reason: But as you point out, there are surges in the amount of vampire literature or films when people are worried about disease. The ability to toy with something that can kill you isn't new: it's like playing Russian roulette in a much more safe way.
The last big spike was during the height of the American AIDS scare. And this is perfect because it's a very powerful taboo, but people can get involved in it without really doing anything. Nuzum: My guess is that Lazarus people probably don't know about Stoker.
And followers of that myth, the people who call themselves vampires, are generally sort of nice.
As Nuzum crunched Count Chocula one morning in his Washington, D. home, he flipped on his TV and caught President Bush warning against the soft fascism of plugging in too many appliances and becoming an "energy vampire." Flipping through a magazine, Nuzum saw a model with fangs and a cape enticing him to buy some vodka and "drink in the night." He had his project. Nuzum encountered neither of those fiends, but his reporting ping-ponged him around the Western world, to a vampire bar tour in San Francisco, to a fetish night in New York, to Bram "Dracula" Stoker's old stomping grounds in the English town of Whitby.
"If the vampire is ubiquitous," he wondered, "how did this happen? He accompanied sickly vegetarians and star Butch Patrick on a fact-challenged tour of Vlad the Impaler's Transylvania.
Some are reclusive, some are younger than they say they are in chat rooms, and none of them will prove to a journalist that they actually drink blood.
(Nuzum drank some of his own and got very sick.) "All of the vampire folks I met," Nuzum writes, "are all at least marginally aware of the darkness in their own lives.