I can’t help it. For twenty years, I was a news anchor in Madison, and old habits die hard. So I often check the Madison Police Department’s website, just to see what the thugs and losers are doing to keep the cops busy.
The incident report about the vampire doesn’t even mention the word. It’s filed as a battery complaint. Happened in broad daylight….just before 9 Sunday morning. What kind of vampire walks the streets in broad daylight?
A vampire wannabe.
More on that, in a moment. In case you haven’t noticed, vampires have apparently hired the kind of public relations help that Tiger Woods needs, and have completely revamped their image. There’s the “Twilight” series of novels Stephenie Meyer has written, and which have been turned into very successful movies.
Stephen King says Ms. Meyer “can’t write worth a darn”, but even the master of horror himself acknowledges that Meyer’s vampire books are HUGE. They’re all best-sellers, and the central figure is a benevolent vampire, Edward Cullen, who CAN exist in sunlight, and has become the heart-throb of millions of teen girls. He uses his powers for “good”. And to protect Bella Swan, his girlfriend.
Then there’s the “True Blood” phenomenon: the multiple-award-winning HBO series about vampires and shape-shifters, based on the Sookie Stackhouse novels written by Charlaine Harris. Sookie is a telepathic waitress who’s fallen in love with Bill the vampire, but he’s one of those old-school vampires who has to sleep in a coffin and can’t stand sunlight - or silver.
I admit I’m hooked by both the Twilight movies and the True Blood TV shows.
Back to our story about the vampire wannabe in Madison. Madison Police Public Information Officer Joel DeSpain - who’s been a pal of mine for 20 years and who worked with my wife back in their Channel 3 days - is the person who writes most of the police incident reports for the media.
He says the 21-year-old Madison woman was jogging on the bike path on the near west side, where Allen Street becomes Edgewood Avenue, Sunday morning just before 9, when a white guy (DeSpain did NOT say “pale white guy”) in his 20’s, about five-foot-ten with spiky hair, pushed the young woman down. He “flashed his teeth and hissed”, according to DeSpain, but the young woman was able to fight back and run off.
Not one bit amusing in any way to the young woman. DeSpain told me yesterday afternoon the young woman was terrified, and cops aren’t amused one bit by the attacker. This is serious stuff, and if the cops catch this guy, he’s in big trouble.
With these new-age vampires walking around in daylight, will Madison police have to start carrying silver bullets?
I say stake ‘em - right through the heart. It’s the only way to be sure.