By Michael Gushue & CL Bledsoe
(NOTE: October is the month when HALLOWEEN HAPPENS. You can tell because stores are taking down next year’s Christmas displays and putting up the following year’s Valentine’s Day displays, just like Capitalism intended.
Of course, Big Distraction has gotten so good that we can’t remember what happened last week, and have no idea what’s supposed to happen a week from now. Some people call this neurological damage, and others call it Livin’ The Dream. Either way, we, the authors of this blog, are here to help. You see, we’re a lot like elephants: we never use deodorant, we never hold in our farts, and we never forget.
So, every Thursday in the month of Octember (whatever), we’ll be posting an informative and factual blog post covering a vital Halloween-related topic. This way, you won’t be caught by surprise when people show up at your door and demand treats, on October 31st. Or October Threedee-onesie.)
Now we return to our regularly scheduled program: How To Even…Deal with Becoming a Werewolf, already in progress.
You can’t sleep. You go outside to wander the foggy moors (or maybe a K-Mart parking lot. Basically the same thing), but something is following you. It looks like a giant wolfie doggo, but there’s a hint of intelligence in its eyes. You’re pretty sure it’s just a big fuzzy wuzzy, though, and you give its tummy a squeezle. It doesn’t like that. It borks — but not a cute bork — a bork full of bloodlust and animal rage. You try to run, but it easily catches you. The next thing you know, it’s nomming on your body. You pass out and wake in your bed. You’re fine; no wounds or anything. Though, your pajamas are totally shredded. Typical Sunday morning, you’re thinking.
You soon put the experience behind you, because you feel great. Better than you maybe ever have. You can run faster, see better, smell things you didn’t know existed. It’s amazing, until the next full moon. You are at a party when midnight hits. Suddenly, you feel something weird. You run to the bathroom, and your body begins to change. Hair sprouts all over your body, your limbs change, and your hands become claws. You crash through the window and fall two stories, but land, unscathed. You can’t stop yourself from howling at the moon. Haven’t you already gone through puberty? What the hell is up?
The next morning, you wake in a Dumpster just as it’s being dumped into a trash truck. After a bemusing interaction with some sanitation workers, you get your bearings and head home to your apartment. The door is locked, so you find yourself scaling the side of the building and going in through your balcony. Your memories of the night before are confused, half-formed. You remember a lot of running, humping things that may have been inanimate objects, and you’re pretty sure you swallowed a cat.
Maybe it doesn’t sink in right away, but after the next full moon, you can no longer deny it. The doggo you met on the moors wasn’t a good boy at all; it was a werewolf, and now you’re one too. WTF do you do now?
First, let’s assess the situation. Being a werewolf is manageable. It happens regularly, though there can be some trip ups every now and then. But a mostly regular schedule means you can plan for it. Schedule solo camping trips during the full moon. Sleep naked to avoid having to replace your pajamas. Avoid having pets so you don’t eat them. You might consider chaining yourself up every full moon, but this is probably a bad idea for two reasons. One, your werewolf self will simply break the chains, which means you’re out however much they cost (even silver chains, more on that later). And two, stifling your inner werewolf nature is unhealthy and will lead to it popping up at unexpected times. You aren’t a person and a werewolf, now; you’re just a werewolf. If you try to separate the two, you’re going to end up with all kinds of psychic backlash. Basically, it’s better to let that stuff come out than trying to keep it all bottled up inside, because when it does come out — which it will — you’re going to end up doing something really messed up. Like eating a neighbor.
Being a werewolf is a lifestyle, which means you’re going to need some supplies. Your body will now change into a giant wolf every full moon (and once during a really embarrassing sexual encounter with a waitress). There are certain basic realities you have to now face.
Flea collars. All that roaming in the woods means you’re probably going to get fleas. Luckily, flea collars can be made into stylish necklaces. You’re also going to have to check your ears for ticks after a night of loping around and killing stuff. You’ll want to do that before you head off to work.
Nair. Your body isn’t just going to sprout fur during the full moon; it’s going to generally get hairier. Unless you’re in a hipster band or work in a coffee shop, you’re going to have to get rid of some of that hair to avoid public scrutiny. Also, consider that people are going to start wondering why their pets are disappearing every full moon, plus all the howling on main street. You don’t want to draw any attention to yourself. Hair removal is going to become a big part of your life. Yes, it will grow right back. Even if you get laser hair removal, pluck until you’ve killed the follicles, etc., it will grow back. Sorry.
