Thursday, July 16, 2009

Blood payment

Blood, toil, tears & sweat; the essential recipe for success from both Roosevelt and Churchill. However, I rather wish my weekly pursuit of a Grand Slam title on the Observatory's tennis courts didn't involve quite so much of the blood part.

The local mosquito population apparently think the visiting European is tasty delicious. Far more so than anyone else who appears on the courts. So while my friends straighten out stiff muscles this morning, I am considering gnawing off my arms to relieve the itching.

I was informed by a bite-free colleague that mosquitoes prefer people with O-type blood. Common as anything in Europe but a rarity in Japan where most people are A-type. I initially treated this theory with some skepticism. Japan looks to blood type like Europeans and Americans look to astrology; a person's blood group predicts their personality, love matches and whether they should be staying away from dogs with black spots for the next five days. Type Os like myself are destined to be outgoing and very social but tend to start more things that they finish. Type As (which I assume most of my friends are here) are calm perfectionists and highly artistic. Japanese anime characters almost always have a blood group assigned to them in keeping with their personalities.

In my mistrust of believing that blood group is the answer to all ailments, I turned to that one source of reliable information; the internet. Google informed me that there is scientific evidence for a mosquito preference to O-type blood which might indeed explain the excitement in the insect population of Japan upon seeing me. If nothing else, the stories are at least collaborative.

Damn it, now I'm at the end of this post I want to scratch again. Must. Keep. Hands. On. Keyboard.

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