I couldn't help myself. It's the cheapest, gaudiest Dracula ring in the entire history of Dracula rings, but how could I resist? So rarely does one encounter packaging that illustrates the Prince of Darkness as a sort of mutated half-vampire/half-Wolfman, and by the time I realized just how perfectly the dude's eyebrows mimicked the appearance of my almost-forgotten Nerf boomerang, two bucks seemed like a real bargain.

While it's obviously meant only to bolster the theme of your spooky costume, the makers of the ring felt it necessary to play some sort of strange "hypnotic power." Can it be true? Is the key to fabulous wealth and riches a two dollar plastic ring with an oh so adjustable band? Was my ticket to superstardom something that stains my "fuck you" finger an unenviable shade of green? Only time would tell.

The ring is atrocious, but sometimes, atrocious is just what we're looking for. Not sure if this is one of those times, but it's nice knowing that -- if a case ever arises where I need an atrocious ring -- it's right there on the mantle. Or in this case, the table. Being all hypnotic and stuff. Blah. Vlad.

The "gem" is, of course, a big hunk of red plastic, poorly glued into place. The band can be pulled apart to fit even the fattest of fingers, so if you're a husky wannabe vampire, no worries. Still, the real selling point was that "hypnotic powers" teaser. Time to put the claim to the test. Now we just need a guinea pig. Since I don't have any friends, guess we'll have to use a cat.

I wasn't sure if there were any incantations meant to be spoken during the assumed hypnotizing process, but for what it's worth, I was humming the theme from 2001 the whole way through. The cat, for her part, intermittently cleaned its ass.

In the end, she didn't seem all that hypnotized. I let her try on the ring to give me a shot of the hypno-juice, theorizing that perhaps the ring could only be used on humans. I don't think she took control over me, save for a brief moment where all I could think about was buying six bags of Friskies and serving it in a sauce brewed from beef stock and mouse blood. Then again, I've had these thoughts in times prior to the arrival of Dracula's stupid hypnotic ring.

God, my cats are ugly.