People think wolves howl at the moon, but a quick googling should be enough to dissuade them from the idea. From there it’s a small leap to disassociate werewolves from the moon as well. I’m surely not the first person to consider that… even typing out that sentence sounds like a douchey humblebrag, but I can’t think of anything I’ve seen where werewolves weren’t affected by the moon. There’s probably some prime example everyone is rushing to comment on, but it just struck me one day so I went and googled it. I mean wolves howling at the moon, not non-lunar werewolves. I suppose I could have googled that as well. :P

Of course that begs the question,* what triggers lycanthrope changes? Obviously Gregor can control his, as can any lycan that’s been doing it for a while. There are a host of reasons someone wouldn’t be able to control it though. When someone is first “brought into the were-fold” (not a double entendre in this case) they can change seemingly at random. It’s like adolescent boys and erections**. Well, it probably doesn’t happen nearly that often, but lycanthropy does introduce a whole raft of new hormonal imperatives to a body. Some people aren’t the most stable to begin with. Suddenly turning into a furry whatsit can pile on a degree of stress to one’s life. Some weres can have specific triggers though. The were-cats working at the pet store who just ripped a big bag of catnip all over himself is in for a surprise. Really his co-workers are in for the surprise.

Gregor’s exactly right though, it’s an example of snowballed confirmation bias. I don’t expect this myth to go away very quickly though. Lycanthropy is such a obvious allegory for adolescence it’s good material for fables and stuff like Teen Wolf and Gingersnaps. Myths I would like to see go away are the “you only use 10% of your brain” one. Limitless is a good show so I’ll give it a pass, but I would have enjoyed Lucy more if it didn’t start with Morgan Freeman authoritatively telling me something that’s patently false. It’d be like starting off a movie by telling the audience that the moon is made of cheese or that women have fewer teeth. That’s a real thing people used to believe that I just found googling stupid old misconceptions. Aristotle thought that. I mean… just count their teeth? Maybe he thought a woman opening her mouth wide enough for a man to count her teeth would make her uterus spray poison or something.

*It doesn’t actually beg the question. Begging the question is a logical fallacy involving circular reasoning. I’m just using it as a colloquial phrase to slightly shift topics, which I probably shouldn’t do, especially because too many people doing it too often changes the meaning of phrases and words. For example, “theory” now means both “A scientifically accepted general principle supported by a substantial body of evidence offered to provide an explanation of observed facts and as a basis for future discussion or investigation” and also “a big fat guess” and we’ve all seen how much trouble that has caused. Edit: It’s been pointed out that my original definition of theory wasn’t accurate so I’ve updated it. Laws generally state what and how, but not why. Theories deal with the why. Ranking them first and second in terms of scientific certainty leads people to believe that theories are sitting around waiting for a few more pieces of evidence before they’re promoted to laws.

**I just learned that the female equivalent of ‘morning wood’ is called ‘morning dew,’ which sounds like the Mountain Dew guys trying to obliviously market a breakfast drink.

The vote incentive is finally updated. I’ll try to not let it languish for that long again.

Double res version will be posted over at Patreon as soon as I get up. $1 and up, but feel free to contribute as much as you like :)

Here’s the link to the new comments highlighter for chrome, and the GitHub link which you can use to install on FireFox via Greasemonkey.