Allston Christmas just seems to come earlier every year

Early Allston Christmas

Ari Ofsevit drove around Allston this week and found the locals already getting ready for the big holiday.

Meanwhile, Jenni K. discovers not everybody's clear on the concept of Allston Christmas:



    Free tagging: 


    What percentage of the

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    What percentage of the furniture out on the sidewalks will have bed bugs? I know I'm more paranoid than most, but I say we burn anything permeable that's put out during Allston Christmas...

    Not likely

    The normal issue is mattresses and sofas; unless you have a walk-in oven that you can keep at low heat (150°), you can't easily kill them. Most everything else (sheets, comforters, pillowcases, slipcovers, pillows, etc.) can be washed in a commercial washer on hot (140°) and thereby sanitized. 130° is supposed to be the kill temperature for bedbugs. Laundromats have hotter water than home water tanks, which are usually at 120-130°.

    Normal Bleach or Lysol or whatever will kill anything in wooden furniture. It's padded fabrics where insects can successfully hide.

    The city and all the Unis have advisories out. Darwin's rules will take care of the fools.

    The minimum temperature for

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    The minimum temperature for proper sanitation is 165F (74C).

    Lysol is alcohol based and is not good on furniture with finishes. It could distort and/or make the surfaces of finished furniture gummy.
    Good old hot water and Murphy's Oil Soap should be able to handle most.

    A steam cleaner also does wonders.


    Do not accept the wisdom offered in this thread. Do some research on reputable sources. For instance, the EPA says "Bed bugs die when their body temperatures reaches 45°C (113°F). To kill bed bugs with heat, the room or container must be even hotter to ensure sustained heat reaches the bugs no matter where they are hiding." The "even hotter" is certainly not 165°F.

    I have achieved 130°F in the middle of a black trash bag placed in the sun, as measured with a digital meat thermometer. The bag was set on milk crates above a reflective silver tarp on a calm, hot, sunny day.

    I've also read that cedar oil is effective in treating furniture and baseboard crevices. The stuff is expensive, but since you dilute it to 8% in water, you don't need much. Search hard, and you can get a quantity of it for reasonable money.

    September 1

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    Some leases turn over this weekend so that the landlord can inspect/repair/fumigate/get new locks before the Labor Day Onslaught.

    Yup and

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    Seniors who have graduated and are moving away for jobs/grad school, or students who are moving back into the dorms for next school year might leave a few weeks early.