Vampiros, Chupacabras, El Cucui, oh my!
This weekend I'm attending the Bram Stoker Conference sponsored by the Horror Writers of America. As my book is about a Latino vampire, now I'm the "expert" on all things supernatural and Latino. I have been asked to participate on a panel about horror creatures from around the world, and of course, I'll be speaking about our undead neighbors from south of the border.
First, let's clear up some misconceptions. That the typical Mexican vampire wears a tux, has slicked back jet-black hair, and knows more salsa moves than Paste Picante. Actually, most vampiros have never worn a tux (even to weddings), tend to be balding, and only dance polka--when they're drunk.
El Cucui is the mestizo cousin of the common bogeyman. El Cucui is used to threaten little kids as in, behave or El Cucui will get you. That's nonsense, of course. El Cucui isn't crazy about kids at all. He's too much of a neat-freak. What El Cucui loves to do is screw with your budget. You ever open your Visa bill and go, "Holy Cow. I owe how much?" Blame El Cucui.
Chupacabra, is the goat-blood sucker. I know a chupacabra but I'm mad at her so the less I say the better.
La Llorona. Supposedly she drowned her kids and is damned for it. She haunts rivers and canals, crying out, "Where are my children? Where are my children?" She tries to trick you into the water and drown you, hoping to trade your soul for one of her babies'. Llorona honey, that crying bit is so nineteenth century. You want to entice men into the water, I got six words: hot bod in a string bikini.