The Office US has touched the hearts of millions. We can all relate to the story lines, antics, and relationships throughout the seasons. Sometimes though, The Office is not always 100% accurate even though it makes for a wonderful break from life.
Today, Eco-Safe Pest Control will examine what exactly happened in Season 9, Episode 10 of The Office, known as “Lice”. Lice can be very frustrating, and they can be spread quite easily. While they are a pest, head lice is something that should be left to medical professionals. Unfortunately, commercial pest control cannot help with head lice, but can help with pests even more frustrating then lice.
With Jim Halpert away, Pam Beasley Haplert has been on her own and is over worked. The telltale indicator of her tiredness is when Erin mistook Pam for Meredith when walked into the office– sorry, Meredith!
Pam: “Yesterday, things took a turn for the worse. I found out Cece has lice, so I was up all night, disinfecting every sheet, towel, toy, item of clothing in the entire house. I’m exhausted.”
After settling in, Pam brings supply requests forms over to Meredith where she notices that Meredith starts to scratch her head erratically.
Pam quickly runs away, worried she has spread lice throughout the office.
Pam: “I’m sure she’s just confused. People scratch their heads when they’re confused. Not always like an ape, the way Meredith just did, but it happens.”
It does not take long to notice and Erin calls Meredith over to check her scalp. At this point, Erin becomes the unofficial lice checker armed with a plastic fork and flashlight. We soon learn that Erin has had lice 22 times throughout her life and attributes that experience to being between foster homes and orphanage. Erin has Meredith lean over the front desk:
Erin: “Holy wow, that’s a big one. All right, pencils, everyone – we’ve got lice.”
Angela: “Oh, god, Meredith! Lice? Did you not sign a pledge to shower?”
Dwight: “What? Lice? Oh, my God. Lock the doors. We’re on full quarantine.”
With Dwight now involved, we know that the issue will be handled in true Schrute fashion. He will use the most toxic and dangerous materials on the market, even products not labeled for lice, and overreact so much where the problem is made worse where he becomes a danger to himself and others; however, we love Dwight!
Pam: “Dwight, relax. It’s just lice.”
Dwight: “Just lice, Pam? Of all of the vermin in God’s great green kingdom, Lice are the ones I detest the most. My first day of school, I had lice, and no one would play with me. For 15 years they called me ‘freak’ and ‘four eyes’ and ‘sci-fi nerd’ and ‘girl puncher,’ all because I had lice when I was seven.”
While it seems unlikely that Dwight’s childhood issues were all because of lice, he give a shoutout to the “green kingdom” which promotes the idea of the importance of using natural organic methods especially when it comes to pest control issues in the workplace.
Dwight cuts the line for lice checks.
Dwight: “Make way. No. Inspect me”
Inspecting is key when it comes to any pest issue an office or business may have. Without inspection, no pest control company can properly identify and determine the best action plan to help you overcome or prevent pest issues. After her inspection, Erin informs Dwight that he is all clear and notes that Dwight has the cleanest scalp she has ever seen.
Dwight: “I should be. I use Lice shampoo every morning.”
Natural Organic Commercial Pest Control is just as, if not more effective then traditional pest control.
A perfect example of going overboard is Dwight using lice shampoo even when he does not have lice. Besides impact to overall health, this can be very serious and sometimes it can happen with pest control companies. They treat just to treat and that should never be the case. If you have a pest control company that applies the “strongest, most toxic” materials each visit, please give Eco-Safe Pest Control a call for a free pest control audit of your business.
Dwight, without hesitation, grabs an aerosol can from his waist and sprays Erin in the face with what we can only assume is to kill lice or a generic disinfecting spray. He then sprays Pam, Angela, and others as he retreats out of the office, so he does not catch lice. Never, and we repeat never, spray anyone with an aerosol – especially in the face.
With the whole office against Meredith as they believe she is the one who brought lice in because her character has a “less clean” vibe, Pam begins to feel very guilty. When Erin positively identifies that Pam has lice along with Angela, Stanley, Oscar and others, Pam loudly replies:
Pam: “No. How? I am so clean.”
While being clean will most definitely help with controlling pests, being clean does not mean you are not vulnerable to pest issues. Countless homes, businesses, and restaurants adopt the best cleaning procedures possible, but still can be plagued with pests such as fleas, German roaches, ants, and more. A common misconception is that you must be dirty to have a pest issue and need commercial pest control. This sentiment could not be further from the truth.
Minutes later, Dwight returns in a full yellow hazmat suit carrying supplies and a megaphone. One thing we do need to give Dwight credit for is that he acts immediately.
