Vermin / Rodents / Pests

Yesterday we received this horrified email from a law student at Seton Hall: “Have recently been informed that NYLS has bedbugs. EWWW!”

When you’re the object of scorn emanating from Newark, you know you’ve got problems. [FN1]

But the news appears to be true. Yesterday the New York Law School community was notified of a possible bedbug issue, by email (reprinted after the jump).

The good news: it doesn’t seem like a major infestation (at least not yet). According to the NYLS memo, “A single bed bug was recently spotted in the entry area of the C building.”

What brought this lonely little bedbug to NYLS? Here are some theories….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Why Did the Bedbug Cross the Road — and Enter New York Law School?”

Potential clients keep contacting me, almost daily. I’m going to have to take my number off our Web site.

– Maryland lawyer Daniel Whitney of Whitney & Bogris, aka “the bedbug attorney,” in an interview with the Washington Post.

The lawyers have your back, you cute little bed bug sniffing dog.

Now this is what I’m talking about. These bedbugs think they’re so powerful. They think they’ve got us by the balls. They think they can just come into this city and take things over.

Well, in the words of Dr. Peter Venkman, “Nobody steps on [rich tourists sleeping at the Waldorf] in my town!” Light ‘em up, boys. It’s time these critters learned how we do things downtown.

And for this problem we’re going to unleash one of our most powerful weapons: an ARMY of landlord-tenant lawyers, who are ridiculously skillful. These guys are not to be messed with. Have you ever tried to evict someone in New York City? I bet it didn’t work out for you. Landlord-tenant lawyers in this city are what trained pit bulls want to be when they grow up.

The lawyers will stop these damned bedbugs. They’ll make it so damn expensive for landlords who don’t correct the problem that your super will personally eat all of the critters in the building if that’s the only way to make them go away….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “There’s Only One Way to Deal With Bedbugs: Release the Sharks”


Snoopy works from home instead of going to the MetLife Building.

This morning we reported on bedbugs at Winston & Strawn’s New York office. Alas, the problem might be much larger than we initially anticipated.

That’s because Winston & Strawn is located in the iconic MetLife building, at 200 Park Avenue in Manhattan. After this morning’s post went up, a spokesperson from Winston told us that all inquires about the bed bugs were being referred to the building’s landlord, real estate giant Tishman Speyer.

Are bedbugs crawling around the whole MetLife building? We don’t know yet; Tishman Speyer hasn’t returned our phone calls.

But if bed bugs are a threat to all the tenants of the MetLife building, there are three other law firms that could be getting very itchy…

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Here in New York, we’re not worried about hurricanes, we’re not worried about terrorists, we’re not worried about whether or not Derek Jeter “cheated” to get on base. We are worried about one thing: bedbugs.

Bed bugs are everywhere. Lat has this theory that we’ve reached bedbug epidemic stage and that everybody eventually will have them at same point. I’m retraining my Lhasa Apso to be a bed bug sniffing dog in hopes of making a little extra money. The threat of coming into contact with somebody who has been in contact with somebody who knows somebody who had bed bugs is real.

So you can imagine the horror felt by associates in the New York office of Winston & Strawn, when they received an early morning, pre-recorded phone message from the firm…

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I recently wondered, on Twitter, whether it’s only a matter of time before everyone in Manhattan has bed bugs. Bedbugs are like death and taxes: they will get you eventually, and the only question is when.

For lawyers and staff in the legendary Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, the answer may be: soon. An employee in the office informs us that a bedbug-sniffing canine was brought into the 80 Centre Street building this afternoon — and that the dog alerted to the presence of bedbugs in multiple locations. Furthermore, rumor has it that (1) the powers-that-be in the office have known about bedbugs at 80 Centre Street for at least a week, and (2) the main building, at One Hogan Place, has had bedbugs for even longer.

(Right now Robert Morgenthau is probably thinking to himself, “Thank God I left that dump for Wachtell.” Morgenthau’s sucessor as DA, Cyrus Vance Jr., is probably scratching himself.)

“Several offices apparently came back positive for bed bugs,” said our source. “But, bizarrely, they are only going to fumigate those specific offices — not the entire building, like they should.”

Um, why the heck not?

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Move Over, Muppets: Bedbugs Take Manhattan (D.A.’s Office)”

A couple of weeks ago, we reported on a bit of a bedbug breakout in the Brooklyn D.A.’s office. We thought it was kind of funny, but people who work in that office are not laughing. Instead, emails have been flying around the office — and one message in particular is both informative and hysterical. It’s just hard to decide if it’s hysterical (haha) or hysterical (dogs and cats living together).

The emails are coming from someone who calls himself or herself “Not Taking Bed Bugs” (“NTBB”). This individual is mad as hell and not going to take it anymore. NTBB is trying to incite some collective action from the employees in the Kings County District Attorney’s Office:

Please photograph every bed bug bite you get. Keep records of where in the office you were when you noticed it. Always inform [Lady Scapegoat] via email – exactly how many bites. She needs your help. She needs to know. They need a “paper trail” to document the progress.

