Vampire killers under federal contract?

U.S. Vampire Service exterminates the undead

Do have a problem with the undead? Are vampires stalking your town, making a simple late-night run for pizza highly dangerous?

You might need the expertise of the U.S. Vampire Service, a satirical (we certainly hope!) website that claims to be a "a private company that contracts with the federal government to exterminate the undead."

According to the USVS, vampires, commonly called "bugs," are "very real." But you should not worry too much about them, and call the police or FBI if you suspect a threat.

"We exterminate less than 10 bugs a year," the site says, "meaning you have a better chance of being hit by lightning while a shark is eating your leg" than of encountering a vampire.

And if you want to work as a vampire slayer?

"Don’t bother applying. When we have openings we find you," the USVS site admonishes. "Nothing personal, but we require special skills and abilities that you can’t study in school."

Also, don't bother trying to fight vampires with crosses, stakes or holy water -- according to the USVS, none of them are effective against real vampires.

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What if you're in another country and want some information on fighting "bugs"?

"We cannot at this time share any of our research with organizations outside of the United States," USVS says. "If you are a foreign agency looking to work with us, please call Special Agent Juan Martinson at 202-324-3000." (That telephone number connects you to the FBI switchboard. We didn't stay on to ask for Agent Martinson.)

So what gives with the USVS? It could be a subtle marketing ploy for something -- perhaps the unpublished book written by its apparent head, Chief Othniel O’Connor. It could be an elaborate satire or practical joke.

Or, it could be just what it says it is: a private company that contracts with the federal government to exterminate the undead.

Happy Halloween!

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