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10 Easy Ways to Tell if You're a Vampire

October 16, 1998|MICHAEL QUINTANILLA | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Up all night?

Been chowing down on rare steaks?

Trying to land a job at your local blood bank?

If you answered yes to any of these queries, then you might possibly be a vampire. Or, at least, a vannabe.

For starters, you're in the right place. The City of Angels is Vampireville to slightly more than 50 vampires, claims the VPR, or Vampire Research Center, in New York, another favorite haunt.

"Vampires love to come and go as they please, and they especially love a big city," says Joel Martin, VPR's director. "Big cities have a very fluid population."

Ba-da-bing!

But seriously, folks, the file cabinets in Martin's office are crammed with thousands of dossiers from people from across the world who believe they are vampires.

Tooth be told (sorry), he says the VPR--which started doing this work in 1971--is up to its neck (oops) in verifying the very existence of modern-day vampires. So far, the center claims there are about 1,000 vampires--based on a confidential vampire census--with about 400 of them scattered about Canada, Mexico and the United States (where San Francisco, Chicago and Washington, D.C., are other fave stays).

"These people have very good jobs, some in government. They're well educated. One of them is from your area--he used to work in network television--that is, until he died from drinking contaminated blood."

Oh?

Martin explains that vampires drink human blood "because they have the need to drink it. It's called hemotomania, a craving for blood. We, at the VPR, believe that this craving is not psychological; it's physiological."

It's also one of the many ways to tell whether you're a vampire. Here are 10 more from a VPR questionnaire:

* Are you a nocturnal person and dislike daylight?

* Are you a loner and tend to be secretive?

* Do you naturally look younger than you are?

* Are you supermodel thin and pale?

* Do you have elongated canine teeth?

* Do you have the need to drink blood--anywhere from two drops to a couple of ounces daily (which usually comes from a cooperative giver)?

* Do you have legal access to blood via a job at a hospital or a blood bank?

* Do you have a strong interest in vampirology?

* Do you have a voracious appetite for rare meat and an aversion to garlic?

* Do you almost always dress in black?

* For a copy of VPR's vampire evaluation form, write to: Joel Martin, Vampire Research Center, P.O. Box 5442, Babylon, NY 11707.

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