Monday, March 23, 2009

Mosquitoes on a Bender

Do you remember the commercial for Tabasco sauce where the guy drinks a bottle, then sits alone in a semi-darkened room, hot and sweaty. The camera zooms in on a buzzing mosquito looking for an opportunity to take her bite.

The man remains calm and allows the mosquito to land on his arm, insert her proboscis and suck until she is so fat she can barely fly. The mosquito has trouble taking off but as she flies off in a zig-zagging, drunken path, belly swollen with blood, suddenly she explodes from the heat of the Tabasco. The man shows a wry smile and the commercial ends.

Well, I came across a funny story about getting mosquitos drunk. I never heard of putting down a bloody steak to attract them but it sounds like a good idea. I know when they breed mosquitos for lab tests, they fill a sponge full of blood and the mosquitos drink from that. This isn't the complete story as its rather long, but the gist of it follows;

"Night before last, in order to sleep, we placed a piece of raw beefsteak on a plate at the head of our bed. In the morning it was by the mosquitoes sucked as dry of blood as an old sponge, and our skin saved at least two thousand perforations. All about the room, in the morning, were the mosquitoes, plethoric with blood, loaded till they could not fly. We killed a few, but the job was too sanguinary, so we left them to their feast.

Last night, in order to get even with the serenading devils, we steeped half a pound of fresh beefsteak in some old rye whiskey, and left it on a plate by the bed. Nothing like being hospitably inclined.

In ten minutes after the light was extinguished, a swarm of these backbiting bill-posters made an advance movement. KeelyNetOne of them caressed us sweetly on the nose-he sent in his bill-there was a slap-a diluted damn-a dead mosquito! Soon we heard a tremendous buzzing about the whisky-soaked beef. The entire mosquito family came singing in, and such an opera-good Lord delivers us! But they did not disturb us with bites.

We fell asleep, to be awakened in ten minutes by the worst mosquito-concert ever. We raised a light and the greatest show of the season was there to be seen. Every mosquito was drunk as a blind fiddler... Talk about shows, concerts, dog-fights, amputations, circuses, negro funerals, draw-poker, sparking, or other amusements, there is nothing to be compared to a flock of mosquitoes on a bender. If you don't believe it, fix them up with a piece of beefsteak soaked in whiskey, and laugh your sides sore at the antics the drunken warblers cut."

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