Friday, October 24, 2008



Millions of readers have entered the “Twilight” Zone. Not the one inhabited by Rod Serling and the otherworldly "doo-doo-doo-doo" theme song, but a world created by novelist Stephenie Meyer, in which a boy named Edward Cullen is so besotted with a girl named Bella Swan that it’s all he can do to keep from killing her.

Not that Bella would mind Edward taking aim at her jugular – the result would level the playing field considerably. You see, Edward is a vampire, while Bella is not.

Though targeted at young adults, “Twilight” and its sequels, “New Moon,” “Eclipse,” and
“Breaking Dawn” are ridiculously popular among readers of all ages, including yours truly. The series has spent a combined 160-plus weeks on the New York Times Best Seller list and the big-screen debut of “Twilight” is set to hit theaters next month.

Meyer’s vampires aren’t the bloodsuckers of lore – they never sleep, they’re visible in the daytime, and they won’t throw a hissy fit if you sprinkle a little garlic on your pasta. In fact, Edward and his family are more protectors than predators of humans, preferring to hunt woodland creatures than two-legged ones. Aside from their stunning physical beauty and vamp-specific powers, they’re startlingly human…ish.

As much as I adore this new, romantic breed of vampire, I also love the campy vamps of yesteryear – capes, fangs, bat-morphing and all. Whether you’re from the old school or the new guard, one thing’s for sure: It’s not an easy life. If it’s not that #$%* Buffy trying to slay you all the time, it’s wicked morning breath and bloodstained teeth. What vampires save on food and drink, they spend on whitening strips. And you think bed-hair is a pain? Try pulling a comb through coffin-hair!

Sure, immortality might sound cool, but do you REALLY want to be around for “High School Musical 54: The Reunion – Let’s See Who Got Super-Fat”?

On the flip side, there are a few advantages to being a vampire:

* You raise “sleeping in” to a fine art.
* You’ll never need Botox or plastic surgery.
* No worries about health insurance.
* You don’t have to get a job.
* No grocery bills.
* Lightning speed that makes Superman look like Supersnail.
* Slim chance you’ll ever get food poisoning.
* No soul, no guilt!
* So what if you don’t cast a reflection in the mirror? You always look marvelous.
* You don’t have to worry about Daylight Savings Time.
* No need to kill your enemies … just outlive them.
* A 20-year prison sentence feels like 20 days.
* Bloody Mary night at the local bar.
* Your clothes will come back in style over and over … and over.

And last but not least, one of the best things about being a vampire is when someone says, “You suck!” you can take it as a compliment.