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Mosquitoes

This summer bites. Literally. Entomologists tell the Washington Post that we’re seeing the most vicious mosquito infestation in 30 years—an assault made even worse by the Asian tiger mosquito, a ferocious and heretofore unknown strain. A simple product of wet weather and small-insect migration? We doubt it. Someone has a plan to keep Washingtonians scratching and swatting their summer away. And the Washington City Paper’s crack team of conspiracy-watchers have a set of suspects just itching to be revealed.

Suspect:

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals

Motive:

Save the cows. More mosquitoes means fewer barbecues. Fewer barbecues means more people opt for pasta with veggies instead of big, thick steaks.

Means:

Activists maintain trove of larvae rescued from would-be bug-squashers. Let the bugs fly free, and you’ll make barbecue season absolutely impossible.

Suspect:

Descendants of C&O Canal laborers

Motive:

Revenge. Many of their ancestors gave their lives to build that canal. But the waterway never earned a cent—meaning they had sacrificed for nothing more than a lousy tourist attraction.

Means:

What better use for D.C.’s biggest stretch of standing water?

Suspect:

D.C. boosters

Motive:

Make Washington look cosmopolitan. All summer, New York has been famously plagued by the mosquito-borne West Nile virus. If a stylish city like Gotham has mosquito troubles, reason the District’s cheerleaders, we should, too.

Means:

Officially, the test runs of Amtrak’s Acela trains have been sans passengers. Which leaves more room for hordes of Empire state mosquitoes.