Monday, October 24, 2011

#116: Vampires

Reason to Be Happy #116:

I've had a thing for vampires ever since reading Stephen King's Salem's Lot at far too young an age. I knew immediately that if such creatures existed, I wanted to meet one…heck, maybe even be one.
I love the old school vampires, and the way Anne Rice built on the vampire mythology that already existed (sticking to the fact, for instance, that, ahem, vampires can not go out in the sun no matter how overcast it is).
Did you know that every culture has vampire lore? Including the Inuits?

So why did I want to be a vampire? What was the appeal? Living forever. Even at the age of twelve, I knew that this world was a pretty cool place, that I pretty much adored life, and that I had no hope of squeezing every single amazing thing I wanted to do, learn, see, and experience on this earth into one measly human lifetime. The idea of getting to stick around forever was attractive. Obviously, I hadn't thought it through—you know, the idea that everyone you know will eventually age and die unless you turn them into vampires, too. The whole you-can-only-go-out-after-dark thing. The whole humans-want-to-kill you aspect. Oh, and the drinking of blood (handily taken care of by the synthetic Japanese True Blood drink). But for all those cons, you have to admit the pro is a fairly big pro.

Perhaps you'll get a kick out of some correspondence with a friend who shall remain nameless here (please note my restraint). At a party, we got into the discussion of "which would you rather be, a zombie or a vampire?" He started it. My answer was immediate and (to me) obvious: vampire. Yes, I love zombie stories. But I do not love zombies. Nor do I want to be one. We actually "discussed" this for about 20 minutes (no lie) much to the amusement and bewilderment of other party goers.

The next morning, the friend sent this message, and the following correspondence ensued. (Yes, we are dorks):

Zombies vs. Vampires, The case for Zombies.
While vampires are an obvious favorite, I think there are some strong arguments for wanting to be a zombie.

1. Zombies live free of pain, crime, war, religion and politics. This John Lennon-inspired life offers no stress and utopia where all zombies get along and work together for one common goal: to eat the warm flesh of those rascally vermin, the living. (Who brought us noting but pain, pestilence, and Justin Bieber) The zombie life is a Zen-like utopia where you wonder around with people of the same mind-set looking for sustenance and nothing else. (Very John Kerouac - think moving commune) . There is no financial strain and materialistic pressure.

2. Going to the beach. Zombies get to hang out at the beach and swim all day long. While vampires must sleep the day away, zombies are able to enjoy the surf and the sun. (Which helps slow the rotting flesh issue.) Zombies are the majority in every scenario, not the minority. Zombies get to walk down the street loud and proud and don"t have to hide a thing. Living in the shadows is not for the zombie. Zombies do what they want, when they want.

3. The ability to eventually rot away. Being able to eventually rot away in a painless fashion is a ideal. Immortality equals constant boredom. How many times can you read the same book? (Or worse, a different book that is the same story) Seeing friends die, seeing the same trends over and over; all of this becomes a form of torture. However, the zombie eventually just rots away in a painless fashion after a life of hanging at the beach and eating to your hearts content. No fear of old age, no need for healthcare - no having the see the remake of "Footloose" - all of these are good things.

4. You are not hunted. Vampires are constantly being hunted. Were-wolves, vampire-killers, whatever Wesley Snipes is; all these creatures are interested in destroying you. Zombies? In general, people are constantly trying to get away from you. Sure it makes eating a little harder, but I would take that over free of the hunt.

There are likely numerous other issues, but the kids need fed.


Zombies vs. Vampires, The Case for Vampires

1. Zombies lack cognition of all things but the need to feed, but vampires still maintain their logic, intellect, and even emotions. Vampires retain verbal skills, and their long life spans usually equate to well-developed vocabularies. Vampires are therefore able to truly commune and communicate, have witty dinner conversation with friends, flirt, woo, argue, debate, and discuss...all things which make life, especially eternal life, have spice and interest.

2. Vampires are undead, which is technically different from dead (which zombies are). Being undead means their physical forms are "frozen" at the age and state of health in which they were turned vampire. This means their bodies will never decay, rot, or smell. This makes vampires much better smelling and hygienic than zombies. Vampires are able to be attractive and well-dressed, if they so choose.

3. If a vampire is injured, their vampire blood (known as V in some human circles, where it is highly coveted) allows them super healing powers. So, for instance, if they suffer a gunshot wound, knife slash, or even an amputation, they are able to heal themselves, rather than fall prey to rot, gangrene, and decay like a zombie. A vampire will never be forced to exist with missing limbs.

4. Vampires are able to "pass" as humans, and their smaller numbers means they are able to go unnoticed among humans if they wish. Zombies are unable to "blend" due to their appearance and strong odor.

5. Vampires can have sex. It is true their only bodily fluid is blood, so...they cry tears of blood, get the idea. But THEY CAN HAVE SEX and can enjoy sex. (Zombies, I repeat, have no cognition of anything but the need to feed).

6. Being immortal is not for sissies, but requires a proper attitude of mental challenge. There are always more books to read (or be written), languages to learn, places to visit, instruments and crafts to master, endless avenues of self improvement and discovery. (Not all vampires, after all, choose to repeat high school...which would, indeed, be a form of torture).

I did mention sex, right? And dinner parties? Speech?

There are likely numerous other issues, but I must do some writing that actually pays my bills....



Zombies vs. Vampires, Response

BORING!!!! Typical answers on the supposed superiority of vampires. :) Zombies have cognition, but not in the typical sense. Zombies communicate, albeit in a rudimentary fashion. Give me the zombie all day long. Sex with no fluid except for blood. Creepy! Take care and get to work.


Boring? Whatevs, dude. Boring is stumbling around drooling and moaning... :-) You go rot on the beach. I'll be exploring the Louvre after midnight. No hard feelings.


  1. This made my day on so many levels. Thanks for the smile.
    For what it's worth, I say vampire all the way!

  2. Thanks! Ridiculous, I know...but these are important things to consider, right? :-)

  3. A recent "Deadliest Warrior" on Spike pitted Zombies vs Vampires. Vamps won.
    I enjoy vampire stories as long as there is NO GLITTER.

  4. Amen. Real vamps don't sparkle. :-)

  5. For me it's simple. Sex. Vampire sex is HOT. Zombie sex is scary. You never know when something might fall off. For me, that ruins the mood.

  6. Ha! Rick, you made me snort my coffee! :-)

  7. The worst thing about life as a vampire: the allergy to garlic, which is the lifeblood --so to speak-- of great cuisine. The second worst: the aversion to any object or pair of sticks that forms a cross.

    But that given, I would rather a vampire be
    than even a zombie bee be.