Mosquitoes love me. I don't know exactly why. I always assumed that I had a "sweet smell" from possibly my light perfume, body oils/lotions or just an au naturel plain and simple sweetness that I would exude. But after being victim again this past weekend to another mosquito feeding frenzy, I had to do a bit of research on the subject. Enter Google. While there has been much study done on the subject, one common theory is that mosquitoes are attracted to certain blood type markers that we humans release. Studies have found that people with Type O blood suffer more bites than those with AB blood types because of these odorant markers they emit. And since I have the O blood type, this makes me an especially hot commodity. Even though type O is the most common, it still seems I get bit much more than my fellow O-ers. And here all along I thought it was that I just smelled so good, so sweet, so irresistible, only to find out it is just about the blood, always has been just about the blood, nothing more.
Besides finding out about the O blood type, it was interesting to discover that only the female mosquito feeds on humans (great, like the other side needs any more ammunition about how brutal we females can be), but in momma mosquitoes defense, she needs the blood in order to produce her eggs. We are nothing more than mosquito sperm banks, apparently we have been fathering many mosquitoes without our consent. So can't fault her on this one, we all know how strong the maternal instinct can be.
But for some reason within the last few years my markers must be distinctively higher. I always seem to be the one at the garden party who wakes up with a mosquito injected hangover. I sit at the candlelight outdoor table, trying to be inconspicuous as I swat at my arms, then my ankles (which seems to be their entree of choice) gently pulling down the sleeves of my shirt, and as I suffer in a silence (except for the swatting sound), I patiently wait for the hostess to say, "it's getting kind of cold out here, want to go inside?"
This seems to happen wherever I go. In St. Helena, Sacramento and most recently, Marin County. I came back to Santa Barbara last night with my newly mosquito bitten tattooed legs relieved to know that I haven't seen a mosquito in Santa Barbara since, I can't remember when. The itching was so intense I ran to CVS to buy some Cortizone-10 to help me ignore this mosquito saliva infested annoyance of mine. Ready to call it a night, I applied the gel, put on my pajamas and got in bed to read (okay, I'm lying, to do a little Facebooking), when lo and behold what do I see, a mosquito flying, hovering over me. This can't be! I started to panic, wondering if he came with me in my suitcase, my computer bag, where on earth did he come from? I tried swatting at him a few times, then he was no where to be found. I couldn't go on this hunting expedition all night. I was tired.
Not having access to any mosquito netting, I pulled my covers up to my chin, trying to expose as little of my sought after flesh as possible and hoped that my assumption was correct, that this little fellow, was in fact a fellow. Only then would I would be able to fall asleep peacefully.