twice about the carnage which will most surely follow.

Yes, sure, you gave the warnings, so you’re ethically absolved of all responsibility. Have a nice day!

The truth is, everyday people take bed bug infested stuff off the curb which has warnings attached. People can be idiots.

So if you don’t destroy or debug your stuff, you are spreading bed bugs.

You’re spreading the itchiness and discomfort of bed bug bites, the cost of pest control and replacing possessions, the many hours of sleep, and hours and hours of work. You’ll likely cause others to have to move too, at great expense of time and money.

Don’t kid yourself that the warnings you gave will prevent others from suffering. If you have bed bugs in your home, people could pick them up and take them home just by coming over to get something of yours, let alone taking it in their car or into their home.

Thanks to Aly of A Little Aly-tude for the find, for warning her public, (and for the shout out!)

If ad has been removed, see screenshot here.

1 pestek August 15, 2008 at 2:51 pm

i had a case of bed bugs recently where this had happened my customer had bought a wardrobe from a local classifieds paper.

2 James Buggles August 15, 2008 at 9:35 pm

Just when you think nothing could surprise you. She wins a lot more points for stupidity than she loses for honesty. Did she ever hear of a garbage can? Good reporting.

3 James Buggles August 15, 2008 at 9:35 pm

Sorry, she loses a lot more points for stupidity than she wins for honesty. Duh.

4 nobugsonme August 16, 2008 at 3:27 pm

Yes, James, she does.

One person in the forums thought it was wrong that I said,

“The truth is, everyday people take bed bug infested stuff off the curb which has warnings attached. People can be idiots.”

S/he pointed out that people were just ill-informed, and I acknowledge that. My language was too harsh.

Until the government is issuing public service announcements via TV, internet, and radio, and placing ads in magazines warning people that they may get bed bugs from infested furniture found curbside or obtained secondhand (AND explaining why this is a serious problem), some people are going to be able to claim ignorance that bed bugs exist, that they are a serious problem, and that it is really hard to successfully and without a doubt remove them from most items.

Until then, ignorance and lack of education, not sheer “idiocy,” is the problem.

For those who have experienced bed bugs, as this Craigslister did, it is astounding that she believes bed bugs do not spread easily.

If bed bugs could be easily removed from (or were not in) most of these items, would she really be giving all her furniture away?

Finally, garbage cans: yes. But readers should remember that destruction is key. Plenty of people have no qualms about removed items labeled with “bed bugs” signs from dumpsters and curbs.

5 James Buggles August 19, 2008 at 7:17 pm

I used the term “garbage can” metaphorically as in all this stuff should be destroyed. Much it couldn’t actually fit in a garbage can. She knows they spread, which is why her post is so bizarre. In one breath, she lovingly describes an item and in the next expresses uncertainty about whether it’s infested. I love the line about how she never got bitten in a certain chair, but she doesn’t have the courage to take it with her.

6 nobugsonme August 19, 2008 at 11:46 pm

I hear you, James. She clearly is worried about bringing them with her.

She doesn’t get off the hook as “ill-informed.”

However, her target audience can claim that.

We need public education campaigns so that everyone will go, “take your bed bug stuff? Are you crazy?!?” Instead of some people saying, “ok, sounds good!”

7 nobugsonme August 21, 2008 at 12:01 am

Here’s another Craigslist ad today, warning readers in the “housing” section against a studio for sale in Jackson Heights which is allegedly infested with bed bugs:

There’s an ad for a studio apartment at xx-xx Broadway being offered at $11x,xxx.

I just went to see it this afternoon. It’s disgusting. There was a boxspring in there covered in bedbug fecal matter, and evidence of bedbug fecal matter on the walls and ceilings.

The super admitted there were bedbugs there. The previous tenant lived like a “homeless guy” he said. The super tried to reassure me that he had sprayed the apartment down with kerosene, and that all the bugs were dead. Yeah right, that’s why there’s bedbug fecal matter all over the place and infested furniture still sitting there.

It was obviously a massive infestation. The sponsor is planning on doing a total renovation. But with an infestation that huge, bedbugs have surely spread to adjacent apartments and beyond. A renovation may keep them at bay, but they’ll return as neighboring apartments probably have them.

It’s a gross building. I can’t believe they’re letting people in to see it.

That’s a bad idea.

[Note: Address was intentionally not included here. Please do not post the address if you see the ad still live.]

8 nobugsonme August 21, 2008 at 12:18 am

What a fruitful time I have been having on Craigslist this lovely Wednesday evening in August. Here’s yet another warning message, disguised as an ad for an apartment.

First the ad:

I am offering a share in my large two bedroom for $425 per week which includes the utilities. The room is furnished, in an apartment that offers its own amenities such as: washer/dryer, balcony, dishwasher, central air, one and a half bath, and space.

I am a 29, gwm, student, cool. I don’t smoke, but people who smoke can go outside. Drinking and drugs are your business.

Then the annotation:

If you are about to respond to this post, read this…

I’m a french student and I have rent this room during four months this year and I was Xxx’s roommate.

And I don’t think you should live there.

[Then a laundry list of complaints follow. And finally:]

But the bedroom is great, a little bit infected by bedbugs, otherwise it’s fine.
I have the proof that I’ve lived there, if you have any other questions do not hesitate to contact me by email.

Is the part about bed bugs true? Or just a disgruntled ex-roommate lashing out? Who knows?!?

9 Abby Reel June 9, 2010 at 4:51 pm

I am going through a bedbug infestation issue right now. I just found and new house (luckily I rent) and I have to throw everything away. We’ve had to come up with a deposit, first months rent, and the money for new furniture. When reported to my landlord, he would not believe me and said, “It’s probably fleas”. All 5 of us in our family have itchy red bites all over us. My daughter woke up 2 nights ago screaming because there were 2 bugs on her neck like a vampire. This is absolutely the worst thing I’ve ever been through! I don’t wish this on anybody. (I will be slashing all my furniture before setting it out on the curb! No one deserves this!!)

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