Sleep Tight

“Don’t let the bed bugs bite” 

As a kid, whenever I heard this statement I thought it was just one of those stupid things old people say. Like pretend things, like “Santa Claus is watching you.” Or “Did the tooth fairy come see you?” Or “Jesus is white.” Ok no one ever told me Jesus is white; just seeing if you were paying attention.
When it was time for bed, you probably had some kind of routine. Before I went to bed and heard the “Sleep tight, don’t let the.. etc.” I had to brush my teeth. Depending on what tooth paste flavor I had at the time would determine how well I brushed my teeth. If it was something yucky, I would try and trick and my dad into thinking I brushed them. With gross toothpaste, I would try to get away with minimum brushing. I did this a variety of ways, still spending enough time in the bathroom for my dad to think tooth brushing was taking place. Some nights, I would let the water run and flick my toothbrush under the water. Maybe splash a little splash on the mirror for fun. Sometimes I would squeeze some toothpaste off in the sink. To later try and prove to my dad “See I did brush my teeth. Feel my toothbrush, it’s wet. Look some toothpaste fell in the sink.” I should’ve been in the Gifted and Talented program. I was practically a child-genius or a sociopath. Sometimes I would just brush my teeth without toothpaste. Each night I would try to mix it up. Then my dad would always check my teeth. Many a fights happened before bed time that were teeth brushing related. I would always have to go back and brush them; sometimes being directly monitored. That house was a prison. Probably wasted years off my life brushing/rebrushing my teeth. Ok not years, definitely 20 minutes.. This problem could’ve been easily solved if kids’ toothpaste didn’t taste like minty, bubble-gum dinosaur-asshole. Why can’t someone invent a regular toothpaste for kids that maybe doesn’t have a taste or tastes like gatorade or something? 

Sorry off topic. Back to bed bugs. “Don’t let the bed bugs bite?” Real funny old people. Everyone knows bugs don’t live in human beds. Bugs belong outside. Bugs do not bite sleeping children. Your bug jokes are stupid.

Little did I know at the time that there was truth to this bed bug warning. I didn’t learn bed bugs were real until I was in college and I saw a news report of bed bugs on mattresses on a college campus. I was like “oh someone must have left their window open, trying to heat the county, and a community of bugs entered the room in the transition and decided to live in a comfy mattress”. Peaceful, friendly, harmless bugs.. NO. Then the news report continued and showed huge pictures of a bed bug. The report continued. It warned everyone of the hell that bed bugs cause daily. It showed real pictures of bed bug bites. Nobody had ever told me bed bugs were real. If they did tell me I probably swore them off as a liar and from that moment I ignored anything they ever said to me. 

Sorry bed bug truthers. Forgive me. I did not know. I don’t feel like it was entirely my fault. It was the old people and their stupid sayings. Old people: maybe you shouldn’t be some damn jokey when referring to bed bugs around children.



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