Real Mistakes, Real Laughs:

Air bases were built on captured islands of Tinian, Saipan, and Guam but they were barley within the range of the long-range bombers.

(hope the bombadiers weren't on gluten-free diets)

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Saturday, June 6, 2009

"Bite Me"

Ah, remember the good old days, when the title phrase was an efficacious insult instead of the come-hither teen-speak Stephenie Meyer fans have come to associate with all things vampire. I'm probably not the only one who remembers that the whole teen infatuation with hunky vampires began more than 20 years ago with the film, "The Lost Boys." Back then there was less blood and more imagination, kind of like the movies of 60 years ago when the camera panned up to the stars after the final kiss close-up. You knew what came next; you didn't have to see it. Now there's so much Hollywood vampire blood that California is going to have ration corn syrup.

But my real issue is the whole vampire-equals-sex-god thing. I suppose it started in 1931 when Bela Lugosi forever made Dracula a romantic figure (if you like Hungarians with patent-leather hair). Personally, Lugosi's Dracula resembled my pediatrician. It's a wonder I didn't screech during inoculations. Or fall in love.

Aren't vampires supposed to be scary? Certainly that's what Bram Stoker intended. The literary Dracula had hair growing out of his palms and ears, foul breath, and red eyes. Hardly my idea of romantic figure. Most women don't tolerate back hair, let alone palm hair (though I suppose it would have its merits in winter). Yet out of the myriad Dracula films made over the decades, only two ever portrayed the Vampire in Chief as a frightening character. "Nosferatu," a silent film of the 1920s and probably the original "horror movie," and "Bram Stoker's Dracula," the '90s film with Winona Ryder, Keanu Reeves, and Gary Oldman. Not surprisingly, the latter version sported all the special makeup and effects modern cinematic techniques offered. Gary Oldman's portrayal of Dracula was indeed scary, but compensated by a bevy of sexy, semi-nude female vampires who had their way with Keanu Reeve's Jonathan Harker.

I'm too old to know the names of today's hot actors portraying vampires in movies and cable tv shows, but I'm sure everyone under 25 has committed their chiseled jawlines and bleached-white fangs to memory. I just hope life doesn't imitate art and spawn a vampire craze among teenagers. Maybe vampirism will replace oral sex as the new good-night kiss. The legal drinking age may need some serious re-evaluation.


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