Dwight: “It’s a hazmat suit. That stands for hazardous materials men’s suit wearing. If you rent more than four times a year, it just makes sense to buy.”
He asks if there is anyone else here that is lice-free and finds out to his dismay that they do not own their own hazmat suits.
Dwight: “I’m going to need you to gather your belongings. Retreat to the warehouse. Conduct your business there, until the infected have been de-loused.”
While this seems like a great idea, just because Erin did not see lice does not mean they are not carrying it with them when they go down to the office. Remember, Erin is not a medical professional and lice, just like many pests, can be carried. If someone encountered bed bugs, they could unknowingly bring them with them. With pests such as bed bugs, it is of upmost importance to not spread possibly contaminated items to other areas as that can further an infestation.
Dwight: “I’m going to stay here and fight. If you don’t hear from me by lunch, call me. I might want lunch.”
Dwight beings inspecting all over the office, looking for lice on office supplies and desks. Lice cannot survive without a human host for more than 24 hours. They cannot live on hats, scarves, carpet, or furniture. Lice do not “fall” onto surfaces or supplies unless the hair they attached to falls out. Even more good news is that they cannot live on pets. Stanley has had enough and wants to leave, but Erin tackles him frantically explaining that if he leaves now, lice will get in his car, and then inside of his house. Again, this is definitely true for many pests such as bed bugs and German roaches.
Dwight of course calls a meeting:
Dwight: “Scalp leeches, skull vampires, follicle gypsies, hair lawyers. One this is clear – it’s kill or be killed!”
Erin: “No, no, no. It’ more of a nuisance, really. It’s not that big a deal. I’ve collected your hats and coats.”
Dwight: “To be burned!”
Erin: “To be washed.”
Angela: “What do we do about our heads?”
Dwight: “I’m not going to lie. Lye!”
Erin: “All we need is mayonnaise… It helps to suffocate the little buddies, and it’s a really healthy alternative to the chemicals found in most lice shampoos.”
Oscar: “I can appreciate that. I also only eat local organic produce.”
Go Oscar! Oscar would absolutely love Eco-Safe Pest Control. Erin instructs everyone to leave the mayo on for four hours as that will be enough time for the lice to “fall asleep, suffocate, and then pass away.”
Dwight: “Oh sure and when you’re ready to get serious, come to me to get it done right [showing off sharp scissors in the air].”
Stanley: “Put those away before you hurt yourself.”
Dwight listens, but accidentally rips his hazmat suit when attempting to put his scissors into his utility belt. To which he repeatedly starts screaming “No” while retreating into Michael’s old office and locks himself inside. Dwight then puts his megaphone to use:
Dwight: “Attention people of the office. You have exactly 60 seconds to evacuate the bullpen. At that time, I will be tossing this powerful insecticidal grenade, which contains piperonyl butoxide as well as…”
Dwight accidentally drops it and it fogs Michael’s old office which Dwight is trapped in. Everyone gasps and Erin asks Dwight if he is ok.
Dwight: [coughs] “Whoa. Hypertoxide has a mild hallucinogenic effect, but I don’t think it’s kicked in yet. I’m going to count down from ten. Nine, yellow, cold, sad, purple”
Dwight immediately falls to the floor.
Hypertoxide is most likely a made-up word since Dwight is hallucinating and insecticide grenades or bug bombs can be extremely dangerous. During his warning, Dwight mentions a common synergist in many products. Piperonyl butoxide (PBO) is a synthetic pesticide ingredient that acts as a synergist. A synergist helps other ingredients work better. PBO is considered to be low in toxicity to humans on its own but is often combined with other pesticides such as pyrethins (natural) and pyrethroids (synthetic). PBO is typically found with pyrethrin in medicated lice shampoos and is also a common ingredient in many pesticide products.
Believe it or not, a bug bomb would do little to nothing for lice and this holds true for most pests. Bug bombs usually will not help control pest infestations, even with roaches, ants, and bed bugs. From 2007 to 2015, there were more than 3,200 cases of bug bomb-related illnesses reported in the United States. If used incorrectly and if this episode was reality, Dwight could have died. However, in true Dwight fashion, Dwight sees even his weaknesses as strengths and firmly believes he always knows what is best.
Dwight: “Had a pretty good day today. Not everything went exactly according to plan, but, Lice, if you are watching, I am ready for you anytime, anywhere.”
Dwight accidentally sets off a second insecticidal grenade in his vehicle. If you have or think you may have lice, please consult a medical professional. If you are ever considering using a bug bomb, please call Eco-Safe Pest Control beforehand as we offer better, safer, and more effective means of dealing with even the most difficult of pests.