Keep your own record of bed bug sighting and always inform [Lady Scapegoat] via email immediately exactly where and when. She needs your help. She needs to know. They need a “paper trail” to document the progress.

IF YOU ARE ANXIOUS FROM BED BUGS, PLEASE CALL IN SICK. ANXIETY IS A DISEASE WITH A MEDICAL DIAGNOSIS.

Also a disease: mass hysteria…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Bed Bugs v. Brooklyn D.A.’s Office: Round 2″

Over the weekend, we linked to the Gothamist story about the bed bug problem plaguing the Kings County D.A.’s office. The bed bug epidemic is sweeping New York. Yes, California, have your laughs. Just know that in New York we slough off bed begs; in California, the Earth itself will scratch you off into the ocean.

Still, your Manhattan-based Above the Law editorial team is well-protected from the brunt of this plague, as the New York Daily News reports:

Ten percent of respondents in Queens, Staten Island and Brooklyn reported bedbugs at work, as did 8% of Bronx residents, but just 3% of Manhattanites were afflicted.

And I bet those 3% of Manhattanites are the ones who fall for the occasional “come to my [party / wedding / wake] in Brooklyn, it’s not that far” email. Idiots. If God wanted us to cross rivers and risk the savages of the outer boroughs, he would have provided more helicopter pads.

Oh we kid, Kings County, ’cause living in Brooklyn is like living in Manhattan, only not nearly as cool. And because when the Kings County D.A.’s Office has a bed bug problem, they send out some hilarious emails.

And we’ve gotten our hands on those emails…

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bedbug bed bug Columbia Law School.jpgFirst Cadwalader. Then Cravath.
Now, Columbia. From a CLS source:

You’ve got to throw some more shame on the bedbug issue! According to the housing people, six Columbia Law School summer associates who are living in Lenfest Hall (the law school housing building) have brought Cravath bedbugs home, and the building’s infested!

They hired a “scientist” to run around with a bedbug-trained sniffing dog to root out the infestation; the building’s supposed to be crawling with them. WTF?

How can a firm like Cravath not be on top of something like this? Now I’ve got to be worried about catching cooties…

Look, punk: those are Cravath bed bugs. They’re too good for you. Count yourself lucky that they’ve decided to grace your crappy dorm with their presence.
If you stop your whining, and ask nicely, they might do the Cravath walk. Up and down your back.

bedbug bed bug Cravath Swaine Moore LLP Above the Law blog.jpgHiring partners and recruiting coordinators at Wachtell and S&C, it’s time to break out the champagne:

CRAVATH HAS BEDBUGS!!!

Yes, that’s right. The Worldwide Plaza headquarters of Cravath, Swaine & Moore — perhaps the country’s most prestigious law firm, and one of its most profitable — has some unwelcome visitors. And no, 2L interview season ended months ago.
Here’s what we’ve learned, from multiple sources at CSM:

Cravath Swaine Moore LLP Above the Law blog.JPG1. An email was sent around Cravath last week about the presence of bed bugs at the firm.
2. A few bedbugs were found on two floors, the 21st floor and the 41st floor, which are being fumigated.
3. Two employees had bedbugs in their apartments and told the firm, which caused the firm to investigate.
4. The 21st floor is a paralegal / administration floor, but the 41st floor is a litigation floor — which means that one of the two employees may be a lawyer.
6. Both of the employees are still with the firm (i.e., they have not been fired, like the poor soul at Cadwalader who, rumor has it, got canned after self-reporting).
7. The email about the bed bug problem was protected against forwarding or copying.

Apparently Cravath and Cadwalader have something in common other than the Bear Stearns deal. [FN1]
As you may recall, in June 2007, Cadwalader reported a bedbug problem. A few months later, they announced lawyer layoffs.
Are associate layoffs like bedbugs? Will they start off at relatively less prestigious firms — we say “relatively,” since Cadwalader is still plenty prestigious (#26 on the Vault 100) — and move all the way to the top of the list? Will Rodge Cohen and Ed Herlihy be scratching themselves furiously as they negotiate the next big bank merger?
Words of wisdom to incoming Cravath summer associates: go to as many events as you can, and spend as little time as possible at the Death Star. May the force be with you.
We contacted Cravath, which declined comment through a spokesperson. If you have anything to add on the situation, please feel free to email us. Thanks.
[FN1] The bedbug email went around Cravath before the JP Morgan Chase / Bear Stearns deal was initiated. So there would be no merit to a conspiracy theory that Cadwalader gave the cooties to Cravath by sneaking them into a box shipment destined for Worldwide Plaza.
Earlier: Breaking: Cadwalader Overrun By Bed Bugs!!!

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