Dental chews. A werewolf is only as good as his admittedly long and pointy teeth. We recommend chews with charcoal for removing plaque and freshening the breath.
Traditional werewolf literature avoids discussing the big elephant in the kennel when it comes to wolfin’ it up. That issue is doggie medical problems. For starters, you’re going to have to deworm yourself. And believe us, it’s even worse than it sounds. After that you’ll have to lay in a bunch of pharmaceuticals for mange, distemper, rabies, heartworms (yeah, *more* worms. Get used to it.). The list goes on and on. Kennel cough can be a problem, especially at work, although you might be able to pass it off as “cubicle cough.” We’re not even going to discuss hip dysplasia. Look it up.
All this makes becoming a werewolf seem like a downgrade. But think for a moment. Exactly how healthy are you now? If you’re like us, probably somewhere between an invalid and a run over armadillo (spoiler alert: you’re like us). Werewolves, on the other hand: no ulcers, ingestion, hangnails, bald spots, bad tickers, slipped discs, depression, anxiety, or any of the other ailments you’re going to have to suffer during your lifetime as a non-werewolf. Final score: werewolves 1; human people 0.
Things to Avoid
Silver. There are all kinds of legends about werewolves. Some are true and some aren’t. One of the most prevalent is that silver kills werewolves. This isn’t entirely accurate. See, once you become a werewolf, your senses become heightened. This includes your sense of style. Silver is considered more refined than gold, but it’s still pretty garish in an everyday setting. So, the stereotypical “pained” reaction a werewolf has to silver is more of an embarrassed reaction to an over-the-top place setting or pretentious letter opener meant to impress when the werewolf can smell that you still have a little poopy butt.
Mercury. Another substance that’s supposedly anathema to werewolves is mercury. The origins of this legend are shrouded in mystery, but there is a semblance of truth to it. First off, consider where mercury is found: mostly in thermometers. Thermometers are used by doctors — and vets. Dogs traditionally hate going to the vet. (And think about how a dog’s temperature is actually taken.) So, we can see the source of this legend — werewolves dislike having cold thermometers stuck up their butts, which is fair. So, they dislike mercury, in principle.
Wolfsbane. A popular theory is that werewolves are repelled by wolfsbane. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. In fact, wolfsbane acts like catnip for werewolves. If you want a werewolf rolling on its back and acting all stoned, by all means, break out the wolfsbane. Just be prepared when every werewolf in the vicinity shows up.
Dog whistles. Dog whistles affect werewolves much the same way they affect dogs, which means they’re really annoying. To be honest, there’s a pretty decent chance that if you blow a “werewolf whistle” around a werewolf, it’s going to ask you politely to keep down the noise, and if that doesn’t work, it may call the police with a noise complaint.
Vegans and Vegetarians
Becoming a werewolf is an absolute nightmare for vegetarians and vegans. When the transformation happens, the human consciousness is submerged in the animal form. Werewolves will act like wolves or dogs in various ways, such as sniffing butts, peeing on things to mark them, and going batshit for snausages.
Of course, this is going to lead to some guilt for the meat-averse. There isn’t a lot that can be done about this. Some formerly vegan werewolves have tried dressing tofu up as a rabbit or cat, but their wolf selves sniffs right through it. On the upside, werewolves are pretty good about being gluten free.
At first blush, turning into a werewolf may seem like a tragedy. There’s the hair situation, the indigestion after eating the neighbor’s cat, and the general fear of discovery, but this is just one perspective. Consider, instead, the reality that you are now, basically, a dog. We challenge you to name anything happier and more lovely than a dog. Other than Betty White, of course. No longer will you be mired in the morass of existential angst that is a human life. You have a real shot at inner peace and contentment, and all you have to do is sniff some butts and try to eat a few butterflies. And you can lick yourself just about anywhere you want to (when you’re in wolf form). Honestly, we’re jealous. Maybe not of the butt sniffing part, but of the general doggy nature. Get out there, chase some sticks, and try not to eat anyone who doesn’t deserve it.