LAST NIGHT I WATCHED “SECRETS OF THE DEAD” ON PBS AND THE SHOW WAS ABOUT VAMPIRES. I learned how their existence got started and how it remains today. I felt virtuous for watching such foolishness because it was on Public TV.
How many people will dress as Vampires tonight? How many children will want to be the “walking dead” while accepting real live candy? What is the fascination with dead people who have come back to life?
The PBS show seemed to explain part of this by the fact that ancient people couldn’t explain why they had disease and barren crops much of the time. It was easier to blame dead people who came back to haunt the living with catastrophic events. Their solution was to dig up the buried person and cut out their heart and burn it in the village cross roads. This supposedly took care of any further disasters from that Vampire. There were plenty more out there in the grave yards though!
The more modern Vampire, of course, was first made famous by Mary Shelley and other writers. Readers were quick to enjoy the threat of being scared by the monsters imagined to be rising up from the dead. Vampires had big front teeth to pierce the throat and suck blood from the living at night. Then, they would go to their coffin and sleep during the day. Then they didn’t need to have their hearts toasted, but just be stopped by a stake through their heart.
Today, this gives way to finding Vampires in all kind of normal circumstances. Since Dracula was noted to be quite a gentleman and downright sexy when he was behaving himself, that image grew into young ladies swooning over them. Vampire stories are quite popular with teenagers. Parents don’t seem to be discouraging this fascination on any great level.
So, I guess we have to just learn to live with the fascination of Vampires and even believe a little in their existence within our world. We can even dress up like Dracula and feel good about scaring people. I guess we are also comforted by knowing that germs cause disease, not Vampires.
BUT I GUESS WE STILL NEED THEM AROUND……..BECAUSE THEY DON’T SEEM TO BE GOING AWAY!